French progressive rock and jazz violinist Didier Lockwood died February 18, 2018 in Paris. He was known for his virtuosity and experimentation on the electric violin.
Didier Lockwood was born in Calais, France in 1956. He grew up in a family of artists. His father was a school and violin teacher, his mother an amateur painter, and his elder brother Francis, a talented pianist very attracted to jazz. Didier fell in love with the violin and entered the Conservatory at the age of six.
In addition to going to school and participating in swimming competitions, the young violinist attended the Conservatory and received daily private classes.
Didier Lockwood joined the Lyric Orchestra of the Théâtre Municipal de Calais at 13 years old. He was 16 when he was doubly rewarded for his efforts and his virtuosity by winning the First Prize of violin of the National Conservatory of Calais, as well as the SACEM First National Prize of contemporary music.
The young violinist admired classical music and its eminent composers. However, a new passion soon developed: improvised music and jazz. At 17, he chose the legendary progressive music band Magma rather than attending the Paris Conservatory.
In 1973, he made his debut with Magma, along with drummer Christian Vander. Lockwood recorded two albums with Magma: Theatre Du Taur Concert (1975) and Live/Hhaï (1975).
In 1976, Lockwood joined Zao, a progressive band created by two former members of Magma. He participated in two albums, Kawana (1976) and Live! (1976).
Jazz became his next focus in 1978. Lockwood worked with well known French jazz musicians: André Ceccarelli, François Jeanneau, Didier Levallet and Henri Texier.
During the 1980s, Lockwood carried out all sorts of jazz projects, ranging from string trios and quartets to solo and fusion groups. He also collaborated with UZEB, Gordon Beck, Martial Solal and Michel Petrucciani.
In 1994, he celebrated his 20 year career anniversary. The following year, he made his first American album: New York Rendez-vous.
In March 2000, he released, Tribute to Stéphane Grappelli, which received many awards since its release: Diapason d’Or, Choc Jazzman, and Selection FIP.
In the spring of 2001, Didier created, along with Indian dancer Raghunath Manet and percussionist Ri Murugan, the show Omkara, a musical encounter between jazz and Indian music.
In 2003 Lockwood released a double album titled Globe-Trotter, featuring solo and quartet performances.
In 2005, Lockwood and Caroline Casadesus, created a new show, the Jazz and the Diva that brought together jazz and classical music.
In 2009, Didier released Lockwood Brothers with his brother Francis.
After several years touring Europe alongside Mike Stern, Billy Cobham, John Abercrombie and Victor Bailey, he reformed the Didier Lockwood Group (DLG), with Jean-Marie Ecay, Paco Séry and Linley Marthe.
Didier Lockwood received numerous accolades and awards, including Les Victoires de la Musique, le Django d’or, le Prix de la Sacem et de l’Académie du Jazz and Knight of the Legion of Honor and Officer of National Merit and Arts and Letters.
Few keyboardists in jazz history matched the creativity and eclecticism of Joe Zawinul. He was a true innovator in the world of jazz and one of the originators of today’s world fusion sounds.
Joe Zawinul was born on July 7, 1932, in Kirchbach, a small village near Vienna. His first instrument was the accordion. At the age of 12, he started to learn the piano, which became his main instrument. After World War II, Zawinul continued his musical education at the prestigious Vienna Conservatory. He moved to the United States in 1959 on a scholarship to the Berklee School of Music in Boston.
In the United States, he inevitably became involved in jazz, playing as a sideman to artists such as Slide Hampton, Dinah Washington, and Cannonball Adderley. He met and collaborated with Miles Davis while the latter was moving into his electric era and was essential in the outcome of Bitches Brew (1970), Davis’ first electric project.
After releasing his debut solo album on Atlantic in 1970, Zawinul and saxophonist Wayne Shorter put together one of the most important jazz groups of the 1970s, Weather Report. Drawing on the power and theatricality of rock and R&B, while maintaining allegiance to jazz and the pure spirit of improvisation, they were pioneers of the fusion movement of that decade while carving out their own unique niche.
