“Encore” follows up the musical directions Eberhard Weber explored on his critically-acclaimed “Resumé” album of 2012. The source material here is comprised of more of the unique electric bass solos Weber played in performances with the Jan Garbarek Group between 1990 and 2007. Track titles derive from tour itineraries of the period. Here are pieces recorded in Frankfurt, Cambridge, Rankweil, Bradford, London, Klagenfurt, Granada, Edinburgh, Konstanz, Seville, Hannover, Langenhagen and Pamplona – none of them sounding as they did on the night. Now the solos are meticulously edited, rearranged and modified with additional keyboard parts played by Weber. In November 2014 he put the finishing touches to the material at Studios La Buissonne in southern France, joined by an old friend, veteran Dutch trumpeter and flugelhorn player Ack van Rooyen (who appeared on Weber’s “The Colours of Chloë”, forty-two years ago): “Van Rooyen played on my debut, and now he’s on what may be my last album. I can’t really say whether I’ll turn out anything after ‘Encore’.”
Weber discusses the album’s genesis in a liner note interview with Karl Lippegaus: “I listen to a lot of music and I listen very precisely. It took me a year to find out what I could do with this material. Those bass solos with the Garbarek Group functioned as transitions between two large blocks of sound in the concerts. Usually they were completely spontaneous, roughly six to ten minutes long. I lit on the idea of adding something to them myself. Since I’m no longer able to play bass, I have to plough my way with one hand on keyboard or piano. Here I could decide where I wanted a piano part and when to stop, something that’s almost never possible on stage, even out of courtesy to the others... Spontaneity is very important. I could make use of solos from almost two decades of work.” Now, Weber says, he must address his earlier spontaneity from another perspective, becoming his own producer and critic. The process of remoulding solos from the past to make music in the present is an unconventional one but its potential was evident already on “Résumé”. In Jazz Journal Michael Tucker described that disc as “music of dark and deep yet also rhythmically engaging, at times even playful substance. Featuring judicious use of digital delay and loops, and with diversely unfolding and layered pizzicato and arco motifs offering what registers throughout as mythopoetically-charged melody, the meta-music that is ‘Résumé’ is perhaps the most thoroughly arresting of all the albums Weber has made.” “Encore” carries its momentum forward.
“Encore” is issued in Eberhard Weber’s 75th year, his birthday celebrated in January with sold-out concerts in Stuttgart, the town where he was born, with performances of Weber’s music and new work dedicated to him, featuring Jan Garbarek, Ralph Towner, Gary Burton, Pat Metheny, Danny Gottlieb, Scott Colley, Michael Gibbs , Paul McCandless and the SWR Big Band.
Eberhard Weber’s autobiography Résumé: Eine deutsche Jazz-Geschichte is imminent from German publishers Sagas Edition.
In January Eberhard Weber received a lifetime achievement award, the newly created Landes-Jazzpreis Baden Württemberg, honoring his artistic work and influence on musicians worldwide.