I have been tinkering with this for a while – finding out whether living with one artist only, at least for a while, is feasible. Listening only to the chosen musician for, say, one month?
Wynton Marsalis is certainly the most famous of the Young Lions and has been instrumental in bringing the traditions back into Jazz; but he was absolutely not the only one in the 1980’s reaching back to Bebop, Swing, New Orleans Jazz or even Ragtime. Continue reading Wait a minute, there wasn’t just Wynton!
It is funny, almost independently what one reads (on the internet) about Wynton Marsalis, latest the second sentence elaborates on what controversial figure he is. And this post obviously makes no difference to this!
But as Swiss, I have an elegant way out of this – being neutral has served us well in the past and will serve me here as well. Without having to take sides, I can purely enjoy his music, which I really do a lot!
What had started as anarchy collective should become one of the leading European ensembles of the modern creative Jazz. And then had to declare “Game Over” due to lack of funding. Continue reading Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose
In the old days everything was better, or at least simpler!
Up to the 1960ies, the development of Jazz followed largely a straight line. A style followed the previous one, the most recent one dominated and was the most relevant one in the given context. Then during the sixties and seventies Jazz styles started existing partially in parallel.
But in the 1980, this all changed. Continue reading If you thought Free Jazz was different – try this!
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. Continue reading About Two Which Found Their Style
As a small country (there are only 8 million of us), Switzerland does not present a large market and it is therefore difficult for Swiss (Jazz) musicians to earn a living from music. Being successful abroad is necessary, but also means winning against strong competition on their home turf. Hence, Switzerland has and always had a strong amateur Jazz music scene.
But here is one which could easily have made a living from the music. But he chose to go to the office every day and to keep Jazz as his hobby.
He even gave away a scholarship at Berklee, because he did not want to dedicate his entire time to music! Continue reading The One Who Chose Office Over Music
A year ago I set sails and went off to explore the world of Jazz. And it has been a very rewarding year of travel, lots of amazing stuff to see, respectively to hear. 30 posts document the trips to places far away as well as explorations around the house.
But after a year, it was also time to give the site a complete overhaul. I hope you like it, please let me know what you think.
Merry Christmas to everybody!
Does the name George Gruntz ring a bell? In case not, or if it is just a distant sound, I believe it is about time to change this. Here is why:
- George Gruntz played in 1958 at the Newport Jazz Festival as part of the Newport International Band and was on stage together with Louis Armstrong.
- As a piano player, he was on tour with Dexter Gordon, Roland Kirk, Donald Byrd, Lee Konitz, Chet Baker, Johnny Griffin, Gerry Mulligan and Art Farmer.
- With his own big band, he was the only European to rank top positions in the critics poll of Down Beat more than ten times in a row.
- His music has an extremely ample scope and is a lot of fun to listen to.
- He is likely the most important Swiss Jazz musician (ok, not so important for non-Swiss).
- If you still don’t believe me, read the Down Beat tribute to him