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Antonio Faraò Quartet

Faraò / Lagréne / Ceccarelli / Di Piazza

Antonio Faraò

Considerato dalla critica europea uno dei più interessante pianisti jazz dell'ultima generazione, Antonio Faraò nasce a Roma nel 1965. Fin dalla precoce età di sei anni, inizia suonare e si distingue fin da ragazzo per uno spiccato interesse verso la musica nero-americane d'avanguardia. I suoi primi modelli di riferimento, seppur diversi sono legati da un'identica tensione al rinnovamento del linguaggio, McCoy Tyner e Herbie Hancock. Solo in seguito, Faraò scopre Bill Evans, pianista imprescindibile per chiunque voglia suonare jazz in trio. L'influenza di Evans sull'estetica di Faraò, appare oggi più evidente rispetto al passato, sopratutto quando gli impeti più marcatamente percussivi lasciano spazio ad una maggiore consapevolezza melodica. Una altra delle maggiori fonti di ispirazioni di Antonio Faraò è sicuramente il compositore John Williams. Presto, viene chiamato a fianco dei maggiori maestri del jazz contemporaneo. Sarebbe troppo lungo elencare le collaborazioni del pianista. Basta qui citare, Jack DeJohnette, Lee Konitz, Chico Freeman, John Abercrombie, Richard Galliano, Johnny Griffin, Benny Golson, Billy Cobham, Toots Thieleman, Bireli Lagrene...e, tra i protagonisti della musica leggera, la grande Mina. Tra i più prestigiosi dei riconoscimenti, possiamo citare il premio Four Roses (1991) e il primo premio al concorso Internazionale Piano Jazz Martial Solal" (1998), indetto dalla città di Parigi ogni 10 anni. Un evento che ha lanciato Faraò ancora più intensamente nei circuiti europei della musica jazz contemporanea, e lo ha portato ad incidere, dopo alcuni dischi prodotti in Italia, vari album da leader per etichette internazionale come la Enja e la Cam. Il suo ultimo progetto uscito nel 2005 si chiama "Encore" nel quale accompagnato dalla sua collaudata sezione ritmica europea, Faraò si conferma front-man ispirato e creativo che, a tutt'oggi, sembra aver firmato un altro "capolavoro" come ha sentenziato un suo fan eccellente: Herbie Hancock. Un must per chi ama la formula del piano trio. " Antonio is not only a fine pianist, but a great one " (Herbie Hancock)

Bireli Lagrene

Biréli Lagrène is a " phenomenon of the guitar " (dixit John Mc Laughlin). Revealed at the beginning of the 80s, the child prodigy knew how to cross brilliantly the cap of the maturity,

asserting himself from day to day as a more and more inescapable musician in The world of the guitar and in that of the jazz, where it looks henceforth like reference. The history begins in Alsace, within the community gipsy, where Biréli is born in 1966, of a family of musicians. Introduced very early by his father, then by his brother, very young Biréli surprises by his precocity . More of one, and not the slightest, will meet themselves under the charm. So of Matelot Ferré, companion of Django Reinhardt, whom the interpretation of the young prodigy will impress. Django, he is, during these years, " the Biréli's big affair " Biréli reproduces note by note all the chorus of his "master" " W hen I was a kid, I used to put on the record again and again, until I succeeded in re-doing him. Afterwards, I understood that respecting the great guitarist was worth much more than imitating them.... " With Biréli, the virtuosity never goes indeed without the coolness of the inspiration. It is the big lesson that he retains of Django, who bursts during his first albums. " Routes to Django ", first of all, which is published in 1980, soon followed by " Biréli Swing ' 81 ", then by " Biréli Lagrène 15 ", trilogy in shape of " free manifesto ", according to the etymology of the word "gipsy" ( " free man " ). As well the jazz, for Biréli, becomes confused with this original freedom, " a freedom which has no limits " . " Django helped me to go and see what 's happening elsewhere ", explains Biréli.

