Lah-Lah was created by husband and wife team Tina and Mark Harris. Tina an opera singer and Mark a jazz double bass player. The pair ran four early childhood music schools after the birth of their two daughters. They always believed in the importance and power of music for young kids and their families. It was actually the parents at their school who suggested they present a live show, so they hired a venue and got the band together. After their first live season they were signed by Nickelodeon and started the adventure into TV. With three TV shows screening internationally, the highly awarded band is now a favourite for families all over the world. Their highly successful YouTube channel has now had over 370 million views. And now, Lah-Lah’s Stripy Sock Club Online is a music membership site with videos, TV shows, sheet music and educational games and activities that are a favourite in the classroom and at home.
Meet the Band
Tina has sung with top companies including Opera-Australia and The Melbourne and WA Symphonies. Following vocal studies in Paris, she relocated to Japan, developing a love of children’s education teaching ESL in Tokyo. Returning to Sydney to start her family, Tina launched four early-childhood music education centres.
In 2008, Tina created Lah-Lah with husband Mark. Lah-Lah’s debut album launched with a concert season at Sydney’s Seymour Centre in 2009 attracting industry interest and Tina pre-sold twelve live action/ animation music interstitials to Nickelodeon Australia and releasing a DVD with Roadshow.
Alongside teaching, touring, producing, composing and recording, Tina co-created live action/animated series ‘Lah-Lah's Adventures’, premiering in 2014 on CBeebies and 7TWO. That year Lah-Lah’s live tour won the ACE Awards’ Best Children's Show.
In 2016 the Stripy Sock Club format was created, Tina co-produced two Lah-Lah albums and the live tour won Tina’s second ACE award. Stripy Sock Club entered development in 2018, test-shooting at RMIT University.
In 2018, Tina celebrated ten Lah-Lah years with a second consecutive ARIA nomination for Lah-Lah’s sixth album '10th Birthday Party'. Tina then spent 2 years creating and producing a new TV series, Lah-Lah’s Stripy Sock Club. The show was an industry first with a partnership with RMIT University in Melbourne using cutting edge technologies Zero Density and Unreal Engine to instantly composite live action into 3D animated environments. Tina works as a private consultant and mentor to businesses, helping them think outside the box and see new lateral possibilities.
Buzz the BandLeader
Mark Harris is best known by preschoolers Australia wide as Buzz the Bandleader in TV shows Lah-Lah's Adventures and Lah-Lah's Stripy Sock Club broadcast by ABC TV, featuring the band Lah-Lah that he leads with wife and co-star Tina. For older audiences, Mark is the comedic singing double bassist in triple ARIA winning world music band Monsieur Camembert and performs with Abby Dobson (Leonardo's Bride) and Lara Goodridge (Fourplay) in French nightclub band Baby et Lulu.
A Masters graduate of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music Jazz department, Mark has also performed, recorded and or toured with the Wiggles, James Morrison, Emma Pask, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Sierra Boggess, Rhonda Burchmore and Tom Burlinson, and has performed in the Sydney productions of Crazy For You, My Fair Lady, Annie, The Boy From Oz, Chicago, Wicked, Fame, Jersey Boys, The Lion King, and Aladdin. On stage, Mark performs in venues nationally with Lah-Lah and also worked alongside Tim Rogers and Bojana Novakovic in The Importance Of Mary Maclane By Herself for Griffin Theatre Co.
As a composer, Mark wrote an album of original jazz - Entrée - for his quartet Mark4. He also co-composed the score for the stage adaptation of Oliver Jeffers’ book The Book Eating Boy with wife Tina for CDP Theatre Producers as well as the music for Lah-Lah’s six albums, two of which were nominated for ARIA awards.
Mister Tenor Saxophone
Summer Hill musician Matthew Ottignon is one of Sydney’s busiest saxophonists. His versatility and flare for performing sees him sought after by bands of many different flavours and styles. He has appeared on the recordings of Katie Noonan, Jackie Orszazcky, and Mike Nock and has appeared on stage with international legends Lou Reed, Brian Wilson, Steve Cropper and Donald Duck Dunn.
Ever since moving to Sydney from his hometown of Auckland NZ, Matthew has been in demand for his ability to add something special to bands, DJ’s and recording artists from all over the world, in particular because he spent some time with jazz master Mike Nock. His skills as a multi-instrumentalist have landed him in triple ARIA winning band Monsieur Camembert, and Matthew is often seen on stage with Guy Sebastian.
His own project Mister Ott is part of a worldwide movement of African inspired jazz ensembles, while being equally inspired by hip-hop, soul and electronica. The band’s first album ‘Drop It Like It’s Ott’ – a high caliber instrumental record that crosses world music with jazz, funk and Ethiopian music – was released in April 2015 and it’s follow up ‘Single Shot’ was released 2017 receiving many favourable reviews in the press both here in Australia and internationally. The band recently returned from performing in Berlin.
