Kinsmen feat. Rudresh Mahanthappa & Kadri Gopalnath

Past Dates

Kinsmen feat. Rudresh Mahanthappa & Kadri Gopalnath

Kinsmen is Rudresh Mahanthappa’s collaboration with Kadri Gopalnath, a living legend of Indian music known as “The Emperor of the Saxophone”, a true innovator in bringing the saxophone to Indian classical music. The music on the homonymously titled album Kinsmen, featuring their co-led Dakshina Ensemble, is exemplar of successful multicultural, transnational collaboration. Utilizing his extensive knowledge of both jazz and the traditional melodic and rhythmic concepts of Indian music, Mahanthappa has masterfully provided a framework that has brought out the best in all the musicians, resulting in spectacular interaction and virtuosic displays. The music burns with passionate interplay: Mahanthappa’s biting attack intertwined with Gopalnath’s staccato outbursts; Kanyakumari’s slippery portamento and Abbasi’s Mahavishnu-like single note runs. Rather than “Indo-jazz fusion”, the music harmoniously synthesizes the cultural and musical divide, creating a sound that truly transcends labels and genre.

Utilizing Indian ragas, songs, and rhythmic cycles as a starting point, Mahanthappa composes new melodies and harmonies that connect them with a jazz sensibility. About the collaboration, Rudresh says, “The piece is really about finding this middle ground where we’re both comfortable playing in this setting that is half-Western and half-South Indian, and maybe pushing to a point where it actually becomes neither (…) Eventually though, I would just ask Kadri to think of something contrapuntally to play with my parts, and he’d sit there and think for a minute and then come up with these beautiful melodies, these lines weaving in and out of each other. It was really amazing.”

Jazz Bigband Graz – ‘Urban Folktales … And A Rose!’

Among European jazz orchestras the Jazz Bigband Graz has earned an exceptionally good reputation. The international cohort of soloists performs on a superior level. The two artistic directors Heinrich von Kalnein and Horst-Michael Schaffer have managed to mould this heterogeneous flock of individualists into a homogeneous team with a genuine musical language.

The notion of a “Big Band” almost seems too conventional for the reckless musical adventures of this group from Styria since with each new project they further depart from their normal frame work of large jazz ensembles. In 2008, the JBBG celebrated triumphs with their progressive programme Electric Poetry & Lo-Fi Cookies. This year’s edition of JazzFest Berlin stages their latest extravaganza, Urban Folktales … And A Rose!

The poetry of the newly refurbished orchestra –extended by electric zither, amplified wheel fiddle/hurdy-gurdy and a theremin, plus visual projections by artist group OchoReSotto – revolves around one of the most elementary of all human issues – love.

Kinsmen feat. Rudresh Mahanthappa & Kadri Gopalnath

Rudresh Mahanthappa alto sax
Kadri Gopalnath alto sax
A. Kanyakumari violin
Rez Abassi guitar
Poovalur Sriji mridangam
Carlo de Rosa bass
Dan Weiss drums

Jazz Bigband Graz – ‘Urban Folktales … And A Rose!’Horst-Michael Schaffer vocals, trumpet, conductor

Heinrich von Kalnein saxophones, flute, conductor
Christoph ‘Pepe’ Auer saxophones, clarinet, bass clarinet
Johannes Enders saxophones, flute
Martin Harms saxophones, bass clarinet
Bernhard Nolf, Axel Mayer, David Jarh trumpet, flugelhorn
Johannes Herrlich, Robert Bachner trombone
Wolfgang Tischhart bass trombone
Uli Rennert keyboards, lapsteel guitar
Matthias Loibner electric hurdy-gurdy
Christof Dienz e-zither, bassoon
Henning Sieverts bass, cello
Gregor Hilbe drums, programming
Barbara Buchholz theremin
OchoReSotto visuals