Swiss-German Arranger Christophe Schweizer
Collaborates with Famed WDR Big Band Cologne,
Setting Original Small Group Compositions of BILLY HART
First full-length album dedicated to large ensemble arrangements of Jabali’s original music. Compositions are drawn from “Enchance” (Horizon A&M, 1977), Rah (Gramavision, 1987) & “Oceans of Time” (Arabesque, 1997), among others.
Picture a young musician from Switzerland one sunny New York morning in September 1992, in the basement of The Mannes College of Music. The ensemble class has just finished a performance of a Bud Powell composition called “Webb City” at the request of their coach, and it’s obvious these five musicians from radically different cultural backgrounds – some of whom will later go on to become well known in different scenes – feel less than at ease playing with each other for the first time.
After a moment of silence, pregnant with uncertainty, the ensemble coach finally declares, “You guys need to learn how to love each other.” You can guess who that teacher was.
Swiss-born, Hamburg-based arranger-composer Christophe Schweizer is of course is just one of hundreds, if not thousands of musicians and fans, that maestro Billy Hart has touched – and continues to touch as an educator and performer. Schweizer calls Hart’s touch a “generosity of self.” Over the course of a career spanning over five decades, Hart’s collaborations are perhaps greater in significance, number, and diversity than most living jazz musicians.