Jeff Duff in “Polymorphia”

Posted on 15th November 2015

Maier's 1618 burning hermaphroditeJeff Duff is to appear in Polymorphia—a film by Sydney-based film-maker Edward Inchbold to be released in 2016. It’s a film of the short genre in which "an insane man meets the man in his head who makes his dreams". Duff plays the role of "Albert".

That’s according to IMDB, which also notes that the film stars one Felix Johnson as "Mr A B C", and one Nerida Bronwen as "The Dancing Girl", with music by Steve J. de Souza, among other seasoned artists of cinematography, production and costume design, etc.

Inchbold—this film’s writer, director and producer—also has the 2014 film Hard lines behind him. See also his early profile at the film-maker’s share-site mutinee.

Duff himself notes in his blog of 1st Oct 2015:

Film director Edward Inchbold, selected me to play one of the rather spooky characters in his new short movie called ‘Pollymorphia’. We filmed the movie in Sydney in September. I’m looking forward to seeing the completed film … apparently the aim is to have it screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

Pending more details, let’s ponder the above woodprint from 1618 of a burning hermaphrodite, which seems to fit in with the theme and perhaps even style of this new Duff project.

For more info about Duff in film and theatre, there’s:

  • Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby—background info about Duff’s appearances, alongside Leonardo Di Caprio, here, with screenshots of Duff’s cameos here, and the whole movie via amazon here for streaming or here by hard-copy
  • Andrée Greenwell’s The Hanging of Jean Lee here, being a post-punk opera about the last woman to be hung in Australia, Duff playing her victim
  • The "cult" Oz science-fiction/heavy-metal movie Sons of Steel in which JD plays the role of Secta
  • Duff’s record on IMDB
Jeff Duff astride the whole party, in knickerbockers, in Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby"

Jeff Duff astride the whole party, in knickerbockers, in Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby”

+ See also: Jeff Duff in the 2013 Melbourne Arts House staging of "The Hanging of Jean Lee":

~ and Jeff Duff singing "The Burn" in Sons of Steel:

~ P.S., the above-cited blog by Duff refers to a certain “brian walsh” of MONA. Duff of course is referring to David Walsh, as in Walsh’s own blog.

Share Button
– rodg.

Digital Duff: Lots more to sample on Google and Amazon now

Posted on 9th November 2015

At least 17 Jeff Duff albums + extra tracks now available from Google and Amazon for MP3 preview/purchase—including albums only previously available in vinyl, and hard-to-find CDs. iTunes will follow suit, for sure (just not now).

For samples/purchases, go the links on the Jeff Duff Stuff TRACKS page. Just note that (1) Amazon MP3s are not generally available for purchase via Australia; (2) Google Play links are fine for both ample preview and purchase; and (3) iTunes offers somw little samples but its purchase links are bung, as of this date, at least for Austrlians.

The two Kush albums Snow White and the Eight Straights and Nah, Tellus Wh’t Kush Means Yer Great Sausage are there (via Amazon and Google Play):

Kush album Snow White and the Eight Straights featuring Jeff Duff Kush album Yer Great Sausage featuring Jeff Duff

There’s also Jeff Duff Orchestra’s Alone & Paranoid album, and the two albums with Joseph Calderazzo.

Jeff Duff Orchestra: Alone and Paranoid Jeffrey and Joseph Holiday in Transylvania

The two late Duffo UK albums are finally available: that’s Bob the Birdman and Lexicon.

Duffo: Bob the Birdman Duffo: Lexicon

No more boxes for puss as Duff's all digitalSadly, only, as Duff goes streaming, cats will need to find another source of boxes to go strange in.

Share Button
– rodg.

Scott Walker on the Duff side

Posted on 6th November 2015

Jeff Duff offers a guide to the music of Scott Walker in the latest issue of the online magazine Rhythms. (Walker’s real surname is Engel — German for Angel — hence this Duff pic.)

In the article, Duff comments on several Walker albums/tracks. There’s also info on how Duff’s preparing a Walker-inspired show, collaborating with the producer of Walker’s Nite Flights album.

Which brings us to another of Duff’s inspirational associates: Bowie, who spoke in awe of this album, and recorded its title track, with a vid where mime beats paparazzi, and art exploits, and survives, its survey:

Duff recorded a Walker song himself — the classic The sun ain’t gonna shine anymore, on his 2014 Walking on Eggshells album. While Duff’s online catalogue is being updated, try sampling some Walker albums on iTunes: e.g., Scott 4, Climate of Hunter, and The Drift.

