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Sal La Rocca

Born: August 20, 1961    Primary Instrument: Bass, acoustic

Sal La Rocca

- Sal La Rocca / Double Bass Player / Composer

Sal LA ROCCA is one of Belgium’s most in-demand double bassists. He has played alongside Toots THIELEMANS, Philip CATHERINE, Steve GROSSMAN, Lee KONITZ… After a stint with rock playing guitar, at age 23, he discovers jazz in the early 80′s and switches to double bass which he intensively explores on his own, taking as a model Paul CHAMBERS.

Sal has released two albums under his own name, such as Latinea (2003) and It Could Be The End (2012) with : Lorenzo DI MAIO (guitar), Pascal MOHY (piano) and Hans van OOSTERHOUT (drs) featuring: Jacques SCHWARZ-BART (tenor sax) on the IGLOO label...
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“ Wednesday June 8, 2011 Nominees for the Sabam Jazz Awards 2011 are known Nominees for the Sabam Jazz Awards 2011 are known : Gino Lattuca (tp), Jacques Pirotton (gt), Fabrice Alleman (sax), SAL LA ROCCA (b) & Michel Hatzigeorgiou (b). The award will ne announced on July 16 2011 durig the Dinant Jazz Nights.” Lundi D'Hortense - Jazz in Belgium
Sal La Rocca / Press

“Northern Europe boasts many excellent players, so it’s no surprise to find a quintet this good from the buttoned-up city of Brussels. It’s led by a resonant double bassist, a gifted composer who has a distinctive and hypermodern touch. Two Belgians, guitarist Lorenzo di Maio and pianist Pascal Mohy, contribute elegant solos, but the star turn is really Jacques Schwartz-Bart, a world-class tenorist from Guadeloupe who has toured with US trumpeter Roy Hargrove a few years back. His serpentine lines are always a pleasure to follow but it’s La Rocca’s simple-sounding yet artfully harmonised themes that make this album special. The only standard here is Crescent, a John Coltrane lament that inspires solos worthy of its composer.” RICK PEARSON (London Evening Standard) - CDs of the week: It Could Be the End (Igloo)

”Sal La Rocca, an emblematic figure of the Belgian bass for twenty years, high rock, courted by all the jazz greats through Belgium (Lee Konitz, Steve Grossman and many others)...” Etienne Payen - - It Could Be The End -

”This is the second album on the Belgian Ilgoo label by highly respected double bass player Sal La Rocca - with special guest Jacques Schwarz-Bart on saxophone - plus : Lorenzo Di Maio, guitar, Pascal Mohy, piano, and Hans Van Oosterhout, drums.” Discovery Records - Discovery catalogue available for Sal La Rocca

”Nine original La Rocca compositions give the players full scope to take rewarding harmonic and rhythmic excursions, blending a rock energy with jazz improvisation, yet La Rocca’s roots are still very much from Paul Chambers and Ray Brown.” Discovery Records - Discovery catalogue available for Sal La Rocca

“LINE UP of J.Schwarz-Bart -”I was already aware of Sal’s remarkable talent on bass. I also got to enjoy his qualities as a human being during our conversations. But this recording session was the opportunity for me to discover the composer and exceptional leader that he is. He has his own style of writing and chose musicians capable of following his vision on these recordings. The experience was a pure joy for me. It’s one of the records I’m most proud of.” Jacques Schwarz-Bart” Jacques Schwarz-Bart - Igloo-records

“Sal La Rocca, is one of the talented bassists and the most popular of the Belgian jazz scene. He played with Toots Thielemans, Philip Catherine, Nathalie Loriers, Anne Ducros, Jacques Pelzer, Lee Konitz, Steve Houben, Steve Grossman and many more. For this second album, It Could Be The End, Sal La Rocca has surrounded himself with “sizes” Belgian and international, including Jacques-Scharwz Bart (NY, Paris) and Hans Van Oosterhout (NL), who ally themselves with subtlety and intelligence in this ambitious project.” Flagey, FM Brussel

