Concert

Iiro Rantala “My Working Class Hero” (A Tribute to John Lennon)

Concert
Iiro Rantala “My Working Class Hero” (A Tribute to John Lennon)

Iiro Rantala probably “Finland's best known jazz musician internationally,” (Jazz Finland) has been an ACT exclusive artist since 2009. His years with the label have witnessed a steep rise in his renown outside Finland, and have produced a series of major albums, each one a significant and contrasting statement. He is an artist in his absolute prime, and now has the international standing that he so richly deserves. A major public figure and musical advocate in Finland.

As a teenager, Iiro Rantala was playing in several jazz and pop groups around Finland. When his Trio Töykeät was formed in 1988, Rantala concentrated on this group for 18 years. The trio were known for a unique combination of deep musicality and madcap humour, and played over 2,000 shows in forty-five countries.

At age of 26, Rantala also started a career in classical music, playing Mozart concertos and Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” with Finlands leading orchestras.

Rantala's move to ACT proved a success from the start. His first release for the label was “Lost Heroes,” a solo piano album which came out in February 2011. It was hailed as “a giant of an album” by AllAboutJazz.com, and “a masterpiece” (Süddeutsche Zeitung). It earned him the 2012 ECHO Jazz award for Best International Pianist, and the album received the annual prize of the Deutsche Schallplattenkritik. It has proved of lasting value: in early 2016 it was garlanded with a German Jazz GOLD Award.

Rantala’s thoughtful solo piano tribute to John Lennon “My Working Class Hero” brought a different, more reflective side, a “liturgy of memories and love for the music.” (LondonJazz News)

Iiro Rantala was asked earlier this year to name his favourite piano players. “Richard Tee, Egberto Gismonti, Keith Jarrett and Michel Petrucciani,” he responded. The surprising name in there is the first one. Tee was a studio player on countless soul and R&B albums, who died in 1993. That influence is to the fore on “How Long is Now” (2016), an “infectious, tuneful and swinging trio album” (Times of London) made with Lars Danielsson on bass and Peter Erskine on drums.

6 October 2017 Friday 20:00

Akbank Sanat

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