Share Button
– rodg.

Maestro Duffo Alitalia: Jeff Duff at the Norton Street Festa 2015

Posted on 29th October 2015


The Norton Street Festa of Italian culture in Sydney this October 25 did not miss a Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr rat-pack. Short of the Festa being all pasta workshops, pizza, screaming bambini, screaming Mammas, groaning Pappas, beautiful people and cheesy French Fries, the Festa sported its own Rat-Pack in the form of Jeff Duff, Glenn Rhodes and Jess Ciampa on its mainstage from 1:00 p.m.

Well, at least the water-carrier was thanked by Duff for the vodka, and an appointment was made for whacky-backy with some happy bearded man in the crowd. All in good humour, of course, given Duff’s a totally clean machine. And that was really the extent of the rat-packery. The mood was merry, charitable and festive.

Some samples follow of the songs, complete with the festive sounds of the merry crowd.


Among the songs performed by the Duffo Trio were Walk on the Wildside, Walking in Memphis, Sorrow and Sailing ….

cumberbatch_1Sailing is the Chris Cross track. It’s not usually of a cool calibre. Specifically, if you were into Duffo when Chris Cross’ Sailing first came out in 1979, you’d’ve surely missed it, maybe even sneeringly. But if you’ve since expanded your tastes, thanks especially to Duff’s own evolving catalogue, it’s a cool beauty as performed by the Trio. Sure, Chris Cross’s own version is pretty nasal; he abbreviates and just about squanders every meaningful potential of his own song. In Duff’s hands, in His Master’s Voice, and the keys and beats of Rhodes and Ciampa, this song is now a musical experience of genuine and graceful optimism—primed with Duff’s elegant elocution, and the artful way he expresses melancholy as he offers hope. There is nothing so bombastic as Walt Whitman’s claim to “sing the body electric”. There is more of the angelic hope of Keats, ready to die in the wake of the nightingale’s sweet song. Optimism that soars while being deeply anchored. Sailing, indeed. Try it at the bus-stop (I did, and never lived longer).


Love the one you’re with

The Trio of Duff, Rhodes and Ciampa was popular, driven to two encores, kindly over time. Amid these encores came the only really Italian track by the trio, given its association with "Dino Martino":


The song was recorded by Duff for the 2007 So Quiet album (available on iTunes), and Duff performed Sway on the popular nationwide Kerrie-Anne Show on Channel 9 TV:

Hard to get a shot let alone a vid at the Italian Festa without the various body parts of festival goers cavorting through every circumstance. So many of the shots from this occasion miss out on Duff’s feet. One tried hard to get a shot of what looked like a pair of particularly special Duff shoes; but whenever one got a frame on them, the Maestro’s mercurial spirit took him flying off left or right, and so on, over and over again.

For another experience of the Trio: Sun 29 Nov at St Leonards Park, Miller St, North Sydney, at the Spring into Jazz Festival from 3:00 pm. Read about Duff at last year’s Spring into Jazz here.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Closed tags: , , ,

Kate Ceberano, this is how to Advance Australia

Posted on 3rd October 2015

ceberanoHear Jeff Duff singing the Australian National Anthem, Advance Australia Fair, here:

Jeff Duff sings Advance Australia Fair

This is off the Wacky Live album by Ed Wilson’s Big Band featuring Jeff Duff.

This comes up for blogging given Ms Kate Ceberano‘s unfortunate slip-up in delivering the Australian National Anthem at the AFL Grand Final on this day, as reported all over the country, e.g., on Kate Ceberano messes up the Australian National Anthem at the AFL grand final.

Jeff Duff’s version is a cake of national enthusiasm, a true rendition of national character, all-Australian in its glam, bombastic way, expressing a sincere but innocent nationalism—no "Oi–oi–oi’s" required.

See band-master Ed Wilson’s site for more samples of Duff and the Big Band.

And so let us also advance Judith Durham’s own advance on the anthem, setting all that’s cheap and Ceberano aside:

It just remains to mention that Australians have long had to suffer stuff-ups by their supposedly professional singers of the National Anthem, come some important day. The wonderful David Campbell (as linked to by Ceberano in her own passing reference to this misfortune, on her FB) tell us something about it here, by way of the Daily Telegraph.

Share Button
– rodg.

