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Jen Anderson

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Biography

Jen Anderson, known for her hauntingly beautiful violin playing, was born into a musical family. Her father was a professional jazz musician before becoming an expert in medieval music. The children were all encouraged to learn an instrument and Jen chose the violin.

However, as a teenager, Jen became disillusioned with her choice of instrument. She didn’t want to play in an orchestra or be a solo violinist; she wanted to play in a rock and roll band. Violin players, however, weren’t guaranteed a place in rock and roll bands, so she taught herself to play the bass guitar.

It was Jen Anderson’s talents with her first musical choice, the violin, which was noticed by some of the country’s top bands. Six months after leaving her home town of Armidale in NSW to go to Melbourne, she was touring internationally with one of Australia’s top bands, The Black Sorrows.

“All of a sudden I was touring around the world and staying in the best of hotels and being courted by record companies around the world. I used to dream about being in a rock band and touring the world and suddenly it happened.”

Jen played and toured with The Black Sorrows, and also Weddings, Parties, Anything throughout the 1980s and early ’90s, but eventually tired of motel and hotel rooms. In 1993 she was asked to compose live music for the black and white silent movie Pandora’s Box starring the beautiful Louise Brooks. It was a huge hit. She then composed music to accompany The Sentimental Bloke for the Melbourne International Film Festival.

Since then Jen has been writing for film and television, including the ABC’s Simone de Beauvoir’s Babies and the recently released Clara Law film Goddess of ‘67.

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