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HIGHLIGHTS IN THE CAREER OF LARRY PORTER

PIANIST, REBAB PLAYER, COMPOSER

Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1951, received his first piano lesson at age 6.

Studies at Cleveland Music Settlement, Eastman School of Music and Berklee College of Music.

Founded the group Children At Play with Tom van der Geld in Boston in 1971.

Went to Germany in 1973, played with Bobby Jones, Sal Nistico, Leszek Zadlo, Volker Kriegel, Kai Winding, Mel Lewis, Günter Lenz, Bobby Stern.

1976 journeyed through Asia, studied music in Afghanistan and India; learned the rebab in Kabul with Ustad Mohammed Omar, the sarod in New Delhi, both plucked string instruments.

Lived in New York 1977-80, worked as pianist in the jazz scene, as accompanist for Merce Cunningham and other dancers, and as rebab and sarod player in the Indian music scene. Was founding member of the Kathak Ensemble with dancer Janaki Patrik and tabla player Paul Leake.

Returned to Germany in 1981, played with Frank St. Peter, Airto Moreira and Thad Jones. Founded quartet with Allan Praskin.

Lived in Spain 1983-84, recorded first quartet record "First Date".

Returned to Germany in 1985, recorded LP "Acoustic Music" featuring original songs.

1986-88 extensive touring with Chet Baker, including the New Morning in Paris and European festivals.

Also worked with Hannibal Marvin Peterson, Heinz Sauer, Conexiòn Latina, Benny Bailey, Don Menza, Al Cohn, Leo Wright.

1987 recorded LP as soloist with the Czechoslovakian television big band in Prague.

1988 tour and radio production with his own quintet featuring two sax players, Sal Nistico and Allan Praskin.

1988-92 Art Farmer Quintet.

1989-91 Harvey Wainapel Quartet, including CD "At Home/On The Road".

1989 premiere of String Quartet.

1990 won prize in a competition for jazz-chorus compositions in Cologne for his work "Vergänglichkeit" for mixed chorus and jazz piano trio on a poem by Hermann Hesse.

Duo with Swiss harpsichord player Rudi Lutz, a fusion of jazz and baroque improvisation.

Worked with singers Sheila Jordan, Mark Murphy and Jay Clayton.

1991 composed a one-hour work “Moksha” with choreography by Janaki Patrik for Indian dance, voice, piano, bass and tabla. A synthesis of jazz and western elements with Kathak dance. Premiere in New York.

Accompanied Jeanne Carroll, blues and jazz singer from Chicago.

1991-92 Archie Shepp Quartet.

Concerts with the Marty Cook-Monty Waters Quintet.

1991 recorded live CD with Monty Waters Quartet in Paris.

1992 awarded annual music prize by the City of Munich.

1993 tour and CD recording "More Of Me" with singer Rachel Gould.

CD recording "Phases Of The Moon" with the Marty Cook Group.

Feb. 1994 release of "Sonnet For Sal" on Enja, Porter-Praskin Quartet with Sal Nistico.

June 1994 moved back to New York. May 1995 release of trio CD "March Blues" on Enja (CD 8092-2). Worked mostly in local clubs and was very active as a rebab player in the Indian and Afghan music scenes. Recorded highly acclaimed CD “The Magical Rebab of Larry Porter” with Franc Menusan on tabla in 1999.

Moved to Berlin shortly before the turn of the century. January 2000 recorded CD “Mundell’s Moods” in Hamburg with Mundell Lowe and Hendrik Meurkens.

Released two CDs in 2004: a trio recording, "the circle is unbroken", and "Songs" featuring vocalist, Barbara Mayr.

Winter 2002-2003 resided in Tokyo, Japan and recorded the CD, "Sweet Conversation", with singer, Mika Ohashi.

Premiere in 2005 of "Kind Of Jazz Suite", a piece for 8 French horns commissioned by the Berlin Philharmonic.

Arranged an entire album of German songs in 2007 for Barbara Mayr and played piano - "German Songbook" on Enja Records.

Music for two documentary films, "16 Days in Afghanistan" (2007) by Amwar Hajher and "Afghanistan's Opium Trail" (2008) by Mehran Bozorgnia.

Formation of duo with trumpeter, Christian Grabandt, and release of CD, "Ol' Man River", in 2008.

2009 extensive tour of Poland and CD recording with the quartet of Polish trumpeter, Maciej Fortuna, and Chicago drummer, Frank Parker.

2010 release of fusion CD, "Silk Road Blues", featuring new compositions for rebab and piano with rhythm section. An original mix of jazz, Afghan and Indian music.

2010 recorded the CD "Mabuti" with newly composed music for quartet, released in May 2011.

Current group:
Larry Porter Trio

 

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