Gebhard Ullmann

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Gebhard Ullmann
The Scott DuBois Quartet Gebhard Ullmann Unterfahrt-2013-01-26-004.jpg
Ullmann at Jazz Club Unterfahrt, Munich 2013
Background information
Born (1957-11-02) November 2, 1957 (age 61)
InstrumentsSaxophone, flutes, bass clarinet

Gebhard Ullmann (born November 2, 1957) is a German jazz musician and composer.


At the age of six, Ullmann started to play the recorder and later classical flute. Since 1976 he studied a.o. with Herb Geller and Dave Liebman and at the University of Hamburg flute and saxophone. He also studied medicine from 1976 – 1982. During this time he worked with guitarist Andreas Willers and a trio with keyboards and vocals.

Since 1983 he has been living in Berlin, although he lived in both Berlin and New York City from 1999 to 2011. With Willers he started the quartet Out To Lunch in 1983 (later with Enrico Rava), the project Minimal Kidds (with Niko Schäuble, Trilok Gurtu, Glen Moore) and different trios with Steve Argüelles, Marvin Smitty Smith and Phil Haynes.

In 1991 he began his project Tá Lam (up to ten woodwinds plus accordion) that toured worldwide and released 4 CDs that made it to the top-of-the-year lists in many magazines all over the world including a five star review by John Ephland in Down Beat. 1993 Soul Note founder Giovanni Bonandrini invited him to start his project Basement Research in NYC. Originally a quartet with Ellery Eskelin (later Tony Malaby), Drew Gress and Phil Haynes, later it became a quintet with Steve Swell, Julian Argüelles, John Hebert (later Pascal Niggenkemper) and Gerald Cleaver and released seven CDs.

Some of the other projects Ullmann led or co-led and composed music for are:

  • The Berlin-based Clarinet Trio (with Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke)
  • the transatlantic quartet Conference Call (with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, Matt Wilson, later Han Bennink and George Schuller)
  • the trio BassX3 (with bassists Chris Dahlgren and Clayton Thomas plus Ullmann on bassflute and bassclarinet) his co-lead projects with Steve Swell The Ullmann/Swell 4 (with Hill Greene and Barry Altschul) and The Chicago Plan (with Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang) the French/German Double Trio de Clarinets (the Clarinet Trio plus Jean-Marc Foltz, Sylvain Kassap and Armand Angster) the Berlin-based quartet GULF of Berlin, the duo with vocalist Almut Kühne and the electro-acoustic trio das Kondensat (with Oli Potratz and Eric Schaefer). For the last two as well as his new solo program he worked for the first time with sampling and live looping devices.

In 2015 Ullmann released his 50th CD as a leader or co-leader. As a sideman he works in the regular quartet of New York guitarist Scott DuBois, in the orchestras of Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii, the German pianist Hannes Zerbe and the Belgian pianist Bram de Looze. He was a member of projects such as The Silent Jazz Ensemble, Chris Dahlgren’s Lexicon, the Berlin-based Die Elefanten (produced by Teo Macero), Günter Lenz’s Springtime and many others.

He has also worked with Paul Bley, Keith Tippett, Frank Gratkowski, Ernst-Ludwig Petrowski, the Ensemble Les Percussions de Guinée, William Parker, Herb Robertson, Bob Moses, Bobby Previte, Lauren Newton, Andrew Cyrille, Sylvie Courvoisier, Willem Breuker, Rita Marcotulli, Dieter Glawischnig, Tom Rainey, Ivo Papazov, Sergei Starostin, Alexey Kruglov, Beñat Achiary, Frank Möbus and the actor Otto Sander.


