Misha Mengelberg

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Misha Mengelberg
Misha Mengelberg 1985.jpg
Mengelberg in 1985
Background information
Born (1935-06-05) 5 June 1935 (age 81)
Kiev, Ukraine
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, composer
Instruments Piano

Misha Mengelberg (born 5 June 1935) is a Dutch jazz pianist and composer.[1] He won the Gaudeamus International Composers Award in 1961.

Early life[edit]

Mengelberg was born in Kiev, Ukraine,[1] the son of the Dutch conductor Karel Mengelberg, who was himself the nephew of the conductor Willem Mengelberg. His family moved back to the Netherlands in the late 1930s and the young Mengelberg began learning the piano at age five.[1] Mengelberg briefly studied architecture before entering the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, where he studied music from 1958 to 1964. While there he won the first prize at a jazz festival in Loosdrecht and became associated with Fluxus. His early influences included Thelonious Monk, Duke Ellington and John Cage, whom he heard lecture at Darmstadt.[2]

Later life and career[edit]

Mengelberg's first appearance on record was on Eric Dolphy's last album, Last Date (1964). Also on that record was the drummer Han Bennink, and the two of them, together with Piet Noordijk, formed a quartet which had a number of different bassists, and which played at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1966.[2] In 1967 he co-founded the Instant Composers Pool, an organisation which promoted avant garde Dutch jazz performances and recordings, with Bennink and Willem Breuker. He was co-founder of STEIM in Amsterdam in 1969.

Mengelberg has played with a large variety of musicians. He has often performed in a duo with fellow Dutchman Bennink, with other collaborators including Derek Bailey, Peter Brötzmann, Evan Parker, Anthony Braxton, and (on the flip side of a live recording with Dolphy) his pet parrot. He was also one of the earliest exponents of the work of the once-neglected pianist Herbie Nichols.[2]

Mengelberg performing in 2004

He has also written music for others to perform (generally leaving some room for improvisation) and has overseen a number of music theatre productions, which usually include a large element of absurdist humour. A 2006 DVD release, Afijn (ICP/Data), is a primer on Mengelberg's life and work, containing an 80-minute documentary and additional concert footage.

Two of his students were Oscar van Dillen and Cor Fuhler.

Selected discography[edit]

Solo albums[edit]

  • 1979: Pech Onderweg (BV Haast)
  • 1982: Musica Per 17 Instrumenti / 3 Intermezzi /Omtrent Een Componistenactie Composer's Voice
  • 1994: Impromptus (FMP)
  • 1997: Misha Mengelberg (I Dischi Di Angelica)
  • 1997: The Root Of The Problem (hatOLOGY)
  • 1999: Two Days In Chicago (hatOLOGY)
  • 2000: Solo (Buzz)
  • 2005: Senne Sing Song (Tzadik)

Collaborations[edit]

As leader

  • 1978: Groupcomposing (Instant Composers Pool), with Peter Brötzmann, Evan Parker, Peter Bennink, Paul Rutherford, Derek Bailey, and Han Bennink
  • 1978: Fragments (Instant Composers Pool), with John Tchicai, Han Bennink, and Derek Bailey
  • 1985: Change of Season (Music of Herbie Nichols) (Soul Note), with Steve Lacy, George Lewis, Arjen Gorter, and Han Bennink
  • 1985: On Escalation / 3 Pianopieces / Dialogue / Summer (Attacca), with Peter Schat, Jan Van Vlijmen, and Otto Ketting
  • 1991: Dutch Masters (Soul Note), with Steve Lacy, George Lewis, Ernst Reyseger, and Han Bennink
  • 1994: Who's Bridge (Avant), with Misha Mengelberg Trio (Brad Jones, Joey Baron)
  • 1997: Live In Holland '97 (X-OR), with Mats Gustafsson and Gert-Jan Prins
  • 1998: No Idea (DIW), with Misha Mengelberg Trio (Greg Cohen, Joey Baron)
  • 2001: Four in One (Songlines), with Misha Mengelberg Quartet (Dave Douglas, Brad Jones, Han Bennink)[3]
  • 2009: Mill (Conundrom), with Cor Fuhler and Michiel Scheen
  • 2011: It Won't Be Called Broken Chair (Psi), with Evan Parker
  • 2013: Lucebert / Jazz & Poetry '65 (Uitgeverij Huis Clos), with Misha Mengelberg / Piet Noordijk Kwartet (Han Bennink, Rob Langereis)
  • 2014: Nunc! (Nemu), with Dirk Bell, Ryan Carniaux, Gerd Dudek, Joscha Oetz, and Nils Tegen

