Gary Honor


Gary first began playing alto saxophone at age 10 after being inspired by a saxophone solo he heard on a TV pop music show.  Due mainly to his enthusiasm Gary quickly excelled on the saxophone and won the school band trophy at the end of his first year of playing.

During his early high school years he became familiar with many of the saxophone greats but it was the soulful, energetic sound of the jazz/rock players such as David Sanborn, Michael Brecker, and Grover Washington Jr that really caught his attention.  From then on his passion for jazz, rock and blues began to emerge in his own playing. At 15 he began playing in hotels and clubs when he joined the Sydney blues band ‘Heart’n’Soul’. This gave him the opportunity to develop as a soloist as well as learn from some of Sydney’s finest blues musicians.


The following year he won 1st prize in the Northside Jazz competition for under 19 year olds. This led to a scholarship trip to England in 1996 after graduating from high school to further his studies in the art of jazz and saxophone playing.

Shortly after returning from the UK Gary’s music took a back seat as he began studies in computer science and the arts at Sydney University .



‘It was hard for me to get fully involved in my studies in computers.  I enjoyed being creative and number crunching wasn’t really the best avenue for that, I kept playing music while I was a uni and soon found that my passion for music was too great a distraction.’


Gary then followed his heart, leaving Sydney altogether and enrolled in the Jazz course at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music.  It was there that he was taught by many great lecturers, notably Tony Hobbs and John Hoffman.  He also took up the flute and clarinet at this time and became a member of John Hoffman’s Con Artist’s Big Band.  It was with this band that he was given the opportunity to record a CD with legendary Australian jazz artist Dale Barlow.  

It was also during his time in Queensland that Gary became very aware of the spiritual aspects of music and soon realized that his music was a gift from his creator.  After re-dedicating his life to Christ his music took on a more substantial meaning. 


‘I will always be thankful for what God has done in my life, everything that has happen for me so far is in preparation for what is to come. God has an eternal purpose and will for me that I previously was unaware of.  As I live my life and play my music I realise more and more that there is no greater freedom than a life in Christ.’


Brisbane Christian Outreach Centre was the church he made his home and it was there where he was given the opportunity to play his sax before hundreds of people each week in worship.   Over a period of 4 years Gary recorded on and arranged for a series of praise and worship CD’s and videos.

Gary was also a valued member of the high-energy showband ‘Honey’ playing sax, flute and wind synth.  Honey performed regularly at corporate events all over Queensland and soon gained acclaim for its musicality and energy on stage.

At the beginning of 2000 Gary graduated from the conservatorium of music with a degree in jazz and decided that he needed a change of pace.  This inspired him to move back to Sydney in search of more musical opportunities.  After arriving in Sydney he enlisted in the Navy and began playing with the Royal Australian Navy Band. 


‘Coming out of uni can be a real struggle for a young musician,  You have to spend a lot of time looking for paid opportunities to play.  After seeing a few friends join the service I soon realised to Navy was going to give me the best opportunity to play professionally.’


Over the past few years Gary has traveled all over Australia performing in every major city. He has also been a featured soloist with the Navy Big Band and Wind Orchestra on numerous occasions and has had the opportunity to visit international destinations such as Greece , Crete , Japan , China , Philippines , Guam and also Norfolk Island for ANZAC day.



Only a few months ago Gary decided that was time to move on in his musical career.   Now with numerous musical experiences he now felt that it was time to leave the Navy and explore other musical endeavours. 


In the second half of 2004 Gary has really established himself in the Sydney Music scene.  Gary has been performing regularly at the Newmarket Hotel with his 10-piece band ‘ Bump City ’ which he co-launched earlier in 2004. Already Bump City is regarded as being Sydney ’s finest old-school soul funk band with a regular following growing with each performance.  He has also been working with other artists such as the Fabulous Blues Brothers Show, Oh Boy –The Buddy Holly Show, Frank Bennett and the Sydney All-Stars, American Gospel Award winning Jazz ensemble ‘Scat’, Deva Permana’s Multifunksee, The Power Of Two, Troy Smith and Peter Morgan’s Lamore Trio.  Also, he featured as a soloist with The Allniters in support of UB40’s pacific tour 2004.


On top of all that he is also a member of the worship team at Hillsong Church in Sydney where he plays regularly to congregations of 1000+.  Gary has recorded on and written brass arrangements for numerous praise and worship CD’s for Hillsong Church and has also featured on an instrumental album.


And, most recently to date, Gary has release his debut solo CD – Atmospheric.





‘I’m really excited about finally having the chance to record my music.  I love being creative and recording is the ultimate outlet for that.  This CD is completely instrumental and so I’m telling a story or painting a picture with sound.  My main aim was to create atmospheres with both strong melodies and a solid groove which are easy for the listener to connect with.  That way, people will be in a better position to hear my heart in the music which is the desire of most composers.’