Ullmann received the Julius Hemphill Composition Award (1999) in two categories, one of the first SWR Jazz Awards (together with Andreas Willers in 1987), The German Phonoacademy Award (1983), many awards by the city of Berlin including the first Berlin Jazz Award in 2017.[1][2] The second CD of his Tá Lam project was nominated best CD of the year by the German Schallplattenkritik and many of his CDs made the best-of-the-year list in magazines and newspapers worldwide including the New York City Jazz Record and the Down Beat magazine (Final Answer 2002, The Bigband Project 2004, New Basement Research 2006, News? No News 2010, Tá Lam 11 – Mingus! 2011, Hat And Shoes 2015).[3] The CD Transatlantic received the Choc of the French Jazz Magazine. Since 2005 Ullmann is listed in the Down Beat critics poll, lately in several categories.[4]


Leader or co-leader albums[edit]

  • Gebhard Ullmann, Andreas Willers Playful (Biber, 1985)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Andreas Willers, Hans-Dieter Lorenz, Nikolaus Schäuble Out to Lunch (Nabel, 1985)
  • Minimal Kidds No Age (Intuition, 1987, with Andreas Willers, Nikolaus Schäuble, Trilok Gurtu, Glen Moore, Burhan Öçal, Hans Lüdemann)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Enrico Rava, Andreas Willers, Martin Lillich, Nikolaus Schäuble (Nabel, 1989)
  • Per-Dee-Doo (Nabel, 1990; with Michael Rodach, Martin Lillich, Nikolaus Schäuble)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Andreas Willers Suite Noire with Marvin Smitty Smith, Bob Stewart (Nabel, 1992)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Andreas Willers Playful '93 (Nabel, 1993)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Hans Hassler Tá Lam (99Records, 1993)[5]
  • Tá Lam 8 Moritat (99Records, 1994; with Dirk Engelhardt, Hans Hassler, Heiner Reinhardt, Jürgen Kupke, Joachim Litty, Thomas Klemm, Volker Schlott)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Ellery Eskelin, Drew Gress, Phil Haynes Basement Research (Soul Note, 1995)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Andreas Willers, Phil Haynes Trad Corrosion (Nabel, 1997)
  • Kreuzberg Park East (Soul Note, 1999, with Ellery Eskelin, Drew Gress, Phil Haynes)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke Oct 1, '98 (Leo Records, 1999)
  • Tá Lam Zehn Vancouver Concert (Leo Records, 2000; with Hinrich Beermann, Daniel Erdmann, Hans Hassler, Thomas Klemm, Jürgen Kupke, Joachim Litty, Theo Nabicht, Heiner Reinhardt, Volker Schlott)
  • Essencia featuring Carlos Bica (Between the Lines, 2001; with Jens Thomas)
  • Clarinet Trio Translucent Tones (Leo, 2002; with Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke)
  • Conference Call Final Answer (Soul Note, 2002; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, Matt Wilson)
  • Conference Call Variations on a Master Plan (Leo, 2003; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, Han Bennink)
  • Conference Call Spirals. The Berlin Concert (482 Music, 2004; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, George Schuller)
  • Steve Swell, Gebhard Ullmann, Hilliard Greene, Barry Altschul Desert Songs and Other Landscapes (CIMP, 2004)
  • The Clarinet Trio Ballads and Related Objects (Leo, 2004)