If Biréli is at first a child of Django, if the flow of Wes Montgomery or George Benson did not miss to mark him, in the passage, with their indelible imprint, it is thanks to Jaco

Pastorius and to Weather Report that he owes a big part of his musical emancipation. From 1986, the one who already rubbed himself to partners of the tempering of Stéphane Grappelli or Larry Coryell dashes " in lost body " in the adventure of the fusion, multiplying the experiences and the meetings. Hesitating even a moment on the instrument to be adopted (under the influence of Pastorius, Biréli became a redoubtable bass player). It is finally the guitar which requires him definitively, for a research period when he builds up himself a dazzling style, while showing exceptional faculties of adaptation, supported by the talent of an improviser which places him among the biggest. One finds him so beside John Mc Laughlin, beside Paco de Lucia, beside Al Di Meola, beside Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, for Cream's reformation, with Stanley Clarke, Miroslav Vitous, Lenny White, Mike Stern.... without counting two albums live which he registers with Pastorius himself. In the bend of the 90s, the album " Acoustic Moments " constitutes a beautiful synthesis of this route and as a break, before the consecration of the classicism, which Biréli will obtain by playing the standards, with one " Live in Marciac " (1994) greeted by the criticism. This entry of the guitarist on the label Dreyfus Jazz coincides with an always-wider recognition on the national and international scenes. "Django d'Or"in 1993, Victoires de la Musique in 2001 for " Front Page ", one " power trio " formed with Dominique Di Piazza and Dennis Chambers who records for Universal, Victoires de la Musiques again in 2002, crowning the success and the popularity of " Gipsy Project ".

At 35 years old, having "strolled" on almost all the fronts of the modern guitar, having had a dialogue with some of the best hexagonaljazzmen (Didier Lockwood, Richard Galliano,

Sylvain Luc ...), Biréli Lagrène, at the top of his art, decides indeed to take up with the music of its previous history. It is in the boldness of this incredible bet, between virtuosity and depth, that Biréli, wild and subtle, lively as the flash of lighting, succeeds in being today, making a success of replaying Django's music while staying himself Appearing again in this respect, in the spirit as well as in the letter, as one of most brilliant heirs of the "master". "Gipsy Project and Friends" second album was engraved by this forming of shock, celebrates so with happiness the anchoring in a tradition that Biréli possesses on the fingertips.

Dominique Di Piazza

Lyonnais, d'origine sicilienne, mais élevé parmi les manouches, Dominique Di Piazza découvre la basse grâce à Jaco Pastorius dans Heavy Weather. Ancien guitariste autodidacte, il développe sur la guitare basse, une technique particulière de picking avec le pouce et l'index de la main droite qui lui donnera une rapidité et une précision unique au monde. Sa grande connaissance du Be-bop et son sens très développé pour l'harmonie vont faire de lui un bassiste renommé dans le monde de la musique Jazz. Il jouera très vite avec les grands noms de la nouvelle génération du jazz français: Eric Barret, Jean-Pierre Como, Michel Pérez, Louis Winsberg, Aldo Romano, Nicolas Folmer, le Big Band lumière de Laurent Cugny, Didier lockwood, tournée européenne avec Gil Evans, André Céccarelli, Joe Di Orio, Dennis Chambers, Bireli Lagrene,Michel Pétrucciani, Katia et Marielle Labèque,Bobby Thomas Jr, Donald Harrison, Danny Gottlieb, Gary Husband, Antonio Farao, Jeff Gardner, Guiseppe Continenza, Alex Acuna, Adam Nitti, Norman Stockton, Gordon Beck etc... Membre du "John Mc Laughlin Trio" de 1991 à 1992 aux côtés de Trilok Gurtu: tournées mondiales de 300 concerts, Album " Que Alegria". A influencé de nombreux bassistes en Europe et aux USA tels que Mathieu Garrison, Adam Nitti, Lucas Pickford etc... En 2000, groupe "Front-Page" avec Bireli Lagrene et Denis Chambers (1 tournée Européene), et enregistrement d'un CD qui obtint le prix des victoires de la musique 2001 : "meilleur CD de jazz de l'année"

