In memory of Johnny Peret

In memory of Johnny Peret
In memory of my friend Johnny Peret, vibist, drummer, accordeonist extraordinaire

Friday, September 28, 2012


Niels Jorgen Steen’s Beatkapel Plays Jazz
(Denmark, 1976)

An album of good time Jazz found last year in Brussels.  I must confess that I was totally unfamiliar with these musicians but the album looked OK the track list had a few hard swinging favorites (Gee and Hey Lock to name a couple). It was pretty cheap (found in a second-hand bookshop that had a few LPs, not a specialist shop), I decided to pick it up and was pleasantly surprised.  It is middle-jazz but of the very swinging variety. 

It seems that the Beatkapel was a very popular band in the 70s in Denmark. These guys are swinging like there was no tomorrow and the interplay between the musicians are quite enjoyable and something special.

I could not find much info on the Net  in any language I know.  I found some info on Niels Jorgen Steen on the Danish version of Wikipedia.  Here is what I could make out of it: 

Niels Jorgn Steen (born 1939) is a Danish pianist and band leader, active in Jazz since the late fifties.  He played regularly with the Arnvid Meyers Orchestra,  a dance / jazz band which had occasionally guests of the caliber of Ben Webster or Harry Edison.  During the Seventies, he led the Beatkapel and, for a while, the Danish Radio Big Band.  As from 1987 he became part of the A-Team,  an informal big band featuring the cream of the Danish Jazz musicians, such as Peter Thorup and Bobo Moreno.

Info in English on tenor sax Jesper Thilo can be found  here.

Niels Jørgen Steen's Beatkapel plays Jazz - RCA (S) YDLP1-716

Jesper Thilo (ts) Niels Jørgen Steen (p) Torben Munk (g) Hugo Rasmussen (b) Ove Rex (d) Asger Rosenberg (vcl-1)
Copenhagen, August   1976

How high the moon-
Wait around 
I cried for you (1)
Lang Kedelig blues
Hey Lock 
Cotton tail 
Ghost of a chance
Flat foot floogie

It is very hard not to get in a damn good mood listening to the music on this album.

Note : the entire session was re-issued on CD with bonus tracks on Music Mecca (DK) CD1010-2. Get it if you can!