Category Archives: Public Performance

That Little Matcha Girl

You might have noticed a pretty little cafe along Preston Street in Como, South Perth. A bright little street overlooking the waters just perched atop a gentle slope. 

P+M’s Winter burrow last Sat

Polkadot + Moonbeam had the pleasure of playing there last week. And in a week of cold wet days, that morning was sublime – sunshine, matcha and ukulele jazz. We also made some new friends: Anabel and family (Daddy, Violet, Osi, Coco) and company, Lim, our new greyhound pal, and of course the proud owner of the cafe. The space is cosy and just a perfect nook for us to rest our paws over matcha and jazz improv. 

The highlight of the gig for me was Nat Cole’s LOVE (and the rock ending, teeth, grit and grind… 😅). You can spot that funny video on our Instagram (apugnosedream). But we also loved playing our light instrumentals over Jobim, Jimmy Van Heusen…classics for the Saturday morning crowd. 

Light instrumentals for a breezy sunny morning


The matcha was beautiful with genmai in them – like magic drops of texture and earth in the smooth creamy bittersweet. Moonbeam’s mocha was a dream 💛. 

Magic spotted at Little Matcha Girl

Thank you Little Matcha Girl for having us. Thank you all. We hope to see you all soon!
xoxo

P+M

Ps: don’t forget to check our Instagram and YouTube for new clips 💛 

’til we next brunch …

Kalamunda Jazz Festival 2016

We were the final line-up for the Jazz festival that spanned over the long weekend celebrating the Queen’s birthday, lasted 4 days and started from Friday 23rd September. Many cool WA Jazz acts were featured and we also came by the day before to catch Bonnie Scott with her singer-guitarist at the historic Kalamunda Hotel. We fell in love with the Perth Hills on the same day.

Historic Architecture @ The Kalamunda Hotel

Historical Architecture – Kalamunda Hotel

Deep vocals from the groovy keyboardist/band leader, and nice smooth work on the drums and bass too. I am convinced that the black-collared green parakeet that landed on the branch of the tree in front of the patio was a little jazz bird and it conveniently stole a couple of juicy chops from the trio that day.

Adam James Trio (Adam James - keys, Ben Vanderwal - drums, Peter Jeans - Dbl Bass)

Adam James Trio (Adam James – keys, Ben Vanderwal – drums, Peter Jeans – Dbl Bass)

The weather drew colder when it was our turn to play but a few customers who had just arrived when we got on were our heaters for the afternoon. Their love for our music and enthusiasm for our 4-string duo combination really melted us. Though our popsicle-feet were falling off, they never quite left their seats. A few more storm-braving jazz lovers joined us towards the end of the evening who laughed along and cheered with us. Moonbeam has a knack too, for making any grey sky blue. 🙂 I was just so grateful for such an open-hearted and generous audience. It was practically 3degrees with wind and rain, but they were comfortable with the Jazz, the beers and the outdoor heaters. That was all we needed really.

Our personal favourites that night amongst the many jazz and latin standards we played that afternoon was Charlie Parker’s ‘Billie’s Bounce’ and Sonny Rollins’ ‘Doxy’ both of which we played on the melodica and bass. Just because the two tunes were infectiously bringing the bop into the house. We were just swinging a good time, but it is just wonderful when it bursts into dance and movement in the crowd. The kids especially loved those 2 tunes, we suspect it was exactly what the Bird had meant in the Bounce. We ended the evening with Frederick Loewe’s ‘Almost Like Being in Love’, one of our favourite standards from Nat King Cole, rounding up the darkening skies with a bit of sparkle everyone could take home with.

We made a few new friends that night that humbled us greatly. And a few whose names we didn’t get but whose smiles we would remember for a long time. Blake and Caroline who never left their seats except to refill their glasses, Karen Wallace (ukulele lover and budding singer) and her beautiful friends, Norrisha, quietly enjoying our little tunes behind the massive pillars of the historic hotel, who came up to us after the show to ask if we had a cd album that she could buy from us, the little dancing boy who said ‘do we have to go to Nana’s? and left reluctantly…’, made everyone (including his own parents) chuckle.

