Farewell, Graeme Osborne

Graeme Osborne, Dobell's shop man and denizen of the Soho jazz scene of the 1970s and early 80s, died in Melbourne in August

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Graeme Osborne - habitué of 1970s Soho. Photo courtesy Gerry Koster

Readers of a certain age will be saddened to hear news of the death of Graeme Osborne, at the age of 77, on 22 August in Melbourne. He migrated from Australia to London and worked at Dobell’s Jazz Shop in the Charing Cross Road, in the 70s and early 80s, a contemporary of Les Fancourt and the late Brian Peerless, Trevor Salter, John Kendall and Ray Bolden.

He returned to Australia in 1983 and started Jazz Import Services as well as writing as a jazz critic for Melbourne newspaper The Age and having a long-running programme on PBS community radio. He semi-retired to Stanley, NE of Melbourne, about 15 years ago to work part-time in the post office and in a bookshop.

A knowledgeable but modest man, he was always good company and could  often be seen at jazz venues or discussing music, contemporary issues and literature in places like the Two Brewers, The Avenue or The Seven Dials Community Centre in Shelton Street.