Jürg Wickihalder Overseas Quartet
Jürg Wickihalde Alto, Soprano Sax (CH)
Achile Succi Bass Clarinet, Alto Sax (I)
Marc Zubek Bass (CAN)
Kevin Zubek Drums (USA)
All compositions by Jürg Wickihalder except Four in One and Played Twice by Thelonious Monk.
Recorded October 31 and November 1, 2007 by Willy Strehler, Klangdach, Swizerland Liner
notes: Bill Shoemaker.
Cover art & graphic design: Jonas Schoder
Intakt CD 153 / 2009 EAN_7640120191535
Already in 1995 the Swiss saxophonist and composer Jürg Wickihalder worked in several projects in the USA together with bassist Mark Zubek and clarinettist/saxophonist Achille Succi (for instance in the Big Band “Interplay Collective” or the internationally successful Jazz-Funk-Band “B. Connection”).
The four musicians met in 2007 again, for the first time after almost ten years. During this “10-years-break”, every musician went his own way, everyone developed his musical language, delight in playing and energy joins now experience and maturity.
Musically the band somehow reminds of the early Ornette Coleman Quartet or the Steve Lacy Quartet with Don Cherry: it is a playful music with a strong groove, over which - since there is no harmony instrument!- the soloists improvise with a lot of freedom, but always focusing on the compositional material.
Jürg Wickihalder (* 1973 in Glarus/Switzerland) is living as a saxophonist (ss./ts.) and composer in Zürich. Jazzschool Luzern 1989-92, Berklee College of Music (USA) 1992-95. Studies and/or cooperation with Steve Lacy, Joe Viola, George Garzone, Urs Leimgruber, Irene Schweizer, Pierre Favre, Hans Koch, Ulrich Gumpert. Leader of the “Jürg Wickihalder Overseas Quartet” (CD “Furioso”, Intakt 153), the “Jürg Wickihalder European Quartet” (CD "Jump", Intakt 194), the Jürg Wickihalder Orchestra (CD "Narziss und Echo", Intakt 209), Duo with Chris Wiesendanger (CD “A Feeling For Someone”, Intakt 134). Member of “Omri Ziegele Billiger Bauer”, "Ulrich Gumpert Quartet".
Numerous awards and prizes as saxophonist and composer (e.g. 1995 18th annual student award from „Down Beat“ (USA), 1994 member of the Dean’s List of the Berklee College of Music for outstanding musical work, 1993 1st prize as soloist from the „Dienemann Stiftung“, Luzern (CH)).
Achille Succi (bcl./as.)
Achille Succi, Saxophonist and bass clarinetist, has recently been singled out as “one of the European musicians to keep an eye on in the next ten years” (Bill Schoemaker, Giornale della musica, January 2010), while journalist Mario Gamba defines him as a “genius of italian Jazz”(Alias, March 20th, 2010). Born in Modena, Italy, in 1971, he began self-taught and later won several scholarships that gave him the chance to study in some of the most important schools and workshops in the world (Berklee, D.Liebman masterclasses, Kopenhagen Rhythmic conservatory, Siena Jazz). Among the many artists he has collaborated with are Uri Caine, Ralph Alessi, Louis Sclavis, Ernst Reijseger, Pierre Dørge and Franco D'Andrea; he has also participated in the recording of many CDs and performed all over the world. As leader Achille Succi has recorded two CDs: ,“Shiva’s dance” and “Terra”, and a duo session with Bass player Salvatore Maiore: “Pequenas flores do inferno”. Together with Fabrizio Puglisi and Alberto Capelli he founded the "Atman" group, with two CDs released; and with pianist Christopher Culpo he just released "Fresh Frozen", for the "El Gallo Rojo" record label, featuring tuba player Oren Marshall. Achille Succi teaches music ensemble in Nonantola (Modena) and holds improvisation workshops and masterclasses in several Italian cities. Since 2001 he has been a faculty member of famous summer workshop Siena Jazz, and recently taught at the In.Jam masterclasses; since 2006 he also teaches clarinet and improvisation techniques at the Ferrara andBologna .Conservatory.
What they say about him:
Succi is as free as a bird, and fits easily into any situation ranging from plaintive beauty to organized chaos. (Budd Kopman, Allaboutjazz.com)
Although his own sessions as leader aren’t that numerous, Modena-born saxophonist and clarinetist Achille Succi seems to be the go-to guy when adventurous Italian composers want to add professional zing to their projects. (Ken Waxman)
In relying more on folk-tinged melodies, odd meters, and slightly unusual instrumentation, two ensembles exemplified the distinctive varieties the grapevine model yields. Achille Succi, who can wield a fiery alto saxophone, but on this occasion only played bass clarinet, led a strong quartet with Beppe Caruso, who put the tuba squarely in the front line as well as his trombone, bassist- cellist Salvatore Maiore, and Roberto Dani, an impressively resourceful drummer. Succi’s compositions are rife with ear-tugging melodies and a rhythmic undertow that draws the listener deeper into the materials. (Bill Schoemaker)
Mark Zubek (bass)
grew up playing drums, basses (upright and electric), guitars and keyboards. After attending Berklee College of Music, Mark has divided his time between New York and Toronto writing and producing for pop artists, and performing and recording jazz with Grammy winners Betty Carter and Wynton Marsalis, Jack DeJohnette, Dave Holland, Victor Lewis, Bill Stewart, Brian Blade, Mark Turner, Juno winners Mike Murley and Kirk MacDonald etc. Mark co-wrote “Love Notes” with Betty Carter for her Verve/Polygram album “Feed the Fire”. He is featured in the Penguin Guide to Jazz Encyclopedia, and his albums “Horse with a Broken Leg” and “twentytwodollarfishlunch” can be heard on Fresh Sound Records.
