I visited the US in April and a CD from the visit is now available. A live performance from Middletown, Connecticut. It´s a group we call Tipple where Kevin Norton plays drums and vibes plus lots of percussion. David Watson plays guitar and a little bag-pipe. And I play my usual stuff. We first played a few years back while recording our first CD Tipple. Now we have decided to make this a touring group. And another CD is also coming out in the not too distant future.
Another CD, also a live performance, has been released by VCDC which is Stine J. Motland, vocals, Fred Lonberg-Holm, cello and Ståle l. Solberg, percussion plus myself. The CD is called Insult and was recorded at the Sult gallery in Stavanger last November.
So these are pretty recent performances and would give you an up-to-date idea what the groups sound like.
We have recorded two concerts in Santiago which I will make available as downloads. We have played one set as a trio and we have had the pleasure to play with musicians from Santiago in our second set. Their names are on the poster. i don´t have a very good internet connection here so I will upload the tracks a little by little. The first trio performance is at http://www.frodegjerstad.com/cd/chile1.zip
Here is the quintet from the first night: http://www.frodegjerstad.com/cd/chile1q.zip. Here is the trio from the 2nd concert: http://www.frodegjerstad.com/cd/chile2.zip
We are now in the middle of a South-American tour which takes us to Brazil, Chile and Argentina. We landed in Santiago yesterday and played a concert here last night.
We started on March 5th in Rio de Janeiro where we played at the Audio Rebel. That was a very nice room to play in because it´s designed for sound: it´s a room for recording music. Unfortunately there was raining massively just before the concert and the streets were flooded so some people did not come because of the rain. a nice concert with a good audience.
The following day, we went north of Rio for about 2 hours to Cabo Frio. We had a concert in the house of Mateus Pagalidis. The house was packed but his neighbors were not too happy after we started playing loud music so we had to turn down the volume drastically. But as we don´t do that too often – it was a challenge to make it work…
After cabo Frio, we went to Sao Paulo to play at the Serralheria which is a very nice room to play in. The concert went well, but we could have had more people in the audience. Marcio Gibsons duo played first and they invited us to play the following day at the Trackers. This time Marcelo had three guitarists in his group and it sounded great!
So far we have had good shows and we have met some really nice and helpful people. Thank you all! I will follow this up and maybe post a little sound clip.
The rest of the tour is like this:
March 11 Projazz school of music concert
March 12 Club Thelonious, Santiago, Chile
March 13 Casa de la Cultura del Fondo Nacional de las Artes/FNA Rufino de Elizalde 2831 C.A. de Buenos Aires
March 14 Spanish cultural office in Buenos Aires. workshop
March 15 Spanish cultural office. Florida 943. Buenos Aires.
March 16 Teatro Argentino concert + workshop, La Plata
Sometimes I will let people download some music for free. Mostly concert performances.
This is a little recording we did in Canberra. Or Richard Johnson actually did it – with his little two-track recorder! This is the first set. The second set disappeared – we simply did not find it! Or maybe it was not recorded. Who knows?
Of cause, this should have been a link, but I don´t know how to do that! So please copy and past it into your browser and the music will arrive!
Steve and I will be playing together next month. First at cafe MIR in Oslo on September 11th and at cafe Stills, Stavanger on September 12th. he has played with many of the greats like Brøtzmann, Coxhill, Bailey, John Edwards, Alan Wilkinson etc etc.
I first played with him in London a couple of years ago. then we corresponded a bit and then we found some dates. Steve is a very good drummer and also a nice guy so I am looking forward to seeing him.
We played at the “Blow Out” festival at cafe MIR in Oslo on August 16th with “VCDC” which was fun. I had not played with them since last August because of my heart attack in December so it was good to be back.
Fred came to Stavanger on the following Monday. We had decided to record a bit again which we did on Tuesday and then we first played at the kindergarten at noon and in the evening we played at Gallery Sult. I felt we did a good gig and I must say it´s always a pleasure to play with Fred. This time I also brought my bass sax and for the first time in concert, I really enjoyed playing the big horn. It worked well with Freds cello. Now it´s mixing time and we´ll see what it is….
On Sunday, we (the trio) leave for the other side of the globe. I remember as a kid we used to have a globus and looking closely, I could see New Zealand and Australia. and of cause I wondered what those places were like.
Then when I started school, one of my mates and his family moved to Australia. By then I knew it was pretty far away and I thought his family were very brave.
This tour came about because Paal was there last january with The Thing. And he suggested he could give it a try. We first aimed at January 2012, but had no luck. But for me, it was very much luck because I had a heart attack mid-December. And I would never have been able to do it by January. Then Paal tried August and we were lucky.
Side by side is another duo with Paal. we did this in 2008 while touring the US as a duo. We visited Cadence in the north of New York State and recorded in their living room. Paal and I have made some duo recordings and it´s always a pleasure! When I first played with him, when he was around 15 up until now, he´s gone through an enormous development as a player as well as a human being. I am very proud to be able to play with him still, after all these years. And I actually feel we are playing better together now than ever before. Paal is a very natural player who is not dogmatic in any way. He is so much part of the moment and manages to grab it and process it in a very personal way. A great musician!
Different Times is a duo with bassist Nick Stephens. Nick and I have played together on and off since 1984. Now it´s always a kick to visit him and his wife Fay in their London home where he also records most of his stuff in the attic. This CD is from 3 different sessions.
Dragon is a most unusual trio: Paal Nilssen-Love, drums, Bobby Bradford, cornet and myself recorded live at the Dragon Club in Poznan, Poland. it was not intended to be a trio, but our bassist, Ingebrigt Haaker Flaten, did not arrive on time from Austin. So we had to do it as a trio. Actually, I am pretty happy with Ingebrigt not showing up on time because the result is pretty unusual. bobby and I was standing face-to-face so I could follow him pretty well while Paal was sitting in the middle, a little behind us.
