Gershwin is sweet, Jazz is salty: New album “Salted Caramel” by Simon Höfele
Let’s just do it: that was the motto when Simon Höfele and Frank Dupree decided to grab a hot potato. The two musicians, who have been making music for years, and not exclusively in the classical field they studied, love jazz as much as they love Hummel’s trumpet concerto and Beethoven’s for piano. That said, they can seldom stray far afield in their repertoire: the gap between classical music and jazz is so great; prejudices are simply insurmountable, and musical
approaches too diverse. So they have done that anyway, and together with Frank’s colleague Obi Jenne on drums, Jakob Krupp on bass and the Goldmund Quartet they have produced an album that aims not to point out differences, not to emphasise what divides, but something that instead creates musical networks, music that aims to liberate us from conventions and put us in a good mood.
“The jazz pieces are the salt in the classical soup,” the two musicians explain. “Miles Davis, Chet Baker & Co. It was important to us on this album to say thank-you to a few of these jazz greats. These trumpeters influenced the world of music significantly. Without them, the trumpet would not have the status it enjoys today.”
Höfele and Dupree stick pretty close to the originals in the jazz songs: Urtext if you like. Based on the transcriptions of the original recordings, they improvise, explore new territory and view each work through their own eyes. “For Roy Hargrove’s ‘Strasbourg-St. Denis’ Simon Höfele recorded two trumpets with different mutes in overdub. And on Gillespie’s ‘Manteca’ we worked out our own arrangement, with four Simons playing simultaneously, so to speak! In some ways we see this combination as an offer to lovers of classical music to dive into jazz,” is how Dupree puts it.”