ECHOES OF FREEDOM
Oboman: Oboe, English Horn
Johan Renard: Violin
Claude Tchamitchian: Bass
François Merville: Drums
"We never go as far as when we don't know where we're going..."
Over 50 years after the release of the album “The Shape of Jazz to Come” by Ornette Coleman, the desire to explore unknown territory remains strong. Jean-Luc “Oboman” Fillon and François Méchali, artists that are rich with numerous musical experiences, draw the contours of a new musical project.
At the crossroads of jazz and improvised music, “Echoes of Freedom” is a project for which the different musical aesthetics brought by each member of the group is the determining factor : classical and contemporary music for some, Indian music, flamenco or Arabic-Andalucían music for others. The Group’s identity is built on a gathering of strong musical personalities, talented improvisers and remarkable leaders. The quartet benefits from an original instrumentation with the duality violin/oboe on the one hand and double bass/ drums on the other. Something in common with Ornette’s quartet : no piano! A real difference: the tandem sax/cornet is replaced by the duet violin/oboe, which are usually, but wrongly, classified as classical instruments… be wary of appearances…
A large part of the repertoire is devoted to improvisation, the celebration of the moment, risk-taking that is essential when looking for authenticity. These improvisations are collective, they leave the way open to emotions, to the musicians stories and origins, to exploring the relationships between the protagonists and the interaction with the audience.
Johan Renard, a French musician based in Paris, is known for his mastery of the violin, his approach to improvisation, composition and his teaching.
Very early, he finished his classical musical studies and joined the CNSMDP to deepen the art of improvisation with Jean-François Jenny Clark, Daniel Humair, François Jeanneau and Hervé Sellin.
During the Yehudi Menuhin competition, still a student Johan, will present a program where he mixes classical and improvised violin, in the Jury is Stephane Grappelli who will write him a letter where he pushes him to continue on this path and stresses the importance of the quality and the emotion he received when he saw young musicians playing the violin differently, and what's more, his music.
Thereafter within the CNSMDP he will record within the George Russel Orchestra. This meeting will transform her vision towards Jazz and the so-called "classical" harmony, thanks to the chromatic Lydian concept.
With his technique and his knowledge of the violin, Johan Renard is committed to finding himself around the most diverse musicians, and coming from all horizons, for him music is a and indivisible and can not suffer from classification.
He then meets Didier Lockwood who makes him aware of the importance of rhythm and that it is a vector of universality in Music, Didier Lockwood the consider the next generation of jazz violin, and ask him to teach at his school the CMDL. He collaborates with many artists: Emmanuel Bex, Stephan Eicher, Isabelle Olivier, Carine Bonnefoy, Romane, Alex beaupain, Stochelo Rosenberg, Richard Bona, Archie Shepp ...
The importance of improvisation and the freedom of creation led Johan to meet many musicians from around the world. He meets Dr L Subramniam, violin master Indian, with whom he regularly works around carnatic music.
Born to an Armenian father and a French mother, 1 Claude Tchamitchian grew up in a family of musicians (his two parents were pianists, his father even having been a pupil of Alfred Cortot). He began as an autodidact, then studied music at the Avignon Conservatory. There he met Rémi Charmasson and André Jaume, with whom he worked in particular in 1988 at the first at the Festival de Sorgues.
Subsequently he multiplies collaborations with French jazz musicians (Stéphan Oliva, Yves Robert, Sylvain Kassap, Gérard Siracusa, Gérard Marais, Jacques Di Donato, Antoine Hervé, René Bottlang, Philippe Deschepper, Jacques Thollot ...) (Jimmy Giuffre, Éric Watson ...).
He is the leader of the Lousadzak, Amarco, Ways Out ensembles and member of Andy Emler's Megabyte and forms with the latter and drummer Éric Échampard the E.T.E. He is also the founder and artistic director of the Émouvance label.
After studying classical music at the regional conservatory of Rueil and Paris, he obtained a first prize in percussion and chamber music at the CNSM in Paris in 1992. He then devoted himself to jazz, first alongside David Chevallier, Noël Akchote, Julien Lourau and Bojan Z, then meets Louis Sclavis, of which he will be one of the privileged partners for almost twenty years.
He works and records in many formations including those of Vincent Courtois, Martial Solal, Laurent Dehors, Denis Badault, Jean-Marie Machado, and more recently Denis Colin and Dominique Pifarely. He crosses paths with many musicians such as Michel Portal, Henri Texier, Marc Ducret, Joëlle Léandre, Django Bates or even Dave Douglas.
Also a composer, he trains his own formations as a leader.
In addition to instrumental projects, he regularly works with dance, circus arts, theater and song.