Jens Bunge

Meet You In Chicago

Jens Bunge (harmonica), Thomas Guenther (p), Michael Arnopol (b), Rusty Jones (dr)
featuring Jackie Allen (voc), Judy Roberts (p & voc), Greg Fishman (ts), Diane Delin (violin), Joe Pardon (perc)

Recorded April 18 & 19, 2000 at Steve Yates Recording, Morton Grove, IL, USA

 

By now it should be known that the chromatic harmonica is not a mere toy, but a "real" instrument and suitable even for jazz. Musicians like Larry Adler, Toots Thielemans and Hendrik Meurkens have been proving this again and again and leave the audience astonished at their virtuosity and the great sounds they are able to get out of this pocket-sized instrument.

Jens Bunge, German harmonicist from Frankenthal (near Heidelberg) has now released his new CD - his forth - entitled "Meet You In Chicago". The "Master Of Jazz-Harmonica", Toots himself, notes: "We must welcome Jens Bunge to a the growingranks of chromatic harmonica players in jazz. I receive recordings of all over the world. ... Jens has a round tone and technique, supported by musicianship. ..."

Yet the focus of this album is not on the sound of Bunge`s harmonica, but groovy modern jazz: a few originals, swinging standards and sensitive ballads, interpreted by outstanding musicians of "Chicago`s rich 21st century jazz scene" as Neill Tesser states in the linernotes.

And, quite interestingly, the story goes back to the year 1995, when the globetrotting harmonica player ran into a pianist/vocalist Judy Roberts and saxist Greg Fishman at a hotel bar in Singapore and sat in with them for a couple of songs.

Visiting their hometown Chicago in 1998 and 1999 Bunge made expierences such with with the jazz scene there that he soon felt the desire to document this on a CD.

So he formed a quartet with pianist Thomas Guenther (tours with Buddy DeFranco), who emigrated from Tübingen/Germany, Michael Arnopol (bassist of Blue Note- Recording Artist Patricia Barber) and Rusty Jones (drummer, played with George Shearing Trio), enriched by featured soloists Judy Roberts (p & voc), Jackie Allen (voc), Greg Fishman (ts), Diane Delin (violin) and Joe Pardon (perc).