Born: January 10, 1978 Primary Instrument: Piano
Kekko Fornarelli is one of the most widely appreciated young pianists internationally. His unique ways of balancing an endless research with universal usability, and his ability to draw the profanes up to that foreign thing called jazz makes him one of the most eclectic and pervasive artists in the current international music scene. His unique style is characterized by its attempt to create music to observe, more than just to listen to. A way to tell stories, emotions and situations. Numerous are his collaborations with prestigious Italian and international jazz artists : Rosario Giuliani, Flavio Boltro, Michel Benita, Francesco Bearzatti, Luca Bulgarelli, Yuri Goloubev, Benjamin Henocq, Nicolas Folmer, Jerome Regard, Manhu Roche, Andy Gravish, Eric Prost, Marco Tamburini, Jean-Luc Rimey Meille.
Kekko Fornarelli was born in Bari, Italy in 1978. He began learning classical piano at the age of three, first through private tuition and later at the Conservatorio Piccinni in Bari. Fornarelli’s love for jazz music began at the age of 18. From there on, Kekko has immersed himself in the study of the instrument, the style, and the music, a life journey which has led him to travel worldwide creating opportunities for meeting a great number of artists and developing his skills. Fornarelli’s first album, Circular Thought, released by the record label Wide Sound in 2005, was critically acclaimed as one of the best Italian jazz projects of the year. He moved to France in the same year, where he spent three years pursuing his studies towards his personal idea of music. The collaborations with different artists, such as Manhu Roche, Flavio Boltro and Rosario Giuliani, led him to publish the second album in 2008, A French Man in New York, also released by Wide Sound and distributed by Egea . The album is an innovative project taking inspiration from French pianist Michel Petrucciani. His last album, Room of mirrors, was released by AUAND records and distributed by Egea in 2011.
The late Esbjorn Svensson transformed the piano trio with his use of electronic effects and a penchant for dynamic melodies that strayed far out to the fringes of jazz. Unsurprisingly, he inspired a new wave of pianists. With Room of Mirrors, Kekko Fornarelli has positioned himself as the torch bearer of the New Piano Trio. Kekko’s talent as pianist and composer is evidenced in his fearless use of dramatic tension and the wisdom to never let it devolve into silliness. On double bass, Luca Bulgarelli sticks to the shadows, revealing his presence with an uplifting lyricism. Gianlivio Liberti’s percussion is an elegant touch that softens the edges. The electronics ebb and flow, never gimmicky, never intrusive. A smart recording with an emotional presence. Evocative and addictive - Dave Sumner
Circular Thought (Wide Sound, 2007)
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