Bugge Wesseltoft, solo (7pm eastern) + Gard Nilssen Acoustic Unity (8pm eastern)
Friday, November 6 

Big Ears is proud to be the exclusive North American presenter of the Norwegian Digital Jazz Festival, a series of streaming concerts featuring 15 of the most important acts in Norwegian jazz. Our first show from the festival features a double bill of the lyrical pianist Bugge Wesseltoft playing from his most recent release, Everybody Loves Angels; followed by a trio led by the explosive drummer and composer Gard Nilssen.

BUGGE WESSELTOFT — Since the early 1990’s Bugge Wesseltoft has made an impressive, truly post-modern transition from his ECM nordic jazz traditions. From playing and recording together with the likes of Jan Garbarek, Sidsel Endresen, Terje Rypdal, Nils Petter Molvaer, Jon Eberson to forming his own innovative New Conception of Jazz group and exquisite label Jazzland Recordings. Wesseltoft is multi-decorated with critics prizes for creating a unique, fresh blend of ‘modern jazz’.

In this concert, he’s playing all by himself, primarily songs from his latest solo album Everybody Loves Angels.

There is no musician or artist in the world that is not inspired by others. However, the important thing is to let inspiration develop, to work towards finding a unique means of personal expression. This is what I believe and is what I have always tried to achieve… to find my own thing, my own voice. I don’t want to be another carbon copy of any great musician, past or present: I don’t see the point of that. There have been so many good things done before, but one must find one’s own sound.”
— Bugge Wesseltoft

Personnel: Bugge Wesseltoft (piano/keyboards)

— Gard Nilssen is a drummer, composer, producer, and bandleader from Norway who lives in Oslo. He is one of the most sought after and active drummers on the European jazz scene today, traveling 200 days a year all around the world with his own bands Gard Nilssen Acoustic Unity, Bushman’s Revenge, sPacemonKey, Amgala Temple, Ruby, and Gard Nilssen Supersonic Orchestra. Born and raised in a musical family made up entirely of drummers, it was of no surprise that his instrument of choice became the drums. Gard’s background started playing with marching bands and big bands in his hometown Skien. He studied drums with his all time hero, Audun Kleive, before he moved to Trondheim where he got his master degree in jazz at the NTNU University of Jazz Music.

His drumming is described as energetic, creative, musical, groovy, fearless, and dynamic with a technical surplus. Besides having recorded 70 records, he has played and toured with musicians and artists like: Bill Frisell, Pat Metheny, Thomasz Stanko, Mike Stern, Andy Sheppard, Joshua Redman, Ambrose Akinmusire, Susanne Sundfør, Chris Potter, Django Bates, Bugge Wesseltoft, Håkon Kornstad, Mats Eilertsen, Jon Balke, Arild Andersen, and Mathias Eick. He is also a member of Susanne Sundfør band, Maciej Obara 4tet, Cortex, Team Hegdal, Trondheim Jazz Orchestra, and Thomas Dybdahl band. In 2019, he was the ‘Artist In Residence’ at the Molde International Jazz Festival. He’s a vintage drum freak to the bone and a vinyl collector that has his own record label called Gigafon.

Personnel: Gard Nilssen (drums), Ole Morten Vågan (bass), André Roligheten (saxophone)

Big Ears stream of the Norwegian Digital Jazz Festival is available only to viewers in North America (USA, Canada, Mexico). The stream will be hosted on Mandolin.com. Tickets are $8 (plus service charges) in advance and $10 day of show. Viewers may also purchase access to the Entire 15-Set Norwegian Jazz Festival via Big Ears for $50. For those unable to watch the initial stream of this presentation, it will be available for replay for 48 hours after the initial stream (note: tickets may only be purchased, however, before or during the initial broadcast).

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