Duško Gojković (Serbian Cyrillic: Душко Гојковић; born 14 October 1931) is a international jazz trumpeter (Serbian born) , composer and arranger.
During his career Duško Gojković built his own style recognizable for the preciseness, brilliance of his technique and warm sound in playing as well as melodic tunes in composing. His colourful life is like a mirror of a half a centrury of jazz history. He caused stylistic developments; Gojković set technical standards, played with all the greats of the genre and finally became one of them. Since 1955 he has been a formative influence not only on the German jazz scene, performing and recording with such as Dizzy Gillespie, Gerry Mulligan, Stan Getz, Sonny Rollins, Lee Konitz, Chet Baker, Woody Herman, Johnny Griffin, Mal Waldron, Phil Woods, Tommy Flanagan, Kenny Clarke or Kenny Barron and many more and is highly admired in the USA and Japan. He is best known for his unmistakably melodic phrasing and his high-class ballad renditions on the trumpet, muted trumpet, and flugelhorn.
Gojković was born in Jajce, former Kingdom of Yugoslavia, now Bosnia and Herzegovina. He studied at the Belgrade Music Academy from 1948 to 1953. He played trumpet in a number of jazz Dixieland bands and, though only 18 years of age, joined Big Band of Radio Belgrade. After five years spent there he grew into a seasoned musician and decided to continue his career in West Germany. In 1956 he recorded his first LP as a member of Frankfurt All Stars band. Next four years he spent as a member of Kurt Edelhagen’s orchestra as a first trumpet. In these years he played with notable jazzmen such as Chet Baker, Stan Getz and Oscar Pettiford. In 1958 he performed at Newport Jazz Festival and drew much attention on both sides of the Ocean. In 1961 he was offered a scholarship for the studies of composing and arranging in Berklee. He took the offer and finished the studies.
After the studies he was invited by Canadian band leader Maynard Ferguson to join his band. Gojković performed as a second trumpet until the break of the band in 1964. His work with Ferguson boosted his reputation as an excellent big band musician and an outstanding soloist. Next he returned to Europe, formed his sextet and in 1966 recorded his first album Swinging Macedonia, produced by Eckart Rahn, with music he originally composed inspired by the music of Balkans. The album is generally considered to be the cornerstone of Balkan Jazz. In the years to follow he played with Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Oscar Pettiford, Gerry Mulligan, Sonny Rollins, Duke Jordan, Slide Hampton etc. In 1966 he continued his career in The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band. In 1968 he settled in Munich and formed his own big band with artists such as Rolf Ericsson that lasted until 1976.
In 1986 he managed to form another orchestra with which he performs to this day. His much awaited comeback came with the 1994 Soul Connection album that won him a broad acclaim. This was followed with album Bebop City. In 1996 he recorded the Soul Collection album again but this time with his own big band. Another great album came in 1997 – Balkan Blue, a double CD: first one a quintet with Italian sax player Gianni Basso while the second one features orchestra of the North German Radio (NDR) accompanied by the jazz rhythm section and Gojković as a soloist. His next album was In My Dreams (2001) recorded with his quartet.
In 2003 Gojković opened a new chapter in his career with his album Samba do Mar, in which he composes for the first time inspired by Brazilian music. In 2004 he performed on the 200th anniversary of modern Serbian statehood, the opportunity he used to gather in Belgrade international All Star Big Bend with whom he recorded A Handful of Soul CD. His last album Samba Tzigane came out in 2006. Gojković celebrated his 75th birthday with a grand concert in Belgrade.
- 1966: Belgrade Blues (with Sal Nistico and Carl Fontana)
- 1966: Swinging Macedonia (with Nathan Davis, Mal Waldron)
- 1966: Take Me in Your Arms
- 1970: As Simple As It Is
- 1971: It's About Blues Time
- 1971: Ten To Two Blues (with Tete Montoliu)
- 1971: After Hours
- 1974: Slavic Mood
- 1975: East of Montenegro (Recorded live at the Belgrade Jazz Festival 1975, the long lost tape that was missing from Radio Belgrade’s archive has been found and appeared to be of extremely high quality and value and essential bit of jazz archaeology and finally released in 2001 on Cosmic Sounds in UK.)
