Pianist and Composer
About Roberto Magris’ style, jazz critic Ira Gitler wrote: “as a pianist he reflects some of his most admired models – Wynton Kelly, Tommy Flanagan, Bill Evans, Kenny Drew, Jaki Byard, Randy Weston, McCoy Tyner, Andrew Hill, Paul Bley, Don Pullen and Steve Kuhn (a varied group indeed) – in his own way. There is a quick, supple right hand and the rich harmonies of the two-handed transitions in his playing that don’t necessarily summon up instant comparisons to any of the above or others.”
Born in Trieste (Italy) in 1959 Roberto Magris began his jazz career in the late ‘70s. Since then Mr. Magris has recorded 26 albums with his own groups and has played concerts in 41 different countries in Europe, America, Asia, Africa and Australia, also performing at several top jazz festivals and jazz clubs in the world, including “Catalina Jazz Club” in Hollywood, “The Blue Room” in Kansas City, “The Jazz Bakery” in Los Angeles, “Porgy & Bess” in Vienna, “Unterfahrt” in Munich, “Agharta”, “Reduta” and “Jazz Dock” in Prague, “Muniak Jazz Club” in Krakow, “Jazz Club Gajo” in Ljubljana, “B.P. Jazz Club” in Zagreb, “Half Note” in Athens, “Nardis” in Istanbul, “Atlantis” in Basel, “Bennett’s Lane” in Melbourne, “Thelonious” and “Notorious” in Buenos Aires, “Montreal Jazz Festival”, “San Sebastian Jazz Festival”, “Ocho Rios Jamaica”, “Toronto Downtown”, “Summer Jazz Krakow”, “Atlantic Jazz Festival Halifax”, “Galway Jazz Festival”, “Jazz at Hermitage Moskow”, “Jazzkaar Tallinn”, “Ecuador Jazz”, “Jazz en Lima”, “Gulf Jazz Festival” and many others.
In the ‘80s, Mr. Magris was the leader of a seminal jazz trio named “Gruppo Jazz Marca” and recorded 3 LP’s that were reissued 25 years later on CD format, as collector’s items, by the English label Arision. In the ‘90s, he increased wider recognition on the European and International jazz scene performing and recording CD’s with the “Roberto Magris Quartet”, the progressive jazz bands “DMA Urban Jazz Funk” and “Alfabeats Nu Jazz”. He was and continues to be a prototypical pianist who has also performed and recorded in other settings as well.
Between the years 1998 and 2002, Roberto Magris was the musical director of the “Europlane Orchestra”, a central-European jazz venture sponsored by INCE-CEI (Central European Initiative), and in 2003 he founded the “Roberto Magris Europlane Quintet”. During that period he also recorded 3 CD’s released by the historic Italian jazz label Soul Note: “Check In” (with Tony Lakatos and Michael Erian), “Il Bello Del Jazz” (with Herb Geller, the West Coast jazz icon), and “Current Views” (with Philip Catherine, Bill Molenhof among others). In 2008, he was celebrated as a pianist, composer and arranger in the CD “Restless Spirits: Big Band Ritmo-Sinfonica Città di Verona plays the music of Roberto Magris”, released by the Italian label Velut Luna.
In 2009, Mr. Magris renewed his partnership with Herb Geller, performing together around Europe until the end of Mr. Geller’s illustrious career. Mr. Magris also maintained an enduring friendship and collaboration with Tony Lakatos, playing concerts together in Europe and in the USA, as well as with the Czech bassist Frantisek Uhlir. However, since 2006, Mr. Magris has mainly focused his musical interests in the USA, where he has become the musical director and leading recording artist for JMood Records, the Kansas City jazz label owned by Paul Collins. For JMood Roberto Magris has performed and recorded with jazz legends bassist Art Davis (John Coltrane), Albert “Tootie” Heath, Idris Muhammad, Sam Reed as well as with Brandon Lee, Logan Richardson, Paul Carr, Jimmy “Junebug” Jackson, Hermon Mehari, Matt Otto, Alonzo “Scooter” Powell, Jim Mair, Elisa Pruett, Kendall Moore, Peter Schlamb, Michael O’Neill, Monique Danielle, Julia Haile, Pablo Sanhueza and many other extraordinary musicians. Lately Mr. Magris has performed in the USA with his Kansas City trio, including bassist Dominique Sanders and drummer Brian Steever.
