Emil Mangelsdorff Quartet


One can "without doubt count Emil Mangelsdorff to Europe's most outstanding contralto saxophonists. His style possesses harmonious tranquillity that one misses with so many modern contralto saxophonists. Thereby fire and drive of performance that one unfortunately seldom hears today", these words are from an article in Jazzpodium dating from the fifties. And they still hold true, perhaps even more so because Emil Mangelsdorff plays today "more maturely and powerfully than ever", as the Frankfurter Rundschau recently commented.

His secret is that he has preserved the pure joy and pleasure of music since his youth, ever since the day he was listening to his parents' radio and first heard American jazz: "Louis Armstrong was playing. I was absolutely electrified, had a pulse rate of 160 and knew at once - that's what I want to do!" He imitated this hot music on the accordion and under the Nazi dictatorship he became the clandestine star of the Frankfurter Hotclub Combo, until the Gestapo jailed him and then dispatched him to the Russian front. But neither this nor the four and a half years in Russian captivity could break his will: back in Frankfurt he played his way as modern contralto saxophonist into the top ranks of German jazz. As one of the first he cultivated the "art de duo" - initially with Attila Zoller, later with Bob Degen - and created trend-setting "lyric&jazz" productions. He won the German Disc Prize for his record "Swinging Oildrops" and for his musical achievements and political commitment he was awarded the Hessen Jazz Prize, the Wilhelm Leuschner Medal of the State of Hessen, the Goethe Plaque of the City of Frankfurt and the Johanna Kirchner Medal.

Alongside his work in the hr Jazz Ensemble, which he has belonged to since its foundation, Emil Mangelsdorff is today above all active with his own Quartett. Here, congenially accompanied by Thilo Wagner (p), Vitold Rek (b) and Janusz Stefanski (dr,) he enjoys the sum total of his artistic background: captivating virtuoso bebop, soulful blues and poetically narrated ballads. Impulsive temperament and an inexhaustible melodious inventiveness keep Emil Mangelsdorff's performance ever highly effervescent.
(Text by Jürgen Schwab)

German Record Critics’ Award for Emil Mangelsdorff

The album "The Emil Mangelsdorff Quartet - Blues Forever" received the German Record Critics’ Award in appreciation of “one of the new releases of high artistic merit in the field of recording” in the fourth quarter of 2007 and was selected for the Quarterly Critics’ Choice 1/2008.

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Emil Mangelsdorff Quartett
Lersnerstra├če 37
60322 Frankfurt am Main
Phone +49 (0) 69 555625
Fax +49 (0) 69 556505