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Swiss Octet performs live Jazz.

By Mike Derderian, Star Staff Writer Jordanians on October 4th were offered a jazzy note that came as part of a major scale activity organized by the Swiss Embassy in Amman. The Amadis Dunkel Octet, a group of eight musicians that was formed in the United States in 2001, gave a three-hour live performance at the Cultural Village to a group of Jordanian jazz fans. After wrapping up things in Jordan the Octet will head to Syria and Lebanon to continue its tour.Amadis Dunkel, trombone; Daniel Blanc, lead alto saxophone and flute; Daniel Schlucter, alto saxophone; Alex Hendriksen, tenor saxophone; Alex Hilbe, baritone and alto saxophone; Oliver Friedli, Piano; Corcoran Holt on bass and Clyde Adams on drums, were the eight musicians from Switzerland, Lichtenstein, the Netherlands and the US who gave a new definition to the word "groovy."According to Dunkel, when he started talking about forming the Octet, a lot of people thought he was crazy; nevertheless, everybody wanted to be part of it in order to play new arrangements. With such determination it is no wonder that the Amadis Dunkel Octet's latest CD JL301 has been available in stores since February 2004.During the evening's course original pieces composed by Dunkel, like Brazil, Evolution, Blues in 6/8, Minor Misdemeanor, Blue Bone and Snowflakes, in addition to classic standard pieces by renowned Jazz musicians like Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Sonny Rollings John Coltrane, and AC Jobim were performed.Passing through the art pit before reaching to the crowd-packed plaza of the Cultural Village, where the concert was taking place, the echoing trombone and saxophone sounds intermingling with the repetitive drum and cymbal reverberations created an artistic ambience similar to the creative psychedelia of the sixties.To Brazil off we go was one of the evening's pleasurable sentiments as the audience listened to the Brazilian influenced jazz piece, which reflected a fine grasping of a country's heart and soul on part of the musicians. Following this piece, Broadway, a Bird, McReel and Woode composition was soon performed with the same sense of sterling Broadway glamour that dominated the jazzy and brassy music scene for the past century.Loud trombone solos on part of Dunkel, as Blanc switched from flute to the Alto saxophone providing a backup sound to the rest of the lively tune, which proved that the Octet was accomplished in delivering great showmanship to a live audience. "Its not a habit but we have to have it, pause for a cause," announced Dunkel to the public leaving the floor for Paul Widmer, the Swiss Ambassador. "I don't have to say much about the Octet, for music speaks for itself," said Widmer, who also spoke about the MediaSculpture Video Art Scene Switzerland that was opened to the public on September 26 at the village.After a ten-minuet interval, the Octet picked up from where it left off, giving the audience a good taste of jazz; opening up with energetic, challenging and reoccurring piano tunes. With a sudden pause the audience thought the piece came to an end; however, as they attempted to clap the Octet picked up again with the intro."We are now going to do an original composition; I am Swiss so you have to understand the title Snowflake," jokingly announced the band leader to the public. With a very warm beginning that soon turns to a tranquil mood reflecting images of falling snow and wood turning asunder in a fireplace. Snowflakes was a very romantic rendition of jazz touching the warm feelings in a person's heart.Minor Misdemeanor, a Dunkel original and a fast going piece gave the audience quite a motivating frenzy, especially when the drummer Adams gave a very impressive rolling solo that made the other musicians stand awaiting their turn to get back on track and made the audience cheer for more."Thank you, Clyde Adams. What a drummer," shouted out the young Trombone player also thanking the audience for attending and expressing his joy for being in Jordan and announcing that he will come back again.

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Publication:The Star (Amman, Jordan)
Date:Oct 10, 2004
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