Matthew is also involved in the Compass Sax Quartet, Crusty Suitcase Band, Hipstones, Splinter Orchestra, Java Quartet, and John Pochee’s Space Cadets.
Matt plays with the Musica Viva in Schools Touring program and teaches at the Australian Jazz Workshop. He is passionate about music education for children and loves working in the school environment.
A permanent fixture in the Sydney jazz scene for many years now, Matthew adds his individual tenor sound to many outfits.
Gary Daley is best known as a musician playing in some of the elite bands of Australian jazz; currently James Greening’s band Greening from Ear to Ear and the jazz-world music band The catholics. He leads the quartet Bungarribee which features his own compositions and interpretations from the classical repertoire. Gary plays acoustic and electric piano, organ and also the piano accordion. Another side to Gary is his appearances week days on the ABC TV children’s channel in the preschool show Lah Lah’s Adventures.
Gary graduated with honours from the Sydney University Music Department where he studied with Peter Sculthorpe. He then studied with the late Roger Frampton who was a significant mentor.
In home town Springwood, just west of Sydney, he is the artistic director of the music concert series Live at the Village which has presented leading musicians in a variety of improvised music since late 2009.
Sanctuary is the recording of the latest album which was supported by the Australia Council. Psalm from ‘In the Palm of Your Hand’ is a five part gospel-jazz work commissioned by the St Paul’s Grammar School, Cranebrook in 2004. Performed by Gary Daley, Steve Clisby (solo voice), Toby Hall, Jess Ciampa, Richard Maegraith, Ben Waples, Ben Daley, Voice Mail (choir of St Paul’s Grammar), Cathy Jarman.
In 2002 Gary’s then band Heavy Weather recorded World View, which was sponsored by ABC Jazz Track.
Among the unrecorded works are compositions for the Bungarribee quartet. Some of this music was written in 2014 while Gary was artist in residence at Bundanon.
One extensive piece, Willow Tree was premiered at the first Live at the Village concert, October 2009 by Sandy Evans, Kristin Berardi, Lloyd Swanton, Nic Cecire and Gary Daley. A beautiful evocation of landscape this multi-layered 14 minute work left the audience stunned by its beauty and complexity.
Nic has been playing professionally for over 25 years. In that time he has performed and recorded with many of Australia’s leading artists in a wide variety of musical settings.
As an in demand jazz drummer Nic has worked with some of Australia’s leading jazz musicians such as, Jenny Morris, James Valentine, Dale Barlow, George Golla, and Tina Harrod.
He has also recorded with jazz, pop, rock and independent artists such as the Whitlam’s, On Inc and Yothu Yindi. Nic is also a regular on the session scene recording jingles for Virgin, Telstra and AGL amongst others.
Nic has performed at various Jazz festivals including Manly International, Magnetic Island, Thredbo, Bellingen, Dubbo and various Newcastle festivals.
Nic has studied with some of Australia’s leading drummers, such as David Jones and Andrew Gander, as well as completing the jazz course at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music in 94/95.
When not performing Nic is a highly sought after educator as a lecturer at the Australian Institute of Music. Nic also taught at the Hunter School of the Performing Arts (1997 - 2007) and Newcastle TAFE (from 1996 – 2005).
Mister Alto Saxophone
Originally a classically trained saxophonist Ross is now an in demand multi-instrumentalist on the Sydney jazz and world music scene. Ross’ passion for jazz is largely due to his school work experience that he completed at the Australian Army Band which inspired him to pursue further musical study at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where he completed a Bachelor of Jazz Performance. He has also been the recipient of a number of musical scholarships in his career. As well as playing in a variety of Sydney based ensembles, Ross composes and performs in his own project, Midnight Tea Party, which is inspired by the sounds of the balkans and dub/reggae.
Lah-Lah was created to make music fun! Based around early childhood musical concepts but always, entertainment first! There’s Lola the Dancing Double Bass, Squeezy Sneezy the hyper allergic piano accordion, Tom Tom on Drums, Mister Saxophone who loves to go hiding, Buzz the Bandleader and the loveable lead singer Lah-Lah. Lah-Lah's music is inspired by world music, Jazz, rock and roll, pop and a touch of classical.
"I wanted to let you know how much Lah-Lah's Adventures captures my son's imagination. My son Lucas, who is nearly 3, acquired a saxophone from the glad wrap roll, an accordion that he made from folding a page out of my precious beautiful home magazine, chopsticks for his drumsticks and his ukulele is now fondly called Lola 😊 Thank you so much!"
"I'd just like to say thank you for your wonderful music and show. Both of my kids love watching you. My son has since taken a real interest in instruments also. He loves playing all kinds of instruments. I just wanted you all to know that your music and what you do, makes a difference. Thank you!"