Duffo’s “Album of the Ear”

Posted on 3rd September 2015

NME_adMass aural infection was spawned by Jeff Duff across Punk UK in 1979. That was with his quasi-eponymous debut solo album Duffo on the Beggar’s Banquet label.

Here’s some stuff showing how Duff’s first solo album was marketed at the time. This is a half-page newspaper ad—in New Musical Express, of March 17, 1979, page 49, just under a review by Steve Clarke of the album “Cool for Cats” by UK-Squeeze.

So, actually, Beggars’ Banquet has nix directly to do with the late ’68 “return to roots” Decca album from The Rolling Stones.

The Beggars’ Banquet album on EBay: The CD is going from $AU 27.44 to $AU 68.52; see also $AU 27.86 and $AU 50.93.

We also correct/expand the WankaPedia Beggar’s Banquet article as follows (in gold bold):

Beggars Banquet is an English independent record label that began as a chain of record shops owned by Martin Mills and Nick Austin, and is part of the Beggars Group of labels. In 1977, spurred by the prevailing DIY aesthetics of the British punk rock movement (then at the height of its popularity), they decided to join the fray as an independent label and release records under the Beggars Banquet imprint.[1] The first band on the label was English punk group The Lurkers; the first ever release on the label was The Lurkers’ classic 7″ single “Shadow”/”Love Story”.[1] They also released the first solo “Duffo” album from Australian big-band vocalist Jeff Duff, starting with the single “Give Me Back Me Brain”, as performed live by Duffo on The Old Grey Whistle Test, The Russell Harty Show on ITV, and German-TV’s Rock-Pop. Later in the decade and into the early 1980s, hits with Tubeway Army and Gary Numan secured the label’s future.[1] They have since released music by Biffy Clyro, Buffalo Tom, The Charlatans, The Cult, The Go-Betweens, The National and Tindersticks.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Closed tags: , , ,

Rock Brain of the Universe Extolls Jeff Duff

Posted on 23rd July 2015

Thrice-crowned Rock Brain of the Universe, Australian journalist  Glenn A. Baker, has recouped his often-quoted observation that Jeff Duff, had he been born in the northern hemisphere, would long have been cushy, in popular minds, alongside Bowie, Reed and Iggy Pop — noting "the presence about him … the astonishing voice … the capacity to fit into any environment …"

That’s in this exciting and informative vid with generous quotes from the Southern MainMan Himself [3 views as of posting]

For more about Glenn A. Baker, see bios at wikipedia and Penguin.

Actually, listening to Duff here, we hear the limits of Baker’s thesis. Duff admits he was “too way out there” even for British audiences. Yep, the data available to the Institute for Duffological Studies do not exactly gel with GAB’s proposition that Duff, alienated from Oz, found a perfect home in punk UK. Duff was gob-smacked and punched-up at his UK first gigs, abandoned by execs at a publicity stunt, and encountered groaned out enthusiasms from UK TV presenters even as he offered them masterful live performances—to(Russell Harty on ITV, and Annie Nightingale on the Old Grey Whistle Test). Maybe this is real punk-type celebrity; Duff still hotted up the charts, so much so that he’s become one of the elect "UK New Wave Greats", in line with Elvis Costello, The Jam, and Joy Division. But this historical status wasn’t led by bells and whistles, Rudolph and chorus-girls. It came by mighty slogs, against the odds—slogs and odds perhaps no less trying than what JD endured in Oz, after all.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Rock Brain of the Universe Extolls Jeff Duff tags: ,

Golden Eve: The Premier Bowie Is @ ACMI Gig

Posted on 12th July 2015

Jeff Duff talk/performance on BOWIE IS opening night

July 16, 2015; followed by the Bowie Late Nights and Symposia @ ACMI:

From ACMI:

Step back in time with glam rock legend  Jeff Duff  as he explores his prolific music career and the impact of Bowie on his work and life.

From the glitz’n’glam of his Ziggy performances, to his trips beyond the stardust with his BOWIE Unzipped shows, Duff will take audiences on a journey behind the scenes of his onstage engagement with Bowie and his music, and lifts the glitter-spattered lid on a flamboyant career that spans the 1970s to today.

A very special guest of the program, the legendary Australian rocker kicks off the Strange Fascinations series, and will perform an intimate set of songs at the conclusion of the talk.

