International Bass Player Janek Gwizdala Visits the Institute… November 13th saw the return of established jazz bassist and visiting faculty Janek Gwizdala. The London born International artist came into the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance for an exclusive lesson to third year degree students and an evening masterclass in more than just bass playing. After playing at the London Jazz Festival the night before, Janek provided us with his insights into being a self made success.
He has been touring as a band leader and working as musical director or sideman with some of the most respected names in the industry. These include: Randy Brecker, Hiram Bullock, Mike Stern, John Mayer, Airto Moreira, Flora Purim, Pat Metheny, Marcus Miller, Dave Kikoski, Adam Rogers, Jojo Mayer, V.V. Brown, Jem, Paul Shafer, Delta Goodrem, Gary Husband, Peter Erskine, Wayne Krantz, and Mark Turner.
Janek is a regular visitor to the Institute; his clinic looked at the reality of being a working musician, and covered topics such as self-promotion, internet marketing, being a recording artist, getting gigs, keeping gigs, and having fun doing what you love for a living! Whilst at The Institute’s campus in Kilburn, London, Janek demonstrated The Tone Print, a wireless app from TC Electronics that can loop and layer any sound when uploaded to the pedal playing it instantaneously. He went on to speak beyond the techniques of bass playing and delved into the secrets of being a master instrumentalist in an industry that usually relies on having a recording deal. Using social media and networking with fellow students as an example of creating a presence and attention in the right places he explained how it is possible to have an international career – entrepreneur style.
Janek reveals “I’m always impressed by the depth of the students’ questions at the Institute. They are obviously being inspired by their teachers to ask important questions and raise their own awareness about what it is they want out of the music business. It certainly keeps me on my toes in terms of the answers I’m compelled to come up with, and I always leave my sessions at the Institute having learnt a lot from the students myself.”
With a new book out entitled ‘So you’re a musician, now what?’ on the principles of thriving financially and creatively as a musician and an album out in the New Year, Janek’s masterclass was unique and enlightening.