Piotr Pawlak Jazztet was created in 2010 during the 3rd semester of bachelor studies at University of Music in Graz, Austria. At that time, for more than a year, Piotr was already a jazz jam-session host at near by club "Café Alpha". Jam sessions always featured lots of musicians and student peers, especially horn players. This became one of 2 main reasons for forming his own band. The other inspiration came form his university drum professor, Mr. Howard Curtis, who encouraged Piotr to go into band leading and, as a good start, gave him few lead sheets from “Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers” band.
He named his band “Jazztet”, to honor the great Art Farmer / Benny Golson formation from the 1960s and to accurately describe the style of music he was performing. Since then Piotr Pawlak Jazztet, featuring various musicians, performed all around Europe, in New York and continues to give concerts here in South Korea.
PiotrPawlakJazztet is a project that started back in 2010. It involves a traditional hard-bop set up of 3 horns and rhythm section. What began as a student project at the Jazz Department of the University of Music in Graz (Austria) evolved to a full-time band concept. The Original band performed in 9 countries on the continent and won 3 international awards on Jazz Competitions in Spain, Poland and Italy. Later in New York, and in the beginning of his South Korean stay, Piotr continued to perform this program with various international musicians, and always with a piano-bass-drums rhythm section and 3 horns.
July 2011 Piotr Pawlak Jazztet released its first and so far the only CD entitled “Wist Werk“. This live recording was a result of 14 days long Winter 2011 International Tournée through Austra, Poland and Slowakia. It’s available for streaming on soundcloud.
The year 2020 marked a rough 100 year anniversary of the unofficial beginning of jazz music named by historians as The Roaring 20s or The Jazz Age. All around the USA, the 1920s and 30s was a time of rapid spike in popularity of jazz music and dance styles. 1920s was also a time of economical prosperity, especially for the American middle class, that led to extra spending on various cultural events. At the same time social, artistic and cultural dynamism introduced significant new trends in lifestyle that allow jazz music to blossom. To honor the music of that period Piotr created "The Gatsby Era" concert series featuring songs specifically selected form The Jazz Age.
This project dates back to 2019. In July of that year sad news about the death of Brazilian "Father of Bossa", João Gilberto, went out into the world. He was the first artist that Piotr listened to when learning about Brazilian music. To pay him a tribute Piotr Pawlak Jazztet decided to make a one-night-only concert with music only from Brazil. The public gathered that day made it clear that more such performances are needed, thus Bossa'N'Samba project was born. Minjin, the lead vocalist, sings songs in both English and Portuguese languages.
Many music history critics describe the year 1959 as "The Year That Changed Jazz". That year saw releases of now world renown jazz classics like "Kind of Blue” by Miles Davis, “Giant Steps” by John Coltrane, “Time Out” by Dave Brubeck or “Moanin'” by Art Blakey and many, many more. Year 2019 marked 70 years anniversary since that remarkable time. Piotr Pawlak Jazztet wanted to honor those recordings and introduce this music to the Korean audiences. Through the project Piotr introduced 35 songs from 35 albums with a brief description of the lead artist and the recording itself (one song per album, 7 songs per concert and 5 concerts in total). Although not so frequent anymore, Piotr Pawlak Jazztet still keeps bringing this program back to new places and audiences.
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The Art of Trio is a project named after a series of recordings made by famous jazz pianist Brad Mehldau. Brad performs his originals and arrangements of songs, selected from a verity of music genres, using only the jazz trio band setting. In the same jazz trio setting, Piotr creates a music program consisting of a historical journey through life and music of one individual or trio group per concert. The band gave so far 7 composer-featured performances in addition to regular concerts.
After his November 2016 arrival to Korea, Piotr’s the first concerts had no specific programming in mind, but consisted of a series of shows with new friends in front of unknown audiences. Hence Piotr Pawlak Quartet, Quintet, and Friends.
Cherokee (Ray Noble) Max Roach Transcription (Live Band) 7th Semester Drum Exam, University of Music in Graz.
(arr. of Take The A Train) Graz University of Music, Jazz Bachelor Concert
Candy Waltz | comp. Piotr Pawlak CUNY Queens College Master Diploma Concert
“KOsmo-POLityczny” started in 2019. The project's purpose is to introduce more creative collaborations by Korean and Polish musicians. The first edition featured Rafal Sarnecki Quartet's national tour in Korea, with Piotr on drums and Minjin Seo as a featured artist in some of the concerts. The second edition of the “KOsmo-POLityczny” project was organized with the help from the Korean Cultural Center in Poland and Minjin Seo was chosen to be the featured artist. The 2020-Polish-Tour was planned, but due to the global pandemic all concerts got canceled. In cooperation with the “Jazz Po Polsku” Foundation, Minjin with additional 2 Korean and 3 Polish musicians was invited to record 4 tracks online to make up for the rescheduled tour, with Piotr on the drums.
Although 4NowQuartet has its own tab and website it is worth here to mention, since Piotr is it's music director, arranger and main drummer. The Band itself has already many important performances worth featuring. Since 2017 4NowQuartet has already performed in all major Korean cities from Seoul to Busan.
Lastly, since his arrival to Korea, Piotr has been a busy supporting other artist. He is featured in nearly all 4NowQuartet and Minjin Seo projects and also in a verity of other shows. Here are some notable highlights.