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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas: Live At Salzburger Jazzherbst

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Hungarian clarinetist Lajos Dudas seems to continually find inspiration through altered states of musical companionship. In a three year span, Dudas released four vastly different records that mark him as a bolder-than-the-norm reed man with an unquenchable thirst for something different: He played one-on-one with pianist Hubert Bergmann on What's Up Neighbor (JazzSick, 2011), delivered a wide-ranging, decades-spanning career retrospective in the same year, worked with guitar, bass and drums on Jazz And The City (JazzSick, 2012), and explored trio pathways on Live At Porgy & Bess (JazzSick, 2013). So what does a septuagenarian seeker like Dudas do after he's ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas Trio: Live at Porgy & Bess

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Vienna's Porgy & Bess Jazz Club is approaching its twentieth anniversary as an international--but intimate--venue for top jazz talent from Europe and beyond. It's the perfect setting for this live recording from the Lajos Dudas Trio. A Hungarian native living in Germany, clarinetist Dudas is teamed with long-time collaborator, guitarist Phillipp van Endert and bassist Leonard Jones. Jones--a seminal member of the AACM--has played with Muhal Richard Abrams, Sonny Simmons and Mal Waldron in the course of his accomplished career. For his part, Dudas has worked with Karl Berger, Albert Mangelsdorff and Attila Zoller among the more familiar names in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas Trio: Live at Porgy & Bess

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Hungarian-German clarinetist Lajos Dudas has quite the résumé in Europe, with about 50 recordings to his credit. He has been around long enough to have had clarinetist Artie Shaw remark on his talent, but do not mistake his longevity with a marriage to the traditional mainstream of jazz; it is anything but. Dudas has adventurous spirit that seeks to probe the same sonic areas as Jimmy Giuffre's 1960s trio, albeit in a somewhat more behaved fashion. The present live outing, recorded in Vienna, Austria's Porgy & Bess club finds the clarinetist leading an understated guitar-bass trio through a spirited and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas: Live at Porgy & Bess

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Budapest born and Überlingen (southern Germany) based clarinetist Lajos Dudas is one of the few, contemporary virtuosos of this woodwind in the realm of jazz. His mastery over every nuance of his instrument allows him to exploit the full breadth of its musical range with delightful ease.The extent of Dudas' talents are heard on the energetic set Live at Porgy and Bess recorded at the famous Vienna club of the title. The sparse trio setting showcases his unique style and allows his band members ample room to shine as well.Dudas starts off with clean, deceptively, simple ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas Quartet: Jazz And The City

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Most musicians firmly plant themselves in one particular territory in the music world, but clarinetist Lajos Dudas prefers to set up camp at the border crossings, allowing for swift travel between stylistic realms. Dudas doesn't discriminate when it comes to direction, and he's made that evident through his own endeavors over the past fifty years. He spars with the avant-garde elite, swings like mad in straightforward settings, tackles classical music with the requisite grace and technique that the repertoire demands and appears to have a damn good time doing all of it. While his skills and artistic scope have allowed ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas Quartet: Jazz And The City

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Lajos Dudas' What's Up Neighbour? (JazzSick, 2011), was a collaboration with pianist Hubert Bergmann. An eminently enjoyable set of improvised tunes, the album highlighted the veteran clarinetist's love of and talent for improvisation. Jazz And The City showcases Dudas' skills in a more straight-ahead setting, leading a quartet through a set of standards and originals. The humor and good-natured love of the music remains, albeit within a more structured set of tunes.On Jazz And The City Dudas combines four of his own tunes with half a dozen well-known standards. Dudas and guitarist Philip van Endert weave their melodies ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas and Hubert Bergmann: What's Up Neighbor?

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Lajos Dudas and Hubert Bergmann are both experienced musicians, but until 2011 they had never even met, let alone worked together. What's Up Neighbor? is their debut album, an engaging and refreshing duo set of improvisations on clarinet and piano. Dudas is an experienced improvising musician with an extensive discography going back to the '60s. Born in Hungary, he now lives in Germany, the home country of pianist Bergmann. The two met for the first time when Bergmann organized an improvised music workshop near Dudas' home, and What's Up Neighbor? is the result of their day in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas / Hubert Bergmann: What's Up Neighbor?

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When clarinetist Lajos Dudas read about a workshop for new and improvised music in his town of Lake Constance, at the foot of the Alps, he was taken aback. Long a proponent of free jazz, Dudas was surprised that he was not aware of the event. A few days later, he was invited, by Hubert Bergmann, to a meeting where the pianist suggested that they record together. Dudas had his doubts about the project working--after all, he improvised freely, while Bergmann played contemporary music. As it turns out, Dudas need not have been apprehensive; their stylistic contrasts did not mar ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas: 50 Years With Jazzclarinet: The Best Of Lajos Dudas

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The music of Hungarian-born clarinetist Lajos Dudas doesn't fall under a neat little heading. While no mere label can define an artist, some clarinetists can be categorized in a fairly accurate manner, using few words. We have neo-traditionalists (Ken Peplowski), New Orleans torch bearers (Evan Christopher and Dr. Michael White), technical marvels who brilliantly bridge the jazz and classical divide (Eddie Daniels), and those who defy categorization and have been embraced by the jazz mainstream (Don Byron and Anat Cohen), if such a thing exists. Dudas doesn't belong under any of these banners. For decades, the German-based Dudas has done ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Lajos Dudas: 50 Years With Jazzclarinet - The Best Of Lajos Dudas

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Lajos Dudas50 Years With Jazzclarinet: The Best Of Lajos DudasJazz Sick Records2011 The clarinet is one of the most important instruments in the foundation of jazz. But it lost its luster after Benny Goodman fell out of popularity in the 1950s. After 1960, the few of the American clarinetists still left playing the instrument mostly migrated to Europe. It was only in Europe that the clarinet seemed to thrive after 1960. This is when Hungarian émigré Lajos Dudás (b. 1941), who, from the mid-1960s on, has centered himself in Germany, found ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas: Jazz on Stage

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Hungarian clarinetist Lajos Dudas, who has called Germany home since the late 1960s, recalls the storied history of jazz clarinet in each of his many recordings. But, unlike several other jazz stars of note, Dudas never gets preachy or didactic. His music is more about the enjoyment of the form.Jazz On Stage presents this fine clarinetist in three live performances recorded between May 2006 and May 2007. Here, Dudas is perfectly partnered with few other accompanists, but all of long and simpatico standing. First and foremost is guitarist Philipp van Endert, perhaps Europe's best kept secret, who is ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Lajos Dudas: Jazz on Stage

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The nine tracks on clarinetist Lajos Dudas' Live on Stage were taken from three different live performances in Germany. The technical quality of the recording is top-tier and intimate, providing a sense of both the atmosphere and space in which the music was made.

The repertoire suits the multiple streams that this group brings to its playing. Opening with Dudas' “For Gabor," the CD honors the late guitarist Gabor Szabo, an obvious influence for both Dudas and guitarist Philipp van Endert, a long-time Dudas collaborator. The shadings and detail on “Maydance," another Dudas composition, could serve as a Master Class ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Lajos Dudas: Nightlight

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Lajos Dudas Nightlight 2003 Double Moon

From the opener, a reworking—both lovely and cooking—of Bach's “Bourree,” through standards as well as three compositions from Dudas himself, there is not a weak element on this session. It takes the form of a quartet on five of the tracks and a quintet on the other five. Yet one keeps hearing more. A trombone seems to appear on one track, but this is clearly a matter of clever voicing (by a soprano sax, no less!). With an ensemble sound that has many different tonalities, this ...



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