By 2015, Roberto Magris’ discography on JMood Records grew exponentially. It now numbers 11 albums including “Kansas City Outbound”, “Mating Call”, “Morgan Rewind vol. 1 & 2”, “One Night In With Hope And More vol. 1 & 2”, “Cannonball Funk’n Friends”, “Aliens In A Bebop Planet”, “Ready For Reed”, “An Evening With Herb Geller & The Roberto Magris Trio” and “Enigmatix”.
Throughout his career, Roberto Magris has performed with some of the most illustrious names in Jazz. These have included Kai Winding, Eddie Lockjaw Davis and Sal Nistico. He has also collaborated with Franco Ambrosetti, Florian Brambock, Ines Reiger, Rudi Engel, Nikola Matosic, the members of his Italian quartet Ettore Martin, Danilo Gallo and Enzo Carpentieri, Maria Dal Rovere and Paolo Prizzon with the project “Italian Songs In Jazz”, the “Traditional Jazz Studio” from Prague, Ricardo Cavalli in Argentina and the African percussionists in Gabon.
On June 25, 2007, Roberto Magris was honoured with Resolution n° 070726 by the Council of Kansas City (USA) for his contribution in the field of jazz music and for his performance at the American Jazz Museum. On April 3, 2003, Mr. Magris was also honoured with Ordinance n° 0-9614 by the Council of Mar Del Plata (Argentina) for his outstanding career and contribution in the fields of music, culture and society.
FESTIVALS & CONCERTS
Agharta, Jazz Dock and Redita jazz clubs, Prague (Czech Rep. 2015), Trieste Loves Jazz Festival (Italy 2015, 2013, 2009, 2007), Jazz by the lake, Kansas City (USA 2014), Gulf Jazz Festival, Kuwait City and Manama (Kuwait and Bahrain 2013), IIC Los Angeles (USA 2010), White Field Jazz Festival, Bjielo Polje (Montenegro 2010), North City Jazz Fest, Mitrovica (Kosovo 2010), Phoenix Jazz Club, Kansas City (USA 2010,2009), Ecuador Jazz Festival, Quito (Ecuador 2009), Porgy & Bess Vienna (Austria 2009, 2008, 1994), Novi Sad Jazz Festival (Serbia 2009), Ancona Jazz (Italy 2009,1992), Summer Jazz Festival Krakow and Muniak Jazz Club (Poland 2012, 2009,2006), Jazz Time Rijeka (Croatia 2009,1998,1997,1994), The Jazz Bakery, Los Angeles (USA 2008, 2006), Distrito Jazz Bilbao (Spain 2008), Europa Jazz Fest Bucharest (Romania 2008), Manila Piazza Italia Expo (Philippines 2008), The Blue Room, Kansas City (USA 2007), Galway Jazz Festival (Ireland 2007), Nomme Jazz Festival, Tallinn (Estonia 2007), Nardis Jazz Club, Istanbul (Turkey 2007), Downtown Sambosi Jazz Festival, Budapest (Hungary 2007), Catalina’s Jazz Club, Los Angeles (USA 2006), Jazz at the Hermitage Garden, Moscow (Russia 2006), Umbria Jazz (Italy 2006), Notorious and Thelonious, Buenos Aires (Argentina 2006), Centre Culturel Francais, Libreville (Gabon 2006), Centro Cultural Ruta Maya, Managua (Nicaragua 2006), Granados Hall Asuncion and Encarnacion (Paraguay 2006), Aarau and Olten jazzclubs (Switzerland 2005), Hong Kong Performing Arts Festival and Guangzhou Xhinghai Festival (China 2004), Jakarta Festival (Indonesia 2004), Sofia Jazz Peak (Bulgaria 2004), Tashkent Jazz Festival and Samarcanda (Uzbekistan 