Provenance Paul Grabowsky & Vince Jones
- 1Rainbow Cake04:38
- 2Oh My Love04:55
- 3We've Only Just Begun04:42
- 4Stella by Starlight04:32
- 5If You Never Come to Me04:37
- 6Each Other's Child03:31
- 7May I Come In?04:14
- 8Between Your Eyes04:01
- 10This Is Always04:18
- 11The Parting Glass04:55
Info for Provenance
Provenance is an album from two legends of Australian music – a survey of intimate ballads that showcases the superlative craftsmanship of platinum-selling legendary singer Vince Jones and multi-ARIA-winning pianist Paul Grabowsky.
The title refers to the returning-to-roots that this album represents. Vince and Paul first worked together in the 1980s, when Grabowsky was music director to Jones; Provenance marks a renewed collaboration between the pair after several decades apart. But the word also describes the music which the duo chose to record: ballads that showcase the essential elements of their craft, elements that have been the foundations of their astonishing careers, pared down to the intimate combination of piano and voice (and occasionally piano and flumpet – a hybrid of trumpet and flugelhorn).
Provenance is “a collection of timeless songs with beautiful melodies”, as Vince puts it. The album begins with ‘Rainbow Cake’, composed by the pair in the 1980s. ‘Oh My Love’, written by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, takes on touching poignancy in this new rendition; and from there the album presents classic songs from a variety of genres as well as a number of Vince’s own compositions.
“What we’re trying to do is get a duet situation where we can provide the entire colour without necessarily using a rhythm section,” Jones says of the follow-up to Provenance. “Paul’s phenomenal at that. He can enchant anyone as a soloist. The two of us together – it’s a lovely combination.”
Paul Grabowsky, piano
Vince Jones, vocals, trumpet, flugelhorn
is a pianist, composer, arranger, conductor – and is one Australia’s most distinguished artists.
Born in Papua New Guinea, Paul was raised in Melbourne. During the late 70’s he became prominent in the music scene in Melbourne, working in various jazz, theatre 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 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 (a nationally televised variety show) from 1990-1992.
He was Commissioning Editor (Arts and Entertainment) for ABC Television 1995-98.
He has written the scores for over twenty feature films in Australia, the UK and US including ‘Innocence’ (Paul Cox), ‘Last Orders’, ‘The Eye of the Storm’, ‘Words and Pictures’(Fred Schepisi) and ‘Shiner’ (John Irvin). His television credits include the series ‘Phoenix’ and ‘Janus’ and the Emmy-winning ‘Empire Falls’. His works for the theatre include four operas and various multimedia works. His most recent opera, created for soprano Emma Matthews, ‘The Space Between’, with libretto by Steve Vizard, premiered at Arts Centre Melbourne in September 2018.
He is the Founding Artistic Director of the Australian Art Orchestra, which he led from 1994-2013.
He has won seven ARIA awards (most recently in 2019 for his recording ‘Tryst’ with singer Kate Ceberano)), two Helpmann awards, several APRA and 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 the 2010 Australian National University H.C.Coombs Fellow.
He was Artistic Director of the Queensland Music Festival from 2005-2007 and was Artistic Director of the Adelaide Festival of Arts for 2010 and 2012.
He is currently a Professor at Monash University, and director of the Monash University Academy of Performing Arts and the Monash Art Ensemble. In 2014 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for services to music and arts administration.
Australia’s leading jazz vocalist, Vince Jones, is also a remarkable interpreter and composer of songs in a contemporary jazz style – a style that appeals equally to listeners and his musical peers. As a vocalist he resists showing off technique to the detriment of feel – he’s confident in his musical literacy and sings like there’s nothing to prove. It’s a refreshing approach that gives us, the audience, the chance to be really moved. Vince Jones also plays trumpet and over the years his style has developed a distinctive reserve and subtlety – he plays a little less and draws a good deal more from it than he did in earlier days. A brief, thoughtful solo from Vince is worth a hundred notes played with less discretion.
Born in Glasgow, Vince and his family came to live in Australia when he was 11 years old. He grew up in Wollongong, NSW, listening to his musician father’s collection of great jazz albums, and the feel, style and essence of the music became a natural part of Vince’s world. Starting his jazz performance journey as a bebop trumpet player, the young man had no idea that in 10 years, then 20 years – his superb voice would touch the hearts and minds of many listeners – in Australia and beyond. At 20, Vince began playing the club circuit in Melbourne. He was drawn to R&B music – a genre in which the emotive force of the voice is matched by technical and improvising skills. To a young man steeped in jazz and blessed with a good voice – it was natural to meld these elements together and so began the evolution of Australia’s great jazz vocalist.
Vince’s first album Watch What Happens, released in 1981, was a quiet, strong statement – showcasing his vocal and songwriting talent in tandem with stylish accompaniment. A loyal following developed and with each album and tour the Australian audience grew. Though never a mainstream artist, Vince Jones was actually very popular – demonstrated through album sales figures and audience numbers. Other more media-hungry performers may have filled the column inches and airwaves – but Jones was selling more records and tickets in the atmospheric venues and certainly making people listen and think. The second album, Spell, came out in 1983, followed by a new album each year until It All Ends in Tears in 1988. Five more albums were produced from 1992 until 1999’s Live recorded at the Basement in Sydney. Through the 1990s Vince Jones and his band found success on the European circuit making an impression on reviewers, audiences and promoters. They played to packed houses in Germany, London, Switzerland, Denmark and the Netherlands including the major festivals – the North Sea, Montreux, Aarhus – and a range of more intimate venues.
Similar success has been found in the USA in recent years. Jones uses his voice as an expressive instrument and the lyric as a vehicle for story and comment – a balance found in the roots of jazz. It comes from the blues of the Afro-Americans and the melodies of the Celtic folk tradition and the heart of Vince Jones’ work is in that intersection. He has retained complete independence in the production and repertoire of his albums despite that in Australia they’re marketed through major labels. The songs he chooses – written by him or by others – always make an original, personal statement. Like the best in jazz and improvising styles – the moment of creativity occurs at the point of execution as much as it does at the time of the original composition, and Vince Jones walks this line with finesse and respect. Jones’ dedication to his music is equalled by his passion for the health of Australia’s environment.
This is what drives Vince Jones – his love of the bush, like his love of music, includes the challenging bits alongside the easy, beautiful bits. So his perspective is humble, humanistic and not afraid to speak out. These days he has returned to the South Coast of NSW and when not performing and recording he’ll be putting time into conservation and human freedom issues he believes in – including local problems such as the slipping of the Illawarra escarpment.
In late 1999, Vince’s twelfth CD – ‘Vince Jones Live‘ – was released. Recorded at The Basement in Sydney where he has performed for a number of years, the album has been well received:
“The sonic quality here is remarkable for a live album . . . it’s a mystery that Jones isn’t a household name.” Rolling Stone “Vince Jones is living proof that independence is not about genres …. He’s a soulful survivor, with a voice as cool as a long G&T and a repertoire that balances jazz, rock and soul.” Beat Magazine ”
Backed by a first-rate band (Sam Keevers, James Muller, Adam Armstrong and Simon Barker) he offers tried-and-true originals alongside songs borrowed from sources as diverse as Leonard Cohen (‘Hallelujah’), Aretha Franklin and Pete Seeger. Jones sings with undeniable sincerity…..” The Bulletin – January, 2000
This album contains no booklet.