Myself, Georgia Hazzard and Robbie Long have been steadily working on a new album since mid last year. A fresh batch of acoustic slide songs along with some electric guitar based funk and rock creations. There are a couple of new versions of tunes from Jigzag and DV8 days as well. I’ll keep you updated on our progress.
- Belmore Hotel, Maitland
Greg Bryce Duo with Georgia Hazzard on bass at Belmore Hotel, Maitland from 8.30pm-12am
- Customs House, Newcastle
Duo with Georgia Hazzard on bass at Customs House, Newcastle from 3-6pm
- Edgeworth Bowling Club
GB Band at Edgeworth Bowling Club from 8-11pm
Graham McDonald Program Manager, National Folk Festival
Acoustic trio Jigzag, who are based in Sydney when they aren't touring (which isn't very often, by all accounts), are beginning to create ripples around the country which could easily become Waif size waves in the not too distant future. Like The Waifs, they first caught this reviewer's eyes and ears at the last Woodford Festival, where they were one of the stand-out acts. The good impression was more than confirmed during a recent tour in Queensland's Far North.
An act honed during countless hours busking at Sydney's Central Station, Jigzag are perhaps best judged in a live context, where their sheer vivacity, musicality and inherent ability to entertain truly shines. 30 Seconds of Happiness, never the less, is an accurate representation of their current sets. The album features the group's cleverly conceived and arranged folk and jazz coloured pop songs interspersed with similarly well thought out medleys of Celtic tunes, some old favourites; others composed by Jigzag's fiddle whiz, Caroline Trengove. Their swing approach to jigs and reels brings to mind Scotland's The Easy Club. Guitarist Greg Bryce and double bassist Liz Frencham have similar mastery of their instruments. Together, the three members create perfect 3 part harmony, making Jigzag a very well matched trio.
Vocally, Bryce shines on the co-penned title track and on his own song, These Feelings. Frencham's lovely voice can be heard in all its glory on her outstanding songs, Man of Wood (a sensuous eulogy to her double bass) and the poetic Breathe.
Tony Hillier Rhythms magazine
Dave Gleeson of The Screaming Jets talks about Greg’s song “141” on the Screaming Jets album “Do Ya” which was originally recorded on DV8’s first album “Stab In The Dark” - “141 is a song that was originally written by Greg Bryce from a band called DV8 out of Newcastle (he also wrote "Blue Sashes" on ‘All for One’ and Back on the Hard Drugs on the ‘Tear of Thought’ album). It had more of a punk feel to it when first released in the late 70's or early eighties. It basically says we need to find real solutions to the ills of today’s society, instead of sticking a publicity band-aid on the problem, and hoping it goes away. I think the line, ‘no one wins in the human race' is a f**kin’ corker. My only regret being that I didn't write it.”
Dave Gleeson The Screaming Jets
"If there was one defining moment that shaped today's Newcastle music sound, that point was DV8. In a town where if you didn't play covers, you didn't get a gig, DV8's Greg Bryce went against the grain and he and the band carved an 'enormous' following for his original Newcastle brand of music."
For seven years Greg Bryce was the key to DV8, playing the roles of founding member, singer, guitarist and song-writer. Bryce was also the key to DV8’s popularity in Newcastle. He not only wrote catchy songs that incorporated a variety of styles, he understood exactly what the average pub-goer was looking for in a band…an act that was low on pretence but big on energetic guitar-based rock.
Scott Bevan The Newcastle Herald
Live performance is Jigzag’s lifeblood so it’s nigh tantamount to stating the bleeding obvious to say that the new album shows off their best qualities. Recorded before a studio audience in Melbourne and at festivals in Victoria and Queensland, “Live!” stands as eloquent testimony to the Sydney trio’s stage artistry. Having had the onerous task of following them at a festival in Denmark last year, this reviewer/muso can speak first-hand of their ability to entertain!
As a unit Jigzag are as tight as a jigsaw, though there’s always space for spontaneity. It's a perfect blend of instrumental skills and voices. Greg Bryce (guitar), Elisabeth Frencham (upright bass) and Caroline Trengove (violin/viola) fit together like interlocking pieces. They read each other’s moves like reef fish. All innovative players and singers, lead and harmony, they also have a flair for writing catchy yet thought-provoking songs. Their folky pop contains bright splashes of jazz, blues, classical and Celtic. At the core of Live! is Bryce’s anthemic 30 Seconds of Happiness’, with a veritable busker’s songbook as the meat in the sandwich (there’s quotes from just about everything, from My Sharona to Smoke on the Water). The spectacular gypsy romp Misirlou, featuring Trengove’s soaring violin, is another proven show-stopper. Frencham shines on Man of Wood, her love song to Sebastian (her upright bass). Jigzag change rhythms and feels with an ease that is the hallmark of top flight musicianship. Deft use of dynamics and spine-tingling harmony is the icing on this particularly tasty cake.
