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McDonald, Raymond / Robert Burke / Paul Grabowsky / Nick Haywood / Antony Floyd: Dangerous Decision (FMR)

A stellar collective collaboration between British and Australian improvisers recorded at the Kazz Lab/Jazz Club, in Melbourne, Australia as part of a joint recording project between MONASH and RMIT Universities, with performers Raymond MacDonald on alto sax, Robert Burke on tenor sax, Paul Grabowsky on piano, Nick Haywood on double bass and Antony Floyd on drums.

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product information:

UPC: 748079797338

Label: FMR
Catalog ID: FMR 631
Squidco Product Code: 32000

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2022
Country: UK
Packaging: Digipack - 3 panel
Recorded at the Kazz Lab/Jazz Club, in Brunswick, Melbourne, Australia, by students from the RMT VE Sound Production Program.


Raymond MacDonald-alto saxophone

Robert Burke-tenor saxophone

Paul Grabowsky-piano

Nick Haywood-double bass

Antony Floyd-drums

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Artist Biographies:

"Raymond MacDonald co-leads The Burt/MacDonald Quartet and is a founder member and key player in The Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra. He also performs with The Scottish Jazz Composers Ensemble and the saxophone quartet Rich in Knuckles. He has recently collaborated Lol Coxhill, Keith Tippett, Harry Beckett, Evan Parker, Gunter Baby Sommer, Fred Frith, Keith Rowe, George Lewis, Maggie Nicols, Satoko Fujii, Ken Hyder, Natsuki Tamura, Steve Beresford, Mike Zerang, and Fred Longberg-holm.

Other work includes composing and performing for film, television, theatre and collaborations with visual artists, including commissioned work for Martin Boyce, Simon Starling and Christine Borland. He collaborated with David Byrne on David McKenzie's film Young Adam.

In December 2005 he made a solo tour of Japan and in July 2006 performed with Josh Abrams and Miguel Carvalhais at The Glasgow International Jazz festival."

-Creative Sources (

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"Robert Burke has enjoyed a diverse and wide-ranging career as a performer, composer, researcher and educator in music. Classically trained on the clarinet and saxophones, his main focus as a performer has been in jazz and popular music, including eight years performing and composing with Kate Ceberano (including a top-ten Australian hit) and fifteen years with ARIA award-winning band The Black Sorrows.

Rob has performed on and contributed compositions to over 200 CDs by groups ranging from pop acts such as John Farnham, Ice House, Real Life, Vika and Linda Bull, to contemporary jazz projects with leading artists including Tony Gould, Paul Grabowsky, Vince Jones, Tony Floyd, Doug De Vries, Slava Gregorian, Geoff Hughes, Nick Haywood, Paul Williamson, Jordan Murray and Stephen Magnusson.

Rob has performed /recorded with many international jazz artists including Kenny Werner, Mark Helias, Nasheet Waits, Tom Rainey, Enrico Rava Dave Douglas, George Lewis, Red Rodney, John Abercrombie, Paul McCandless (Origon), George Garzone, Richie Barshay, Johannes Weidenmueller (USA), Lula Galvao, Roberta Valente, Hermeto Pascoal (Brazil), Mirko Guerrini, Debasis Chakroborty (India) and Qmars Piraglu (Iran)

-Monash University (

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"Paul Grabowsky is a pianist, composer, arranger, conductor - and is one of Australia's most distinguished artists.

Born in Lae, Papua New Guinea in 1958, Paul was raised in Melbourne where he attended Wesley College. During the late 70's he became prominent in the music scene in Melbourne, working in various jazz, theater and cabaret projects.

He lived and worked in Europe and the US from 1980-85, during which time he performed with many jazz luminaries including Chet Baker, Art Farmer and Johnny Griffin. He returned to Australia in 1986 and established a reputation as one of Australia's leading jazz musicians with such bands as his own trio and sextet, the Wizards of Oz and as musical director for singer Vince Jones.

He was musical director of Tonight Live with Steve Vizard from 1990-1992.

He has written the scores for over twenty feature films in Australia, the UK and US including The Eye of the Storm and Last Orders (Fred Schepisi) Innocence (Paul Cox), and Shiner (John Irvin). Among the many other filmmakers he has worked with are Gillian Armstrong, Nadia Tass and Clara Law. His television credits include the series Phoenix and Janus and the Emmy-winning Empire Falls. His works for the theater include two operas and various multimedia works.

He is the founder and AD of the Australian Art Orchestra, with which he tours both nationally and internationally. Recent AAO projects have concentrated on collaborations with traditional and contemporary indigenous performers, something which Paul passionately advocates.

Among his numerous CD releases are two for the Hush series (for which he is Artistic Director), designed to assist in the healing environment of Melbourne Children's Hospital.

He has won four ARIA awards, two Helpmann awards, several Bell Awards and a Deadly award. He was the Sydney Myer Performing Artist of the Year in 2000, and received the Melbourne Prize for Music in 2007.

He was Artistic Director of the Queensland Music Festival from 2005-2007 and the 2010 Adelaide Festival, and is currently Artistic Director of the 2012 Adelaide Festival."

-Paul Grabowsky Website (

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"Nick Haywood is an Australian jazz double bassist, composer, and music educator in Melbourne.

