This blog is about two Swiss Jazz musicians which have up to this day left their marks in the musical history of this country. About two, which crossed paths several times during the last 50 plus years. And about two which early on in their career followed the trends of the time but then developed their own style.
In the early 1960ies, the Metronome Quintet was one of the leading Swiss Hardbop ensembles and it featured Bruno Spörri on saxophone and Hans Kennel on trumpet.
Ten years later, Jazz Rock respectively Fusion was on the rise and we see both of them together again in Jazz Rock Experience. Spörri by then already had gone deep into electronic music, firstly with self-built “instruments”, but in 1970 he had bought a very expensive EMS synthesizer.
To amortize the costly gear, Spörri writes and produces also music for commercials and movies. Here we have a very creative example – a commercial for SIG, a large Swiss industrial goods producer, for which he wrote the Concert for SIG Hydraulic Tools:
Bruno Spörri has always kept playing acoustic music as well, in fact his latest few records were all acoustic Jazz. However, he is more known for his electronic creations, for which he has become a leading figure in Switzerland and Europe. He was a founding member for the Swiss Association for Computer Music and was member of the International Computer Music Association (http://www.computermusic.org).
And he certainly is an integrative figure within the Swiss Jazz scene. He is the publisher of the only comprehensive book about the history of Jazz in this country (which is obviously also an important source of information for this blog). The book is a compilation of views and texts from a number of musicians which form a picture of Swiss Jazz through time.
Hans Kennel on the other hand discovered shortly after the Jazz Rock Experience time his true ambition – the perfect combination of traditional music from central Switzerland with Jazz.
For this he formed first the Swiss-folk-Jazz fusion orchestra Alpine Jazz Herd, which became later the Alpine Jazz Experience. In the former the Jazz roots were still very strong, with the latter he moved closer to folk music. However, by now Mytha, a quartet for alphorns, has become his most important project. Whether or not this is still Jazz is up to the listener to decide.
More information about Bruno Spörri can be found via http://www.computerjazz.ch/. Hans Kennel’s website is http://www.hanskennel.com/.
Thanks for reading all the way to here!