Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Bemibek - Dziennik podrozy (Soundpol, 1993)

Bemibek (band)

Ewa Bem - vocal
Aleksander Bem - drums
Andrzej Ibek - piano, organ
Jerzy Bartz - drums
Paweł Dąbrowski - bass guitar
Leszek Matecki - guitar
Henryk Miśkiewicz - saxophone
Sławomir Piwowar - guitar

Dziennik podrozy (Soundpol, 1993)

Honestly speaking I am rather ill-disposed towards anything that even remotely resembles smooth jazz production. I am therefore not very unhappy that this genre so strong in the US is marginal as far as European Jazz is concerned and in Polish jazz even more. Though on Polish soil smooth jazz never indeed has taken roots too deep it does not mean that some musicians were not trying. Most of these tries as well in  past as now are easy to skip but this it is at least worthy to note that such a current is present in Polish jazz stream. This specific recording is definitely nothing groundbreaking but it is interesting from historical point of view as one of first Polish try in the territory where both pop and jazz music meet.

Bemibek was set up in 1970 by Ewa Bem (vocal) and Aleksander Bem (vocal, drums) with Andrzej Ibek (vocal, piano, organ). With addition of Tadeusz Gogosz (bass guitar) group debuted on famous Jazz Nad Odrą festival where they scooped 1st Prize, clearly a sign that critics as well as audience then were open for that kind of decently played and light-hearted muse. It is difficult for me to trace further career of this band, I am not an expert in this kind of jazz, but getting back to the music one must say that it redeems itself and may be listened to with pleasure due to awesome performance of Ewa Bem, one of the most interesting female vocalists in Polish jazz history. She is still active as much as educator being responsible for recent influx of many young, talented jazz vocalists in Poland and as an artist realeasing new albums. I hope that some of her discs, especially those more ambitious, inspired by her favourite Ella Fitzgerald, will find their way to this blog one day...

Please, listen to great bossa nova from this album:

Author: Maciej Nowotny


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