Friday, February 17, 2012

Możdżer/Olejniczak/Walicki/Konrad - Birthday Live (2003)

Leszek Możdżer - piano
Andrzej Olejniczak - tenor & soprano sax
Olo Walicki - bass
Cezary Konrad - drums

Birthday Live (2003)



This is kinda Polish "All Stars" event! Set up to celebrate 3rd anniversary of famous Blue Note club in Poznań it featured four invited artists of highest caliber. Leszek Możdżer enjoys in Poland super star status and has become since recording of this album also more recognized abroad because of his contract with ACT. Andrzej Olejniczak was one of main figures behind band called String Connection, arguably the most important group in Polish jazz in 80ties. Unfortunately he afterwards vanished from our scene since he emigrated to Spain. Olo Walicki was, along with Możdżer, one of protagonist in yass revolution in Polish jazz in 90ties. Since then he has made significant contribution to our scene not only in jazz but also in theater and film music. Cezary Konrad is now very much as much in pop when he plays with Anna Maria Jopek and in quality jazz bands of Krzysztof Herdzin or Marek Napiórkowski. These musicians now live and create in totally different musical landscapes and it is really astonishing how Blue Note managed to gather them together! 

What is even more astonishing is that these musicians had only one rehearsal prior to concert! And yet the outcome of such experiment is simply breathtaking.. Music burst with energy, vibrates with passion and explodes with spontaneity! Both composed and improvised material are in perfect balance. Although it is obviously mainstream in character with clear bop affinities yet it sounds all fresh, rejuvenating, vital. One of thess great recordings you don't want to miss if you love Polish jazz...

1. Felux (Walicki); 2. Chloe (Olejniczak); 3. Express 6.10 (Możdżer); 4. Sir Lester (Możdżer); 5. Egoa (Olejniczak)


By Maciej Nowotny

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