Saturday, April 6, 2013

Volker Kriegel & Friends at the Jazzfest Berlin '81

Volker Kriegel's 1981 Berlin concert released. A historical sound and light document
Hans Koert
The German jazz-rock guitarist Volker Kriegel passed away ten years ago and this was remembered by the release of a great historical album of a live concert at the 1981  Jazzfest Berlin.

Volker Kriegel and Friends at the Jazzfest Berlin '81 ( English) - Volker Kriegel and Friends tijdens het Jazzfest van Berlijn (1981) ( Nederlands) 

Who was Volker Kriegel – a guitarist, not so known outside Germany, but a popular guitarist in the German jazz rock scene? 

(photo courtesy: Mig Music)
 Born in  Darmstadt (Germany), December 1943, he learned to play the guitar as a teenager and received several awards as best guitarist and best soloist. In 1963 at das Deutsches Amateur-Jazz-Festival in Düsseldorf  his  trio ( featuring himself at the guitar, Helmut Kampe (bass) and Dieter Matschoss (drums)), was awarded as Best Band of the festival. 
Volker Kriegel -
self portrait as a cartoonist
(Volker Kriegel)
He was educated as an artist and became a sought after cartoonist for German papers and magazines. He also studied sociology and psychology  at the Frankfurt University and played in the Frankfurter Jazzkeller with musicians like the Mangelsdorff brothers.  In 1966 he debuted at a record by keyboard player  Ingfried Hoffman. In her big band, featuring great names like Manfred Schoof and Dusko Gojkovich in the trumpet section, they played at the 1967 Köln Jazzfestival.
His first album under his own name was entitled With a Little Help From My Friends, originally recorded for the Liberty label in the summer of 1968 with Dutch drummer Cees See.  Late 1960s he was part of the Dave Pike Set – a US vibe player who lived in Berlin for five years. Volker can be heard at several Dave Pike albums from that period.  In 1973 he founded his own band, entitled Spectrum, in which also bass player Eberhard Weber participated, who would later found his Mild Maniacs Orchestra. Volker Kriegel continued in 1975 with his new band the United Jazz and Rock Ensemble, in which musicians like  Ack Van Rooyen,  Albert Mangelsdorff  and Charlie Mariano played. With this band Volker performed at the 1978 North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague (The Netherlands). In the mean time he also participated in the bands of Peter Herbolzheimer and Klaus Doldinger.

(photo courtesy: Jürgen Röhrscheid)

Late October 1981 Volker Kriegel performed with his United Jazz & Rock Ensemble at the Latin Quarter in Berlin; a week later he was part of the Jazzfest Berlin ’81 with his Friends.  The concert was scheduled the 5th of November 1981 at the Metropol in Berlin at the same stage where the John Scofield Trio would pay later that night. His Friends featured bass player Eberhard Weber, vibist Wolfgang Schlüter, key board player  Thomas Bettermann and drummer Ralf Huebner. This concert has been released, ten years after Volkers sudden dead, as a CD / DVD production – a “sound and light” production by MIG records (80187).

The album features six tracks by the band and one by Eberhard Weber, who plays a solo at his Van Zalinge bass, simply listed as Eberhards solo. 

(photo courtesy: Jürgen Röhrscheid)

Mig-Music did a good job to publish both the “sound and light” versions in its Rockpalace / Art of Groove series, the very fact that it’s great to learn more about the dated haircuts of that period …… 
Mig-Music seems to be a trendsetter in publishing both sound and light versions, like the 1975 Weather Report concert and the Snarky Puppy albums, which gives the music an extra dimension, jazz fans will like.  Now, other record companies, like the new North Sea Jazz - Legendary Concerts series, seem to follow this concept. 

This jazz-rock concert by Volker Kriegel & Friends should be part of your collection.

Hans Koert
Follow the Keep (it) Swinging blog at Facebook or ask its free newsletter.

Volker Kriegel - German guitar player passed away ten years ago. Mig-Music released one of his discussed concerts, recorded at the 1981 Berlin Jazzfest, on cd and dvd: sound and light - a new way to present (historical) performances a lot of jazz fans will enjoy! Find your copy!

Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

No comments:

Post a Comment