Sensitive Songs and Guitar Celebration in Salo
Written by Antti Backwater
Translated by Laura Ayravainen
Photos by Juhani Vaihkonen
Jake Hertzog (born in1986) is a daredevil with personality and a broad perspective. He’s a guitar explorer who moves naturally from one atmosphere to another. Yet shifts and changes in tempo were controlled and elegant.
Hertzog is the all-time youngest Montreux Jazz Festival Gibson Guitar Contest winner and he returned to the festival the following year as a performer. He graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2007 and started to build a career in New York.
Hertzog’s jazz-rock trio has been active since 2008. In their latest album the trumpeter legend Randy Brecker plays as a guest star. Hertzog has guest starred in albums of several different artists and also worked as a producer.
The guitarist has a wide range of interests. The performance of the evening included original compositions in addition to i.e. from John Coltrane (Equinox) to Frank Sinatra(Polka Dots & Moonbeams) and Bruce Springsteen (Streets of Philadelphia). Still, their own style and strong awareness of the tradition of jazz stood out from everything in a structured way, creating a harmonious entity.
Jake Hertzog Trio
- "An important model for me even as a young boy was the guitarist Robin Ford’s Guitar Anthology. It helped me to acquire a wide perspective to music; jazz, gospel, acid jazz and hip hop. I’ve started playing blues seriously only in the past few years," the master guitarist describes.
The alternation between jazz and rock is challenging for the band as well. Harvie S changed from a contrabass to a guitar with ease and the style stayed integrated. In the world of drummers there are only a few who can keep their style natural through these shifts – like Jon Hiseman from Colosseum, Victor Jones changed like a chameleon “from whisks to heavy pounding”.
The tight live version of Gloria can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ntb97oLc31E.