Born: January 13, 1968 Primary Instrument: Guitar
A&R, consultant, author, composer and guitarist
Without doubt Konig is today one of the finest composer, guitarist's residing in the United Kingdom. A contemporary jazz player with some international acclaim, Konig has performed, recorded and toured with many of the leading musicians in the field of popular music.
Konig, translate king in German, born Derrick Wallace in 1968 in Edgbaston Birmingham of Jamaican parentage, was age 15 when he attended Birmingham Guitar school. Two years later, he successfully audition at Goldsmiths University in London and was offered a place to study with jazz guitar Peter Driver, columnist for Guitarist magazine.
Back in Birmingham, he gained experience playing a wider variety of music. Indeed, Konig immersed himself into the role of a consummate student playing a myriad of styles, Latin, Pop, Rock, Jazz, Calypso, Gospel and Reggae.
Enrolling with the Birmingham Conservatoire proved to be the turning point in both his academic and music career. Whilst still a student, international jazz legend Andy Hamilton beseeched him to join his band the Blue Notes.
With Konig on board, the Blue Notes performed on British radio, and television before proceeding on a tour of the UK to promote their album JAMAICA BY NIGHT. Being a major contributor to the album served much to heighten Konig’s profile across the UK.
On graduation from the Birmingham Conservatoire, Konig taught music throughout the United Kingdom alongside some of his fellow graduates. Meanwhile, feeling the call to perform, he found work as a studio musician in Manchester, England. And, it was then that he was drafted into becoming a Westone guitar endorsee and demonstrator. The Westone sound was heard and seen on the Gomez Tour of the United Kingdom in 1999.
Leaving Blue Notes to study jazz at the Julia Crane School of Music in New York allowed Konig to be mentored by Yamaha endorsee and world-renowned big band conductor/composer Prof Bret Zvacek.
Signed to Revolver Music in early 2000, he delivered his first album, a 12-track CD, NEW LEAF that debuted at number 8 on Radio WM album charts. Change, the sophomore CD, was recorded for Wheatsheaf Production.
In 2004 Konig released his third album CD BIRMINGHAM 3, an album featuring his newly stemmed fusion trio, called Birmingham Three, that includes himself on guitar, Kristopher ‘Bear’ Currie, on bass and Chris Brown on drums.
KØnig achieved commercial success in South Africa when he appeared in a musical drama at the South African State Theatre. Immediately after, in August 2005, the musician, given to academics, took a haitus to complete post graduate studies for a Master of Arts degree in music, he graduated with honours.
The multifaceted, multi-talented jazz musician currently moonlights as a consultant in academia advising Masters degree students in areas of Law and Arts.
A considered expert on guitars, Konig not only possesses a harem of 11 top-make guitars, two of which he is an official spokeman, but also is the author of a book on the subject. The book 50 GUITARISTS, which is in the bookshop and on Amazon UK since 24th May 2007, gives an historical and geographical perspective to fifty most accomplished, yet largely unknown, UK based guitarists.
Whilst continuing his multifarious, extra-musical, involvement in Birminghan, England, the gifted guitarist continue his focus in the grand effort to establish himself as an artist of world renown. Well on the way, he has etched his name performing in Ireland, across Europe, US and Canada, South Africa and Jamaica.
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