New Jazz Quartet

Year 1964
Category New Jazz Quartet
Director Martí Colomer

Life in Barcelona in the 60’s was totally imbued by the still prevailing Franco dictatorship, although it was already announcing what were going to be the last throes of that enraged dragon that persisted in subduing any hint of culture.

While I was in the last grades of high school I had the good fortune to meet someone of my own age who, like me, was into the latest trends in black jazz and blues. It was the time when, in the then famous venue of the Plaza Real, great musicians from abroad or the blind pianist, the much admired and esteemed Tete Montoliu, were playing.

My friend Martí Colomer played the trumpet quite well, a great admirer of Miles Davis. And I, for my part, defended myself as well as I could with the drums made up of snare drum, hi-hat, timpani, bass drum and cymbal, if it was with tacks, the better, because it blurred very well the rhythmic clattering with the wooden drumsticks.

There is an anecdote that years later I liked to quote to the incredulous listening of my friends. It was when I told them that I had played drums at the Jamboree, which was the name of the place, accompanying the famous Ched Baker The truth is that yes, even if it was true, it was the result of the insistence of my friend Marti, the famous trumpet player agreed to let me sit in front of the drums to accompany him. To be honest, this wonderful experience lasted less than a minute, at which point Ched Baker said something along the lines of “come on kid, that’s enough”, perhaps this last part of the story is the one I didn’t always tell.

We continued our meetings with Martí Colomer and we were joined by Jordi Marfà on piano and José Peña on double bass. Later, even in a concert we gave at the North American Institute of Culture in Barcelona, we had the collaboration of the English blues singer Kent Scobles. The group we formed was the “New Jazz Quartet” and our repertoire ranged from Miles Davis to Dave Brubeck, Milt Jackson and Bobby Timmons.

Concert program “New Jazz Quartet”
Institute of American Studies, January, 1965

Concert program “New Jazz Quartet”
Manlleu, February, 1966