Tony Hillier Rhythms Magazine’
This multi-talented trio have been a live favourite on the Aussie folk circuit for years now. This new live album captures them in both intimate venues and full-blown festival crowds. It’s a varied mix of Celtic, jazz, pop and even country in parts. Highlights include 30 Seconds of Happiness which tells of the band’s busking experiences and lets them show off their musical talent as they run through a series of staccato snapshots of busker staples from Stairway to Heaven to My Sharona - all with acoustic guitar, double-bass and violin. Also worth a listen is their pumping eight-minute acoustic take of Misirlou, these days best known as the title music for Pulp Fiction.
Eddie O'Reilly The Newcastle Herald
Greg playing lead guitar for Bo Diddley at Doyalson RSL with the Rat Salad men. A distinct privilege, honour and pleasure. Greg was lucky enough to repeat the experience at the Sydney Entertainment Centre years later.
“Under The Wire is an alluring mix of hookier-than-Rex-Hunt’s-
tackle-box guitar lines, a bit of soulful funk, blues and even the odd ballad for good measure.”
Stephen Bisset Newcastle Post
What a surprise! This band really kicks freckle. DV8 is the best thing to come out of Newcastle. As a three-piece band it has a lot of punch, reminiscent of Matt Finish and early Spy V Spy.
The album’s production quality is excellent, the sound is clean but it hasn’t lost that live edge. There’s always a chance that songs on an album will sound the same after a while but they are so varied that it doesn’t happen with this one. Greg Bryce (guitar, vocals) is the band’s songwriter, creating some interesting atmospheres and images. Listening to the album, I felt like I was really there. I could almost smell the beer and sweat, which is what a live album should be like.
We asked Greg to play at my 50th Birthday celebrations, he was so good that we asked him to play at my wife’s 50th in August 2014. Greg played a wide variety of music, he encouraged participation from our guests with quite a few of us getting up and dancing. Throughout the night family and friends kept telling me that Greg was playing fantastic music. When it came time for Greg to finish there were plenty of groans however we asked Greg if he could continue, he readily agreed and we really appreciated it. When we told our guests that Greg was going to keep playing we were met with people telling us that they could listen to him all night.Thanks Greg, you are a very talented musician and entertainer. Everyone really enjoyed your music, Friends and family were still talking about how great you were a week after the party. We have had friends say that they would like to ask you to play at their next event. We highly recommend Greg, most definitely.
John and Lauri V.
Jigzag were a revelation! This three-piece high energy band from Sydney combine Celtic snap, heartfelt ballads and punchy folk with energetic, joyful stage presentation. See them if you ever can. Buy their CD. It's on the web.
Steve Baker Review of Tablelands Folk Festival Yungaburra, Qld
Hi Greg, I would like to thank you for the fantastic music you played at my 50th Birthday.
You had the place rocking and as I explained to you when we chose the song list I wanted people up dancing and celebrating all night and this was exactly how the night progressed. Many of my friends said that they had not had a night of such fun , music and dance in a long time.
The selection was FANTASTIC! You played all the greats and the sing-along at the end of the night with my drunken friends was memorable to say the least.
Greg Bryce is the great guitarist and singer songwriter from one of Australia's most popular acoustic festival bands 'Jigzag'. They're wonderfully eclectic, virtuosic, energetic and thought provoking all at the same time. Greg's an example of a true team player and surely a role model for guitarists wanting to contribute intelligent parts and "play for the song".
Nick Charles Rhythms Magazine
It takes a particular talent to remove the stitching of various musical cloth and thread together a tapestry that feels as if it’s seamless and natural. Jigzag have that singular talent. This, their second album, is not easily classifiable, and nor should it be. The trio – of guitar, violin and double bass – blend acoustic folk, pop, Celtic, jazz and even country swing; these streams flow into a river that glistens on the surface with sunlight, yet has a musical and emotional depth to it. The album kicks off with the infectious joy of the title track, which was born from busking days in Sydney. Man of Wood, a piece of jazz bravado, follows, written and sung by Liz Frencham, it shows the ease with which this trio can handle a change of direction.
Interspersed with the originals are interpretations of Celtic instrumentals, including a melancholy and mood-riven version sung by Caroline Trengove of She Moved Through the Fair. The musicianship, whether ensemble or soloing (guitarist Greg Bryce’s switch from one style to another mid-song is impressive) is of a constantly high level. The harmonies show a special chemistry, no more so than on Between the Darkness and the Deep, an achingly tender ballad. The coalescence of voices sends shivers down the spine, and there’s no greater tribute to musicians than that they can make ring, like a spoon on a glass, a resonant chord within.
Warwick McFadyen The Sunday Age, Melbourne