Janek Gwizdala

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Janek Gwizdala
Born (1978-11-19)November 19, 1978
London, England
Genres Jazz, jazz fusion
Occupation(s) Musician, composer
Instruments Bass guitar
Years active 1999–present
Associated acts Mike Stern, Jojo Mayer, Bob Reynolds, Hiram Bullock
Website janekgwizdala.com
Notable instruments
Fodera Janek Gwizdala Signature

Janek Gwizdala (born November 19, 1978) is an English jazz bassist and record producer born in London.

Biography[edit]

Gwizdala's beginnings in music started at age 11 with classical guitar lessons at the Merton Music Foundation from Peter Woodings, as well as study in classical music through brass ensembles and orchestral percussion, drum lessons with now Buzzcocks drummer Danny Farrant, and participation in almost every style and genre of ensemble that was offered by the MMF. Through these early years Gwizdala's main interest was in drums, and it was the lure of one of his favorite drummers, Ian Thomas, that convinced him to attend a local jazz gig at the Gun Tavern in Croydon with a friend, the band leader Laurence Cottle. The next day a bass was purchased and Gwizdala followed Cottle around London and the UK, learning everything he could. A job at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in London as assistant sound engineer led to meeting Brazilian jazz musicians Airto Moreira and Flora Purim. After an invitation to sit in with them in London in 1998, it was on Flora's advice that Gwizdala move to the U.S. and attend Berklee College of Music.[1]

While studying at Berklee, Gwizdala joined the band of Kenwood Dennard and was afforded the opportunity to work with musicians like Pete Levin and Hiram Bullock. Before leaving Berklee and Boston, Gwizdala would meet several people that would become lifelong musical collaborators, including Bob Reynolds, Tim Miller, and Hal Crook.

After three semesters at Berklee, Gwizdala moved to New York City to pursue his career. Working day and night on his playing, and managing to land several high-profile gigs, the next eight years would include tours, record dates, production, musical direction, and performances with Jive Jones, Adam Freeland, Mike Philips, Jem, Delta Goodrem, Wayman Tisdale, Wayne Krantz, Mike Stern, Randy Brecker, Paul Shafer, VV Brown, Pat Metheny, Ronny Jordan, Marcus Miller, Dapp Theory, James Valentine, Jojo Mayer, and Jeff Lorber.

Recordings as a leader[edit]

Mystery to Me, released in 2004, was recorded at Manhattan Center Studios in front of a live audience in one take.[2] It features Mark Turner, Jojo Mayer, Elliot Mason, Tim Miller, Gretchen Parlato, Gregoire Maret, and John Ellis.

Live at the 55bar was recorded live over two nights in November 2007 and released February 7, 2008.[3] It features Oli Rockberger, Elliot Mason, Brad Mason, Justin Vasquez, Tobias Ralph, and Tim Miller.

The Space In Between, Janek's third album as a leader, was released on October 26, 2010. The album features Jojo Mayer, Tim Miller, Mike Stern, James Valentine of Maroon 5, Airto Moreira, Bob Reynolds, Doug Wamble, and Audun Waage.

Equipment[edit]

Janek plays Aguilar Amplifiers and Speaker Cabinets Jim Dunlop Strings,[4] TC Electronic pedals [5] and Fodera basses.[6]

Selected discography[edit]

As leader[edit]

  • Mystery to Me - 2004
  • Live at the 55bar - 2008
  • The Space in Between - 2010
  • It Only Happens Once - 2012
  • Theatre by the Sea - 2013
  • Motion Picture - 2014
  • American Elm - 2016

As sideman[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]