  • The Big Band Project (Soul Note, 2004, with Claus Stötter, Ingolf Burkhardt, Michael Leuschner, Reiner Winterschladen, Ingo Lahme, Joe Gallardo, Sebastian Hoffmann, Sebastian John, Stefan Lottermann, Peter Bolte, Fiete Felsch, Lutz Büchner, Julian Argüelles, Christof Lauer, Frank Delle, Vladislav Sendecki, Stephan Diez]], Lucas Lindholm, Tom Rainey, Marcio Doctor, Dieter Glawischnig)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Chris Dahlgren, Peter Herbert BassX3 (Drimala, 2005)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Chris Dahlgren, Art Lande Die blaue Nixe (Between the Lines, 2006)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Chris Dahlgren, Jay Rosen CutItOut (Leo Records, 2006)
  • Gebhard Ullmann & Basement Research Live in Münster (NotTwo, 2006)
  • Conference Call Live at the Outpost Performance Space (482 Music, 2006; rec. 2003; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, Gerry Hemingway)
  • The Clarinet Trio Leo Records 25th Anniversary (Leo, 2007)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Steve Swell, Julian Argüelles, John Hebert, Gerald Cleaver New Basement Research (Soul Note, 2007)
  • Conference Call Poetry in Motion (Clean Feed, 2008; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, George Schuller)
  • Gebhard Ullmann Basement Research Don't Touch My Music Vol 1 & 2 (NotTwo, 2009)
  • Steve Swell, Gebhard Ullmann, Hilliard Greene, Barry Altschul News? No News! (Jazzwerkstatt, 2010)
  • Conference Call What About ...? (NotTwo, 2010; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, George Schuller)
  • Steve Swell, Gebhard Ullmann, Hilliard Greene, Barry Altschul Live in Montreal (CIMPol, 2010)
  • Tá Lam 11 Mingus! (Jazzwerkstatt, 2011; with Benjamin Weidekamp, Daniel Erdmann, Hans Hassler, Heiner Reinhardt, Hinrich Beermann, Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke, Vladimir Karparov, Volker Schlott)
  • The Clarinet Trio: 4 (Leo Records, 2012; with Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke)
  • BassX3: Transatlantic (Leo Records, 2012; with Chris Dahlgren, Clayton Thomas)
  • The Double Trio de Clarinets: Itinéraire bis (Between the Lines, 2013; with Jean-Marc Foltz, Sylvain Kassap, Armand Angster, Jürgen Kupke, Michael Thieke)
  • Conference Call. Seven. Live at the Firehouse (NotTwo, 2014; with Michael Jefry Stevens, Joe Fonda, George Schuller)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Daniel Erdmann, Johannes Fink, Christian Lillinger E und U Mann (WismART 2014)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Gerhard Gschlößl, Johannes Fink, Jan Leipnitz GULF of Berlin (Jazzwerkstatt, 2014)
  • Almut Kühne & Gebhard Ullmann Silver White Archives (Unit, 2014)
  • Gebhard Ullmann & Basement Research: Hat and Shoes (Between the Lines, 2015)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Achim Kaufmann "Geode" (Leo Records 2016)
  • Almut Kühne, Gebhard Ullmann, Achim Kaufmann "Marbrakeys" (Leo Records 2016)
  • Steve Swell, Gebhard Ullmann, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Michael Zerang "The Chicago Plan" (Clean Feed 2016)
  • The Clarinet Trio "Live In Moscow" with guest Alexey Kruglov (Leo Records 2017)
  • Gebhard Ullmann, Oliver Portratz, Eric Schafer "Das Kondensat" (WhyPlayJazz 2017)[6]

