Heinrich von Kalnein
Since more than 25 years the German-born saxophonist / flutist Heinrich von Kalnein is one of the most high-profile jazz artists of the European jazz scene. As leader of his own ensembles as well as sideman he may be heard on more than 40 CD’s / LP’s.
After graduating with honors from the University of Music Graz, Austria in 1987 he continued his studies with renowned saxophonist / educator David Liebman and Oliver Lake among others. He developed a very distinct musical profile by taking his melodic concept and jazz roots into the realm of worldbeat, free improv and electronic music. In the 1990ies he toured extensively all over Europe with his own HvK Group (feat. the French guitarist Nguyên Lê) as well as with the Indo-Jazz Worldmusic Project ‚Free Winds’ (feat. Shakti’s Selvaganesh Vinayakram). With the latter group he also toured India and Sri Lanka.
With JBBG – JAZZ BIGBAND GRAZ, which he is (co-) leading since 2003, he performed a.o. with the vocal groups ‚Take Six’‚ ‚The New York Voices’ as well as with singers Jon Hendricks, Diane Shur and Kurt Elling. With their CD ‚Joys & Desires’ (2005) featuring the work of drummer John Hollenbeck and vocalist Theo Bleckmann they got critical acclaim worldwide, which led to performances at the 2006 IAJE– conference in New York as well as the Northsea Jazzfestival. With their 2008 production 'Electric Poetry & Lo-Fi Cookies' blending the worlds of electronic music and jazz they developed a sound of their very own performing all over Europe. Their CD ‚Urban Folktales’ was released by the prestigious German label ACT records in 2012. Their latest CD ‚True Stories’ was released in March 2016 on Natango Music.
In 2008 he founded his new trio KAHIBA featuring Swiss drummer / electronic musician Gregor Hilbe and Austrian accordionist / pianist Christian Bakanic. With this band he released three highly acclaimed CD’s. In 2016 he co-founded a new quartet together with German guitarist Axel Fischbacher featuring bassist Charles Sammons and drummer Ralf Gessler.
In 2012 he founded his own label Natango Music. In 2018 he will release his 8th production KAHIBA “aLive!”. Additionally he worked as a musical producer and bandmember with the Vienna Art Orchestra performing worldwide. Currently he is living in Graz and holds a position as a professor for saxophone at the Jazz institute of the University of Music Graz KUG.
He performed also with Iain Ballamy, Django Bates, Carla Bley, Bob Brookmeyer, Jay Clayton, Wayne Darling, Gil Evans, Heiner Goebbels, Jerry Granelli, Doug Hammond, the Peter Herbolzheimer Bigband, Peter Herborn, Marc Johnson, Sheila Jordan, Nguyên Lê, Rene Lussier, Charlie Mariano, Bob Mintzer, Phil Minton, Glen Moore, Wolfgang & Christian Muthspiel, Simon Nabatov, Ed Neumeister, Marc Ribot, Paquito d'Rivera, Steve Swallow, Dave Taylor and the ORF Radiosymphonieorchester (Austrian National Public Radio symphony) among others.