Kevin Zubek (drums)
was born in 1972 in Toronto, Canada. He started playing drums at age ten, self - taught until he was 23 years old, when he took his first drum lesson with Joe Labarbera. From 1995 to 1997, Kevin studied jazz performance at Humber College in Toronto and Berklee College of Music in Boston before he moved to New York in 1998.
Currently, Kevin is the drummer in guitarist Yoshie Fruchter’s Pitom, a Jewish heavy rock band with Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz on bass and Jeremy Brown on violin. Pitom has two CDs on John Zorn’s Tzadik Records. He is also working with his bass playing brother in the Mark Zubek Quintet (Avishai Cohen – trumpet, Mark Turner and Seamus Blake – saxophones). Their cd was released in 2008 on Fresh Sound Records.
Kevin is also a member of Juerg Wickihalder’s International Jazz Quartet, based in Europe, with a Cd on Intakt Records. Kevin was the drummer of Satlah from 1999 to 2005 (Daniel Zamir – saxophones, Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz – bass), recording three albums for Tzadik Records
Schon seit 1995 arbeitete Jürg Wickihalder in den USA in verschiedenen Projekten mit dem Bassisten Mark Zubek (Kanada) und dem Klarinettisten und Saxophonisten Achille Succi (Italien) zusammen. Beim ersten Wiedersehen - 10 Jahre später - ist jeder Musiker seinen eigenen Weg gegangen, alle haben sie ihre musikalische Sprache verfeinert und weiterentwickelt, nebst jugendlicher Spielfreude und Energie zu musikalischer Erfahrung und Reife gefunden. Musikalisch erinnert das Quartett an frühe Ornette Coleman Quartette und an frühe Steve Lacy Projekte, etwa im Quartett mit dem Trompeter Don Cherry: Es erklingt eine verspielte Musik mit starkem Groove, über welchem die Solisten infolge fehlenden Harmonieinstruments mit viel Freiheit, aber starker Verbundenheit zur Komposition, improvisieren. Jürg Wickihalders Eigenkompositionen stehen im Mittelpunkt.
Kevin Zubek ist ein Ausnahmetalent aus der New Yorker Downtown Szene. Er arbeitet u.a. mit dem New Yorker Trompetenstar Avishai Cohen, mit John Zorn und Chris Cheek. Sein Bruder Mark Zubek spielt regelmäßig mit Jazzgrössen wie Jack DeJohnette, Dave Holland, Brian Blade, Mark Turner oder Gerri Allen. Achille Succi ist einer der aufregendsten Italienischen Bassklarinettisten und Altisten der jungen Generation. Er arbeitet u.a. mit Louis Sclavis, Ab Baars und Dave Liebmann.
A.S. (*1971, Modena, IT) lebt als Saxophonist und Bassklarinettist in Nonantlola, Italien. Autodidakt. Zusammenarbeit mit David Liebmann, Louis Sclavis, Ab Baars und Ernst Rejiseger. Solist u.a. in Uri Caine’s “Othello Suite”, in “Circulez!” von Louis Sclavis, in “Belcanto” von Ettore Fioravanti, im “Gramelot ensamble” von Simone Guiducci, in “Urban Raga” von Paolino Dalla Porta und “Eleven” von Franco D'Andrea. Rege Konzerttätigkeit u.a in Skandinavien, Brasilien und Australien mit Pierre Dorge’s “New Jungle Orchestra”. Gewinner des „Pépinières Europeénnes pour jeunes artistes“. A.S. lehrt an den bekannten „Siena Jazz Sommer Workshops“ und ist Lehrer für Jazzimprovisationstechniken am Konservatorium Ferrara. Discorgafie: “Pequenas flores do inferno”(Gallorojorecords), “Terra”(Splash), “Shiva’s dance”(Artesuono), “Puntolinea” (Bassesferec) u.v.m.
K.Z. (*1972, Toronto, CA) lebt als Schlagzeuger seit 1998 in New York und ist Autodidakt. Zusammenarbeit mit Joe Labarbera, John Zorn, Seamus Blake, Chris Cheek, Avishai Cohen, George Garzone u.v.m. Mitglied des „LJQ“ (Lemon Juice Quartett) und von „Satlah“. Konzerttourneen in des USA und Europa. Diskografie: „Visitor“ (Live), “Republic” (Independent), „Peasant Songs: the Music of Eric Satie and Bela Bartok” (Piadrum Records), “Voices in the Wilderness” (Tzadik Records), “Satlah” (Tzadik Records), “Exodus” (Tzadik Records), Cildren of Israel (Tzadik Records).