“SAL LA ROCCA Sal La Rocca, is one of Belgium's most in-demand double bassists. He has played alongside Toots, Philip Catherine, Nathalie Loriers and Anne Ducros (in France). Other musicians with whom Sal played : John RUOCCO, Gianni BASSO, Harold LAND, Jack VAN POLL, Kris DEFOORT, Ali RYERSON, Paolo RADONI, Félix SIMTAINE, John ENGELS, Philip CATHERINE, Michel HERR, Guy CABAY, André CECCARELLI, Mourad BENHAMOU, David LINX, Deborah BROWN, Sheila JORDAN, Mark MURPHY, Steve GROSSMAN, Ch. HIRSON, Bert JORIS, Jiggs WIGHAM, Dave TURNER, Michel GRAILLIER, Salvatore BONAFEDE, Stéphane BELMONDO, Lee KONITZ, Gordon BECK, Anne DUCROS, Olivier HUTMAN, Stanley JORDAN, Randy BRECKER, Bob FRANCESCHINI, Richie BEIRACH, Scott HAMILTON, Didier LOCKWOOD, Tony LAKATOS, Bobby DURHAM, Dani KLEIN, Jacques SCHWARZ-BART, William LECOMTE, Emanuele CISI... ” Christiane Gillaerts - Igloo-records

”An album that comes singular and the plural is conjugated in the present, past and future, a contemporary jazz album in the form of travel with every step, a song to hum and top-level soloists to follow in their wanderings harmonic and rhythmic. To be fair, a record signed by a bassist-leader often looks like two drops of water to another disk signed by a bassist-leader: as a heavy hand on the status of coach - spotlight on bassist, all mine themes, all the first chorus, the coda ... This second album of Sal La Rocca cleverly avoids the trap: the universe only compositional (except Crescent) is the exclusive work of the leader, for the rest, the balance is impeccable and each musician grew out of the adventure. It Could Be The End? Not at all answered the echo!” JPS, Maison du Jazz Jean-Paul Schroeder - Igloo-Records

”The unique sound of Thielemans’ instrument is simultaneously pleasing to the ear and yet evocative of days gone by. Track one also prominently displays the talents of one of four rhythm sections in Vol.1. - For this number he’s joined by Nathalie Loriers on piano, SAL LA ROCCA on bass, and Bruno Castellucci on drums — they each get noteworthy solos. I thought SAL LA ROCCA was going to steal the show for a moment with an attention-getting solo on bass”. FCEtier - Music Review: Toots Thielemans — The Live Takes Vol.

”Sal La Rocca is someone who has played a lot with my father, who also appears in “Après un rêve” and after the album of Pascal Mohy. It can make all the sauces because it's an exceptional musician. He brings a lot of stability, musical: it's very nice. I must also say that, humanly, is a very interesting person.” - G.Houben Claude LOXHAY - G.Houben/Jazzaround

- “We knew Sal La Rocca on double bass sound. Less was known composer. The latter shows its strength and subtlety in this album, where he composed all but one of Coltrane recovery. Excellent melodies on which Jacques Schwarz-Bart (sax), Lorenzo Di Maio (guitar) and Pascal Mohy (piano) improvise with superb. Sal and Hans van Ossterhout (drums) provide an impeccable rhythm. A very successful album, the funky and funny accent”.” (J.-C. V.) - It Could Be The End

“Sal la Rocca band Sal La Rocca, most of our bass pirate, undertakes a quest for some years as passionate as it was unexpected. A quest that we discover a very different musician's image sideman bop partner Steve Grossman, Jacques Pelzer and Bob Mover. Mindful perhaps of his distant rock tinged debut, Sal La Rocca surrounds himself for his own projects, guitarists with an approach to the instrument that combines energy and rock sounds, and jazz improvisations. It has just been released a second album IGLOO Records in 5tet, entitled “It Could Be The End”, where we find sizes of Belgian and international, including Jacques-Scharwz Bart (NY, Paris) and Hans Van Oosterhout (NL) , who ally themselves with subtlety and intelligence in this ambitious project. ” La Louvière Metrope Culture - Carte blanche to Igloo - jazz

