After several encounters with Rossano, our first opportunity to perform together arose with Marc Richard´s European Swing Allstars in 2003.We thoroughly enjoyed the encounter both personally and musically, so we planned right then to do a recording together. Thanks to our Australian friend and drummer Anthony Howe, this duo-CD is now available. He recorded us at the Ascona Jazz Festival 2006 during two afternoon sessions - therefore the title “Swingin´ By The Lago”. Because of the rigid time schedule, the duos were developed spontaneously and without detailed prearrangements. The intimate ensemble playing of two balanced voices confronts the musicians with a special task, but if it works it is a great pleasure. It is inspiring and very exiting to play together with Rossano! We consider swing and feeling the main ingredients of our music.
During the second afternoon Anthony joined us on drums and one of the world´s best jazz saxophone players sat in: Harry Allen. We think, the three quartet tunes somehow reflect the typical atmosphere you experience during the Ascona Jazz Festival when musicians meet at the jam session after their concerts at night. Thanks a lot for your cooperation, Rossano, Anthony and Harry! I´m much obliged to Nicolas Gilliet, musical director of the Ascona Jazz Festival, who provided the room and a concert grand piano for the recording session. Over the years, he has repeatedly given us the chance to present jazz in its many facets. You´ll find three bonus tracks on this CD. They were recorded live during a concert performance of my quartet at Bungertshof in Königswinter near Bonn. Many thanks to Johannes, Michael and Meikel! Walter and Stefan Schlund used a radio-transfer-van to record the concert. Michael Schneider and Stefan mastered both sessions. Evidently, they got great ears and know what to do, so the mastering was great fun as well.
About the musicians:
Rossano Sportiello is one of the world´s leading stride, swing and bebop piano players. The French institution, L’Académie du Jazz, recognized his work on solo piano as the “Prix du Jazz Classique 2005”. He has played with such jazz luminaries as Slide
Hampton, Gerry Mulligan, Bucky Pizzarelli, Dick Hyman, Houston Person, Dado Moroni,Eddie Locke, Dan Barrett, Harry Allen, Scott Robinson, Carl Fontana, Rebecca Kilgore, Reggie Johnson, Scott Hamilton, Bob Wilber, Kenny Davern,Warren Vaché, Ken Peplowski, Butch Miles, Jake Hanna and Johnny Frigo.
Matthias Seuffert is internationally considered a versatile and multi-faceted Jazz clarinetist and saxophonist from early jazz through to bebop. He has recorded with some of the best jazz players on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean and lectured at the jazz faculty of Trinity College of Music, London. Musicians he has worked with include Red Holloway, Eddie Locke, Jimmy Woode, Herb Hardesty, Warren Vaché, Dan Barrett, Tom Baker, Kenny Davern, Harry Allen, Marty Grosz, Jon-Erik Kellso, Keith Nichols, Alan Barnes, Trevor Richards, The European Swing Allstars and The European Saxophone Quartet.