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Martin Uherek Quartet


We performed our most recent project Martin Uherek Quartet – Remembering Monk during our fall tour October 20-25, 2013, finishing with our performance on the main stage of Bratislava Jazz Days 2013! You can watch the complete video recording of the concert here!

Jazz formation Martin Uherek Quartet was founded at the beginning of 2008, as a group of young, promising musicians, gathering around top Slovak jazz pianist and teacher Klaudius Kováč. The original quartet consisted of following musicians: saxophone – Martin Uherek, guitar– Peter Palaj, double-bass – Róbert Ragan Jr, drums – Pavol Blaho. After some personal changes, the band settled with pianist Jakub Tököly replacing the guitarist. The band is currently functioning in this set-up:

 

saxophone – Martin Uherek

piano – Jakub Tököly

doublebass – Peter Korman

drums – Pavol Blaho

 

 

Since its beginnings, the quartet has performed at many various occasions, such as club gigs, banquets, concerts, and festivals. Among the mentioned, the band has performed on the United Europe Jazz Festival, sharing the stage with Swedish guitar player Ulf Wakenius, who played for 10 years with the famous jazz pianist Oscar Peterson. The Quartet has performed on several jazz festivals in Slovakia, as well as festivals abroad – The United Europe Festival (Poland), Jazz Showcase 2012 (Hungary).

 

Martin Uherek Quartet has participated in International Jazz Contest in Tarnow, Poland at the end of 2008, where this group achieved 2nd place in the younger category. In the same year, on a Slovak jazz contest called Jazz Christmas 2008, the quartet became the laureate of the competition and was awarded for stylistic interpretation of jazz tradition. On both of these competitions, several members of the quartet were also awarded prizes for best soloists. Members of Martin Uherek Quartet have also participated in a competition New Faces Of Slovak Jazz in 2010, where they were awarded for convincing instrumental performance in jazz spirit, with following judge commentary: „The music of this group shows deep respect to bebop jazz tradition and its language is very persuasive.“ The most recent achievement, with project Remembering Bud Powell, was winning the Competition of Young Talents on Bratislava Jazz Days 2012 – the Quartet won the first prize – the opportunity to be opening Bratislava Jazz Days 2013 on the main stage. In 2013, the Quartet opened BJD on the main stage with his newest program, called Remembering Monk, built in tribute to the great pianist and composer Thelonious Monk.

 

Martin Uherek Quartet is a stable and well-known group and is considered the new young Slovak jazz generation. The members, despite their young age, can be proud of cooperation with several prominent Slovak jazz musicians, both in Slovakia and abroad. Frequently, there are performances of the Quartet members with other musicians, as well as playing in trio settings.

 

In the present the band can be most often seen as a regular house band in Jazz klub 12 in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia, where they started the tradition of playing regular Tuesday jam sessions.

The quartet’s repertoire is wide, but mainly focusing on the jazz tradition – swing, bebop, hardbop, jazz music of the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s.

 

In the past 2 years, the band has performed two distinct musical projects, each in tribute to a great jazz piano player:

 

The first was performed at the Bratislava Jazz Days in 2012 and bears the name “Martin Uherek Quartet -Remembering Bud“. It was created in tribute to the great piano virtuoso Bud Powell (27.9.1924 – 31.7.1966). The projects introduces both famous and less-known compositions of Powell, arranged for the quartet, in the original “bebop” stylistic interpretation.

The most recent project was called “Martin Uherek Quartet – Remembering Monk” and is another tribute, this time to a great pianist and composer Thelonious Monk. The programs brings new arrangements of Monk tunes. With this project the band played at the grand opening of the 39th year of biggest slovak festival Bratislava Jazz Days 2013.

Official biography for download:
MUQ biography – ENG
MUQ biografia – SK

Official promo picture for download:
MUQ promo picture