“Latinea -Sal La Rocca Already a recognised sideman, Sal La Rocca has brought together a few long-standing friends in a surprising quintet: the Sal La Rocca quintet, featuring Bruno Castellucci, Jacques Pirotton, Peter Hertmans and Kris Goessens. The fruit of this encounter is the first album “Latinea”. Sal La Rocca offers us new original compositions that are both colourful and generous, dipping us in an environment in which jazz is king. From his wide experience, Sal gave the record a cohesive group sound. Each musician finds room enough to express himself, with the various voices combining in a surprising result. ” Igloo-records

As A Leader

Album Name: LATINEA
Artist Name: Sal La Rocca
Record Label: Igloo-record
Year Released: 2003
Tracks: 10
Peter Hertmans (gt)
Jacques Pirrotton (gt)
Chris Geossens (p)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Bruno Castellucci (drs)

As A Side Musician

Album Name: LEE KONITZ & J.F.PRINS "trio"-
-Live at the Manhattan Jazz Club-
-Feat.: Sal La Rocca & Bruno Castellucci

Artist Name: Konitz/Prins
Record Label: Gam 915
Year Released: 1995
Tracks: 6
Lee Konitz (a.sax)
Jean-François Prins (gt)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Bruno Castellucci (drs)

Album Name: TOOTS THIELEMANS - The Live Takes
Artist Name: Toots Thielemans
Record Label: Quetzal-records
Year Released: 1999
Tracks: 9 (Sal appears on track 1)
Toots Thielemans (harm.)
Nathalie Loriers (p)
Michel Heer (p)
Kenny Werner (p)
Michel Hatzigeorgiou (elect.b)
Sal La Rocca (up.b)
Jay Anderson (up.b)
Bruno Castellucci (p)
Adam Nussbaum (p)
Jukkis Uotila (drs)

Artist Name: Anne Ducros
Record Label: Dreyfus-Jazz
Year Released: 2001
Tracks: 11
Anne Ducros (voc.)
Didier Lockwood (violin, tp)
Gordon Beck (p)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Bruno Castellucci (drs)

Album Name: PIANO, piano
Artist Name: Anne Ducros
Record Label: Dreyfus-Jazz
Year Released: 2005
Tracks: 12
Anne Ducros (voc.)
Chick Corea, Jacky Terrasson, Enrico Pieranunzi,-
- Rene Urtreger, Benoît De Mesmay (p)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Manu Roch, Karl Jannuska (drs)

Artist Name: Olivier Hutman 4tet
Record Label: Plus loin music
Year Released: 2006
Tracks: 7
Olivier Hutman (p)
Jacques Schwarz-Bart (t.sax)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Hans Van Oosterhout (drs)

Record Label Name: Igloo-record
Year released:2008
Tracks: 10
Sabin Todorov; (p)
Sal La Rocca; (b)
Lionel Beuvens; (drs)

Album Name: VAYA CON DIOS (Comme on est venu)
Artist Name: Vaya Con Dios feat. Dani Klein
Record Label: Columbia
Year Released: 2009
Tracks: 13
Dani Klein (voc.)
Tim De Jonghe (tp)
red Gjeci (violin)
Francis Perez (gt)
William Lecomte (p)
Sal La Rocca (b)
Hans Van Oosterhout (drs)
Guests: Toots Thielemans, Philip Catherine,...

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Date Venue Ticket
May15 Sazz'N' Jazz
Brussels, 1210, Belgium
Jun18 Jacques Pelzer Jazz Club
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Download jazz mp3 “Standpoint” by Sal La Rocca Download jazz mp3 “Crescent (J.Coltrane)” by Sal La Rocca Download jazz mp3 “Insomnia” by Sal La Rocca
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Download jazz mp3 “A Light Wind Blew Through Your Hair” by Sal La Rocca

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