This was yet another performance outcome that baffled me. What started off to look like a chilly afternoon became an intimate concert with such attentive listeners and new friends. We are truly very appreciative and grateful for all your love for our music. Bless your hearts. <3

Personal notes:
To Norrisha: thank you for joining us on our Facebook (link) for updates on our debut album. It is in the early penning stages but I really dig our new original tunes. We want to take our time to paint out honestly the shades of love in our lives. Thank you for taking the initiative, it really is why we keep on keepin’ on.

To Caroline & Blake: you know how you would always be our personal candidate picks for GoggleBox – you guys are the real deal – and we will always remember you as the beer buddies who loved Jazz, rock, folk and everything live. It is why the live music keeps going. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Our thank you also to Champion Music and Kalamunda Hotel for having us.
We <3 the Perth Hills!

xx

P+M

Polkadot + Moonbeam in a Tipi - Photo: Duncan Roylance

Ukulele & Jazz in a Tipi @ First Comes Love Fair

The unpredictable weather in Australia last 2 weeks must be quite disconcerting for those planning an outdoor wedding. With a bit of planning… and maybe… a Tipi, no rain or hail or storm could ruin an occasion of LOVE (I fiercely believe). Here’s what happened with jazz ukulele duo Polkadot + Moonbeam at First Comes Love Fair last weekend at Mosman Bay.

L.O.V.E @ First Comes Love Fair

L.O.V.E @ First Comes Love Fair

We turned up at the lovely Picture Garden at MosArts ready to set up our instruments on that windy Sunday morning.The tipi we saw at the last fair was there as usual. Their lovely owners, Adele and Simon came out of their tent to say hello and almost immediately invited us to play inside. Yes, inside the tipi. It was a gorgeously decorated space with rustic benches, carpets, flowers and pretty lights, and it wasn’t our first time in there. But it would turn out to be the first time we ever played in one. How exquisite!

Tepee by TP & Co @ First Comes Love Fair

Tepee by TP & Co (@tp&co)

The couple’s easy personalities really complimented the ambience in that outdoorsy, bohemian, earthily honest and smart-looking tipi. And in no time, we were all geared up, excited to hear the acoustics and experience the effect of playing in such an amazing ‘venue’. We LOVED it.

Since we were equipped with our own nifty battery-amp, there was no need for external sources of power and no wires or cables to speak of, or to neaten up. (We are big on sounding but also looking good for everyone!) I had never heard my ukulele sound any more intimate and pretty than that single day. It didn’t need to scream any note to beat any sound, and the beautiful people that came through that day would witness its simple unassuming yet resonant sweetness. We pulled out a few familiar swing and Latin romantic tunes but the highlight for me personally was Charlie Chaplin’s ‘Smile’ played as an instrumental. Moonbeam’s robust and bouncing lines interwoven with the tinkles of the tenor ukulele sang a harmony lovelier than our own voices in that gorgeous tent, and spoke more through stillness than choreography and stage lights. It is a moment I would remember for a while.

Flowers in the Musical Tipi

Flowers in the Musical Tipi

We miss Duncan’s beautiful mix of sounds in that wonderful theatre space (we will never forget last FCL’s amazing sounds) but we count our blessings that in a newly created stage space we found spontaneous collaboration with lovely people that resonated both ways. Moonbeam playfully imitated the Attenborough’s narrative, “…and here we see a symbiotic relationship…” and cracked me up, again.

Thank you FCL for inviting us to play for the fair. We enjoyed it thoroughly.

Polkadot + Moonbeam in a Tipi - Photo: Duncan Roylance

Polkadot + Moonbeam in a Tipi – Photo: Duncan Roylance

Special thank yous to Duncan for this shot of us playing and singing in the musical tipi, and to Adele and Simon of Tipi & Co (@tp&co) for your spontaneity and generosity.

Rounding up with my favourite moment of Moonbeam with his mustard yellow tie (from our own wedding in 2013)

Moonbeam in a Tipi (@tp&co)

Moonbeam in a Tipi (@tp&co)

xx

Polkadot