Steam in the Casa

Steam in the Casa is a new CD by thye trio. It´s a live performance from last November when we played in Montreal at Casa del Popolo. Casa is one of my favourite clubs with a very nice sounding room .

As the title indicates, we were pretty much steaming. I was really mad because Canada Air had made my old Martin alto sax almost impossible to play: the three lowest notes did not work after they had thrown it around. I got to try a Yamaha modern alto. But I just could not get a strong sound out of it and decided to play my Martin even though it was sort of broken. That gave me an extra push I guess: I really wanted to show to myself that the Martin is good even when it´s crippled! I love the sound in that horn!Casa

Japan tour: May 3rd to May 10th

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We are going to Japan to play 8 gigs! Looking forward to the sea-food!!! And the music!

We are now in the middle of the tour. It´s been great with  good crows and some very exciting music! In fact I think we have opened another door in our musical relationship. We now play more independently of each other than ever. And the music feels more free than ever before. We can now go anywhere! This is the strength of doing a tour and play every night in a row: we can try out things and change the music which makes it more exciting for everybody.

Last night in Fukuoka, we played most of the first set without even touching the loud part of the music. Which is very unusual for us!

US duo tour

Today cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and I are starting on a duo tour here in the States.F Lonberg-Holm - Marek Lazarski4 copy

We just did a little Norwegian tour i March, playing Egersund, Haugesund, Oslo, Stavanger and the VossaJazz festival.

Our US tour will take us to:

April 5th:  St. Louis- Jackson Piano, 4354 Olive Str

April 6th:  Chicago – Constellation   311 N Western Ave, Chicago

April 7th:  Louisvlle – Dreamland -810 Market St. Louisville,

April 8th:  Somerset , Kentucky- Lucy’s Gallery 105 Ogden Street

April 9th:  Athens, Ohio – Haffa´s Records

April 10th:  Richmond, Virginia – Black Iris Gallery 321 W. Broad Street, Richmond

April 11th  Brooklyn NY – 65 Fen.  65 Fenimore St, Brooklyn, NY 11225              Here are some  You-tube stuff from Brooklyn:      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11lsPJa_1fU  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8ysWYjmhkw      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoabfsT6jO4    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8Ul-VTJpY4

April 12th: New York – Quinn’s  330 Main St, Beacon NY 12508. Guest: Joe McPhee

Here are some pics from the Saxquest store in St. Louis. They also have a sax-museum upstairs with some rare saxophones. And many beautiful instruments that will water your mouth! www.saxquest.com

Of cause I was drawn to the two Conn bass saxes from the early twenties. Very nice indeed! A visit is highly recommended!

They also have a good selection of vintage saxes for sale. I was too scared to bring my mouthpiece and to start trying horns because if I find one that I like, you don´t know what will happen….

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In Somerset, Kentucky, we found this incredible poster they had made for us:IMG_1421 (1)

Spelling is not always so easy:

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When we got into OHIO, we passed a power plant. Coal….There was a lot of white steam coming out of the chimneys, but also some black stuff that gradually got lower and lower to the ground…..Not very nice!

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The Delaware River

Here is a  review of the Delaware River LP on Nobusiness, by Ken Waxman in AllAboutJazz.

The Delaware River

Bobby Bradford/Frode Gjerstad Quartet (NoBusiness)

by Ken Waxman

There may be 5,251 miles separating Los Angeles and Stavanger, but cornet player Bobby Bradford, 81, and Norwegian alto saxophonist/clarinetist Frode Gjerstad, 67, are so attuned in their playing they sound like next-door neighbors. On this, their fourth quartet disc, the collaborative inspiration is as high as usual, expanding upon a relationship that goes back to the ‘70s-80s when each played separately, then together with the late British drummer John Stevens.

Bradford is the iconoclast who was a member of Ornette Coleman’s little-recorded second quartet while Gjerstad is a Scandinavian version of Coleman, with a singular free jazz vision at variance with the prevailing cold Nordic sound. He has encouraged and employed younger Norwegian improvisers such as bassist Ingebrigt Håker Flaten, featured on this disc, and the nearly ubiquitous Paal Nilssen-Love, whose place in this quartet is now taken by Chicago drummer Frank Rosaly.

It’s Rosaly’s minimal rim clanks that usually set the scene for the four improvisations here. Håker Flaten rarely draws attention to himself, instead fluidly maneuvering others’ timbres in sync like a sheep dog with a flock. “River In”, balanced on a double bass ostinato, sounds like a page from the Coleman book with Bradford seemingly quoting “Lonely Woman”. But Gjerstad’s stop-start clarinet slurs move the narrative into the contemporary realm. More characteristic is “Sailing Up The”, where stringent alto saxophone cries unite with tart brass grace notes for tones so piercing they surmount altissimo. Still, the concordance is so obdurate—and accompaniment so spot-on—that the horn players probe unexpected sonic avenues with no sense of strain or sweat, but rather with a reassuring sense of gratified discovery.

