Raw energy and passion – these are the trademarks of Peter Protschka’s playing and composing. The Cologne based Jazz trumpeter, one of the leading European trumpeters of his generation, considers them a bow to the American Jazz tradition as it has developed since the early nineteen-sixties. But at the same time they always exhibit a rather personal and European touch.
"I’ve always been fascinated by and drawn towards the music of the Hard and Post Bop eras. I love the energy and soul, the sense of humor and the lifestyle that are characteristic of this style", says Protschka himself. "That's why the sound of this era will always shine through all my Jazz projects, whether it is my current quartet or my Art Blakey tribute sextet, The Art Of The Message. Of course the quartet doesn't sound like an American band of the sixties – not least because we all have a completely different background than the musicians of that time. But I've always been interested in the sound of certain historical periods, which is why I also listen to a lot of Classical music. I've started several crossover projects, where I sometimes play a Baroque trumpet."
Apart from Classical influences, Protschka carefully weaves present-day musical trends into his music that go far beyond Postbop. However, he still considers those legendary groups and their composers to be his most important source of inspiration. "Musicians like Kenny Barron, Joe Henderson, Tom Harrell, or Wynton Marsalis have left us seminal recordings, and some of them continue to do so to this day. For me, this is not living in the distant past, but continuing and developing a great tradition."
Protschka lives in the middle of Cologne and has traveled frequently during the last few years – regular visits to New York and Paris were among his trips. That's where he gets to fill up on inspiration and energy. The urban sound of these cities is characteristic of his music, which represents an honest commitment to his own musical truth.