La Provence, Marseille

Last time you came to visit Marseille for the Jazz des Cinq Continents festival, your gig was cancelled because of the rain! Are you planning to take your revenge on the weather with a very special performance?


During your career, you have explored many different styles of jazz, but this time, you are coming back with a more “traditional” acoustic trio. Is it one of many projects, or a way to come back to the marrow of jazz?

Oh well – no past or future for the musical form – – it’s all NOW!

How did this project start?

When I was putting my Elektric Band together in the ‘80s, the first thing I wanted was a hot rhythm section – so I went around and found John and Dave. It was a happy experiment, because when we first played, there was an instant rapport! WE started as an “electric” trio, then added saxophone and guitar to become the Elektric Band. We got so many requests for an “acoustic trio” that I asked Dave and John if they would to try that sound – – and we formed the “Akoustic Band” – – –

People often call you a piano genius, an artist always able renew his style. What drives the evolutions of your music? Pleasure? Challenge?

Life without an Adventure and something challenging to do is a dull life – or no life at all. I love the challenge of exploring the infinite number of ways to communicate with music. And when the audience finds pleasure in what I am doing, it makes it all the more worthwhile.

I read that you have contributed to “discovering” Dave Weckl. Is finding new talents important to you?

I think Dave Weckl “discovered” himself – – which is why it was easy for me to “discover” him :-))

What can you reveal about the show?

So much of our set is improvised that it’s hard to “say” what it will be. We will probably try some older songs and some newer ones. But even that doesn’t tell much, because the renditions change each night. That’s what we’ve grown up doing: improvising 🙂