Jazz & Blues Guru

Peter Lipa * may 30, 1943 is the most significant
personality of Slovak jazz scene.

Peter Lipa (1943) is the most important personality of the Slovak jazz scene. He created a distinctive vocal performance with an emphasis on lyrics. His music comes from a combination of jazz and blues influenced by  singers like Jimmy Rushing, Ray Charles, Al Jarreau, Joe Cocker or Bobby McFerrin. He was the first singer who applied the slovak language in jazz.  He converts rhythm possibilities of the lyrics into musical expression. In his repertoire we can find blues, swing and jazz standards as well as his own original compositions.  Already in the 80s he ranked among the first five male European jazz singers according to Jazz Forum. In 1976 along with Miloš Paška he started an annual jazz festival – Bratislava Jazz Days. Since then, he also started MC-ing his own regular radio jazz program. After the velvet revolution in 1989, the Slovak Jazz Society was established. Peter Lipa is the president since the beginning. He continues to do these and other activities alongside his singing career.
As a singer he was performing on all continents and he recorded 25 albums in slovak and english. The curiosity of his career is,  that because of the communist censorship, he wasn’t allowed to record an album until he was 40 years old. His most powerful experience in music was a duet with Bobby McFerrin. The maestro invited him on stage at the end of his concert in Bratislava  1986. A long time before it was usual on all of Bobby’s concerts.

Peter Lipa, a native of Presov, since childhood tended to music. At the age of twelve he was taught to play the violin, and later on trumpet, trombone and guitar. He graduated from high school in Presov, then graduated from the Faculty of Civil Engineering Slovak Technical University in Bratislava and worked as an editor of the Czechoslovak Radio. In the years 1975 – 1976 he studied in journalism at Komensky University in Bratislava. He started to work as a musician in the early 60-ties. He was the lead singer of such bands as: Strings,  Istropilana, Blues Five,  Gustav Offerman Orchestra, Revival Jazz Band, T + R Band and Lipa-Andršt Blues Band. In 1968, the Blues Five was honored as  a discovery of the 2nd Beat Festival in Prague. As a singer  throughout his career, he was seeking and finding a connection with a good pianist. Ladislav Gerhard, Milan Svoboda, Gabriel Jonáš, Emil Viklický, Peter Breiner, Boris Urbánek, Juraj Tatár, Pavol Bodnár and his son Peter Lipa jr. – these are just some of them. In 1978 he started his own band Combo. This project in various forms , but under the name “Peter Lipa Band¨ still works. Parallel to this, Peter works on many short-term and long-term cooperations and projects. Currently, he also sings with the Visegrad Blues Band, EU4 and Traditional club.

Struny (1963-66)

Mostly The Shadows& Cliff Richard oriented. The founders and later members were mostly students  from The University of Architecture. Bruno Beiszetzer b, Daniel Winter g, Rastislav Vacho g, Lubo Dolinsky dr.

Istopolitana (1967)

Another student-semiprofessional band. This was the true start of the jazz and blues connection for P.Lipa. With this band he took part in his 1st two jazz festivals – Prerov and Zilina. Ervín Padušický – trb, leader, John Turi Nagy – ss, cl, Rasťo Vacho – g, Tono Vičan – dr, Andrej Šebo – b, Ivan Rupeldt – p.

Blues Five (1968-69)

First band with a clear musical orientation. Succesful in Prague. Peter Koreň Jaro Filip, Janko Lehotský – p,key, Rasťo Vacho – g, Dušan Hájek – dr, Fedor Letňan, Dušan Valihora, Miro Šebo– b,  Ivan Nagy – trp, Milan Talaj, Pavol Hromada– ts.

Orchester Gustáva Offermana (1969-71)

Show and dancing band.
Gustáv Offerman – dr, ld,
František Móži – b,
Jozef Vizvári – p,
Ľudovít Horský – trp,
Dušan Húščava – ts,
Gabika Šusteková – voc.

Revival Jazz Band (1972-77)

Pioneers of the revivalism in traditionl jazz scene in Czechoslovakia. Peter Lipa managed to change the musical orientation to blues and r&b roots. Anton Rakický – bj, Štefan Popluhár – dr, Miloš Paška – b, Milan Vašica – trp, Vlado Vizár – trb, Jaroslav Červenka –as,cl.