Jeff Duff and Glenn Rhodes: opening night: Bowie IS @ ACMI

Jeff Duff and Glenn Rhodes: opening night: Bowie IS @ ACMI

JD informs us, as follows, re the golden eve he performed with Rhodes on the grand:

my conversation/performance was very professionally organised. Jess McGuire interviewed amidst a steady flow of Duffo slides and anecdotes. My performance was with Glenn on grand piano on the main stage with a giant screen projecting duffo images. As it was opening night it was a wonderful audience and it sounded beautiful. I return in Sept to perform more at the exhibition.

Duff returns for a performance at the exhibtion, September 2015:

Nobody can touch him, really, as far as the different styles of music that he’s attacked and developed. And also, not only that, but his incredible style. I think he’s without a doubt the coolest rock star on the planet.Jeff Duff re David Bowie on ABC Melbourne radio Nov 2010

jeff duff, david bowie

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Golden Eve: The Premier Bowie Is @ ACMI Gig tags: , , , , ,

MainMan: Jeff Duff in the Sydney Morning Herald, July 2015

Posted on 6th July 2015

2015_07_03_smh_! Article on Duff by Lawrence Money, July 3, 2015, in the Sydney Morning Herald — with lots of biographical detail, including information about the autohagiography.

For more of Duff in the mainstream papers, see here — including articles about Duff in the Sun Herald, the Daily Telegraph, and the Australian Women’s Weekly … and, indeed, the Sydney Morning Herald in 2004.

Article on Jeff Duff in the Sydney Morning Herald 2004

Article on Jeff Duff in the Sydney Morning Herald 2004

And seeing you’ve got your glass onions on, try also eye-balling this 1st Feb 2015 interview with Duff in the Gay News Network.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on MainMan: Jeff Duff in the Sydney Morning Herald, July 2015 tags: , ,

Duff @ FOV: Tasmania’s Festival of Voices [Preview and Review]

Posted on 26th June 2015



 Jeff Duff  brings the songs of  David Bowie  to the Tasmanian Festival of Voices on the evenings of Friday 3 and Saturday 4 July. That’s Bowie × Duff @ the Hobart City Hall.

See here for the Bowie Unzipped Toolbox and other blogposts about the Duff/Bowie shows, like at the Sydney Opera House in 2014 and 2013 and 2012.

hobart_july_weather Going by the weather forecast for Hobart, it will be interesting to see how much of a Bowie Unzipped show this one will be.

From The Mercury about the Festival:

"SINGERS from across Australia will descend on Hobart this week for this year’s Festival of Voices … More than 2000 singers – the most in the event’s 11-year history – are coming to participate in the festival, about two-thirds of them from interstate. … About 12,500 tickets were purchased for Festival of Voices performances last year and organisers are hoping to increase that figure to 16,000 — including more than 1200 to interstate buyers — this year, with a 114 per cent increase in ticket pre-sales so far." … read more

Mind you, this time in 2014, the same paper reported that 25,000 tickets were expected to be sold for the last Festival. Hopefully this year’s estimate is more reliable; with Duff for sure.

From the venue:

"Hobart City Hall is being transformed for the Festival of Voices: "into a musical Luna Park … with cocktail and lounge areas, candlelight and cabaret performances, … a place of temptation for the senses." … read more

hobart_city_hallThe ABC also has this recent article about the history of the venue:

"From Dame Nellie Melba to AC/DC, a 1954 state reception for Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh, as well as trade fairs, exhibitions, political and religious gatherings, dances and balls, Monday night wrestling, school speech and social nights, the City Hall has welcomed all." read more


Exciting from the start what with the Strauss “2001 theme” reverberating through the hall, from ground zero, crowned, creamed and topped-off by Duff’s backstage baritone spruiking up the spectable to come. Glenn Rhodes, Jess Ciampa, and Jak Housden emerged in genuine NASA outfits, taking up positions at keys/bass, drums/percussion, guitar (respectively) … followed by Duff in golden angel-wings, intoning that revolutionary “la, la, la, la” of Bowie’s Starman. Then followed Ziggy Stardust, … China Girl

Duff, Rhodes, Ciampa and Housden performed some songs that are not always a common part of their Bowie Unzipped repertoire; or did them in previously unfigured ways (and way outs). Here are recordings from one or another of the 2 nights off my phone of the same: go your graphic equalizer.

Modern Love


Walk on the wildside

All the young dudes

Ziggy Stardust

These are just samples, tasters to keep us getting hither and smacked to the next Duff-does-Bowie gig.

