Paolo Fresu, Richard Galliano & Jan Lundgren

Biography Paolo Fresu, Richard Galliano & Jan Lundgren

Paolo Fresu
from the island of Sardinia, which has its own great vocal tradition, could relate at once to the Corsican music with its “refined and archaic voices”, its mix of contemporary compositions and its attempt to hold fast to “melodies vanishing in the darkness of time”. He is one of the most highly regarded jazz musicians in Europe, and his ECM collaboration with Ralph Towner on “Chiaroscuro” (released in 2009), successful both with the critics and the public, figured in the quarterly list of Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik. Since 1990 when he swept the Music Jazz Polls, the trumpeter has been a multiple award winner.

Paolo Fresu has appeared on more than 300 albums, including leader dates for EMI, RCA and Blue Note. His first appearance in the neighbourhood of ECM came in 2007 when he played on – and indeed was the subject of – Carla Bley’s The Lost Chords Find Paolo Fresu, issued on the ECM-distributed WATT label. In 2009 he was heard in a duo collaboration with guitarist Ralph Towner on Chiaroscuro. The Towner/Fresu duo has toured widely.

In addition to the Mistico Mediterraneo work with Fresu, bandoneonist Daniele di Bonaventura’s ECM credits include Miroslav Vitous’s Universal Syncopations II which won the German Critics Prize (Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik) as Album of the Year 2007.

Richard Galliano
After having learned, since the age of 4, piano and accordion from his father, Accordion player and teacher, Lucien Galliano, he is welcome at the Conservatorium of Nice , directed by the famous Pierre Cochereau, and studies Harmonies, Counterpoints … as well as Trombone (First prize in 1969). In 1975, he meets Claude Nougaro while settling down in Paris . Richard Galliano will be his accordion player and Orchestra chief till 1983. He will compose for him the music of ALLÉE DES BROUILLARDS, DES VOILIERS, VIE VIOLENCE … In 1980 , second important meeting: Astor Piazzolla who will advise him to create a French NEW MUSETTE the same way Piazzolla invented the Argentinian NEW TANGO.

Richard Galliano has recorded more than 50 albums under his own name and collaborated with an impressive number of artists: From the Jazz world: Chet Baker, Eddy Louis, Ron Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Charlie Haden, Gary Burton.

From the French variety: Serge Reggiani, Claude Nougaro, Barbara, Allain Leprest, Charles Aznavour, Serge Gainsbourg.

Cross-Over: Nigel Kennedy – his “Bach Project” on Deutsche Grammophon has beaten all classical sales with more than 50.000 copies in 2010.

1997: A “Jazz Victory Award” for his album “New York Tango”.
1998: A “Jazz Victory Award” for his album “Blow Up”.
2009: Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters.
2010: A “Sacem Award” for the best pedagogical method of accordion which he co-wrote with his father Lucien Galliano (Éd.Lemoine).
2011: Commandeur of the Order of Arts et Letters.

2014: A “Classical Victory Award”: Richard Galliano receives the award of the “Best Composer of the Year 2014”.

Jan Lundgren
born in Kristianstad in southern Sweden on March 22nd 1966, and raised in Ronneby, Blekinge, had his first piano lessons at age five. He was soon discovered to have an exceptional musical talent. After a long period of classical training, he discovered jazz more or less by chance in the late 1980’s. He was instantly hooked, rapidly absorbed the jazz piano tradition from Oscar Peterson, Erroll Garner to Bud Powell and Bill Evans, and acquired a depth of knowledge of the Great American Songbook like possibly no other European jazz pianist.

While sailing through his studies at the renowned Royal College of Music in Malmö, he also took up a busy schedule as a professional musician that quickly helped to build his reputation in Sweden. Discovered by Swedish bebop legend Arne Domnérus, he frequently played with other Swedish stars like Putte Wickman and Bernt Rosengren.

Lundgren’s debut album “Conclusion” was released in 1994, and propelled his career firmly forward. The following year saw the formation of the Jan Lundgren Trio with long time student associates Mattias Svensson (bass) and Rasmus Kihlberg (drums), who was replaced in the beginning of the year 2000 by the Dane Morten Lund. This steady band recorded seven well-received and commercially very successful albums for the Swedish label “Sittel” in the period up to 2003. The album “Swedish Standards”, released in 1997 even became a bestseller and reached a place in the Swedish pop charts. But the album “Landscapes” (2003) sold comparably and both releases soon became classics due to their linking Swedish folk music and jazz. The band’s intense tour schedule founds a temporary peak in a concert at Carnegie Hall as part of “Swedish Jazz salutes the USA”.

As a sideman, Lundgren has accompanied such greats as Johnny Griffin, Benny Golson, Herb Geller, James Moody, or singer Stacey Kent. He has also shared the stage with ACT-artist Ulf Wakenius a number of times.

Jan Lundgren has been awarded a number of prizes since the early 90’s: In 1997 “Swedish Standards” became “best jazz album of the year”. He was nominated for the “Swedish Grammy” in 1995, 1997 and 2008 and the “Swedish Django d’Or Prize” in 1998, 2001 and 2002.

Having visited a long list of European territories and venues, Lundgren has also been on extended tours of Australia and Japan. He has visited the USA about 15 times and recorded some well-received albums for the label “Fresh Sound”.

In 2006 Lundgren becomes part of the ACT family: Initially he was featured as a sideman on the Ida Sand album Meet Me Around Midnight (ACT 9716-2). In July 2007 he released his first ACT album Fresu – Galliano – Lundgren: Mare Nostrum (ACT 9466-2), followed by Magnum Mysterium (ACT 9457-2), which will be released in November of 2007.

In 2008 Lundgren could reap the fruits of his labour, and his Mare Nostrum was performed in front of sold out houses on prestigious stages throughout Europe (Salle Gaveau – Paris, Tonhalle – Zurich, Victoria Hall – Geneva, Teatro Dante Aligheri – Ravenna, S. Caecilia – Rome …) as well as at Jazz Baltica, the North Sea Jazz Festival, and the Istanbul Jazz Festival. There are many good reasons why the band has been called “the first European super group”.

In the same year Lundgren was honoured with the Swedish Django d’Or, and began a collaboration with the classical trumpet player Hǻkan Hardenberger and the Swedish writer Jacques Werup – an exiting melange of modern classical and free music, of jazz and compositions of Jan Lundgren.

Lundgren also brought the Jan Lundgren 3io back to life in 2008, albeit with a new drummer, Zoltan Csörsz Jr who proved to be a truly lucky catch for the trio. A new repertoire has resulted in the new ACT album European Standards (ACT 9482-2) which will be released in Mai 2009 together with the re-release of Swedish Standards (ACT 9022-2) from the ACT Jazz Classics series.

Lundgren is part of a remarkable and long tradition of innovative pianists from Sweden like Jan Johansson who passed away early, and in more recent times Bobo Stenson and Esbjörn Svensson. Lundgren has never made life easy for himself, and has always tried to utilize his phenomenal technique to enhance his musicality. His ability to integrate the most disparate musical influences into a fascinating whole is unique in itself. Whether its contemporary classical music, the inexhaustible northern folk tradition or the pulsating groove of jazz, deeply rooted in Afro-American music: Lundgren has a unique way of leading the listener on a voyage of discovery – sometimes relaxed, sometimes utterly invigorating - through his highly individual soundscapes.

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