Born: September 1, 1957 Primary Instrument: Trombone
Wolter Wierbos is considered one of the world’s leading trombone players. He has played throughout Europe, Canada, USA and Asia. Wierbos has many awards to his name, including the Podiumprijs for Jazz and Improvised music and the most important Dutch jazz award, the VPRO Boy Edgar Prize.
Like many Dutch brass players Wierbos started out in a ‘fanfare’ (brass band), switching from trumpet to trombone when he was 17. “It looked good, and the trombones walk in front....” His interests range from precise chamber jazz to throbbing post punk and contemporary composed and improvised music.
Described as “a phenomenon, both a humorous importer of every style into his template-free, fat-backed sound, and a tireless spy in the house of brass”, he is equally at home using the classic trombone vocabulary or enthusiastically giving a round-trip tour of his horn, from buzzing mute mutations and grizzly blurts to purring multiphonics. He is also “a very good instant composer, good at keeping it moving and not taking it too seriously”.
Since 1979 he has played with numerous music ensembles: Cumulus (with Ab Baars and Harry de Wit), JC Tans & Rockets, Theo Loevendie Quintet, Guus Janssen Septet, Loos (Peter van Bergen), Maarten Altena Ensemble and Podiumtrio. He led his own band, Celebration of Difference, and has been involved in theater, dance, television and film projects. He has been invited to play with the EX, Sonic Youth, Gruppo Sportivo and the Nieuw Ensemble (led by Ed Spanjaard).
He has also played with Henry Threadgill, The Berlin Contemporary Jazz Orchestra (led by Alexander von Schlippenbach), the European Big Band (led by Cecil Taylor), the John Carter Project, Mingus Big Band (Epitaph, directed by Gunther Schuller).
He is currently active with Misha Mengelberg’s ICP (Downbeat Poll winner 2002, Talent Deserving Wider Recognition), Gerry Hemingway Quintet, Franky Douglas’ Sunchild, Bik Bent Braam, Albrecht Maurer Trio Works, Nocando, Carl Ludwig Hübsch’s Longrun Development of the Universe, Frank Gratkowski Quartet, Available Jelly and Sean Bergin’s MOB Wierbos also maintains a solo career. He has a running project under the name Wollo’s World, where he brings together different artistic combinations, ranging from duos with tap-dancer Marije Nie and bassist Wilbert de Joode to a quartet with Misha Mengelberg, Mats Gustafsson and Wilbert de Joode. In the future Wollos’ World hopes to feature such interesting musicians as Simon Nabatov, Hamid Drake and Jim Black.
Wolter Wierbos can be heard on more than 100 CD’s and LP’s. He has released two solo CDs: X Caliber (ICP 032, 1995), “a round-trip tour of his horn, from buzzing mute mutations, grizzly blurts and purring multiphonics to radiant melodies”, and Wierbos (DATA 824), a reissue of his 1982 solo LP with an additional track.
...a total player, with outrageous facility and an inquiring mind... --John Corbett: Down Beat, September 1998
...the great, subtle, razor-eared, sometimes comic trombonist....He can nail difficult written music, pitch-perfect, and also play a quarter tone off, with greasy vibrato like an inspired rural brass-band amateur. --Kevin Whitehead: Coda, May/June 1990
Willing to teach:
Advanced students only.
I am available for private lessons, personal- and group-coaching, masterclasses and workshops. Please contact me per mail or phone (see homepage for numbers).