Claus Waidtløw

Claus Waidtlow is a jazz musician who has been admired in Denmark for almost two decades. Waidtlow was originally an alto saxophonist. Today, he is best known for his tenor work as well as his inventive compositional skills. Waidtlow is internationally renowned and has been a leading figure in European jazz for many years. He was born in 1967 and has been a part of the Danish music scene ever since 1989. He graduated from the Rhythmic Conservatorium of Copenhagen where he also studied modern composer with Bob Brookmeyer. He won the 1995 international jazz competition in Gexto (Spain) with the group Science Fiction Quartet. Waidtlow’s 1997 debut album, Claustrophobia (Stunt Records), was his first as a leader. It featured Jens Winther, a Danish trumpet player. Waidtlow released From the Story Book (Calibrated Records) in 2005. The album was recorded with the Claus Waidtlow Group. Last year’s Flavours was recorded by the same musicians, now called the Claus Waidtlow Quintet. Waidtlow’s album received rave reviews. One reviewer called Waidtlow “one the most skilled in the art” of playing the saxophone today in Denmark. Another said that Waidtlow was “in a league of his very own.” Flavours, which Waidtlow recorded with the Claus Waidtlow Group, showcases Waidtlow as not only a great saxophonist, but also as an outstanding composer with modern sensibilities and a command of melodic ideas. One reviewer commented on the eight tracks from From the Story Book that “every single composition has an extremely consistent and forward-moving tale, which the listener can follow with great interest starting at the beginning.” Waidtlow’s music is melodic and well-structured logically. However, Waidtlow manages to combine the complex and the simple. His music is rich in substance, but has a lightness and freshness that makes it easy to express the artist’s ideas. Flavours is proof that Claus Waidtlow, a highly talented writer, brings a personal touch and a unique voice to his work. Recognizing his compositional talents has led to several grants over the years, including a grant of two years from the Danish Arts Foundation. Waidtlow has composed music for both small and large ensembles. Waidtlow is a big-band composer and has been asked to compose music for the Aarhus Jazz Orchestra (New Music Orchestra), Aarhus Art Ensemble, and The Orchestra. Waidtlow’s 2015 CD, “Playhouse”, was released. The CD features Waidtlow as a bigband conductor, composer and soloist. The album features Jeff Ballard, the legendary drummer of the Danish Bigband The Orchestra. Waidtlow collaborated with the Kluvers Bigband in Denmark, a great Danish band. This project also featured Jeff Ballard and Rune Olesen, a Swedish pianist Lars Jansson, and percussionist Rune Olesen. Waidtlow recorded Back and Forth (Music Mecca), in New York with Morten Lund and pianist Nikolaj Hess. Waidtlow also collaborated with American bassist Christian McBride. He was nominated in 1996 for the Ben Webster Prize. This is the highest jazz honor in Denmark. He has been a prolific sideman on more than 50 recordings and has performed with great artists like Toots Thielemanns and Eliane Elias. Since June 2006, he has been a member of Aarhus jazz orchestra. Waidtlow is a member of Aarhus Jazz Orchestra since June 2006. He is well-known as an educator and is a permanent faculty member at the Engelsholms Vinter summer jazz camps. He has taught many high-profile artists such as Jeff Ballard and Gretchen Parlato as well as Ben Monder, Antonio Sanchez, Gretchen Parlato, Gretchen Parlato, and Gretchen Parlato.

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