Choosing the living jazz legend Keith Jarrett as a role model proves good taste and the pianist John Thoma has good taste. Together with his three fellow musicians Andreas Mayerl on bass, drummer Vladimir Kostadiovic and saxophonist Martin Kern, they form the Johannes Thoma Acoustic Quartet and they know their way around the melodic seductiveness of jazz.
"I have a lot of good ideas," says the young Viennese confidently, "but I'm also very self-critical. That's why it took such a long time to finish this album. I wanted it to be perfect, so that I could truly say, look, that's me!"
The album was baptised "Get Real", and although the compositional preparations took some time, we recorded it in only three days in May 2012. Of the twelve songs, one is from Wayne Shorter, three from the band members and eight from Johannes Thoma.
"With 'Fragment' I try to evoke the mood of a very beautiful Italian seaside vacation." Then the eponymous piece, "Get Real", quick and modal to be followed by a title reminiscent of John Coltrane's "The Hitchhiker ". It comes from, so to say, the last century. The album ends with a relatively free improvised piano solo, with "Mister Jay ". "Of course the title is dedicated to Keith Jarrett," says Thoma and affirms: I see myself less as a pianist and more as a composer. "
With this credo he remembers the time, growing up in the blissful, melodious world of Bach and Mozart and learning the classical violin . Only later years was jazz added to the repertoire in the form of Glenn Miller and yes, Keith Jarrett.
You can hear that "Get Real" is the obvious consequence of this music socialisation. So what can listeners expect from this album? For Johannes Thoma, the answer is clear: "Beautiful music. Melodies are very important to me, the colors, the moods. This is mood music in the best sense of the word. Jazz, it raises the spirits and implements the idea of the title "Get Real" in music? Right! "
To me "Get Real" means "live your dream" or 'let your dream come true'. With this album, I have fulfilled a dream. Jazz that puts you in a good mood! That "Get Real" has other fantastic music, in many other ways, doesn't have to be specially mentioned.