"One World" Jazz highlights 2005 - booking info
Trio Richie Beirach (p) - Gregor Huebner (vio) - George Mraz (b) present"Round about Monteverdi"
"Through the three improvisers, the listener experiences a subtly sensual understanding of the music, as the players liberate themselves from it´s basic inward, ballad-like character. Respect, and an inspired, playful mood determines the approach of this unconventional trio. The deciding impulse for their jazz-chamber sound is derived from European classical music."
Richie Beirach, is a pianist with strong classical inclinations who has investigated several crossovers into european formal music. His inexhaustible creativity as pianist and composer as well as his love for classical music and his innovative chordal vision is reflected in innumerable recordings with some of the greatest musicians in the jazz scene. He has worked and recorded with stars like Freddie Hubbard, Lee Konitz, Chet Baker, John Abercrombie, Jack DeJohnette, Dave Liebman to name a few. He wrote jazz history with some of his compositions of which ELM, EON and HUBRIS are the most known. Beirach sees classical music as being as big an influence in jazz as the standards from the Broadway shows, Hollywood films, and Swing. "Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Liszt - they all improvised during their concerts", says Beirach, "but this ability to improvise in classical music has been lost". John Abercrombie says: "As an improviser, Richie is one of the most innovative componists of jazz".
Gregor Huebner, fine composer, pianist and violinist - his debut CD, Panonien, was released in 1997, amongst others featuring Harvie Swartz on bass and Tim Hagans on trumpet. He has extensively toured the Americas, Europe and Japan with Richie Beirach, George Mraz and Billy Hart and recorded several CDs. Gregor is also a member of the New York Metropolitan Museum's Philharmonia Virtuosi string ensemble and of the Richie Beirach Quartet, first appearing as soloist on "The Snow Leopard". In addition, Gregor is the pianist/violinist of EYE CONTACT, the fantastic latin jazz band of bassist Harvie Swartz. Melding of jazz and classical music has always been an integral part of Gregor 's musical direction.
George Mraz is the "total package", a master virtuoso of the bass violin with flawless time and intonation, commanding rhythmic focus and a sophisticated sense of harmony. He is regarded as being one of the most valuable bass players in modern jazz. Oscar Peterson, Tommy Flanagan, Bill Evans, Jack DeJohnette, John Abercrombie, John Scofield, Hank Jones, Joe Henderson, Herbie Hancock and of course, Richie Beirach have kept George Mraz fully occupied since he moved to the States in 1968. Hank Jones has been quoted saying that "there is no greater Jazz Bassist in the world today than George Mraz". Beirach says "George always plays the exact right note you want to hear, he plays the bass as though he invented it".
Latest Recordings:"Round about Monteverdi" (released 2003, ACT 9412-2)
This disc is the third work of a trio of jazzers who take a new look at classical music and give it - and its listeners - an electrifying kick up the past. Covering much more than Monteverdi (Pergolesi, Schutz and many others are also included), Beirach, Huebner and Mraz play the music with obvious relish and inspiration, as much in the style and spirit of Andrew Manze or Fabio Biondi as Uri Caine. The classical musos must hear this as it is a cure-all for those looking for something refreshingly different! The basic idea behind the record is to take extracts from classical compositions, mainly from the pre-Baroque period and giving them a 'free workover', heavily rearranging them for the trio. Much of the music is sober in nature, the textures mostly sparse. Even without a drummer, the combination of Beirach's drive and Mraz's immaculate walking bass makes for a powerful surge. The three masters have not merely attempted a pastiche of Monteverdi, Palestrina, Schütz, Gesualdo and the like, they have respected the humanity of the music and brought their own humanity to it. The best of the series to date.
"Round about Federico Mompou" (released 2001, ACT 9296-2, nominated for Latin Grammy 2002)
"Round about Bartók" (released in 2000, ACT 9276-2)
For further information / demo CD please contact:Dr Matthias Meyerhans , Via Emanuele Filiberto 257, int. 14, sc. IV , 00185 Rome, Italyphone: +39 06 77256715, fax +39 06 77591911, e-mail: email@example.com