And as for the “Festival”: City Hall was spectacular at least as it was magically caught in Duff’s earrings; there was nothing of the promised “Luna Park” of sensory smorgasbord that FOV’s marketeers spun about in its invitations. Against the often undistracting back-drops (a flat wash of purple here, then one of green, and so on, occasionally dispersed with bubbles and streaks), Duff’s two little earrings “blitzed” out like fire-flies, beguilingly sparked anew with his every twitch, encasing his pretty head with every idea we might yet know of Cleopatra and Elizabeth Taylor.

And as for the audience — All quickly warmed to Duff’s characteristic breaking of the 4th wall, through his ambient patter, and his frequent ambles down-stage and beyond, his conversational piques and prods. How’s this for a line?— "Does David Bowie get you aroused?" [‘yay,’ all scream]—then Duff asks “"How about the ladies?" (muted guffaws follow). On the first night, pitched royally front and centre in the auditorium, was the excellent presence of the late Premier of Tasmania, Lara Giddings, with the now Federal Labor senator Lisa Singh, also at table. Plain courtesy and discretion prevent us from reporting what exactly was the answer to Duff’s question, from this table, as he ad libbed to Young Americans, "Do you remember … your Julia Gillard …?".

On the second night, Duff got up three likely “Bopsy Twins” to perform the “Do-to-do” parts, with dance steps, throughout his rocky and then funky rendition of "Walk on the wildside.". So the crowd was lock-stepped with him all the way. Duff even cut through the 5th wall at the end of the 2nd night by getting the dame who called for “lights out” to come out and report why: a curfew, she alleged, was nigh. Duff carried on, obligingly, with a short but swelling song (“All the young dudes”), and no encore.

The night before, someone (who?) almost got JD excited enough to do “MacArthur Park” for an encore. But the crowd here in Hobart, as elsewhere, are rusted on glam and dance fans, calling out for “Jean Genie” to the end, and giving much less than thunderous applause to the operatic arts of Duff’s “Wild is the wind” (rarely performed by Bowie himself). So, no post-“Let’s Dance” Bowie here, no “I’m Afraid of Americans,” “I’m Deranged,” “The Dreamers,” “Sunday,” “Where are we now?,” or so on. That’s all probably a whole ‘nother show worth. “Bowie Intime,” perhaps.

Bowie’s songs are more important than Duff’s own? That’s something JD announced, amid his patter. Explore. Everything Duff’s composed, from "Logical Questions to God" to "Mumbo Jumbo" would set free-men building coliseums across the Milky Way, all in the hope and herald of Duff’s showing, while saints come long and hard, cathedral-high, in photons and alabaster, delirious like automatons, into aeons of Renaissance, blinding all eternities in showers of Enlightenment.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Duff @ FOV: Tasmania’s Festival of Voices [Preview and Review] tags: , , , ,

Duffo 4 Eurovision 2015

Posted on 14th February 2015


The Daily Telegraph reports:
"Australians responded with bewilderment and delight at a decision to allow them to compete in this year’s Eurovision Song …Contest – and immediately began pondering efforts to enlist Kylie Minogue or Midnight Oil. For some Neighbours fans, news that Jason Donovan ruled himself out will be disappointing, but the list below suggests there are a few strong contenders …"

Strong contenders and nonsense aside!
Duffo rules!
Specifically, c’mon, Daily Tonygraph, err, Telegraph, in response to your list of Euro-contenders, we at the Duffological Institute contend …


Samantha Jade

Were we internet trolls, we might remark about some "harridan" channelling Charlie’s Angels, and music-vids like screen-tests for Dr Jekyll and Ms Hyde. BYO paper-clips and tooth-picks for fun. But there’s just a little, more basic problem, besides: Who is she? And so we need …


Kylie Minogue

If ever or ever there was a Judy Garland without herself, there is Kylie Minogue. And that covers the question of talent. If every generation has a voice (Sinatra, Presley, Lou Reed …), Minogue is there but at the same time isn’t, in her quizzical (Bowie-esque?) way. And humans like to show they’re not robots when they vote. And so we need …



Is this the swan who lost her wings while fixing her face to Graham Norton’s back-wall? Is this the diva who struggles to pronounce “chandelier” for beauty’s sake? Her Eurovision calling cards state that she’s “collaborated with Rihanna, Beyonce, Eminem & Katy Perry,” and proffer “her fondness for wigs & dance routines.” What, not Bowie, Warhol, and …


