Steffen Wilde is in a good mood: Finally concerts again, but with the usual restrictions. But it starts again, and the jazz club “Tonne”, of which Wilde is the artistic director, celebrates its 40 years of existence with a concert offensive. Nils Petter Molvær will come with his current quartet, the Norwegian duo …

Steffen Wilde is in a good mood: Finally concerts again, but with the usual restrictions. But it starts again, and the jazz club “Tonne”, of which Wilde is the artistic director, celebrates its 40 years of existence with a concert offensive. Nils Petter Molvær will come with his current quartet, the Norwegian duo Eivind Aarset & Jan Bang, the Zen-Funk master Nik Bärtsch from Zurich, the female trio Julia Hülsmann with the two Evas Kruse and Klesse, the German percussion legend Wolfgang Haffner and the American Legend Yellowjackets, Marc Ribot, the mastermind behind the music of Tom Waits, with his trio Ceramic Dog and many others. The season started on Tuesday evening with a large group demanding the extension of the stage of the most beautiful jazz club in Central Germany to the rhythm embodied by the drums teacher Günter “Baby” Sommer. With the 13-person ensemble “The New Generation of Sister & Brotherhood” he devoted himself to the music and memory of South African pianist and conductor Chris McGregor. Although a white man, he left his native country in 1964 to escape the repression of apartheid and the difficult incapacity for work. Through stations in Zurich, London and France, he acquired an exposed position within European jazz, as he reacted very favorably to the elements of South African music brought with him. The consequences of this cannot be overstated. In his large-band-like “Brotherhood of Breath”, McGregor brought together musicians and music from his native country with representatives of European free jazz and allowed them to create new things from the respective source materials.

Large groups like this brotherhood of breathing have been able to bring radical jazz back to the public. How it can work was demonstrated by the Saxon Rhapsod Drum Baby Sommer with his great training by pursuing this mix of catchy themes and free improvisations among the enthusiastic people in a playful, lively, full of fun and wide pressure wave. He and Scottish guest saxophonist Raymond MacDonald have added two McGregor compositions to pieces that capture and convey the energy and spirit of this influential music. This fit in with the intensive and entertaining program, which was fueled by plenty of intermediate applause.

It was the Berlin jazz organizer Wolf “Assi” Glöde who initiated this project – because what cannot be, what must not be: For almost a dozen years he had the ‘idea to do something about it being so important and innovative Camp Freeing Chris McGregor has been forgotten. The idea of ​​this group of stars was therefore born, mainly from Berlin musicians, who all presented themselves as intense team players as well as ripped off soloists during this magnificent evening. It was with obvious pleasure that he got down to work, and it was worth it. Almost from the start, the spark jumped into the sold-out bin. “You couldn’t have wished for a better start to the season,” said Steffen Wilde when he sacked the people, who were all in good spirits and will be back, on their way home.

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