More on the August Zawinul/McFerrin Performances

Zawinul and Bobby McFerrin played a series of three concerts together in August, and Roger Biwandu, the drummer on those dates, filled me in on the performances.

The line up with Zawinul and McFerrin was just Linley [Marthe] on bass and me–a great quartet. We saw each other during the soundcheck in Germany to see what we could play. It was already great and we knew that there would be a lot of improvisations. To me the first show was the best, surely because of the magic of first shows. We were like connected, the beginning and the ending, the solos, everything was some pure magic. The audience felt it, and it was awesome. The last show was in Marciac, one of the bigger jazz festivals in the world. A lot of media people were there and the huge place was sold out. The shows we did in Germany and in Spain were very crowded too, but Marciac is really big. Joe and Bobby started the show together by improvising for half an hour, and when Linley and I arrived on stage it was to play a fast and very energic “Bimoya” that the Syndicate fans know for sure. We also played “Badia” and “Fast City/Two Lines.” It was great and the crowd was on fire!!!

It was a very great experience and really nice to be on stage and to improvise with this music genius. Bobby is a big Weather Report fan (like everybody), so often we were singing some old tunes written by Joe that he himself cannot remember!!! It was just fun.

You can check out Roger’s other projects at his web site, www.rogerbiwandu.com.

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