2003), Melbourne Italian Jazz Festival and Bennett’s Lane Jazzclub (Australia 2003), Jazz en Lima (Perù 2003), Mar del Plata Jazz Festival (Argentina 2003), Jazz Tour Montevideo (Uruguay 2003), No Borders Music (Italy 2003), Kaunas Jazz and Vilnius (Lithuania 2002), Locarno Jazz (Switzerland 2002), Montreal Jazz Festival, Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival and Atlantic Jazz Festival Halifax (Canada 2001), Gostenhofer Jazztage Nuernberg (Germany 2001), Udine Jazz (Italy 2001), Half Note Athens (Greece 2001), Agharta Prague (Czech Rep. 2001), San Sebastian Jazz Festival (Spain 2000), Newport Jazz Festival Torino (Italy 2000), Ocho Rios Jazz Festival (Jamaica 2000), Curacao Jazz Festival (Dutch Antilles 1999), Juan Sebastian Bar Caracas (Venezuela 1999), Jazzkaar Tallin (Estonia 1999), Festival Guanajuato and Festival Olimpio Merìda (Mexico 1999), Festival Jazz Corinthos and Athens Music Festival (Greece 1998), Festival Cervantino, Festival Metepec and Festival Guanajuato (Mexico 1997), Moritzburg Jazz Festival Halle (Germany 1996), Atlantis Basler Jazz Woche (Switzerland 1995), Jazz in Raab (Austria 1994), Int.l Jazz Days Zagreb (Croatia 1993), Jazz Days Liberec (Czech Rep. 1992), Jazz Festival Wuerzburg (Germany 1992), Lange Jazz Nacht Lindau (Germany 1991), Festival Jazz Sant Cugat (Spain 1990), Jazz Ost-West Nuernberg (Germany 1990), Messina Jazz Meeting (Italy 1989), Pannonton Jazz Napok Budapest (Hungary 1989), Prerov Jazz Days (Czech Rep. 1988), Euro Jazz Ivrea (Italy 1988), Sibiu Jazz (Romania 1986), Jazz Festival Gottwaldov and Blansko Jazz Days (Czech Rep. 1986), Cegled Jazz Show (Hungary 1986), Int.l Jazz Festival Prague (Czech Rep. 1984)
INTERVIEWS & REVIEWS
Roberto Magris’ interviews were published by Blu Jazz (1992), All About Jazz USA (2004), Musica Jazz (2005), Jazzit (2006), Jazz Colours (2007), Jazz Magazine (2007), Jazz World Quest (2007), Jazz Wax (2008), All About Jazz Italy (2008), Jazz Convention (2010 and 2013), 4arts (2013), “Artist of the month” at JazzdaGama.com (May 2015), Jazz Journal UK (2015), Musica (2015). Throughout Mr. Magris’ career, reviews of his concerts and Cd’s were published by Down Beat, Jazz Times, New York City Jazz Record, Cadence, Jazz Inside, Jazziz, Jazz Hot, Jazz Podium, Jazzthetik, Goldmine, Allmusic, Jazzman, Jazz Notes, The Wire, Jazz Journal International, Jazzwise, Concerto, Orkester Journalen, Jazzrytmit, Cuadernos de Jazz, Jazzmozaiek, Jazz Flits, Jazz Review, Musica Jazz, Jazzit, Jazzitalia, Acid Jazz, New Age & New Sounds, The Los Angeles Times, Herald Tribune, Capital Times, Pittsburgh Tribune, News & Observer, Herald Sun, La Nacion, Clarin, ABC, El Pais, Toronto Star, El Nacional, The Gleaner, Irish Times, Canberra Times, Jakarta Post, South China Morning Post, El Universal, Jerusalem Post, Nuernberger Zeitung, Mitteldeutsch Zeitung, Basler Zeitung, Tiroler Zeitung, Vjesnik, Novi List, La Repubblica, Corriere della Sera Magazine, Libero, La Discussione, Liberazione, Il Secolo d’Italia among others.