Even though band members came and went, Weather Report’s spirit prevailed over the course of 17 albums, including the groundbreaking Black Market and the enormously popular Heavy Weather, which included Zawinul’s infectious song “Birdland.” That song, in versions by Weather Report, Manhattan Transfer and Quincy Jones, won separate Grammy awards in three successive decades. Weather Report itself won a Grammy for its live album, 8:30.
In 1985, after he and Shorter finally agreed to go in separate musical directions, Zawinul continued to create adventurous new grooves in the group known as Weather Update and then the Zawinul Syndicate, whose albums included My People in 1996 and the two-CD, World Tour in 1998.
Other special projects included an adventurous solo electronic album, Dialects (1986), and work as producer and arranger on Salif Keita’s landmark album, Amen (1991). Meanwhile, as another side project of his creative life, Zawinul also pursued classical composition, writing his ambitious Stories Of The Danube in 1993 and working with renowned classical pianist Friedrich Gulda. His special solo project “Mauthausen,” released in Europe in 2000, is a memorial for the victims of the Holocaust, and was performed on the site of the Austrian concentration camp after which it is named.
Zawinul had honorary doctorates from Berklee School of Music, and is the official Austrian goodwill ambassador to 17 African nations. In January 2002, Zawinul received the first International Jazz Award, co-presented by the International Jazz Festival Organization and the International Association of Jazz Educators. In 2002, he released the CD Faces & Places.
The live album Vienna Nights came out in 2005.
Zawinul was a pioneer in the use of electronic keyboards, ranging from synthesizers to samplers. He incorporated global sounds into his keyboards, developing cutting edge world fusion.
Joe Zawinul died in Vienna on 7 August 7, 2007.
To You with Love (Strand, 1959)
Money in the Pocket (Atlantic, 1966) Rise & Fall of Third Stream (Vortex, 1968) Zawinul (Atlantic, 1971) Dialects (Columbia, 1986)
The Immigrants (Columbia, 1988)
Black Water (Columbia, 1989)
Lost Tribes (Columbia, 1992) My People (ESC, 1996)
Stories of the Danube (Polygram, 1996) World Tour (ESC, 1997)
Mauthausen – Vom großen Sterben hören (ESC, 2000)
Faces & Places (ESC, 2002)
Joe Zawinul & The Zawinul Syndicate – Vienna Nights – Live at Joe Zawinul’s Birdland (Heads Up, 2005) Brown Street (Heads Up, 2006) 75 (Heads Up, 2008)
This self-titled recording “Gleb Kolyadin” is the debut solo album of Gleb Kolyadin, one of the rising stars of progressive keyboards. His primary instrument is the grand piano, masterfully recorded at Moscow’s iconic Mosfilm studios. The opening track, “Insight” brings together deep classical music influences in the form of piano, jazz stylings and synthesizer solo bursts that recall Chick Corea’s work.
The second track, “Astral Architecture,” is a mesmerizing piece with captivating piano and vocals, soft drums and dreamy guitars and synths.
On “White Dawn”, Kolyadin layers keyboards, mixing grand piano and symphonic synths with soaring guitar.
“Kaleidoscope” features piano, powerful drums and bass that initially sounds like a tribute to the fine work of Emerson Lake and Palmer that later adds jazz vibraphone and flute into the mix with a Rick Wakeman-style synth solo to top it off.
On the short track 5, “Eidolon,” Gleb Kolyadin showcases his magnificent skill on the piano. The piece ends with fascinating reverb sounds. It segues into another and wonderfully orchestrated piece titled “Into The Void,” featuring piano, mysterious synths and delicate jazz drums.
“The Room” features the piano, bass and drum trio format along with saxophone, weaving in progressive rock, jazz and classical stylings and morphs into a high energy electronic prog rock set.
