Ferenc Snetberger: In Concert

Mark Sullivan By

Sign in to view read count
Ferenc Snetberger: In Concert
Hungarian classical guitarist Ferenc Snetberger makes his ECM debut with a live solo guitar recording, surely the most demanding and revealing format for any guitarist. His music is the product of diverse stylistic influences: starting with jazz, but then a strong classical music influence, followed by exposure to Brazilian, South American, and flamenco guitar music. Snétberger cites his first encounter with Johann Sebastian Bach's music as life-changing, followed by hearing ECM label mates Egberto Gismonti in duo with Nana Vasconcelos. The first eight tracks in the album are titled "Budapest" after the city where the performance took place. This implies a completely improvised concert similar to another label mate, pianist
Keith Jarrett. But while the playing is highly improvisational, Snétberger frequently draws on earlier compositions of his (and of course there's "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" as an encore).

"Budapest -Part 1" is a fiery opener, with rasgueado strumming (associated with flamenco). Initially improvised, it finally introduces an earlier melody that Snétberger always has at the ready. "Budapest -Part 2" is a calm contrast, showing the influence of Bach's contrapuntal writing. "Part 4" has a Brazilian samba feel, while "Part 5" is a free improvisation—but it sounds no less logical or precise than the prior selections. "Part 6" employs a tune previously performed under the title "Empathy." "Part 7" features the first performance of a new tune, and "Part 8" ends the main concert program with a reflective ballad. The version of "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" was the encore for this performance at Budapest's Franz Liszt Academy of Music, a gentle exploration of the standard associated with the movie The Wizard of Oz.

It's a beautiful, assured performance, sure to appeal to fans of Ralph Towner, another classical guitarist (primarily) long associated with ECM. There are additional ECM recordings in preparation, including a new trio with Anders Jormin and Joey Baron. I look forward to hearing them.

Track Listing

Budapest - Part 1; Budapest - Part 2; Budapest - Part 3; Budapest - Part 4; Budapest - Part 5; Budapest - Part 6; Budapest - Part 7; Budapest - Part 8; Somewhere Over The Rainbow.


Ferenc Snétberger: guitar.

Album information

Title: In Concert | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: ECM Records

Post a comment about this album



View events near Budapest
Jazz Near Budapest
Events Guide | Venue Guide | Get App | More...

Shop Amazon


Sing To The World
Benito Gonzalez
Jeffrey Morgan
Mindaugas Stumbras
CODE Quartet
First Mile
Lamb Anderson Sorgen
What are the Odds?
Dennis Winge


All About Jazz needs your support

All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.