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Didier Verna

Born in 1970, Didier Verna gets quickly involved in music, since he enters conservatory at the age of 5 and studies music theory for 2 years. At the age of 7, he starts learning classical percussions while continuing his theoretical studies; an opportunity for him to discover group playing and enjoy his first on-stage experiences. From this first instrumental contact with music, he will keep a sense and love for rhythm that can be heard very clearly in his playing, whether in composition or in improvisation.

At the age of 9, bored with playing without interruption the « Bolero de Ravel » on a plastic pad in order not to upset the neighborhood, he decides to try classical piano, which he will be practising for 2 years. Despite the desperate efforts of his teacher to interest him in the exclusive and daily practise of the major scale in all possible keys, he decides to change instrument, and tries classical guitar at the age of 11.

While he likes the instrument itself, he hardly feels any interest for the repertoire, most notably given the fact that as a music listener, he is a fan of Trust, Scorpion, AC/DC, Iron Maiden and other hard rock bands whose sound he completely fails to reproduce with nylon strings. He then turns to another teacher and another, younger, guitar repertoire, and at the age of 13, he discovers the richness and complexity of Marcel Dadi's picking, along with a whole folk and blues world that he starts to like. His relationship with the guitar also tightens at that time.

His encounter, 2 years later, with French guitarist Denis Gouzil marks a decisive orientation in his musical career: he discovers Jazz with him and gets instantly passionate for this music and its improvised aspects in particular. This encounter, taking place on the guitar, seals once and for all his link to this instrument.

He studies Jazz harmony and improvisation for 3 years, and at the age of 18, starts playing in Bordeaux in various bands, like a guitar octet with Denis Gouzil and Yves Carbonne (Compagnie Lubat, Carbonne / diPiazza / Manring).

Since he moved to Paris in order to continue his scientific studies at the age of 21, Didier Verna attempts to maintain both his careers as an assistant professor in computer science and as a musician. He hence continues his Jazz formation as a self-taught, multiplying musical experiences both in bands (from trio to septet, or even in a guitar sextet with a rhythm section) and in styles (jazz rock, modern jazz, brazilian...). Meanwhile, he develops a vocal jazz technique very much inspired from the work of Bobby Mc Ferrin and begins giving voice solo sessions.

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Album Review
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* In the early Scofield Dept... — All About Jazz
* A force of Nature. — All About Jazz
* Metheny-esque, compromising, intellectual, non-rigorous with a superb technique. — eJazzNews
* Pat Metheny's roundness of sound and limpidity of phrases. — Citizen Jazz
* I hear a well articulated playing, in the tradition, masterized. — Alex Duthil, JazzMan
* Some beautiful Jazz Guitar. — Antoine Hervé
* Nice sounds, great playing! — Greg Lyons
* Great quality Jazz music. — Yves Carbonne
* You have a neat touch and a very limpid playing. — Sébastien Charlier
* Your playing reminds me of Jimmy Raney's which I love for its fluidity and its obviousness

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Mike Stern
band / orchestra
Michael Brecker
saxophone, tenor
Bobby McFerrin
voice / vocals
Pat Metheny
Tribal Tech
band / orchestra
Weather Report
band / orchestra


Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

¡En Seguida!

DVL Records


Roots And Leaves

Plaza Mayor


Roots And Leaves

Self Produced


Roots and Leaves

DVL Records



DVL Records


¡En Seguida!

From: ¡En Seguida!
By Didier Verna


From: Roots And Leaves
By Didier Verna



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