Roberto Magris / Enigmatix (JMood Cd 2015) with Dominique Sanders, Brian Steever, Pablo Sanhueza and Monique Danielle
An Evening With Herb Geller & The Roberto Magris Trio / Live In Europe 2009 (JMood Cd 2014) with Herb Geller, Nikola Matosic and Enzo Carpentieri
Roberto Magris Septet / Morgan Rewind: A Tribute To Lee Morgan, Vol. 2 (JMood Cd 2014) with Hermon Mehari, Jim Mair, Peter Schlamb, Elisa Pruett, Brian Steever and Pablo Sanhueza
Roberto Magris Trio / One Night In With Hope And More…, Vol. 2 (JMood Cd 2013) with Elisa Pruett, Brian Steever and Albert “Tootie” Heath
Roberto Magris Quintet / Cannonball Funk’n Friends (JMood Cd 2013) with Hermon Mehari, Jim Mair, Dominique Sanders and Alonzo “Scooter” Powell
Sam Reed Meets Roberto Magris / Ready For Reed (JMood Cd 2013) with Sam Reed, Kendall Moore, Steve Lambert, Dominique Sanders, Brian Steever and Pablo Sanhueza
Roberto Magris Space Trek / Aliens In A Bebop Planet (JMood Cd 2012) with Matt Otto, Dominique Sanders, Brian Steever, Pablo Sanhueza and Eddie Charles
Roberto Magris Trio / One Night In With Hope And More…, Vol. 1 (JMood Cd 2012) with Elisa Pruett and Albert “Tootie” Heath
Roberto Magris Quintet / Morgan Rewind: A Tribute To Lee Morgan, Vol. 1 (JMood Cd 2011) with Brandon Lee, Logan Richardson, Elisa Pruett and Albert “Tootie” Heath
Roberto Magris Quartet with Voice / Canzoni Italiane In Jazz (Pop-eye Cd 2011) with Maria Dal Rovere
Roberto Magris Quintet / Mating Call (JMood Cd 2010) with Paul Carr, Michael O’Neill, Elisa Pruett and Idris Muhammad
Roberto Magris & The Europlane Orchestra / Current Views (Soulnote Cd 2009) with Philip Catherine, Bill Molenhof, Roberto Ottaviano a.o.
Big Band Ritmo-Sinfonica Città di Verona plays the music of Roberto Magris / Restless Spirits (Velut Luna Cd 2009)
Kansas City Outbound / Roberto Magris Trio (JMood/PCAMI Cd 2008) with Art Davis, Jimmy “Junebug” Jackson and Zack Albetta
Roberto Magris Europlane a.o. / Jazz Magazine N. 55 (Cd compilation 2007)
Roberto Magris Europlane feat. Herb Geller / Il Bello del Jazz (Soulnote Cd 2006) with Herb Geller a.o.
Alfabeats Nu Jazz / Stones (Oasis Cd 2006)
Roberto Magris Europlane feat. Tony Lakatos / Check In (Soulnote Cd 2005) with Tony Lakatos, Michael Erian a.o.
Europlane Orchestra / Plays Kurt Weill (Pull Cd 2000) with Ines Reiger a.o.
Europlane Orchestra / Live at Zooest (Zooest Cd 1998) with Frantisek Uhlir, Darko Jurkovic, Marko Lackner, Lojze Krajncan a.o.
Dma Urban Jazz Funk (Map Cd 1998) reissued as “Up to the beat!” (Map Cd 2003)
Dma Urban Jazz Funk a.o. / Acid Jazz Magazine N. 77 (Cd compilation 2003)
Dma Urban Jazz Funk a.o. / New Age & New Sounds Magazine N. 126 (Cd compilation 2003)
Dma Urban Jazz Funk a.o. / Vocal Groove & Jazz Dance (Srazz Cd compilation 1996)
Roberto Magris Quartet a.o. / Trieste e il Jazz (Ed. Fenice – book/Cd compilation 2002)
Roberto Magris Quintet a.o. / Live al Vapore (Srazz Cd compilation 1995) with Florian Brambock a.o.
Roberto Magris Quartet / Maliblues (Map Cd 1994)
Roberto Magris & The D.I. Project / Music of Today (Splasch Cd 1992) with Achim Goettert, Joerg Drewing, Albrecht Riermeyer, Martin Klingeberg, Rudi Engel a.o.
Roberto Magris Israsextet / Life in Israel (Jazzis Cd 1990) with Ofer Israeli, Larry Smith a.o.
Gruppo Jazz Marca / Mitteleuropa (Gulliver Lp 1986) reissued by Arision (Cd 2006)
Gruppo Jazz Marca / Aria di Città (IAF Lp 1983) reissued by Arision (Cd 2009)
Gruppo Jazz Marca / Comunicazione Sonora (IAF Lp 1982) reissued by Arision (Cd 2005)
Herb Geller & Roberto Magris Group: If I were a Bell – Live Performance from Novi Sad Jazz Festival