The longest track is Confluence, clocking over 10 minutes. It begins with delicate piano, bass and absorbing vocals by Steve Hogarth (Marillion). Gleb Kolyadin brilliantly builds the music up tempo, treating the listener to delicious interplay between the piano, drums and vibes.
On track 9, “Constellation / The Bell,” Kolyadin exhibits his classical piano influences and adds contemporary vocal experimentation near the end.
“Echo / Sigh / Strand” combines classical piano with a brief outburst epic prog rock.
Track 10, “Penrose Stairs” features jazz saxophone plus the grand piano, vibrant drums and bass.
“Storyteller” is a progressive rock lover’s dream, with Kolyadin and fellow maestro Jordan Rudess exchanging fabulous keyboard performances. Rudess plays a knockout synth solo.
The album concludes with “The Best Of Days” where Steve Hogarth returns with another entrancing vocal performance accompanied by spellbinding piano, drums and bass.
The lineup on “Gleb Kolyadin” includes Gavin Harrison on drums; Nick Beggs on bass; Theo Travis on flute and saxophone; Steve Hogarth on vocals; and Mick Moss and Jordan Rudess on keyboards.
Gleb Kolyadin cofounded the chamber prog group Iamthemorning in 2010 along with singer Marjana Semkina. The group released Iamthemorning in 2012, Belighted in 2014 and Lighthouse in 2016. In 2016 Iamthemorning won the UK-based Progressive Music Award for album of the year.
With his first solo album, Gleb Kolyadin has unveiled a formidable force in the progressive rock field. He’s a masterful performer, arranger and innovator. This album is heading straight to the top of best progressive albums of the year.
Tautologic is a progressive rock ensemble from Chicago with a unique quirky personality. Their latest album is Re:Psychle, a set of songs inspired by everyday Chicagoans.
While Tautologic’s sound is grounded in progressive rock, the lyrics are idiosyncratic and sarcastic, similar in spirit to Frank Zappa’s work and the Canterbury bands.
The band is led by multi-instrumentalist Ethan Sellers who delivers superb keyboard work throughout the album. What’s refreshing about Re:Psychle is the fact that Sellers stays true to the progressive music spirit by combining state of the art classic progressive rock with chamber music elements, jazz and other influences such as funk and even unexpected Afrobeat-style brass on one song.
Topics portrayed in Re:Psychle include substance use and behavioral health as well as veterans’ concerns, friction between religious conviction and a secular culture, conspiracy theories, celebrity culture, and the need for re- joining nature.
Sellers collaborates with a remarkable cast of musicians. Guitarist Aaron Weistrop showcases his talent as an instrumentalist who extracts top notch guitar sounds and avoids tired hard and heavy metal riffing. Weistrop also provides captivating interplay with violinist Jeff Yang.
The lineup on Re:Psychle includes Ethan Sellers on vocals, keyboards and acoustic guitar; Pat Buzby on drums; Nathan Britsch on bass; Chris Greene on tenor and alto saxophones; Aaron Weistrop on electric guitars; Jeff Yang on violin; Nick Photinos on cello; Aron Topielski on bass; Jennifer Reddick on flutes and piccolo; Michael Maccaferri on clarinets; Johnny Showtime Janowiak on trombone; Eric Koppa on baritone saxophone; Micah Frazier on trumpet; Diana Lawrence on bridge vocals; Jennifer Justice on bridge vocals; and Lillie Sellers on spoken word.
Re:Psychle is a finely crafted prog rock album that combines meaningful, uninhibited lyrics and first class musicianship.
Liver is the new live album by Italy’s remarkable band Slivovitz. The ensemble plays a mix of contemporary jazz, progressive rock, blues and effervescent rhythms with funk influences.
Liver revisits musical pieces from Slivovitz’s recent albums “Bani Ahead” (2011) and “All You Can Eat” (2016). The new versions include plenty of opportunities for improvisation and instinctive interplay. The saxophone, violin, trumpet and harmonica take turns as soloists. I gravitate towards the mesmerizing trumpet solos and the violin performances as well, possibly because the violin connects more with the Arti e Mestieri and PFM Italian vibe that has always attracted me.