Tina Arena

Ms Arena’s bilingualism is certainly a strong point, but Duff, too, has long been cross-over cultural, even more than any other Australian artist. Who’s the only Australian artist among the UK “New Wave Greats” on Repertoire’s 2-CD compilation album of the same name? Who else in England topped the Argentine charts at the height of the Falklands War (with his “Walk on the wildside” – filmed with Bowie’s “Ashes to Ashes” make-up artist)? And Duff was already TV-smart as a 17-y/o on the Paul Hogan Show, still topping youtube lists. So the answer we’re searching for is …


Olivia Newton-John

If ONJ promises to reprise “Xanadu,” maybe. If she does it in Bob Downe style, certainly. But that’s not gonna happen. No, she’s a rainbow wide and long, and belongs with the immortals. She’d have to come down from Mount Olympus to pull this one off, between drinking nectar with the gods, to sing a fanciful song of pleasure, Athena and Diana for critics. No, “She startles like a botanist finding a rare flower,” is the best they’d admit, the bitches.

Who else, then, instead? It’s only, surely … Midnight Oil/Peter Garrett. Hunh? Go

Duffo_Jeff_Duff_2015_170wJeff Duff.

Dreaming on, imagine seeing Duff live, all over Euro, as in …

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Duffo 4 Eurovision 2015 tags: , , , , ,

New wave greats 1976 – 1983

Posted on 2nd January 2015

New Wave GreatsWho‘s the one and only Australian artist featured in this 2-disc, 36-track UK compilation of ground-breaking new wave musicians of the punk/post-punk eras?

The Birthday Party? The Go-Betweens? The Saints? Not a whisp or whisker of them. C’mon, there’s Icehouse, Split Enz, or The Church, for sure …

No. Instead, among artists like Elvis Costello, Madness, XTC, The Jam, The Stranglers, Joy Division, Psychedlic Furs, Tubeway Army … there is only one Australian artist, and that is: Jeff Duff.

That’s with a pressing of his single: “Give me back me brain.” As performed live all over Euro music channels at the time, including on the Old Grey Whistle Test

~ the Russell Harty Show:

~ and this German show:

Duff is also one of the select half-dozen or so solo artists who cut it as a New Wave Great on this 1999 compilation album. There’s Costello, for sure, and Jona Lewie, Graham Parker, Lene Lovich, Nick Lowe, Wreckless Eric, John Cooper Clarke, Ian Dury, Ivor Biggun (!?), … & Duffo.

More about this classic album on this site here.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on New wave greats 1976 – 1983 tags: , , ,

Duff in Bowie Unzipped travels far in December

Posted on 2nd December 2014

lizottes_newcastle_tableDuff’s popular Bowie Unzipped show is travelling this December, firstly:

Tickets are selling fast, it seems, as all the red-spots in this latest booking plan for the Newcastle show indicate.

For reviews about Duff’s Bowie, Ziggy and other live shows, see this site here.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Duff in Bowie Unzipped travels far in December

Amazing grace

Posted on 29th November 2014

Returning from his Mullumbimby glory, then a Kings Cross street festival and a gala event at Sydney’s State Theatre, Jeff Duff sung "Amazing Grace" at a funeral of Terry Halliday, Friday, 28 November—which comments on his Facebook, with over 200 likes, report with great gratitude.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Amazing grace

On the road to Duffo

Posted on 18th November 2014
Mullumbimby, that is

Mullumbimby, that is

The Duffo-pilgrimage of 2014 continues — now by way of a long road to Mullumbimby, courtesy of Antonionio (I know how to spell his name, I just don’t know when to stop). Hope to document this travelling as it goes, and also to be so bold as to take post-worthy pics of the performances. The opening night has already sold out (but we’ll be there), and then there are afternoon gigs day-by-day (checking in). Potential plus! Duff is appearing in Kings Cross later on the same weekend, and then at the Rock Opera night at the State Theatre – from wearing flowers in his hair, to dodging king-hits, and then frocking up for something truly regal, all in a blink of days. Unless Antonionio is good for whipping, I don’t think we can follow Duffo all the way from Mullo back to Sydney so swiftly. But plenty of blinding spells to be reported soon enough and nevertheless, via this channel of Duffophilia.

