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MEDIAWAVE GATHERING

Fort Monostor, Komárom, Hungary

30 April - 4 May, 2019

 

 

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next date:

MEDIAWAVE GATHERING

Fort Monostor, Komárom, Hungary

30 April - 4 May, 2019

 

 

special theme:

 THE MAN

Through Women’s Eyes
 

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News - MEDIAWAVE Foundation

2016-04-19 013:02

Last year the wall put me in East Berlin - interview with Mike Parker from Mike Parker's Trio Theory


Mike Parker is a bassist and composer from New York currently living in Krakow, Poland. His 'Unified Theory' and 'Trio Theory' projects attempt to create one music out of many wide-ranging styles. In April '16 they released 'Alive Out There', a live album recorded on their Fall '15 tour. We asked him about this and about his Mediawave impression. 

 

- Last year you have participated on Mediawave Gathering with a different band, haven't you?

 

Mike Parker: Yes, last year I performed with the Nat Osborn Band, which is more of a funk/rock/pop band in which I was playing electric bass. This year will be quite different...

 

 

- When was the first Mediawave concert for you?

 

MP: Last year was my first time at the festival and it was a great experience, so I'm very happy to be back. Slawek, our tenor player, also performed with the Nat Osborn Band last year and I believe this will be Frank Parker's MediaWave debut. So watch out for Frank!

 

- Please introduce the Trio which is coming this year!

MP:
So this trio is kind of a continuation of a quintet project I started shortly after graduating from university in New York. My musical experience up until that point had included playing in rock bands, jazz groups, an orchestra, and even a chamber ensemble and I had composed in all of these setting as well. I had a strong desire to start a group and compose for it, but I was really struggling for a long time about what instruments would be involved or even what kind of music it would be. In the end, I had the idea to have bass, drums, and 3 horns so I could write anything resembling a string quartet to modern jazz or even 'drum and bass' music. I recorded an album in New York with musicians there and then a 2nd in Krakow, Poland, where I currently live, in 2014. After recording that album I decided to try a more stripped-down version with only 1 horn instead of 3 and while the musical concept is similar it allows for some more freedom in the improvisations and requires a bit more creativity in the arrangements.

 

Mike Parker, Slawek Pezda and Frank Parker - Mike Parker Trio

 

Mike Parker (NewYork)­
Slawek Pezda (Krakow)­
Frank Parker (Chicago)­
double bass tenor saxophone drums

 

 

Slawek Pezda, who also lives in Krakow, is on tenor saxophone. We've been playing together for a number of years and he was also a member of the quintet project, so we have a great musical understanding between us. He's very versatile and has a huge sound, and I just absolutely love the energy he brings to every performance. He gives you everything he has every single solo as I have no doubt you'll see.

 

Frank Parker, who is not actually related to me, is my American partner in the trio coming from Chicago. He's had a really outstanding musical career, playing with a lot of the top musicians in the world and touring with the Kurt Elling Quartet for many years. He has a really great feel to his playing and we also have a very good musical connection. In truth, all 3 of us have a really great musical connection and that is what makes the compositions come to life and the improvisations compelling (I hope...)

 

- Your new album, 'Alive Out There' has been released recently. Could you tell me about the album, about the music?

 

MP: Over the last year and a half we've played a lot of shows on the road and I really feel we've developed as a live band (as opposed to in a rehearsal room), so when I was thinking about recording an album with the trio it seemed natural that it should be a live album. So on our Fall tour last year, in which we played something like 30 concerts in 6 countries, we recorded a few of the concerts and this live album is the result.

 

 

The album consists of 5 of my original compositions and 1 by a friend of mine Bryson Barnes, whose composition became part of our concert repertoire. All my albums have some mix of composition and improvisation, but I think this album focuses a bit more on extended improvisations than the previous 2. I think this group produces a tremendous amount of energy for 3 guys playing acoustic instruments and I hope we succeeded in capturing the energy of our live shows on the album.

 

 

Click on the picture to listen the album!

 

- What is your expectation of the Mediawave concert this year? Do you have some stories from last years?

 

MP: Well I'm really excited to present the trio and I know you have a very good listening audience at the festival so we are looking forward to that. And hopefully something unexpected will happen, we'll just have to see!

 

 

Actually, I have a great memory from last year that turned into a kind of ongoing joke with the Nat Osborn Band for the rest of our tour... You had this wall going through the main festival area all the way up to the stage and people weren't able to move freely from one side of the stage to the other. I was actually really disappointed that my side of the stage was the more difficult side to get to and as a result most people at the festival were on the other side of this wall. I was joking with the band that I was in East Berlin and kind of complaining that I would have no audience. So before we played, I was actively recruiting people to be in 'East Berlin' for our performance and surprisingly it worked. I got so excited about this during the concert that I kept calling out to 'East Berlin' as if it were some kind of competition with 'West Berlin'. People were responding and having a really good time with this kind of joke and it turned into such a big thing that by the end I had probably 70% of the audience on my side of the wall. So ever since that performance my side of the stage in the Nat Osborn Band has been known as 'East Berlin'. 


Mike Parker's Trio Theory

29th April 22:00 Ékes Concert Room

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