André Ceccarelli

For the drummer from Nice, "carte blanche" meant above all a magnificent opportunity to celebrate jazz in all its facets,

from trio to choir, in the intimate and concentrated atmosphere of the studio (primarily the Studio 28 operated by Frédéric Bétin in Antibes) or the fiery playing style and warm proximity between musicians and audience possible in a club like the Duc des Lombards. "Recording this double album was a splendid worry for me," Dédé admits today. "It took six months of work, but it was really an enchantment. What interests me first and foremost in music is communion. On this occasion I really got spoiled. I was very proud to have been able to assemble so many musicians for this 'carte blanche' project. I'm happy with the results and I feel great about it." "Symbolically", André wanted to inaugurate the album with the entire Ceccarelli dynasty present: Jean, the father and master drummer from whom the rest flows, but also his brother Jean-Paul and his son Régis. "The four of us together accompany Stephy Haik, a young, unknown singer who I discovered through a friend, completely by accident, on the Internet. As soon as I heard her I wanted her to be on the first track of this 'carte blanche'."

W ith André Ceccarelli, as every track on this album proves, technical mastery and faculty for adaptation go hand-inhand with stylistic maturity and musicality. But "Dédé" is not only one of the best drummers in the world, he is above all a sensitive and generous artist who is completely committed to the adventure of music, enriched by the friendship and admiration of all those who have the chance to play with him. Testimonials from a few of the guests on this "Carte Blanche": Laurent de Wilde: Andre is often introduced as a "great professional", someone for whom there is no unknown detail of drumming or rhythm. For me such a description fails to dig below the surface, because you also need to mention his regal sense of tempo, his feline subtlety with sticks or brushes, his capacity to put his whole life into a solo, and his ability to interpret any musical style like putting on a glove. And there is a sound associated with all this. So when you play with him the depth of his passion for his art helps you naturally give the best of yourself. It is a rare and precious feeling as well as an honor, one that I savor with each of our collaborations.

Didier Lockwood: André is unique and magical. He is a real jazz "cat". Without a doubt he is one of the great masters of the drums who is also a marvelous rhythmic contrapuntalist.

He makes his drums sound the same way that he naturally punctuates his words-with all the charm of his accent from the south. Through his constant musicality Dédé is the best possible partner for a soloist. I love him for his great talent, but also for his simplicity, his gentility, and the particular attention that he has always paid to young musicians. Richard Galliano: A formidable ball of energy and precision, Dédé is a drummer who exudes ideas. He constantly stimulates the imagination of all the musicians he plays with. Believe me, that's a rare gift!

Baptiste Trotignon: Imagine yourself at the wheel of a splendid collector's item limousine cruising along a sunny coast. Far from the "fast and furious", the car rolls slowly along,

motor purring with power and serenity; it's a beautiful warm day, the top is down and a gentle hint of a breeze is blowing...that's what the pleasure of playing with André is like...Thanks, André! Sylvain Beuf: I was profoundly touched to play with Dédé again. His absolute mastery of the "skins" and his melodic lyricism are always at the service of the ensemble sound. He likes to go off the rails, explore other paths. By his side, one has the impression of strolling with a "faun"-a picture of happiness.

Rémi Vignolo: Regarding this double album of André's, I was initially surprised by the time that passed between each session and the number of different formations and styles that

we played, to such a point that I asked myself what all these "instants" could have in common and how they would fit together on an album. Then I realized that the link, the element of cohesion, was Dédé himself-his IMMENSE culture and his highly personal way of transcending genres by appropriating them liberally for himself. I finally realized that his talent wouldn't hold on a single disc. Like Daniel Humair or Aldo Romano he is one of the true "monsters" of the drums. David El Malek: The first time I heard Dédé was on one of his first albums, whose title I have forgotten. I do remember that he had quite a few guests, including Pierre Mimran. I listened to that album over and over and to this day it remains profoundly spiritual, which sums up in a word everything I love about a musician. At that time I wasn't yet a sax player. But I remember that his way of playing the drums made a deep impression on me. Later, when I had the good fortune to meet him I immediately mentioned that album that had been so important to me. His reaction was extremely humble, on the verge of embarrassment. What a great one he is, always totally present in every phrase he plays. It's a music lesson for all of us.


Gatta Milù

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