Ideas are to words as readers are to …

Off the RadarWriters … and once more in 2010 a team of four from Christchurch City Libraries will head north to the Auckland Readers and Writers Festival. For one of our group this will be a bucket-list back-breaker of firsts. Some of us are more seasoned in the fine art of festival, but for all of us there is a mixture of fear and excitement as we visit the tenth anniversary version of this fantastic event.

We won’t be off the radar – far from it.  Our team – Roberta Smith, Marion Ogier, Bronwyn Smith and myself – will be reporting from individual sessions, interviewing authors, providing audio wrap-ups each day, as well as taking plenty of photos. And of course our hard-working web team will be backing us up.

You’ll see content coming through from next week on, so please join our conversation every step of the way, ask questions and share your ideas and words – that’s if your not too busy going to all the music gigs at the library!

I’m meeting Te Radar and another man who works under a pseudonym,  the fascinating Charlie Dark – and if past experience is anything to go by, there’ll also be plenty of new and exciting discoveries along the way.

Have you ever been to a writing / reading festival? Have you queued up for a signing or been the ultimate fan? And if you met your favourite author, what would you ask them?

Culture tunnels

This rather open-ended title is by a jazz four-sometimes-five-some called Aronas. They are based in Australia and perform all over the world. The piano player is Aron Ottignon. He is a bit of a genius and he comes from New Zealand.

This debut album of theirs came out in 2007. For some reason, this incredibly clever bunch of guys is not a household name just yet. Their exuberant riffs run in, up and around some seriously tight rhythms, with which these guys do things with that are positively in-your-face outrageous, given the 4 x 4 days we live in now! They fall over each other, slipping in and out of various pulses and keep this album driving relentlessly forward. They really are having way too much fun, although just to prove they are more than talented, funky and fun they throw in a delicious little number at the end which leaves you with a very yummy feeling in your tummy.

Their next album is due to come out in time for May Music Month. I can’t wait to get my hands on it!

If you like this you may also be interested in the Mamaku Project, Departure Lounge or another unsung New Zealand jazz sensation Kevin Clark.

Check out this list of New Zealand jazz recordings.