In the 2011, I spent a lot of time in New York city. It had been a good year for me, one tour after another had allowed me to come regularly to NYC. The city was beginning to feel like a second home.
Whenever I had the chance, I would go and listen to one of my favourite musicians, the Brazilian drummer Portinho, who regularly performs in a club on 49th street. That's how I met Klaus Mueller as he plays piano in Portinho's trio.
Working as a session musician for years with so many different artists, I often dreamed of starting up my own project but somehow I'd always end up putting the idea to one side, I didn't feel ready to take that leap.
But over the years, the lingering sense that something was still missing acted as a constant reminder for me to keep looking, eventually something had to give and that's how the trio was born.
Hanging with Klaus one evening, he said to me, 'whenever you want, we can book a studio and record'.
By chance, that same evening, Brandi Disterheft was playing bass with Portinho too. Listening to her play that night and after exchanging a few words with her, I instinctively knee she was the right person, the third link in the trio.
Klaus is an extraordinary musician, Besides being a great pianist and arranger, he's become a great friend. Klaus brings such a positive energy and professionalism to everything he does and when I play with him, I can feel how he always searches for just the right depth and essence of each musical idea that spontaneously comes to him.
His contribution to the making of this album as well as to the arrangements were key to its creation. Music runs through him, he's a true friend.
Brandi was a wonder too, she's such a terrific musician and an exceptional double bassist, and like Klaus, she brought such great energy to our collaboration with her creativity and spark of humour. She brings a wonderful enthusiasm to everything she does and it's one of her many talents.
Thanks to her, I realized that you don't ever just finish an album with the last take, the moment you put away your cymbals and drumsticks.
That's not how it works and Brandi gave me a lot of very practical help and advised me throughout the various stages an album has to go through before it crosses the finish line. Her friendship and trust were invaluable.
The first few times we got together during our days off at Klaus' place. We didn't really rehearse, we just hung out. We'd look briefly at the compositions, chat and drink coffee.
I had this idea to record some grooves that I had in mind but it was Klaus who brought them into the world, producing and arranging the songs enriching the original rhythmic ideas and melodic compositions.
One of my jobs was to deal with time and money and rightly so! When the monent came for us to record, I booked the studio for a few hours, enough for us to play some takes of each song.
In the end, these conditions far from limiting us turned out to be ideal. There was such a great atmosphere that the music just came to us as easily as the friendship had, in a natural and easy flow. Now that we were friends, playing music together took us to a deeper level, that's the gift it brings us. We had such a great time, we always do when we play; I hope people will get that in our music, the way we did when we played those sessions in Brooklyn.
1. Cycles (K.Mueller)
2. Double Blues (K. Mueller)
3. On Green Dolphin Street (B.Kaper / N. Washington)
4. A vida Nao e Assim (S.Prattico/A. de Paula)
5. Herbert Hutchinson (B. Disterheft)
6. Maiden Voyage (H. Hancock)
7. Piccolino (S. Prattico)
8. See Ya (S. Prattico)
SIMONE PRATTICO drums
KLAUS MUELLER piano
BRANDI DISTERHEFT bass