Sideman albums[edit]

  • Die Elefanten: Nervous City (Nektar, 1985; with Chuck Purrington, Joachim Litty, Thomas Wegel, Andreas Weiser, Burkhard Schäffer, Hans Vogt, Klaus M. Staffa, Klaus Pankoke, Uli Moritz)
  • Die Elefanten: Immer Alle, Immer Ich (Nektar, 1987; with Michael Merkelbach, Joachim Litty, Michael Rodach, Gerd Kaulard, Klaus M. Staffa, Andreas Weiser, Nikolaus Schäuble, Uli Moritz)
  • Die Elefanten: Wasserwüste (Nabel, 1989, with Joachim Litty, Michael Rodach, Andreas Weiser, Klaus M. Staffa, Nikolaus Schäuble, Ulrich Moritz)
  • Silent Jazz Ensemble: Silent Jazz Ensemble (Biber, 1989; with Helmut Engel-Musehold, Volker Heller, Elena Ledda, Johannes Wohlleben, Friedemann Witecka, Martin Lillich, Ulrich Moritz)
  • Tayfun with Otto Sander: Eisen, Kohle und Zucker (Open Minds, 1991; with Hans Hartmann, Michael Clifton, Topo Gioia)
  • Silent Jazz Ensemble: Kashina (Biber, 1991)
  • Niko Schäuble Tibetan Dixie: Nothing too Serious (Larrikin, 1992)
  • Günter Lenz: Springtime: Major League (Bellaphon, 1992; with Claus Stötter, Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky, Bob Degen, Thomas Cremer)
  • Die Elefanten: Faust (Klangräume, 1994)
  • Silent Jazz Ensemble: Birds of Passage (Biber, 1996)
  • Joe Fonda: Full Circle Suite (CIMP, 1999; with Taylor Ho Bynum, Chris Jonas, Kevin Norton)
  • Tayfun: Dreams and Dances for a Silent Butterfly (Moods, 2001; with Eddie Hayes, Tobias Morgenstern, Uli Bartel, Matias de Oliveira Pinto, Renaud Garcia-Fons, Hans Hartmann, Andreas Weiser, Topo Gioia)
  • Joe Fonda Loaded Basses (CIMP, 2006; with Claire Daly, Joe Daley, Michael Rabinowitz, Gerry Hemingway)
  • Stereo Lisa Anno Onno Monno (Jazzwerkstatt, 2008; with Aki Sebastian Ruhl, Almut Kühne, Benjamin Weidekamp, Christian Marien, Ibadet Ramadani, Jürgen Kupke, Matthias Müller, Richard Koch, Michael Haves, Simon Harrer)
  • Scott DuBois Quartet Banshees (Sunnyside, 2008)
  • Sadiq Bey Slow the Ear (Allzeit Musik, 2009, with Kevin Ellington Mingus, Mfa Kera, Andrea Rost, Sophie Gothier)
  • Günter Lenz Springtime Strict Minimum (Jazzwerkstatt, 2010; with Claus Stötter, Ernst-Ludwig Petrowsky, Dieter Glawischnig, Bill Elgart; rec. 2007)
  • Chris Dahlgren & Lexicon Mystic Maze (Jazzwerkstatt, 2010)
  • Scott DuBois Quartet Black Hawk Dance (Sunnyside, 2010)
  • Scott DuBois Quartet Landscape Scripture (Sunnyside, 2012)
  • Hannes Zerbe Orchester Eisleriana (JazzHausMusik, 2012)
  • Hannes Zerbe Orchester Erlkönig (JazzHausMusik, 2013)
  • Hans Hassler Hassler (Intakt, 2013)
  • Satoko Fujii Orchestra Berlin Ichigo Ichie (Libra, 2015), with Richard Koch, Nikolaus Neuser, Matthias Müller, Matthias Schubert, Paulina Owczarek, Natsuki Tamura, Kazuhisa Uchihashi, Jan Roder, Michael Griener, Peter Orins
  • Scott DuBois Quartet "Winter Light" (ACT Records, 2015)
  • Bram De Looze "Septych" (Clean Feed, 2015)
  • "United Sounds Of Leo" 3 CDs and DVD (ArtBeat, 2015)
  • Scott DuBois Quartet "Autumn Win" (ACT Records, 2017)
  • Hannes Zerbe Orchester "Kalkutta" (JazzHausMusik, 2017)

[7] [8]


  1. ^ "Gebhard Ullmann erhält den ersten Jazzpreis Berlin". (in German). December 2016. Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  2. ^ "Das rastlose Zentralgestirn". Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  3. ^ Jazz, All About. "Gebhard Ullmann At 50: A Career Retrospective". All About Jazz. Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  4. ^ "DownBeat - Digital Edition - August 2016". Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  5. ^ "Gebhard Ullmann Ta Lam". Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  6. ^ "Gebhard Ullmann / Oliver Potratz / Eric Schaefer - Das Kondenstat (WhyPlayJazz, 2017) ****½". Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  7. ^ Jazz, All About. "Gebhard Ullmann: New Basement Research". All About Jazz. Retrieved January 5, 2018.
  8. ^ "gebhard ullmann - Search Results - MASSIMO RICCI. TOUCHING EXTREMES". Retrieved January 5, 2018.

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