HideOut is a CD by Frode Gjerstad Trio, recorded live at the Hide Out, Chicago and the end of August 2011 when we did a 12 concert US tour. This was the first extended tour with our new bassist, Jon Rune Strøm, and he did pretty well! This gig shows some of the new energy in the band that Jon Rune has brought along. This was never more obvious when we did a recent little tour in the beginning of May 2012. More energy and more melody! I have started running because of a heart attack I had just before Christmas 2011 and I can easily hear and feel the results: more energy, longer lines and more sustaining power. Which cannot be bad?
Tistel is a duo with cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm. I hope to do another one with him because I really love his playing.
One foot moving is a duo with percussionist Steve Hubback. Originally released as a limited edition on the Utech label and now rereleased on FMR. Steve is an original player who also makes cymbals and sound sculptures.
This double-CD by Frode Gjerstad’s large ensemble starts with the horrendous electronic screeching of Lasse Marhaug, but then gradually the music develops, harsh, raw, intrusive, overwhelming, overpowering, with the triple drums of Louis Moholo-Moholo and Paal Nilssen-Love and Morten J. Olsen, accompanied by the acoustic bass of Nick Stephens and the electric bass of Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, the full rhythm section picking up rhythm and Børre Mølstad’s tuba accentuating it with a repeated tone, yet the behemoth gradually slows down for Bobby Bradford’s cornet to bring the first clear tones, played in his bluesy tone over Kevin Norton’s vibes, and Sabir Mateen and Gjerstad himself adding the sax and clarinet lines. On the seventy-one minute long first disc, recorded in Philadelphia, the band shows its real strength by moving as one, not only in the exuberant parts, but especially in the quiet moments, in which sounds bubble up organically like sounds from nature waking up at dawn, all different yet painting a great common canvas of surprise and purity. But of course madness erupts again, with screeching electronics, disrupting every notion of possible comfort, to be altered by steady rhythm and great soloing, “electric Miles”-like at moments.
The second disc is recorded in Oslo, and features the same band, except for two changes : Per Zanussi plays the electric bass and Anders Hana joins on electric guitar. The piece is a few seconds shorter only, and offers the same joyous wildness, and it is hard to say which is best, and possibly nobody can, and that’s probably the reason why we get both in one package. The electric Miles elements are a little more accentuated because of the electric guitar, but that’s just a little touch, the rest is as rambunctious, boisterous, booming, cacophonous, clamorous, crashing, deafening, deep, ear-piercing, ear-splitting, emphatic, full, heavy, high-sounding, intense, piercing, powerful, raucous, blustering, roaring, rowdy, sonorous, thundering, tumultuous, turbulent, uproarious, vehement, vociferous … in short capable of waking up the dead … and real fun at that.
Yet the great power of the album is its variation, and other moments are delicate, gracious, restrained, ritzy, sensitive, sophisticated, subtle … resulting in a bewitching, captivating, entrancing, hypnotic, mesmerizing performance.
I hope you get the gist: free and wild and adventurous and deep?
• Paal Nilssen-Love, drums
• Jon Rune Strøm, bass
• Frode Gjerstad, clarinets, alto sax
After two decades of trios with various international musicians, this is Frode Gjerstads first all-Norwegian trio. And it is a significant move towards a Nordic improvised sound. In the past, he has played in trios with Hamid Drake, William Parker, John Stevens, Johnny Dyani, Kent Carter, Wilber Morris and Rashid Bakr.
This trio has made 8 recordings so far: “Last First” on the US label, Falcata-Galica. A studio-recording from November -99 when the group was quite fresh. Then came a live recording from September 2000 in Oslo, “The Blessing Light” on Cadence Jazz Records. This CD is dedicated to the late British drummer, John Stevens. “Sharp knives cut deeper” with Peter Brøtzmann on the Italian label Splash came in-03, “St.Louis” is a live recording from our 2002 US tour that came out on FMR in -04 and in 2005 we recorded “mothers & fathers”. In 2007 we recorded “Nothing is forever” at a concert in Oslo. Then there is “MIR” recorded in 2010 at cafe MIR, Oslo. This was the first try out for the new trio. And the “East of West” was recorded in April 2011 and this is also our latest recording.
The trio has so far toured and/or played festivals in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Austria, Poland, Germany, Slovenia,Kroatia, Italy, USA and Canada.
Ben Watson, Hi-Fi News:
This trio has a freshness which the big names in London and New York find it hard to muster these days.
Glenn Astarita, All about Jazz:
This band often performs with a distinct sense of spiritualism to coincide with an abundance of hearty soloing and curiously interesting three-way dialogue.
Paal Nilssen-Love first started playing with Frode Gjerstad when he was 15. Since then, he has become one of the most active musicians of the new generation in Norway. He has also played and recorded with international sax-players Mats Gustavsson, Joe McPhee, Ken Vandermark and many, many more! He is now traveling the world and also is a permanent member of the Brøtzmann Tentette.
Check out www.paalnilssenlove.com
Jon Rune Strøm now plays bass in the trio. We first played with him last September in Oslo at the MIR club. A CD form the gig will be out soon, called MIR. Then we did a tour in May with him. Before the tour, we rehearsed a couple of days and also recorded. So another CD is on it´s way “East of West”. I feel very excited playing with Jon Rune and I think we are moving into something else…
Live in New Zealand 2012 (High resolution – for downloads)
Frode Gjerstad/Paal Nilssen-Love: Duo
We sometimes play as a duo as well. We did 13 concerts in the US and Canada in August -08.
Check out the video from Toronto….