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domov arrow diskografija arrow Imer Traja Brizani & BIG BAND RTV Slovenija feat. Peter Erskine 2009

Imer Traja Brizani & BIG BAND RTV Slovenija feat. Peter Erskine 2009


Recenzija, Peter Erskine:

I have been asked to offer some words about my new friend, Imer Taja Brizani. But first, I should say this: I am a fortunate drummer. First, by having enjoyed an education received from two great masters of music: George Gaber and Joe Zawinul. When I studied percussion with renowned timpanist Gaber, beginning with our first lesson together when I was a 10-year old drummer and continuing through my university years, he would often make specific mention of the following facets of percussion: the mambo from Cuba, the sensuous sounds of the caxixi and surdo from Brazil, the finest possible tone obtainable from a triangle in the symphony orchestra, and the intricate rhythms of the Macedonian bass drum. Years later, when I was working with Joe Zawinul in the group Weather Report, he would boast about the power and beauty of gypsy music. I began to think that both Joe and Jaco Pastorius had some gypsy blood in their veins.

The person who would connect the dots for me regarding all of this is bassist, composer, producer and author Imer Traja Brizani. Traja contacted me to work with him in a context that I am most familiar with, the jazz big band ~ in this case, the excellent Big Band RTV Slovenija. If music is a universal language, then big band jazz is a dialect that is instantly recognizable by players and fans alike. Ever since my first work with the big bands of Stan Kenton and Maynard Ferguson (along with Bob Mintzer, Kenny Wheeler, Vince Mendoza and Bob Florence), I have found myself coming often to Europe and working in this genre. Business as usual, except for the musical spin that is Imer Traja Brizani’s world. This is one of the more unique big band projects to have come my way.

Therein, the second reason for my good fortune: I am honored to have been chosen for this collaboration between the American big band ethos and the Macedonian bass drum groove. Even though the Big Band RTV Slovenija has been in existence for over 60 years, the music it plays is essentially American! Well … not so fast, Mr. Erskine. Brizani’s musical trick was to marry the two forms. From Basie to Brizani, and Motown to Macedonia, the musical distance proved far less than the miles it took for me to get there.

And once there, my hosts treated me very well. The big band members welcomed me as one of their own. Traja introduced me to his lovely family, which includes two very talented sons (his wife is a great cook, too!). This man lives and breathes music. He’s brought the electric bass out front, much like his hero and my friend Jaco Pastorius, to a most interesting place. His music carries the pulse of the Macedonian bass drum and the song of the gypsy. Traja’s music is of the earth, and it is urban, too. It’s a campfire in the countryside, a car radio on the highway, a fine jazz concert in a beautiful hotel on a snowy night in Slovenia, and a mysterious band of players who disappear into the night…

I feel fortunate to know this man and to have played his music. Please enjoy this CD documentation of a very special collaboration, one that though miles away from where I live somehow brought me back home.

Peter Erskine
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