Carey Baptist College graduate wins Jazz Artist of the Year at Jazz Bell Awards

Jazz Artist of the Year, Harry Mitchell.
Jazz Artist of the Year, Harry Mitchell.

“JAZZ musician” may not be the wealthiest job occupation but pianist Harry Mitchell has proved he is rich in talent.

A graduate of Carey Baptist College’s prestigious jazz program, Mitchell recently won Young Australian Jazz Artist of the Year at the Jazz Bell Awards.

In addition, his song Ignacio was voted WAM Jazz Song of the Year and he released his debut self-titled album in February.

Mitchell said he was surprised by Ignacio’s accolade and success.

“I didn’t think there was anything that special about it, I just wanted to write a tune sort of in the style of some of the guys I listen to,” he said.

He said recording the album had been difficult at times and the financial aspect of recording music also posed problems.

“It’s expensive to record and to get all the stuff done; I applied for a grant through the government and they gave me a bit of money to record with,” he said.

“But then you get the money and you have to go through and do it. I had about three or four months and I was changing my mind and writing new stuff, deciding what to put in and what not to put in.

“The whole process was pretty long. You write everything, rehearse it, record it and spend hours mixing it before sending it off for mastering and then the whole thing is kind of a four-month process if you can do it quickly.”

Mitchell said he was hoping to play a few shows in the eastern states to celebrate his debut album but knew the financial aspect would again be a hindrance.

“I don’t know if I’m going to tour the whole band. I might just book a few gigs in Melbourne and a few gigs in Sydney and sort of pick up bands as I go around,” he said.

“I might apply for a grant to tour but I just did a tour for another band I’m in around Australia and he had to work so hard to get it going; he had a grant as well.”

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