While the Klaus Möckelmann Trio has the charm of a classic Jazz Trio, the music is not confined to the narrow boundaries of the genre. The group around bandleader Klaus Möckelmann boldly explores Jazz’ ‘stormy weather’ rather than sticking to safe formulas. Just as Jazz’s origins combined various musical cultures, traditions and styles, the Trio engages with other influences while never losing its link to true traditional Jazz ideas.
For example, the title song of the newest CD ‘Music for a while’ is based on a Baroque piece by Henry Purcell, this is mixed with Hip Hop, Groove and Swing to give it a surprising and deliberately modern sound. Klaus Möckelmann’s groove-oriented, swinging, bluesy and emotional style , together with the trio’s musical enthusiasm keep you engaged and entertained throughout the performance.
As with all good conversation, there is no conflict between seriousness and entertainment. It is a strength of this Jazz music that it expresses and uses this tension. The style ranges from contemporary Jazz to ‘earthy’ groove-numbers. Klaus Möckelmann ‘s own compositions and arrangements are defined by clear melodic lines and harmonies, fascinating and surprising changes and imagery. The trio also has a lyrical side which is especially expressed in the interpretation of folksongs such as ‘Ack Värmland du Sköne’ and ‘Dunkle Wolke’.
The leader of the band does’t only focus on Jazz. As a classically trained pianist he became known as the band leader and Hammond organist of the soul-and funk group ‘Voodoo Child’ and ‘Fat Judy’. Möckelmann who has also composed film music and co-founded the Bigband Bremen, feels at ease playing all kinds of genres. Though, as a contemporary music form, he has a ‘weakness’ for Jazz which develops its own language by integrating and challenging a number of cultural influences. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the Klaus Möckelmann Trio members have experience in a wide range of different music genres.
The versatile drummer, Ralf Jackowski, is one of the busiest and most sought after Jazz drummers in North Germany. His explosive, creative, intelligent and sensitive play, brings the depth of the rhythms to live. Trained by Charlie Antolini, Ralf studied Jazz in Rotterdam. He plays in small jazz ensembles as well as in the NDR Radio Symphony Orchestra and has produced an impressive number of CDs (too many to be listed here).
This is what the Press says:
“Ralf Jackowski is an unbelievably, flexible, powerful and expressively complete drummer.” Bremer Weser Kurier
Versatility is also double bassist Gerald Willms trademark. His job is to act as the ‘gell’ between Ralf Jackowski’s rhythmic ideas and Klaus Möckelmann’s complex harmonies. Drawing on his listening skills, he puts his musical abilities to work as a full member of the playing team. Gerald studied ‘double bass’ under Detlev Beier at the University of Arts (Bremen) and as a highly popular sideman, he travels and tours with a number of different Jazz formations.