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About ECM
August 14 , 2004


Muffathalle September 9, 10, 11

Evan Parker first recorded for ECM in 1970, appearing on the fifth album issued by the label, “Music Improvisation Company” with fellow innovators Derek Bailey and Hugh Davies. Tomasz Stanko made his debut for ECM in 1975, with “Balladyna”, whose rhythm section uniquely brought together Dave Holland and Edward Vesala. And Roscoe Mitchell arrived in 1978, with the trail-blazing Art Ensemble of Chicago. The principals of “Unforeseen”, the International Symposium on Improvised Music co-curated by the City of Munich’s Cultural Department and its University, have long relationships with ECM.

And not only the principals. Within the line-up that Roscoe Mitchell and Evan Parker have assembled for their history-making Transatlantic Art Ensemble, which ECM will be recording live in the Muffathalle, there are other associations that stretch back over time.

Barry Guy, for instance, has recorded as a leader for ECM, and as a sideman, so-called, over a 30 year period, with artists ranging from the Hilliard Ensemble and the Dowland Project to John Stevens and Barre Phillips. Along with Guy, Philipp Wachsmann and Paul Lytton are charter members of Evan Parker’s Electro-Acoustic Ensemble (three albums so far) and have also released a duo disc, “Some Other Season”. Craig Taborn and Tani Tabbal have both recorded with Mitchell’s Note Factory for ECM. Marcio Mattos appeared with Elton Dean on ECM’s Japo affiliate way back in the 1970s, and Mattos and John Rangecroft worked with the band Talisker, who also recorded for us, in the same period.

Marcin Wasilewski, Slawomir Kurkiewicz, and Michal Miskiewicz, respectively piano, bass and drums of the Tomasz Stanko Quartet appear with the veteran Polish trumpeter on his “Soul of Things” and “Suspended Night” recordings and have already recorded as a trio in their own right for the label – on an album due in 2005.

Out in the “supporting programme” of the Symposium, in the workshops and workshop concerts radiating around the main events, ECM connections are also echoed – with, for instance, trombonist Sebi Tramontana (of the Italian Instabile Orchestra) and violist Walter Fähndrich.

The complex frame of historical reference linking all this activity underlines a point perhaps too often overlooked: whether one wants to talk about improvised chamber music or free jazz, instant composing or free improvisation, the concept of making music “in the moment” has been central to ECM’s musical philosophy from Day One. Even before that, in fact, for producer Manfred Eicher was recording free jazz – including Evan Parker with Peter Brötzmann – for other labels before starting his own, and also played improvised music himself, with Leo Smith, Marion Brown and others.

Of course, the free “method” is not the only one utilized in ECM’s sessions today, but the extensive experience with improvisation, and the heightened awareness and intensity it can bring, has been of very great benefit along the way. Improvisation, after all, is effective decision-making in real time, and that is of relevance to every recording.
Steve Lake


Tomasz Stanko

Tomasz Stanko Quartet Suspended Night
Tomasz Stanko Selected Recordings
Tomasz Stanko Quartet Soul of Things
Tomasz Stanko From the Green Hill
Tomasz Stanko Septet Litania
Tomasz Stanko Quartet Leosia
Tomasz Stanko Quartet Matka Joanna
Gary Peacock Voice from the Past - Paradigm
Edward Vesala Satu
Tomasz Stanko Quartet Balladyna

Roscoe Mitchell

Art Ensemble of Chicago Tribute to Lester
Art Ensemble of Chicago Selected Recordings
Roscoe Mitchell & The Note Factory Nine To Get Ready
Art Ensemble of Chicago The Third Decade
Art Ensemble of Chicago Urban Bushmen
Art Ensemble of Chicago Full Force
Art Ensemble of Chicago Nice Guys

Evan Parker

Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble Memory/Vision
Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble Drawn Inward
Paul Bley/Evan Parker/Barre Phillips Sankt Gerold
Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble Toward The Margins
Paul Bley/Evan Parker/Barre Phillips Time Will Tell
Gavin Bryars After The Requiem
Kenny Wheeler Music for Large & Small Ensembles
Globe Unity Intergalactic Blow
Kenny Wheeler Around 6
Globe Unity Compositions
Globe Unity Improvisations
Music Improvisation Company

For further information and full programme www.unforeseen.de

Tickets for the “Unforeseen” International Symposium on Improvised Music are now on sale

Roscoe Mitchell Discography

Evan Parker Discography

Tomasz Stanko Discorgraphy