I am looking ahead for fifth Prague Freejazz festival at Kaštan club this weekend. Such a music that freejazz (which somebody misundestands as free jazz) can be! Creating music from the air of consciousness, atmosphere of the moment and heart of the performer is .... whatever;-)
Fifth Free Jazz Festival, organised under this banner in Prague by P&J Music agency, has a lot to continue with. Remembering well performances from previous years, Piotr Baron / Robo Ragan / Dodo Šošoka with their kind of free version of A Love Supreme, playful duo of Sylvie Courvoisier and Ben Perowski, delightful Kent Carter String Trio, various combinations of Lithuanian saxophonists Liudas Mockūnas and Petras Vysniauskas, Russian bassist Vladimir Volkov, German drummer Klaus Kugel and Romanian pianist Mircea Tiberian or poetic Sadiq Bey Schwartzegeist, not to forget appearances of Phil Minton <<mouthful of ecstasy>> quartet, Michel Pilz - Perry Robinson Quartet or Leimgruber / Demierre / Phillips trio, which i did not catch...
Second on the bill at Kastan, chamber friendly space at Břevnov Prague district, is German duo Helter Skelter - guitar player Helmut "Joe" Sachse and drummer Ernst Bier with their part of neverending story of covering Beatles tunes. Such a universal standard material, these beetles from the 'pool.
Last act of Saturday evening is a monster: Great Black American Matthew Shipp on piano (check some of his circa 40, both acoustic and electric albums from past 20 years, notably these on Thirsty Ear label), Russian saxophone player Sergej Letov, who appeared previous year in duo with pianist Maral Yakshieva, and experienced six string wizard from Connecticut, Joe Morris - this time on his second and more recent instrument, which is double bass.
Sunday evening starts with duo of Jaromír Honzák, well respected Czech double bass player, composer and educator (his current jazz projects include international Jaromir Honzak Quintet, nu jazz quartet Face of the Bass and jungle-electro unit Sato San-To), with violinist Martin Zbrožek, who is mainly connected with theatre improvisation project Vizita and subsequently Visit of Music (with Honzák and others) and also appeared on more mainstream entertainment fields. Both Honzák and Zbrožek (who will also play piano) are sharing rich musical experience from their youth.
Another duo represents stable quality of British improvising scene. Pianist Veryan Weston was already here with Minton's Mouthful of Ecstasy, 4 Walls quartet and most notably in trio with John Edwards and Mark Sanders - their completely acoustic preformance at Sklenena louka in Brno years ago left audience (including me) totally blown away. Comunicating with pianist will be alto and soprano saxist Trevor Watts, veteran of John Stevens' Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Barry Guy's London Jazz Composers' Orchestra and many of his own line-ups. He is known to Czech public with his Moire Music Project, actual Watts & Weston duo and Good Old Circus - Interjazz IV. album project in late 70's.
Finally, on Sunday music feast at Kaštan (aka Chestnut) club we can fall in love with clarinettes through Mikołaj Trzaska Clarinet Trio from Poland. Leader, who plays also saxophones aside bass clarinet, was main force in Polish jazz wonder Miłość in 80's (they recorded albums with Lester Bowie and Tomasz Stańko), later joined forces with Peter Brötzmann and Scandinavians Peter Friis Nielsen and Peeter Uuskyla in Quartet North (remember their explosive performance at Divadlo Komedie during early years of Stimul Festival?), his native colleagues Oleś bros drums and bass duo in Oleś / Trzaska / Oleś and is recently active on Transatlantic freejazz scene. Two younger and yet experienced clarinetists in trio, Wacław Zimpel and Michał Górczynski (both alternating bass clarinets) are coming from jazz and, respectively, classicall music backgrounds.