The band lineup includes seven talented musicians: Derek Di Perri on harmonica, Arcello Giannini on guitars, Vincenzo Lamagna on bass, Salvatore Rainone on drums, Ciro Riccardi on trumpet, Pietro Santangelo on tenor saxophone and Riccardo Villari on electric violin.
Migrants is the first full-length album by Korean American violinist, technology wizard and songwriter. I saw Joe live a few years ago and that’s how you can really experience his talent. Joe uses technology to loop his violin’s sounds and his vocals as well in real time.
On Migrants, Kye uses these techniques to deliver captivating layers, percussive elements and loops of sounds where he can turn a single violin into a string ensemble.
Kye is also a singer. His best vocal material takes place when he loops and overdubs his vocals to create choruses and other effects. It’s fascinating, masterful work.
His musical influences include indie rock, a cappella songs, pop, jazz, and classical music.
Migrants features several guests, including bassist Chris Frank, drummer Matt Berger and a string ensemble.
Joe Kye was born in Korea and moved to the United States with his family at a young age. They settled in Seattle.
The Black Hole is the new album by Canadian band The Black Hole. The group delivers a mix of progressive rock, hard rock and heavy metal.
The highlights of the album are the progressive rock-leaning pieces. The four musicians are superb instrumentalists and when they step away from predictable hard and heavy rock, they really stand out.
On “Peaceful Exit” and “So / By Your Side,” perform high energy rock characterized by memorable bass, keyboard and guitar solos and creative drumming.
Most of “Fall’n Fly” is embodied by heavy metal riffs. “Dark Souls” has some interesting moments, but again, it’s full of conventional hard rock and heavy metal riffs.
“Crash” is a bass-fueled rock song with great hooks. “The Worst Is yet to Come” is another high point, a delightful piece incorporating spacy synths, acoustic guitars and great vocals.
“Amora Demonis 2017” is the last song, a re-recording of an early Hamadryad classic. It’s a mix of hard and progressive rock, with the guitar pulling towards hard rock and the rest of the band tugging towards progressive rock.
Progressive rock guitar maestro Steve Hackett has released a new album titled Wuthering Nights: Live in Birmingham. Wuthering Nights was filmed at the Birmingham Symphony Hall during Hackett’s Genesis Revisited & Classic Hackett tour.
The tour marked the 40th anniversary of Wind & Wuthering, Hackett’s last album with Genesis and the band’s last progressive rock release. To celebrate, Steve and his band played 5 of the best-loved tracks from this iconic album: Eleventh Earl Of Mar, One For The Vine, Blood On The Rooftops, …In That Quiet Earth and Afterglow.
Other fan favorites from Hackett’s Genesis days were ‘revisited’: Dance On A Volcano, Inside & Out, Firth Of Fifth, The Musical Box and the classic Los Endos. The album also features many of Hackett’s solo fan-favorites as well as material from his latest studio album The Night Siren.
Steve recalls the Birmingham performance… “I’m excited about imminent release of ‘Wuthering Nights’. It felt special to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Wind & Wuthering, the Genesis album I had the most songwriting involvement with and a favorite among many fans. Songs like One for the Vine, Eleventh Earl of Mar and Blood on the Rooftops come across powerfully on this release, which also features other Genesis and solo Hackett favorites along with songs from my latest album The Night Siren… Sit back and enjoy!”
The band that appears in this recording includes Roger King on keyboards; Gary O’Toole on drums and percussion; Rob Townsend on saxophones and flutes/ Nick Beggs on bass, stick & twelve string guitar; and Nad Sylvan on vocals plus special guests John Hackett and Amanda Lehmann.
The album is available as Special Edition 2CD + 2DVD Digipak, Blu-Ray, 2CD + Blu-Ray (North America only), and digital. All video formats include 5.1 Surround Sound and various extras.
