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ClassicsOnline Home » DEJAN TERZIC QUARTET: Four For One
By Fred Jung
By Glenn Astarita
All About Jazz
By Kenny Weir
Sunday Herald Sun
Dejan Terzic - drums
George Garzone - tenor and soprano saxophone
Roberto Di Gioia - piano
Dietmar Fuhr - bass
The new generation of jazz drummers have finally found their way into the spotlight and refuse to reduce themselves to the ranks ot obedient sidemen. This new stance has spawned a surprising side effect. In the not so distant past, it was nearly obligatory to use sheer volume as the means ot gaining attention. Today's drummer, in the foretront and fully aware of his responsibility to the music, treads lightly through this new awareness. As bandleader, musical director and catalyst, the new drummer sits at the command of the structural dynamics! Quite an intimidating course of events… one could easily forgive our apprentice leader for sub-conciously retreating in light of such responsibilities. We need look no further than the current plethora of drummer-led productions in which the protaganist looms so far in the background that the listener can only guess who's in charge! A fortunate exception is this first offering from 28 year old German drummer/composer/big band leader Dejan Terzic.
A resident of Nürnberg since 1990, Dejan attended the renowned "Meistersinger konservatorium", where he studied Jazz and Modern classical music. Initially undecided in his preferences, Dejan travelled to New York in the summer of '91. There he signed up at the Vermont Jazz Center, run by legendary jazz guitarist Attila Zoller and made quick acquaintance to the residing jazz greats, including Jimmy Cobb, Tal Farlow and Don Friedman. It was Zoller, however, who initiated Dejan into the magic of improvised music.
In New York City Dejan applied to the "Drummers Collective" and studied there with Marvin "Smitty" Smith and Mike Clarke, as well as Bill Stewart. Back in Germany he resumed studies at the "Wurzburg Konservatorium" with drummer Billy Elgart, joined the Bavarian Youth Jazz Orchestra, jumped into his first professional gig in saxophonist Hubert Winter's quartet, joined the German Youth Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Peter Herbolz-Heimer and began to record with a number of groups, including the sextet "Ugetsu".
The recipient of several awards ("Best drummer" at the newcomers jazz festival in Krakow,Poland 1994 ; "Best musician" at the international jazz festival in Oberkochen, Germany 1995 ; 1st place at the newcomers jazz festival in Leipzig, May 1995 ; the city of Nürnberg's cultural prize in 1997) Dejan consolidated his many talents with the formation of his own "Sunday Night Orchestra" in 1994. The CD you hold in your hands represents the latest chapter in a steady stream of mile-stone achievements. Dejan's dream band performing his personal favorite tunes!
With George Garzone, Dejan has acquired the services of one of the most exciting tenor players of our time. The high school teacher from New York has led one of the music's longest surviving free jazz trios "The Fringe", as well as enjoying long musical associations with such esteemed colleagues as Mike Manieri, Peter Erskine, Joe Lovano, Daniel Humair, George Russell and Eddie Gomez. The apparent ease in which he straddles stylistic boundaries between straight ahead and the avant garde has influenced a new generation of saxophonists. George's strong, individual and, above all, uncompromising sound is an integral factor in the soundscape of all eight titles.
Born in Italy, pianist Roberto Di Gioia represents one of Europe's most versatile and expressive keyboardists. Witness here a major stylist at work with limber, fanciful lines supported by churning block chords.
Bassist Dietmar Fuhr from Cologne, checks in as the ideal point man with a huge tone and an undeniable presence.
And there you have it, a musician's quartet born out of a fortuitous performance at the 1998 East-West jazz festival in Nürnberg; who, recognizing a common bond, assembled to document Dejan Terzic's originals, Childish Things, Big Argument, Loose Ends, and Four For One as well as carefully chosen standards Night's Shadow, Spartacus (an adaptation of Maria Schneider’s big band chart on "Love theme from Spartacus") Green Dolphin Street, and the ballad, My Romance (a request of George Garzone's) in their undeniably striking manner.
- Reinhard Köchl, jazz writer - contributor to Jazz Thing, Jazzpodium, Jazzthetik, Scala.
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DEJAN TERZIC QUARTET: Four For One