The Vampires formed in 2004, while its four members were studying at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Beginning with aparent influences such Charlie Parker, Bernie McGann and Ornette Coleman, the band has incorporated the compositions of Garbett and Rose to find a style drawing from Afro-Carribean and South American grooves, and more open improvisation within these grooves, in their original material. The group featured the uncannily natural combination of the two horn players and composers, Nick Garbett (trumpet) and Jeremy Rose (alto saxophone) and the well established and like-minded rhythm section team of Alex Boneham (double bass) and Alex Masso (drums).
The band has enjoyed success from their four critically acclaimed albums South Coasting (Jazzgroove Records), Chellowdene, Garfish, and Tiro, as well as extensive touring and festival appearances over the past eight years, performing at every major jazz festival in Australia as well as the Sydney Opera House. The band features award winning saxophonist/composer Jeremy Rose (2009 Young Australian Jazz Artist of the Year, 2012/2013 Freedman Jazz Finalist) trumpeter/composer Nick Garbett, bassist, Alex Boneham (2012 Young Australian Jazz Artist of the Year), and drummer/percussionist Alex Masso.
The Vampires’ music builds on the rich history of piano-less jazz quartets with a unique twist, adopting reggae, balkan, afrobeat and latin rhythms in unexpected ways. The dual saxophone and trumpet melodic lines have a strong sense of dialogue and emotional range – from exciting to soothing. The band draws on many influences, but have been compared to the likes of early Ornette Coleman, the Catholics, Bob Marley and John Zorn/Dave Douglas’ Masada.
The Vampires toured Germany in April 2014 and from only eight places The Vampires were selected from over 321 applications from 33 countries for the prestigious Jazzahead 2014 showcase.
“Played with verve, high ability and inspiration, The Vampires have produced another distinguished album.”
**** – 4/5 stars – The Australian
Described by ABC Jazz’s Mal Stanley as a talented young vocalist and pianist and ‘one to watch’, Frances is a classy young entertainer based in Sydney and performing at jazz clubs, festivals and other venues around the country.
Frances’ music is mostly original and jazz-oriented, although it also includes blues, bossa and covers of timeless classics.
While she’s been compared to a young Diana Krall and Norah Jones, Frances captivates her audiences with a combination of her genuinely warm stage presence as well as a voice and style that is uniquely her own. She is also a talented and engaging original composer so when she performs her own swinging tunes and beautiful ballads, they merge seamlessly with the standards she covers.
As jazz legend James Morrison said “Frances has a wonderful feeling for jazz and blues standards but what makes her a real stand-out are her original songs and her unique style.” Matt Bailey, Presenter of Jazz Vibes on Fine Music 102.5 FM said “Frances’ music is a river of original and heartfelt material, truly a creative force not just in the jazz idiom, but as a genuine contemporary songwriter.”
Frances’ regular band includes some of Sydney’s most talented young jazz musicians as well as a few old hands. With Frances on vocals and piano, the band normally includes double bass, drums, guitar, tenor sax, trumpet and backing vocals. Changes in tempo and in the combinations of people on stage – from Frances performing ballads solo to the whole band swinging together – give her live shows nuance and variety.
Frances’ album ‘If this Were a Dream’ debuted at #5 on the ARIA Jazz Album charts and has sold steadily since. John McBeath, Jazz Critic for ‘The Australian’ newspaper said “the new album by Frances Madden impressed me more than most debut albums do. Frances has an individual expressive ability, a musical professionalism, a good feel for swing in jazz and she plays fine piano . . .”
Frances’ performances include pro bono and charity work. In 2014 she performed in Mexico for a Susila Dharma International benefit concert and she performed to support the 2015 Tour de Cure here in Australia.
More information and contact details can be found at http://www.francesmadden.com