Having worked out centrifugal musical flow over the years, Bradford and Gjerstad have become like the proverbial wine whose quality improves with age. Spicing from younger players makes this blend even more palatable.

A new CD w/ Borah Bergman and Peter Brøtzmann

UntitledNottwo have release this CD. It´s a concert performance from Molde in 1996. I found this tape while trying to get an overview of old recordings.

I first met Borah Bergman in the spring of 1994 through trumpeter Didrik Ingvaldsen who had met him in New York and had invited him to play a concert in Stavanger, Norway. I was very impressed after hearing Borah play. We talked a lot – we even talked about the possibility of making a recording with John Stevens as a trio. A few months later John died and Borah called me. He understood the loss of a good friend and he invited me to New York to practice with him and to meet new people. So I did.

We played and talked every day for several hours while I was there. He helped me find a new platform and to see new possibilities where, I at the time, only saw sadness and no musical future for myself. After coming back, he called me many times and I arranged for him to come to Norway to play. Which resulted in a new visit for me to New York and to practice even more with him. He was very outspoken and critisized my playing. Sometimes I wondered what I was doing in his flat. In retrospect I am greatful for the time he spent with me.

We did a tour in Norway in the winter of 1996 as a trio with Evan Parker. I knew Evan through John and had even played a bit with him so I felt comfortable. Evan refused to record so there is no proof of our tour. Then Borah suggested we should play with Peter Brøtzmann whom I had not yet met. I was very excited. I approached the Molde festival and within a few days they agreed to have us.

After the concert, the soundman gave me a DAT cassette. At the time I did not like the sound too much so I put it away and forgot it. But I found the cassette when I went through all my stuff recently. And I thought it was a good excample of Borahs playing. His left hand really was shining!

Whenever I was in New York, I went to see Borah. We played together or we just talked. He was sometimes happy, sometimes not. He said he should have chosen to be a writer. He felt he had a handicap starting late as a pianist. But most of the time, he was full of energy and had very strong opinions, about other piano players as well as politics. Some of his observations were really funny!

The last few years of his life, he lived in Boston to be closer to his sister. I called him a few months before he died and he was steaming! He wanted me to come over again to record. I regret I did not go. It could have been a good way to pay tribute to a great man who spent so much of his life learning to conquer the piano and who defined another way of playing improvised music using both hands simultaneously playing two independent melodies. That was his ultimate goal.

I think he did pretty well! There will never be a pianist like Borah Bergman!

TiPPLE – US tour

We are now in the middle of a US tour.

We started right after I came off the plane on Thursday, and played a concert in Brooklyn, at the  SHAPESHIFTER Lab. I was very tired, but I think we played quite well. But without the explosions that came when we hit the South.

The next day we hit the road heading South. With drums, amp, vibraphone, percussion and sax/clarinet in the back of the van.

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On Saturday, we played at the Conondrum Music Hall in Columbia, South Carolina.

Sunday was Raleigh, North Carolina and Monday we played Lexington, Kentucky, at the library. After 9 hours on the road!IMG_2408

Tuesday we are heading North towards Detroit and Trinosophes, one of my favorite venues.

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Then Wednesday Kalamazoo at the Satellite Records, (808 S. Westnedge Ave).

IMG_2422Thursday is  Chicago at Elastic, (3429 w Diversey ave 2nd floor)IMG_9072
Friday our last gig on the tour in Cleveland the Bop Stop,  2920 Detroit Avenue.

Then back to New York and on Sunday I fly home.

This tour with Kevin Norton and David Watson, has been great. Our music has taken us into new territories and become more direct. Of cause this happens when we have the chance to play every day. And also meet a new audience.

We will record in Chicago and hopefully, we will deliver the goods!

More later….

Chile -September

Just came back from Chile a weeks ago. Actually I first came to Buenos Aires where I stayed for two days with my very good friends Fabiana Galante and Luis Conde. We played one day and recorded.

Luis has just got an old Buescher bass sax and he already plays it very well! I do not understand why so few people know about Luis. I hope that what we recorded as a trio will come out soon.IMG_0873

Then I went to Santiago de Chile. Ramiro Molina had organized a workshop for me for the students at the JazzPro school. They were 19 students and I don´t think any of them had ever played free improv before. The first day, as usual in a workshop, was hard but the second and third day was better. So when we played a concert the 4th day, they really did their best and the music went all kinds of places! Very good indeed with intensity and a good laugh!

