Cuba Street parade

Identity, authenticity and self-expression in contemporary Australasian jazz scenes


  • Nick Tipping New Zealand School of Music



identity, authenticity


While jazz has developed into a global artform, its history (and much of its present) remain bound to activity in the US. Jazz musicians in Australia and New Zealand must negotiate the tension between normative expression via an adopted artform, and expression of their own identities as contemporary New Zealanders and Australians, through the discarding of convention in order to achieve greater integrity of expression. Through interviews with musicians from the (multiple) scenes in Melbourne and Wellington, various perspectives are considered. The influence of jazz education, and the notion of national style are also discussed.

Author Biography

  • Nick Tipping, New Zealand School of Music

    Nick Tipping is a PhD student, lecturer and bass player in Wellington, New Zealand. His dissertation focuses on the Wellington jazz scene, and issues of identity, both within the community and in relation to global jazz. Nick was Programme Leader for Jazz at the New Zealand School of Music from 2007-2011, and has lectured in jazz studies and performance at the NZSM and the University of Auckland. He is an active professional bass player on the Wellington scene, and has toured New Zealand and Australia with musicians and ensembles including Mike Stern, Kurt Elling, Joey DeFrancesco, Rodger Fox, Nathan Haines, the NZ Symphony Orchestra, and his own octet The Jac. Nick is a regular contributor to Radio New Zealand, as a critic and commentator on jazz.


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How to Cite

Tipping, N. (2015). Cuba Street parade: Identity, authenticity and self-expression in contemporary Australasian jazz scenes. Jazz Research Journal, 8(1-2), 111-125.