- 1977: Wunderhorn
- 1979: Trumpets & Rhythm Unit
- 1983: Blues in the Gutter (The Cosmic Sounds’ 5 Horns & Rhythm from 2002 is the first CD reissue of winter 1983 session when five exceptional musicians guttered in Sarajevo on the eve of the Winter Olympic Games and the whole session is featured on 2 CDs, while there are also LP reissues by the same label entitled Blues In The Gutter – “5 Horns & Rhythm”, Sarajevo Session 1983 Record 1 and Snap Shot – “5 Horns & Rhythm”, Sarajevo Session 1983 Record 2.)
- 1983: A Day in Holland (Nilva Records)
- 1983: Adio-Easy Listening Music (PGP RTB)
- 1983: Snap Shot (The Cosmic Sounds’ 5 Horns & Rhythm from 2002 is the first CD reissue of winter 1983 session when five exceptional musicians guttered in Sarajevo on the eve of the Winter Olympic Games and the whole session is featured on 2 CDs, while there are also LP reissues by the same label entitled Blues In The Gutter – “5 Horns & Rhythm”, Sarajevo Session 1983 Record 1 and Snap Shot – “5 Horns & Rhythm”, Sarajevo Session 1983 Record 2.)
- 1987: Celebration (DIW, with Kenny Drew, Jimmy Woode, Al Lewitt)
- 1992: Balkan Blue
- 1994: Soul Connection
- 1995: Bebop City
- 1996: Balkan Connection
- 2001: Portrait (with Kenny Barron, Tommy Flanagan, Eddie Gómez, Jimmy Heath, Oscar Pettiford)
- 2001: In My Dreams
- 2003: Samba Do Mar
- 2005: A Handful o' Soul
- 2006: Samba Tzigane
- 2008 "Balkan Project" feat. Tony Lakatosh, Claus Reible, Martin Gjakonovski, Mario Gonzi & Soul Connection Big Band (released just in Serbia, publisher B92)
- 2010: Summit Octet: 5ive Horns & Rhythm (Originally released as Five Horns & Rhythm Unit in Serbia on the B92 label in 2009, and a year later in Germany on Enja with different cover and title, as 5ive Horns & Rhythm)
- 2011: Tight But Loose (with Scott Hamilton)
- 2013: The Brandenburg Concert - "Dusko with strings"
- 2014: Latin Haze (with Big Bend RTS feat. Martin Gjakonovski) (Originally released on CD in Serbia on the PGP RTS label in 2014 and titled to Duško Gojković & Big Bend RTS feat. Martin Gjakonovski, and a year later in Germany on the Enja label with different cover and with one track missing; it is “Latin Department” which the big band recorded without Gojković. It will be a better choice to purchase original release, because its booklet is filed with detailed explanation on soloists on each and every track plus it contains biographies and photos of all the involved musicians.)
- With Ekrem & Gypsy Groovz
- Rivers of Happiness (ENJA RECORDS, 2005)
- With the Maynard Ferguson Orchestra=
- The New Sounds of Maynard Ferguson and His Orchestra (1964)
- With the Woody Herman Big Band
- Live in Antibes (1965)
- Woody's Winners (1965)
- Jazz Hoot (1965)
- Woody Live East and West (1965)
- My Kind of Broadway (1965)
- With Emergency
- Emergency (CBS, 1971)
- With the YU All Stars 1977
- 4 Lica Jazza(Jugoton, 1978)
- With Alvin Queen
- Ashanti (1981)(Nilva Records)
With Dušan Prelević
- U redu, pobedio sam (RTB, 1991)
- With Sarajevo Big Band and Sinan Alimanović
- Najveći koncert u gradu (2000)