Born: February 16, 1949 Primary Instrument: Composer/conductor
Michel Herr, Belgian-born jazz pianist and composer/arranger, played with an impressive list of well known jazz musicians : Joe Henderson, Archie Shepp, Chet Baker, Joe Lovano, Charlie Mariano, Johnny Griffin, Slide Hampton, Art Farmer, Lee Konitz, Bill Frisell, John Abercrombie, Billy Hart, top European musicians such as Philip Catherine, Palle Mikkelborg, Daniel Humair, Aldo Romano, Palle Danielsson, Arild Andersen, Norma Winstone, Riccardo Del Fra, Richard Galliano, Francois Jeanneau, Paolo Fresu..., as well as the cream of the Belgian jazz scene.
Michel Herr played during many years with Toots Thielemans, and toured with him through Europe, Japan, the US.
Michel Herr has led several groups, from the trio to the big band, which feature his numerous compositions.
Achievements as a composer and arranger :
Internationally known as composer and arranger (Monaco Composition Prize in 88). He wrote for several big bands (a.o. WDR Big Band, ACT Big Band, Brussels Jazz Orchestra, Metropole Orchestra etc...), for numerous albums and signed several soundtracks for TV and film, such as Just Friends, featuring Archie Shepp. In 98 he entered the Hall of Fame for his career achievements in the Belgian jazz critics poll '98. He wrote arrangements for many soloists, a.o. for the album Changing Facesof singer David Linx with the Brussels Jazz orchestra, and for Ivan Paduart, Bob Malach and Fay Claassen and the Metropole Orchestra (NL).
A double album of his big band music with the Brussels Jazz Orchestra was released in February 2008 under the title The Music of Michel Herr.
He wrote all the arrangements for Thierry Lang and David Linx's Colors of Time project (released on cd in 2013), featuring a jazz band, a large choir and strings. More than 70 musicians and singers !
A large discography :
Michel Herr appears on more than 80 albums, under his own name as well as with Joe Lovano, Toots Thielemans, Bill Frisell, Archie Shepp, Philip Catherine, Tom Harrell...
Albums as a leader or co-leader
Albums as a piano player, composer, arranger, etc...
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Big band clinics with his own compositions.