Allan Browne co-founded the Red Onion Jazz Band with Brett Iggulden and the late Bill Howard in 1960, leading the group through three extended European tours in 1967, 1969 and 1994. From the mid 1970s to the mid 1990s Browne worked extensively with Vince Jones, Barney McAll, Steven Grant and Paul Grabowsky’s trio and quintet. He simultaneously led the contemporary jazz group Onaje, which was selected to represent Australia at the prestigious Montreal Jazz Festival in 1992.
In constant demand as an accompanist, Browne has worked with many international Jazz icons including Milt Jackson, Mal Waldron, Jay McShann, Herb Ellis, Phil Woods, Al Cohn, Plas Johnson, Jimmy Witherspoon, Art Hodes, Wild Bill Davidson, Urbie Green, Ronnie Scott, Charlie Byrd, Ralph Sutton, Sheila Jordan, Red Holloway, Emily Remler, Teddy Wilson, George Garzone and Richie Cole.
He has worked in film and television and was awarded the Don Banks Fellowship in 2000
for his contribution to Australian music. His discography totals 110 commercial LP s and CDs, including Aria winners in the jazz category, Aria finalists, five Bell Awards and The Melbourne Herald album of the year.
Recent projects have included CD and trio collaborations with Margie Lou Dyer (Allfrey St.,
nominated for a Bell Award in 2008) and with Sam Anning and Marc Hannaford (Homage, which won a Bell award in 2010). His two quintet recordings of music inspired by the poetry of Arthur Rimbaud (The Drunken Boat and A Season in Hell) were received to critical acclaim. In recent years he has had the opportunity to perform with Bernie McGann, Mike Nock, Warren Vache, Julien Wilson, Bob Barnard, George Garzone and Don Burrows, as well as being a regular member of Nick Haywood’s quartet.
During his eighteen-year Bennetts Lane residency, he has worked in small groups with many musicians including Sam Pankhurst, Marc Hannaford, Steve Grant, Scott Tinkler, John Smeathers and Brett Thompson and long time composer/colleagues, Eugene Ball, Geoff Hughes, Phil Noy and Nick Haywood.
Browne sat for three years on the music board of The Australia Council for The Arts in the
‘90s. He is currently chair of The Victorian Jazz Co-Op and has been artist-in-residence at the Elder Conservatorium in Adelaide. He has judged the National Jazz Writing Competition and the National Percussion Awards. With Bob Sedergreen, he co-leads the Stonnington Youth Jazz Initiative, is also patron of Stonnington Jazz and was awarded The Stonnington Council’s Citizen of the Year Award in 2008 for his work in arts and culture.
He has five children (all musicians) and three grandchildren. He had a single lung transplant at The Alfred Hospital in 2002.