Monday, April 10, 2006

Budapest with the John Tchicai Project

The Second and final gig of the Music and Migration series with John Tchicai was held in a cosy theatre in the centre of Budapest.It was my first visit to Hungary so I was well up for it.The band had all arrived at different times and days for instance John Coxon and Ashley Wales had travelled by rail taking 5 trains across europe in what was an enjoyable but gruelling Journey of 48hrs and would be travelling back the same way.John Edwards and Louis Moholo had arrived the day before so were well in the swing of things when I arrived.The lead up to the gig had various problems in store for Ashley as he uses DJ Cd players and various FX units and the organisors had trouble tracking down the equipment,in fact they only arrived a minute before the gig started luckily there was another band on first.This was the band of Mihela Dresler the Saxophonist They were absolutely on fire and clearly connected with the ecstatic audience.They also had a cymbaline player who was amazing.Then came our spot John Tchicai as always was a complete Joy to hear and he was joined for a duet by Mihela that should of been recorded in fact the whole night was recorded but due to an accidental unplugging of equipment at the end of the gig it was erased from a computer so its out there in the ether.I had a great time that included a trip down memory lane playing a set of Trixon vibes the first time in over 20 years.I have one in the garden shed somewhere in pieces that needs an overhaul.My first set of vibes was a Trixon from the late 50s and this one in budapest had been kept in immaculate condition.They were always famous for the sound i.e the notes were brilliant but the frame was always a bit fragile and looked like a kitch art deco tea trolley however seeing this one made me appreciate its sound and my own nostalgia for playing on an identical set that I had learnt heaps of music on it.The journey back was another early morning flight.Felt sorry for Ashley and John who were going to be starting the journey back to England at 8 in the evening on a sleeper train.Let's hope there are more gigs with John Tchicai as the potential to make some nice sounds is really mouth watering.Here is a review of the London gig at the Spitz club.

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