So Jeff Duff played the Civic Hall on its opening nite, on a fly-in. A German lady I met, Duffo-dumb till then, thought he was on cookies! But she also said he struck her as like broaching the line between genius and madness, in league with “David Bowie” and “Kate Bush”. Well, I rose up to the challenge of discussing this stuff, slipped verbally up and down here and there … and that’s enough of that night.

Then there was the Poinciana Café the following night. I didn’t exactly shadow Duffo but kept somehow in his wake as he, pre-performance, ordered a vego meal. I was, as a matter of fact, on the look-out for the same. That’s how I’d just excused myself, for hunger’s sake, from the German lady of the previous night, who was there again at this gig. But, all feeding and gabbing aside, Duff was soon up on stage—only to be attacked by Xmas beetles from all sides. Glenn Rhodes (who had just improvised some legs for his keys, so prepared the venue was …) later remarked that they performed like a punk band that whole night long, as they batted away this plague. It was a distressing debacle. My meal arrived with a beetle upon it. Mullumbimby pavements were absolutely caked with Xmas beetle. Vegans filled the nut-house. Duff and Rhodes championed on.

The highlight was the St. Martin’s Hall gig the next day. There the masses fully thronged the pulpits. And Duff and Rhodes reached deep down into their whole armamentarium of sound to deliver potent renditions of “Yesterday,” “Walking’ in Memphis,” “My baby just cares for me,” among others, including a swag of Bowie, in the hour. Rhodes played with mesmeric power throughout, surprising with his every harmonic choice, and his basic legerdemain. He’s truly the pianist to Duff as Mike Garson is to Bowie. As he explained later, his wonderful arrangement of “Walk on the wildside” works by him taking the minor chords to each of the major chords in Duff’s vocal lines. It makes for a bold and novel, arousing working of the song. How the crowds flocked to Duff and Rhodes after this performance, after they marvelled in applause to each and every song.

Here’s a tube, courtesy of Anthony, featuring Duff on concentrated, sublime vocals, and Rhodes in bar-by-bar wonders referencing just about every jazz style—absolute mainmen of keys and cords (folds of membranous tissue which project inwards from the sides of the larynx to form a slit across the glottis in the throat, and whose edges vibrate in the airstream to produce the voice):

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on On the road to Duffo tags: , , ,

Jeff Duff Trio spring into jazz

Posted on 4th November 2014

Duff performed at Milson’s Park, Kirribilli, this last Sunday (2 Nov 2014). Thanks to the man at another park (one I first found myself at) who promptly Googled me to the proper place. Duff’s voice piped its serpentine way to my ears over the suburbs, as I scaled, lunged and hurtled my way there, to land at the feet of his performance, eventually, on the grass.

This was the “Spring into Jazz” event organised by North Sydney Council, with the Jeff Duff Trio on show — that’s Duff, Glenn Rhodes, and Jess Ciampa. Glenn Rhodes is known to the Duffophile as a co-composer of Jeanne d’arc on Duff’s Alone and Paranoid album, as a back-up vocalist on the Ground Control to Major Tom album, and as seen on The Midday Show sharing the vocal to Bowie’s Sorrow. They did that again as an encore to this "on the green" show. Jess Ciampa was a percussionist on the Lost in the Stars album. But up to then …

There was Duff taking a seat on the down-stage bench alongside a lady with long black hair and eyes behind shades for him to sing Young Americans to. And Duff wandering all about the crowd, so way down into the throng that he even heard a delay between his patter and its pick-up, and Rhodes had to ask Duffo "Which suburb are you in?" There were uncontrolled children let loose to play with Duff’s percussion instruments, and even a vino offered to quench him (no, his herbal tea sufficed). There was also Walk on the wildside in a breezy jazzy canter, and Duff’s own Miles Davis rap re-configured into the Marvin Gaye rap; see this tube to relive that song at the Thredbo Jazz Festval, 2013 — also with Rhodes on keys. Another highlight: Does anybody really know what time it is?, taking the Duffophile back to HMV’s ’70s.

Many folk reached for their cameras to take in a visual swig of Duff — of his many photogenic-plus-musical moments throughout this sunny gig. This Duffophile is always too shy or high on the senses to do the same. Just go searching facebook for such stuff. Maybe searching for “Sydney at its best on a Sunday in Spring” will reveal and revive all for you about this sunny and especially magical Duff gig.

Share Button
– rodg.
comments: Comments Off on Jeff Duff Trio spring into jazz tags: , , ,