Christoph Grab, tenor saxophone | Nicole Johänntgen, alto saxophone | Marcel Thomi, hammond | Elmar Frey, drums

Root Area

Christoph Grab: Root Area, the soul side of jazz with Hammond organ and Nicole Johänntgen

JazzAscona is delighted to host one of the most significant, versatile and creative Swiss Jazzmen of today. Some have rightly called him “a tradition-conscious modernist.”  We are talking about Christoph Grab, saxophonist, composer and arranger, who for his artistic merits will be rewarded with the Swiss Jazz Award 2023, the prize that JazzAscona annually gives to outstanding personalities of the Swiss Jazz scene and which will be presented to Grab at his concert on June 24.

Christoph Grab has had Andy Scherrer, Sal Nistico, Jerry Bergonzi, Joe Lovano and Dave Liebman among his teachers and mentors. He boasts numerous radio and television recordings, countless tours, concerts, and performances around the world with the likes of Ray Anderson, Wolfgang Muthspiel, Irene Schweizer, Benny Golson, Joe Beck, Mark Egan, Danny Gottlieb, Frank Moebus, and many others.
Grab is also highly sought after as a freelancer and is active internationally in various ensembles and with various personal projects that reinterpret the roots of Jazz in a contemporary key. At JazzAscona he will present three projects: Reflections (on June 24), Tough Tenor (on June 27) and Root Area (on June 28).

With Root Area, Christoph Grab presents his updated and timeless version of soul Jazz. The hammond organ is on the honors and the addition of the great German musician Nicole Johänntgen on alto sax ideally complements the band’s sound with her energy and unmistakable groove. Whether inspired by blues, New Orleans funk, gospel or Swiss folk songs, the band manages to create a veritable short circuit between the past and present that releases phenomenal energy, gifting the audience with unique and exhilarating performances.

Root Area
28.6 2023

First time at JazzAscona!