OKeh Records Released RGG’s Album
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Aura, the lastest album by the band RGG, has been released by OKeh Records, a label which presents the albums of the most important modern jazz musicians, such as Bill Frisell, John Medeski and Sonny Rollins.
The history of OKeh Records dates back to 1916 when it was founded by Otto Heinemann, a German-American editor, previously associated with Odeon Records. Initially he released music themes from vaudevilles and immigrants’ songs in Yiddish, Polish, German and Swedish; some of which were recorded in New York, others pressed directly from the European copies. In 1920 he published an album with Crazy Blues song by Mamie Smith, an American singer, pianist and dancer – this album went down in history as the first blues album recorded by an African American vocalist. Later on, OKeh Records released albums by Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong and other jazz classics.
In 2013 Sony Music decided to revive OKeh Records as a place to present artists who seek “global expressions of jazz”. The label now releases albums of world famous jazz artists and jazz trendsetters, like Bill Frisell, Sonny Rollins, John Medeski, Branford Marsalis and Nils Petter Molvaer. Recently, this remarkable cluster was extended by a Polish band, RGG Trio.
RGG Trio started performing in 2001, but with a new line-up since 2013. The band is formed by Łukasz Ojdana (pianist), Maciej Garbowski (double bass player) and Krzysztof Gradziuk (drummer).
"Their consciousness of sound and space marks the fact, that this is a European ensemble well aware of all different parameters in music, worth attention and focus", Anders Jormin, a Swedish bassist, said of RGG. "To experience the music of RGG Trio gives me an obvious feeling why the Polish art of music has always been so much appreciated ever since the days of Frederic Chopin" - added Thomas Gustafsson, a saxophonist who co-operated with the Polish trio.
Aura – translated into the language of RGG – is a phenomenon involving the observation of immaterial colours and sonoristic shapes surrounding a musical idea. The colours of musical expression affect the creation of harmony and serve as a testimony to the perception of different stimuli which led the artists to shape the musical matter, which itself is a collage of musical pieces from various eras. This is a further step, opening the 14th year of RGG’s artistic activity, addressed to the intellect of an active audience. The colour of the aura within the meaning of the phenomenon of the energy field is about matters of the past and present, which significantly facilitates the understanding of the current situation and vitality of man. The colourful glow of the musical tale presented on the album illustrates the spiritual and emotional development of the artists by means of a number of genres diversified in terms of choice of the means of expression. The musical considerations of RGG seem to be a prelude to a further artistic exploration of the musical reality, with no limitations in terms of style, genre, or forms of expression.
– we read on the official RGG Trio website.
The international premiere of the album took place on 14th April, 2015.
Source: press materials, okeh-records.com, rggtrio.com.,14.04.2015, transl. Agata Dudek, 14.04.2015.