Composer, producer, synthesist and multi-instrumentalist, Steve Roach was born February 16, 1955 in La Mesa, near San Diego, in California. He is fascinated by the desert landscapes and wide open spaces in the Southwest of the United States, as well as the outback deserts of Australia. Steve’s style has evolved from purely electronic sounds to the combination of synthetic sounds with some of the most primitive musical instruments.
Steve bought his first synthesizer in 1978. Although his first influences were German electronic acts like Tangerine Dream, Can and Klaus Schulze, Steve soon went beyond and developed his own style.
Los Angeles’ hectic way of life led him to isolate himself in a musical sanctuary. Initially, Steve composed intense sequencer-based music. Later, he started to compose more tranquil and atmospheric music as a response to the rhythmic and sequenced world that characterized his earlier music.
After Empetus, Steve’s compositions mirrored his impressions of southwestern landscapes and world music. His trips to Australia had a profound effect on his music. The desert’s attraction led Steve to move to Tucson, Arizona in the southwestern United States.
“I seek musical instruments that allow me to create sounds in an attractive and intuitive way. It’s something intriguing. That’s the difference between a keyboardist and a synthesis,” says Steve.
Steve Roach records and produces his music in his own studio called the Time Room. It’s a room full of marvelous electronic music devices that Roach uses to extract a multitude of spellbinding sounds.
Steve Roach is restless in his search for new sounds that connect with an ancient source of truth in this ever changing world. Roach has earned his position in the international first tier of major progressive music artists over the last decades through his ceaseless productivity, constant innovation, open minded collaborations with numerous artists and the psychological depth of his music.
Recognized worldwide as one of the leading innovators of contemporary electronic music, he is a very prolific musicians, who has released dozens of albums since 1981, including the ground-breaking double CD Dreamtime Return; the critically acclaimed tribal-trance extravaganza Artifacts; the award winning Earth Island, the second collaboration with Mexican multi-instrumentalist Jorge Reyes and Spanish guitarist and producer Suso Sáiz; the independently produced The Dream Circle; his collaboration with Belgian musician Vidna Obmana, Well of Souls; and Kiva, a mind-bending masterpiece featuring hallucinogenic shamanic rites, synthesizer landscapes and primeval instruments, combining the talents of Roach, Michael Stearns and Ron Sunsinger.
“At the melting point in the ocean of desert, this awesome expanse of a 180-degree horizon slowly works on the perception, revealing yet again the Other desert of inner regions that I crave to be in,” says Steve Roach.
Now (Fortuna 1982)
Traveler (Domino 1983, Fortuna 1987) Structures from Silence (Fortuna 1984)
Quiet Music 1 (Fortuna 1986)
Quiet Music 2 (Fortuna 1986)
Quiet Music 3 (Fortuna 1986)
Empetus (Fortuna 1986)
Western Spaces (with Kevin Braheny,Thom Brennan; Fortuna 1990) Quiet Music (Fortuna 1988)
The Leaving Time (with Michael Shrieve; Novus/RCA 1988) Dreamtime Return (Fortuna 1988)
Stormwarning: Live in Concert (Soundquest 1989, Lektronic Soundscapes 1992)
Desert Solitaire (with Kevin Braheny, Michael Stearns; Fortuna 1989)
Australia: Sound of the Earth, with David Hudson, Sarah Hopkins (Fortuna 1990)
Strata, with Robert Rich (Hearts of Space 1990)
