The Songbirds include both professional and weekend performers and, as well as a GP, also includes a dentist, an engineer, an electrician, teachers and mums.
The group’s core members are Louise Marsh (singing Peggy Lee and tenor sax), Andrea Frances (singing Astrid Gilberto), Janine Andrews (singing Ella Fitzgerald), Michelle Spriggs (singing Amy Winehouse), Tilly Kelleher (singing Nina Simone), Scott Wise (singing Louis Armstrong with Ella, and guitar), Viv Booker (bass), Cleo Wiese (singing Adele), Gary Larkin (drums), Mike Wiese (clarinet, sax), Kevin Jones (trombone, flute), David Rastrick (trumpet), Kevin McDonald (guitar), and Sean Lillico (piano).
Surprisingly, Louise only took up the sax when she was in her early 20s. “It wasn’t a lifelong ambition, but as simple as the fact that my sister was learning the sax and I thought I could do it better! My dad was really into jazz when we were growing up and is a huge music lover so I grew up with the songs our band is now performing.”
The Songbirds will be returning to the line-up of the much anticipated Jazz by the Bay festival this year, on May 31 to June 3 2019 across Busselton, Dunsborough, and Margaret River.
This year’s festival will bring together world class musicians from Western Australia and the northern hemisphere, pairing live jazz, funk and soul with spectacular venues and the region’s best gourmet food and wine for four days. Expect a choice of more than 40 music, wine and gourmet food experiences.
Free local, national and international performances are programmed over the Saturday and Sunday of the festival in the heart of Dunsborough. The program will also feature free and ticketed events at surrounding venues.
Whether you’re into big bands, classic jazz, bebop, swing or scat – Jazz by the Bay has you covered.
Photos: Tim Campbell