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Take Five With Ondrej Pivec

AAJ Staff By

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Meet Ondrej Pivec:
Ondrej Pivec started his career as a classical pianist, but soon turned to jazz—he started to play the Hammond organ before he was 20 years old. He was inspired by such important organists such as Sam Yahel, Larry Goldings, Jimmy Smith, Larry Young and others. He has also taken lessons from the legendary English Hammond player Mike Carr and Italian organ virtuoso Alberto Marsico, and recently Yahel himself during Ondrej's stay in New York.

Ondrej's agile organ bass lines, played using his left hand and his feet on the Hammond organ pedals and his strong style and virtuosity while playing right hand solo are definitely appreciated by both local and international critics. As a leader or sideman Pivec has performed more than 500 concerts all over the Czech Republic and abroad, becoming one of the most remarkable musicians on the Czech jazz and fusion scene.

Hammond organ

Teachers and/or influences?
Teachers: Sam Yahel, Alberto Marsico, Mike Carr, Joey DeFrancesco.
Influences: all the teachers, Larry Goldings, Jimmy Smith.

Your teaching approach:
Sing the melodies you think of, be as musical as it gets. All the other advanced stuff comes after that. Practice your rhythm and time-feel, swing.

Favorite venue:
Blue Note—Dresden.

Your favorite recording in your discography and why?
Overseason (2008), because it was recorded in New York with Joel Frahm and Jake Langley.

CDs you are listening to now:
Brad Mehldau Trio, Live at Village Vanguard;
Sam Yahel, Truth and Beauty;
The Jackson Five, The Best of The Jackson Five;
Kurt Elling, Nightmoves


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