Dave Brubeck in Australia

Hear his 'Messages to Australia'
 Graham McDonald
Portrait of Dave Brubeck, 8 October 1954. Carl Van Vechten. Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, Carl Van Vechten Collection, LC-USZ62-103725

Jazz pianist Dave Brubeck died earlier this month at the age of 91. A respected and popular jazz musician in the 1950s, his quartet released Time Out in 1959, which became the first jazz record to sell more than a million copies and took Brubeck’s appeal outside the jazz mainstream.

In 1962 he toured Australia and, before leaving the US, recorded a single-sided 7-inch record with five short ‘Messages to Australia’, to be sent to radio statons as publicity for the tour. A copy of the disc was part of a recent large donation of material to the NFSA from radio station 2TM in Tamworth. Listen to excerpts below.

While he was here he also recorded a half-hour television special for ATN-7 in Sydney. The NFSA has a Kine film copy of the program, both as a composite print and as negatives, which was telecined and supplied to Brubeck’s management in the 1990s. A copy of that television special is in the Dave Brubeck Collection at the University of the Pacific in California. Watch clips below.

                                                     Messages to Australia, 1962 (excerpt one)

                                                     Messages to Australia, 1962 (excerpt two)


Sourced from chiefsquirrel’s YouTube channel.


Sourced from chiefsquirrel’s YouTube channel.

The NFSA also has an audio recording of two concerts made in the Canberra Theatre in 1974 of Brubeck touring with his son Darius’ band (see NFSA: 593617). These are four reels of analog audio tape which may be of interest to Brubeck researchers in the future.