b. Adrian Herbert Monsbourgh, 17 February 1917, Echuca, Victoria, Australia, d. 13 July 2006, Australia. During childhood and his early teens Monsbourgh took up a wide range of instruments, including piano, brass and several reeds, notably the alto saxophone. It was on clarinet and saxophones that he became best known, especially during the many years he spent in Graeme Bell’s band in the 30s and 40s. With Bell, and later as a freelance, he played in Europe, visiting England on a number of occasions to play with fellow spirits during the trad jazz boom of the 50s. In London in 1951 he recorded a handful of sides, leading a band that included Bell and Humphrey Lyttelton. In his homeland he played with numerous other bands, and for almost 30 years regularly formed his own bands for concerts, club dates and recording sessions. During his long and highly active career ‘Lazy Ade’ worked with many of Australia’s best jazzmen, among them Bob and Len Barnard and Dave Dallwitz. A vigorous player with an engaging capacity for creating musical surprises (for example playing the recorder in a jazzy context), Monsbourgh made an inestimable contribution to traditional jazz in Australia.
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