Then Ramiro, a good drummer called Nikolas and I, played a concert on the Saturday.IMG_1270 IMG_1272

On Sunday Ramiro took me to the fish marked. I had been looking forward to this since my last time in Chile…IMG_1232

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And we recorded together on Monday in a studio with lots of very nice equipment. I have yet to mix it, but I hope it will be good. Then Ramiro and I recorded some duo material Tuesday and Wednesday. And Wednesday evening, we also played at the Theloious jazz club with piano and drums. very nice.

On Thursday Ramiro and I pluss a woman cellist (Isabelle?) played what I think was our best concert. Our instruments blended really well.

Then home with lots of complications, reroutings and terrible seating across the Atlantic. I survived.

Thanks to Ramiro for helping with setting up all this and for his music,

Gigs

I have not played very much since we returned from AUS/NZ because I needed some time off to work with my grandson who has changed his school and needed some extra attention. And I have also managed to paint our house which was also great!

I played one gig in Oslo in May with percussionist Terje Isungset. We have not played together for about 13 years and it was a nice reunion! I drove to Bergen a few weeks after to have a day with him in his house to practice a little. I think we will be doing something together in the future, but his book is full at the moment, so we cannot do anything until next spring.

I will play a gig in Aalborg, Denmark at the first week-end of August with pianist Sten Sandell and drummer Ståle Liavik Solberg. I am really looking forward playing with Sten who has a very personal style.

Later in August, I will play at the Blow Out festival in Oslo. First with a quartet with Nick Stephens, bass, Andreas Wildhagen, drums and bassist Magnus Nergaard. Should be fun! Then I will play with a percussion-ensemble along with Martin Kuchen. Should be fun too!

And then I will be going to Argentina and Chile by the end of August. I will play one night in Buenos Aires with my friends Fabiana Gallante, piano, and Luis Conde, reeds. Then off to Santiago to do a 4 days workshop plus a concert. After that some gigs with guitarist Ramiro Molina. Looking forward to the music and the fish soup!!!

 

 

New CDs

 

There are two new CDs out on FMR. One is with the trio, recorded in Japan last May, “Miyasaki”  and the other one is called “Distant groove” with Louis Moholo-Moholo, drums, Fred Lonberg-Holm, cello and Nick Stephens, bass.

A new CD with “The Cabinet Trio” is coming out very soon on FMR. “Blood samples”.

The trio is with Børre Mølstad, tuba and Roger Turner, drums. We will do a little tour last week of January, next year.

Australia and New Zealand

After we  arrived in Sidney, we had a quick look at the famous Opera House!aus

January 28th we played:  Foundry616,  Sidney

On January 29th and 30th we played Hobarth, Tasmania at MONA Main Stage. http://www.mona.net.au/what’s-on/music

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MONA is a very special place. A great art-museum where they also make excellent wine and beer. If you ever go to Australia, try to go to Tasmania to visit MONA. Amazing!IMG_0977

When we were there, Mathew Barney had the main exhibition. He is the former husband of Bjørk.IMG_0981

Jon Rune turned 30 on the 29th! Last year he had a son and now this!

Then we went to Canberra on January 31st to play at the Sound Out Festival for two days. We play there as a trio both days as well as in some ad hoc combinations.  The venue was ANU Drill Hall Gallery.   Australian National University, Kingsley Street, Canberra.

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We then continued to  New Zealand. Auckland had a touch of summer which was nice as Australia was mostly rain and cloudy.

On February 2nd, we did  The Audio Foundation, Auckland

On February 3rd, we did  THE WINE CELLAR     Auckland. we then drove to Wellington, stopping somewhere in between in a small town.

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Jeff: our tour manager having breakfast. A very good driver and excellent saxophonist.

On February 5th, we did  THE PYRAMID CLUB,  Wellington. we then went to the South-Island – a very pretty place.

On February 6th, we played  TIM´S PLACE, MARAHAU

And on February 7th, we played the DHARMA BUMS CLUB, BLENHEIM

On February 8th, we ended the tour at   THE PYRAMID CLUB,  Wellington. Jeff joined us this evening with wailing alto: great!

We had a fantastic tour in New Zealand thanks to Jeff Henderson. He drove us around and showed us the beautiful country.

We had good crowds from day one and we even played two shows at very small places with nice attendance!IMG_1031

This is from Tim´s place, Marahau on the South Island. That night we saw the moon moving from right to left!!! So we were definitely on the other side of the world!IMG_1041In Blenheim we played at the Dharma bums Club IMG_1065This was almost like a Texas roadhouse! With people coming from the area, bringing their own food and drinks. Very nice!

We met many nice people on our trip to Australia and New Zealand. We would like to thank everybody who made the trip possible! Hope to be back sometime….

sax/clarinet player/improviser