With Eric Dolphy

With Han Bennink

  • 1968: Instant Composers Pool (Instant Composers Pool), including with John Tchicai
  • 1971: Instant Composers Pool 010 (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1972: Een Mirakelse Tocht Door Het Scharrebroekse no. 1-6 (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1974: EinePartieTischtennis (FMP, Instant Composers Pool), live
  • 1975: Coincidents (Stichting ICP Geluidsdragers, Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1978: Midwoud 77 (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1979: A European Proposal (Live in Cremona) (Horo), including with Paul Rutherford and Mario Schiano
  • 1982: Bennink Mengelberg (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1994: Mix (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1996: The Instant Composers Pool 30 Years (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1998: MiHa (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2004: Senne Sing Song (Tzadik)

With Louis Andriessen

With ICP Orchestra

  • 1979: Live in Soncino (Instant Composers Pool, AD LIB)
  • 1982: Japan Japon (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1984: Extension Red, White & Blue (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1987: Two Programs: Performs Herbie Nichols and Thelonious Monk (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1990: Bospaadje Konijnehol I (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1991: Bospaadje Konijnehol II (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 1999: Jubilee Varia (hatOLOGY)
  • 2001: Oh, My Dog (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2004: Aan & Uit (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2006: Weer Is Een Dag Voorbij (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2009: Live at the Bimhuis (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2010: !ICP! 50 (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2010: ICP Orchestra (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2014: East of the Sun (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2015: Misha Enzovoort (Instant Composers Pool)
  • 2016: Restless in Pieces (Instant Composers Pool)

With Peter Brötzmann

  • 1979: 3 Points and a Mountain (FMP), including with Han Bennink

With Dudu Pukwana

  • 1979: Yi Yole (Instant Composers Pool), including with Han Bennink

With Keshavan Maslak

  • 1980: Humanplexity (Leo), including with Han Bennink

With Roswell Rudd

  • 1983: Regeneration (Soul Note), including with Steve Lacy, Kent Carter, and Han Bennink

With Pino Minafra

  • 1987: Tropic of the Mounted Sea Chicken (Splasc(H)), including with Michele Lomuto, Han Bennink, and Unknown Artist

With Steve Lacy

With Yuri Honing

  • 1998: Playing (Jazz in Motion)
  • 2000: Lively (Buzz), including with Ernst Reijseger

With Paul Termos

  • 2003: Termos Sessions Volume I (X-OR, Bimhuis)

With Benjamin Herman

  • 2004: Heterogenity (X-OR, Bimhuis), featuring Bert Joris

With Alessandra Patrucco

With Frank Gratkowski

  • 2006: Frank Gratkowski Vis-à-vis Misha Mengelberg (Leo)

With Ab Baars

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Feather, Leonard & Gitler, Ira (2007) The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz, p. 459. Oxford University Press.
  2. ^ a b c Layne, Joslyn. "Misha Mengelberg: Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 30 January 2011. 
  3. ^ "Four in One – Misha Mengelberg Quartet | Releases". AllMusic. Retrieved 22 February 2014. 
  4. ^ "Misha Mengelberg". Discography. Discogs.com. Retrieved 2016-03-30. 

External links[edit]