Now / Traveller (Fortuna 1992)
World’s Edge (Fortuna 1992)
Soma, with Robert Rich (Hearts of Space 1992)
Suspended Memories: Forgotten Gods, with Jorge Reyes, Suso Sáiz (Hearts of Space 1993)
The Lost Pieces (Rubicon 1993, Relic/Projekt 1995) Origins (Fortuna 1993)
Solitaire: Ritual Ground, with Elmar Shulte (Silent 1993)
Suspended Memories: Earth Island, with Jorge Reyes, Suso Sáiz (Fathom 1994)
Artifacts (Fortuna 1994)
The Dream Circle (Soundquest 1994)
Well of Souls, with Vidna Obmana (Projekt 1995)
Kiva, with Michael Stearns, Ron Sunsinger (Fathom 1995)
The Dreamer Descends (Amplexus 1995) The Magnificent Void (Fathom 1996)
On This Planet (Hearts of Space, 1997)
Slow Heat (Timeroom Editions, 1998)
Light Fantastic (Hearts of Space, 1999)
Atmospheric Conditions (Timeroom Editions, 1999)
The Dream Circle (Timeroom Editions, 1999)
Truth & Beauty: The Lost Pieces 2 (Timeroom Editions, 1999)
Midnight Moon (Projekt, 2000)
Early Man (Projekt, 2001)
Time of the Earth (2001)
Core (Timeroom Editions, 2001)
Streams & Currents (2001)
Darkest Before Dawn (2002)
Mystic Chords & Sacred Spaces (Projekt, 2003)
Texture Maps: The Lost Pieces 3 (Timeroom Editions, 2003)
Life Sequence (2003)
Fever Dreams (2004)
Holding the Space: Fever Dreams II (Timeroom Editions, 2004)
Places Beyond: The Lost Pieces 4 (Timeroom Editions, 2004)
Possible Planet (2005)
New Life Dreaming (2005)
Immersion: One (Projekt, 2006)
Proof Positive (2006)
Kairos: The Meeting of Time and Destiny (2006)
Immersion: Two (Projekt, 2006)
Fever Dreams III (2007)
Immersion : Three (2007)
A Deeper Silence (2008)
Landmass (Timeroom Editions, 2008)
Dynamic Stillness (2009)
Destination Beyond (2009)
Immersion: Four (Timeroom Editions, 2009)
Sigh of Ages (2010)
Immersion Five – Circadian Rhythms (2011)
Groove Immersion (2012)
Back to Life (2012)
Soul Tones (2012)
Future Flows (2013)
Spiral Meditations (2013)
Bloodmoon Rising (2014)
The Delicate Beyond (2014)
The Delicate Forever (2014)
The Desert Collection – Volume 1 (2014)
Skeleton Keys (Projekt, 2015)
The Skeleton Collection 2005 – 2015 (Timeroom Editions, 2015) Etheric Imprints (Projekt, 2015)
Bloodmoon Rising – The Complete 5 hour collection (Timeroom Editions, 2015)
Vortex Immersion Zone (Timeroom Editions, 2015)
This Place to Be (2016) Shadow of Time (Projekt Records, 2016) Spiral Revelation (Projekt Records, 2016)
Fade to Gray (2016)
Painting in the Dark (2016)
The Passing (Timeroom Editions, 2017)
Nostalgia for the Future (Timeroom Editions, 2017) Long Thoughts (Projekt Records, 2017)
Live At Home showcases the talent of innovative Serbian guitarist Dusan Jevtovic and his formidable band. On Live At Home, delivers a superb set of progressive jazz-rock fusion.
Spain-based Jevtovic is not a showoff guitarist. Instead he uses his guitar in multiple ways, creating a certain ambience, delivering altered walls of sound, distorted guitars, some solos and improvisations as well. His colleague, guest keyboardist Vasil Hadzimanov performs an excellent set of mesmerizing electric piano segments that at time channel Chick Corea.
The rhythm section is impressive featuring Pedja Milutinovic’s powerful drums and Pera Krstajic gets some opportunities to play creative bass lines.
On song 5, “Babe,” the band introduces Eastern European chants that lead into cutting edge fusion. Meanwhile, on track 6, “Briga,” the band adds dreamlike sampled vocals that weave in and out.
Live At Home was recorded live at Decije Pozoriste, Kragujevac, in Serbia, on December 23, 2016.
Dusan Jevtovic’s Live At Home displays impeccable examples of progressive jazz craftsmanship.