He has worked with Don Burrows, Dale Barlow, Paul Grabowsky, Bernie McGann, and James Morrison, and with many international jazz musicians, including Nat Adderley, Buddy Greco, Kenny Kirkland, Claire Martin, Jack Parnell, Mark Murphy and Petra Haden. He has been featured on over 100 albums.

Born in 1961, Haywood first started playing an electric bass guitar at eight years of age but did not consider undertaking a career as a professional musician. In 1976 he started playing double bass. After finishing school he worked in a brewery and a tin mine.

In his mid 20s he enrolled in a Diploma of Music course at the Victorian College of the Arts and graduated in 1988.

In 1999 Haywood was nominated for two ARIA Music Awards: for Best Jazz Recording for Sudden in a Shaft of Sunlight by Browne-Haywood-Stevens and Best Adult Contemporary for Beat Club by The Black Sorrows.

The Melbourne International Arts Festival has provided several opportunities to showcase Haywood's composing and performing talents. In 2001 he performed with his band Dodge in the Spiegeltent.

An anniversary concert of John Sangster's Lord of the Rings at the Malvern Town Hall in 2003 also featured Haywood with many of the original musicians.

Haywood, Eugene Ball, and Andrea Keller were the nucleus of the eleven piece Bennetts Lane Big Band which was formed in 2001. The band has been described by the National Library of Australia as "Melbourne's premier large contemporary jazz ensemble" and "comprised of some of Australia's most celebrated improvisers and composers."'

A grant from the Alan C. Rose Memorial Project in 2004 enabled Haywood to study in New York City with American jazz bassists Gary Peacock and Rufus Reid. Later that year he completed a Master of Music Performance degree at the Victorian College of the Arts.

Haywood has been a music lecturer in the Performing Arts Department at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT) since 2001.

With the establishment of the Bachelor of Australian Popular Music course at NMIT in 2007, he became Head of Program/Senior Lecturer in the Department of Music at NMIT. He also teaches privately, and conducts master classes at festivals and institutions around Australia and internationally.

A 2005 agreement between NMIT and the Beijing Midi School of Music, a private music school in Beijing focussing on modern music genres, resulted in Haywood establishing a ten-week music program and teaching the Advanced Diploma of Music Performance to students in Beijing, as well as the opportunity to perform in various Beijing Jazz clubs. He was one of the prominent performers at the 2005 Beijing Jazz Festival."

-Wikipedia (

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"Tony Floyd started playing drums at the age of eight and professionally from the age of fifteen.

Playing with some of Australia's finest jazz musicians he toured Australia and performed with 'The Jextet' in 1985 and recorded two albums with Vince Jones in 1988 and 1989.

Tony graduated in 1990 with a bachelor's degree of Education in Music at the Melbourne University and played in various ensembles including big bands, symphony orchestras, percussion ensembles and jazz and rock groups.

Over the period from 1989 till present Tony performs with 'Things of Stone and Wood'. He toured with them in Europe and Canada and appeared both in Australia and overseas with 'Hot House Flowers', 'Midnight Oil', 'Bjork, Hall and Oates', 'The Jayhawks', and 'The Black Sorrows'. He recorded 6 albums with them, one a debut Top 10 Gold album and awarded ARIA Best Debut single and ARIA Nominated Debut Album.

Tony has been involved with the recording of 21 albums. His performance highlights were with Vince Jones, Ruby Carter, Oxo Cubans, 'Things of Stone and Wood',' Black Sorrows', 'Men at Work', Deborah Conway, Merril Bainbridge and Mark Seymor.

Various appearances with Joe Camelleri and the 'Black Sorrows' (tour plus recording), Christine Sullivan (tour to UK playing at Ronnie Scotts), Vincent Herring, Lee Konitz, Paul Grabowsky, Earthe Kitt, Kate Ceberano, Ross Wilson, Greg Champion, Don Burrows, Graham Lyle, Tony Gould, Ben Robertson, 'Moomba Jazz All Starts' (with Alex Pertout, Bob Venier, Tony Hicks and Bob Sedergreen), and Linda Cable.

He can be heard on any given night in his home town of Melbourne playing with jazz greats such as James Sherlock or in his funky, horn based groove outfit, Dodge. Tony is equally at home on a stage playing bigger rock shows with Aussie Icons Men At Work, or backing talented pop artists such as Missy Higgins.

Tony works as a sessional teacher at the Victoria College of Arts and Monash University."

-Jazz Head (

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track listing:

1. Cosy Street 11:39

2. Dangerous Decision 5:43

3. Ghosts 15:07

4. Merchandised Blues 8:28

5. Moving Forward 4:56

6. Schtinkst 13:48

7. Gallery 12:04
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Each player in this collaboration brings with them a high level of expertise and their instrument in diverse musical styles. They also bring improvisatory experience in generating ideas, making choices of when to play or not to play, copying ideas or developing ideas, and the possibilities of taking conciliatory or contrasting positions in their improvisatory contributions.

What also contributes to these choices are the music experiences of each performer. In 2021, Jordan Murray's (PhD research) investigated an approach to the performance of collaborative free improv based on what he called "indices of style". This recording is an example of a stylistic bricolage where each player brings a series of style signifiers that informs the collective improvisations that are performed "in the moment"."

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Collective Free Improvsation
Australian Improvisers, Composers and Experimenters
London & UK Improv & Related Scenes
Quintet Recordings
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Improvised Music
Recent Releases and Best Sellers

Search for other titles on the label:

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