Erik Truffaz, the French trumpeter has taken the original spirit of the fusion movement and applied it to the highly creative jazz scene in Paris. Two years after the album The Walk of the Giant Turtle.

By Suzi Wonder (Contributor)

Published: Wed 15 Jun 2005, 12:55 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 6:20 PM

A whirlwind of progressive electronic rock, he is back with a new album titled Saloua, bringing together the many elements of his previous work. Joined by Mounir Troudi and Nya on vocals, the Ladyland Acoustic Quartet and the more electronic collective featuring Marcello Giuliani, Marc Erbetta and Patrick Muller.

Born in 1960, Truffaz was inspired to play music by his saxophonist father who led a dance band. He took up the trumpet as a youngster and joined his father on the bandstand. As his technique grew, Truffaz linked up with other bands before being introduced to Miles Davis Classic Kind Of Blue. This led him to study music at the Geneva Conservatoire in Switzerland where he learned to perform classical works by the likes of Mozart and Verdi. In addition to playing in the Orchestre de Suisse Romande, Truffaz played in cover bands while also writing his own jazz-infused music. In 1990 he formed a jazz band called Orange and the following year won the prestigious French jazz award, the Prix Special. Since the mid-90s, Truffaz has been a mover-and-shaker on the European creative improvisational scene. As a leader of his self-named group, Truffaz recorded his first album Nina Valeria and appeared on stages throughout Europe, including the Montreux Jazz Festival. Erik Truffaz will be onstage in Dubai for the first time on Thursday June 16.

Tell us about your upcoming performance in Dubai.

I'm very happy to come to Dubai because I've never been here. I'm a little sad because my Tunisian singer could not get a visa. I thought it would be great to come to Dubai with the singer because a part of my music is Arab music but I will come with my rapper and the band.

You've performed in stages everywhere so is every performance fresh and new for you?

Yes, every performance is new and important. Every performance is not he same and I don't prepare what I will play beforehand because I have a big repertoire so I try to take the energy and the vibe of the audience and the place and I choose the songs to perform on stage.

Of the American electro-acoustic and fusion masters of the 70s and 80s, i.e., Miles Davis, Chick Corea, Electrik and Akoustik Bands, Weather Report, etc., who would you say influenced your sound the most?

It's a mix of all these people, you know. But I think our influence comes from Miles Davis and the acid jazz band music stuff with a mix of drum and bass and trip-hop bands who come from London, England.

Like Miles, your trumpet playing is pretty innovative to be sure.

I'm not sure!! (Laughs)

As far as the whole European electro-acoustic movement having moved over to America now, would you say we're once again on the threshold of electronic jazz sort of like the music Miles Davis, Pat Metheny, Joe Zawinul, Chick Corea and others were innovating in the late 60s, 70s and 80s?

Yes, but we really can say that in a few years, but not now. In 10 years we can say this but now, we really don't know. The future of electronics and jazz is one of the new waves right now on the French scene however.

You're constantly pushing the boundaries of jazz. How do you keep yourself constantly creative and inspired?

I'm not always inspired. I have to work a lot (Laughs) but I'm not the only one. Charlie Chaplin once said that he fought everyday to find a new idea. It's like this, you have to keep awake. I have to listen to what is happening everywhere in the world of music. I love to hear new music and check out what the young musicians are doing everywhere and that's my inspiration.

Erik Truffaz and The Ladyland Quartet Live in Dubai Thursday, June 16 at the Shangri-La Hotel's Al-Nojoom Ballroom. For ticket info, call 04 390 8243 or 050 858 7311.

Tune in for your chance to win Super VIP package including 3-course gourmet dinner for 2, a Blue Note Jazz CD, and more. Concert tickets with Suzi Wonder this week from 8pm - midnight on Radio 2.

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