Hej (1977-79)

Dancing and show band. Andrej Šebo – trp,trb, Miroslav Šebo – b,ld, Peter Szapu – dr, Václav Volný – ts, Peter Koranda – g.

Lipa – Andršt Blues Band (1980-86)

This band has something to say to rock and jazz audience by combining modern electric blues with elements of funk and jazz.The band was a welcome guest at festivals, not only in Czechoslovakia. Blues Band recorded two albums, but its power was in live performance. In addition to the leaders guitarist Lubos Andršt and Lipa was bassist Vladimir Kulhánek, Ondřej Konrad mouth harp, pianist Boris Urbanek and  saxophonist Jan Kubik.

Peter Lipa Band (1994)

Alongside continued collaboration with co -leader and guitarplayer Andrej Šeban. Recorded the album Naspäť na stromy (Back on Trees) (EWP1995) and Čierny Peter (Black Peter) (BMG 1997) with a clear tendency to his beloved music, a combination of jazz and blues. This project gives him more space to sing his original music, based on good choice of lyrics. The line up of the group are first-rate musicians: Juraj Tatar- keyb, Martin Gašpar b, Marcel Buntaj dr. Since 1999 saxophonist Michal Žáček replaced Andrej Šeban.

Peter Lipa Band (1995-98)

After disbanding T&R to continue the same way of music he originally started. Juraj Lehotský – trp, Dušan Húščava – ts, František Karnok – trb, Andrej Šebo – b, Pavol Bodnár – p, Cyril Zeleňák / Stanislav Cvanciger – dr. Album Bistro.( BMG 1996)

Peter Lipa Band (2007)

Robo Rist / Emil Frátrik - percussion,
Michal Zacek - saxophone,
Michal Simko - Bass,
Peter Lipa jr. - Keyb.

Combo Petra Lipu (1977-90)

During the years it had a lots of changes in the line up. This band started with the members of Hej. Later on joined by Peter Breiner-p, Cyril Zeleňák-dr, Stanislav Herko, Vladimir Kulhánek-b. That was the recording on 1st album Moanin- Neúprosné ráno. Then later Breiner was replaced by Boris Urbánek and a new lineup: Mirko Binder-p, Andrej Šeban-g, Jan fabricky-dr, Anton Jaro-b, Karol Lago-as, Juraj Bartoš-trp. 2nd album That’s the way it is/Je to stale tak.

Duo s Petrom Breinerom (1978-1992)

Cooperation started in Combo. Later it was a theatre performance P+P=Jazz in L+S Theatre. Premiere sept.9th 1984. Album BOOGIE UP (Polygram/EmArcy 1997)

T&R Band (1986-95)

The band was formed as a combination of two leading revivalist groups, Novy Tradicionál and Revival Jazz Band. The music was mostly standards, New Orleans, swing, arrangements of classical music tracks, jumping jazz, blues and more. The band often played abroad (Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Cuba, Algeria, Greece, Switzerland, USA and many other countries). The most famous, however, were the regular thursdays at the biggest beer pub in Bratislava – Stara sladovňa , named Mamooth (1980 – 1995), it gained cult tradition. Members: Anton Rakický – bj, Alojz Bouda – p, Fedor Frešo, Stanislav Herko-  b , Štefan “Piťo¨ Popluhár / Karol Sucháň – dr, Juraj Lehotský – trp, Vladimir Vizár – trb, Jaroslav “Country¨ Červenka – cl, as. Albums: T & R Band, Peter Lipa Live at Limmatquai 1982, T&R Band featuring Peter Lipa In Germany 1990, Peter Lipa & T + R Band (OPUS), and UP TO Date(OPEN).

Višegrad Blues Band (2004)

This international band is made by musicians from different countries with strong roots in blues. Polish guitarist Leszek Cichoński, Polish keyboardist Zbygniew Jakubek and Czech Ondřej Konrad harp. Rhythm section is Hungarian, with roots stretching back to the legendary band Locomotiv GT, Hobo Blues Band, drummer Janos Solti and bassist Egon Poka. The repertoire consists mainly of originally arranged blues standards by group members. Original instrumental tracks by Cichoński.

EU4 (2011)

This is the latest international formation, started by Peter Lipa. Starring austrian hammond player Raphael Wressnig, italian guitarist Ruggero Robin and hungarian drummer Tamas Berdisz. The group played the premiere concerts in Slovakia. The idea is to play concerts in the home countries of the members of EU4.