Artists: Daniel Manrique-Smith (flute, alto flute, bass flute), Annette Maye (Bb-clarinet), Mona Matbou-Riahi (Bb-clarinet), Steffen Schorn (contra-a,lto clarinet, saxophone), Thomas Savy (bass clarinet), Lucas Leidinger (piano), Mahan Mirarab (guitar), Dirk-Peter Kölsch (drums), Gina Schwarz (bass, composition, arrangement)
Homage to Nick Drake
In 2020 & 2021 bassist & composer Gina Schwarz had the privilege of being invited to the Multiphonics Festival Cologne as Composer in Residence. The starting point for her new compositional ideas was the music of the British folk singer, guitarist and composer Nick Drake (1948 – 1974).
The depth of his music, the desperate melancholy, the tender hope and his extraordinary lyrics in songs like Time Piece, Way to Blue, Riverman, Clothes of Sand, Strange Meeting II, Blossom, Fruit Tree, Come Into the Garden, Things Behind the Sun & Three Hours were inspiration for her music. Just as Drake sometimes structured his albums as a story, her new compositions can also be interpreted as an independent cycle.
In July 2020, she started composing the day after her father’s funeral. In her new music she used childhood stories from the 70’s as an inspiration – as a dedication to her father.
Vienna-based Bassist Schwarz explores obliquely personal connections with cult singer-songwriter Nick Drake in a project written while she was composer-in-residence at Cologne’s Multiphonics Festival; its undulating lyrical avant-chamber jazz and bass clarinet features share an ethereal, melancholic quality with Drake’s work.
Selywn Harris – October 2022
Way to Blue is Viennese double bass player-composer Gina Schwarz’s homage to British folk legend Nick Drake ((1948 – 1974) and to her father who passed away in 2020. This project began when Schwarz was invited as Composer in Residence to the Cologne Multiphonics Festival in 2020 and 2021, and she began writing the cycle of compositions the day after her father’s funeral in July 2020. Way to Blue proves, again, the healing power of music, its everlasting inspiration, as well as means to shape the way interpret and understand our lives.
Eyal Hareuveni – 14.09.2022
In keeping with the proverbial “dark” tone of voice that Gina Schwarz imparts to her instrument – and to her music – this recording also begins with rippling bass and drum groove experienced as a reflection of [this] darkness in shattered mirror. “Lost Time”, that propulsive opening to the recording immediately takes us into another world – a world that echoes with hopes and despair, joy and sorrows that are cast into a kind of Mendelssohnian scherzo that Miss Schwarz is ever so adept at creating. However, despite the preeminent presence of the contrabass and what certainly sounds like symphonic percussion colouring by the drummer – this time in the person of Dirk-Peter Kölsch.
Raul Da Gama, 24. September 2022