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Sep 20, 2010 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM


Surprise and joy. Those were my first feelings when Najponk confided to me that he was tired of carrying suitcases in a hotel and wanted to return to performing after a more than two-year hiatus. That was in February of 2009, and immediately we started to develop the idea of an album recorded in New York. Najponk’s idea to work with the untraditional instrumentation of Fender Rhodes piano, Hammond organ and drums was inspired by an unofficial recording by Brad Mehldau, Sam Yahel and a still unidentified drummer made in 1998 in a New York jazz club. I began to investigate and discovered that there had apparently never been an album recorded entirely with this instrumentation. This cast the whole project in an even more interesting light. ...


CD Release - Najponk, Ondrej Pivec, Russell Carter
September 20, 2010 , 7pm, Free


....From that moment everything went relatively quickly and easily. Najponk approached leading Czech organist Ondra Pivec, who was living at the time in the Mecca of jazz, and immediately agreed to collaborate. The repertoire was agreed upon shortly thereafter, and after a brief search for a drummer who would suit both the music and the musicians, we chose leading New York drummer Gregory Hutchinson. We had all admired Greg for a long time, especially as a longtime member of the Ray Brown Trio, and more recently for his work with Joshua Redman. Then I approached Petr Ostrouchov, founder of the Animal Music label, about issuing the album, and we came to an immediate agreement. In the course of only a few years Petr has built up Animal Music into a respected jazz label, probably the best in Central and Eastern Europe (a feat which, incidentally, has aided the Czech jazz boom of recent years and boosted the jazz scene not only in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, but somewhat also in neighboring Poland). After careful consideration, we chose Michael Brorby and his studio Acoustic Recording in Brooklyn, where Sam Yahel had recorded his latest album Hometown a few months ago, and where David Dorůžka had recorded his debut Hidden Paths a few years ago after finishing his studies at Berklee. The recording took place on December 7, 2009 in the space of about 2 1/2 hours, and all the tracks were de facto first takes, which makes this a live recording and shows you how good the atmosphere in the studio was, not to mention the playing skills of all the musicians involved. An interesting fact is that it was the birthday of Mike Carr, whose “Theme for Cliff” is on the album. Happy Birthday, Mike! For photography we chose the well-respected and world-famous photograph Antonín Kratochvíl, whose style is very appropriate for this music. Antonín agreed without hesitation, and for me personally it was an amazing experience to watch my favorite photographer in action. We did the photoshoot in the artistic quarter of Brooklyn known as Dumbo. The cover art was designed by Aleš Najbrt of Studio Najbrt, who created the look of the whole Animal Music line (the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague has chosen the whole series for its collection). If anybody knows of any album using the instrumentation Fender, Hammond and drums, I will be very glad to hear about it. Please write me at petr.marek@petrmarek.cz. Thanks in advance. Petr Marek

Booklet – Information:

1. This Love Of Mine (Barry Parker, Henry W. Sanicola, Frank Sinatra) 8:41

2. Theme For Cliff (Mike Carr) 5:23

3. Peace (Horace Silver) 6:23

4. Days Of Wine And Roses (Henry Mancini, John H. Mercer) 4:09

5. Soon (George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin) 6:16

6. I´ve Never Been In Love Before (Frank Loesser) 7:58

7. Blues For Petr (Najponk, Ondřej Pivec) 6:37

8. Cold Duck Time (Eddie Harris) 5:12

9. The Things We Did Last Summer (Jule Styne, Sammy Cahn) 7:19

10. Just A Closer Walk With Thee (traditional, arr. by Najponk & Ondřej Pivec) 6:01

Najponk – Fender Rhodes piano

Ondřej Pivec – Hammond B3 organ

Gregory Hutchinson – drums

Produced by Petr Marek for AGUILAR

Recorded December 2009 by Michael Brorby at Acoustic Recording, New York, USA

Mixed December 2009 by Ken Wallace at Ian London Production, New York, USA

Mastered April 2010 by Gene Paul at DB Plus, New York, USA

Photos (c) Antonín Kratochvíl, 2010



Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street
NY 10021 New York
United States


Sep 20, 2010 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM


České centrum

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