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Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017
Son of an opera singer, Jan Joris, Chris JORIS was immersed in classical music since his early childhood. Very early he embarked on studying piano playing and clarinet and became interested in jazz. During the sixties he formed an "Experimental-Jazz Trio", which permitted encounters with jazzmen like pianist Fred VAN HOVE, saxophonists John TCHICAI and Michel MAST and South African bassist Johnny "Mbizo" DYANI. With the later, he recorded the tapes which will later be used for his first CD, 15 years later. In 1977, in Paris, he formed the trio "Assum" with Cheikh Tidiane FALL and Agib DIENG, with whom he toured extensively. Back in Belgium, in 1978, Bruno CASTELLUCCI opens the door, for him, to professional activities, including studio work. Chris played and recorded with Etienne VERSCHUEREN, Tars LOOTENS, Toots THIELEMANS, Bert JORIS (not a relative of him), Art FARMER, Michel HERR, Michel LEGRAND, Steve HOUBEN, Jim CORCORAN,... In 1982, he formed a new group BULA SANGOMA which recorded two albums. In 1987, Chris took part in "A Lover's Question". Featuring personal compositions, and others, by David LINX and Pierre VAN DORMAEL, this album is based on texts by American writer James BALDWIN. Jimmy OWENS, Slide HAMPTON, Steve COLEMAN, Victor LAZLO, Deborah BROWN, Toots THIELEMANS, Hein VAN DE GEYN, Michel HATZIGEORGIOU, Pierre VAIANA, Diederik WISSELS, Youssef YANCY and Bob STEWART collaborated in the recording and the concerts that followed. In the current line up of BIHOGO, Chris is accompanied by Kurt VAN HERCK, Chris MENTENS (bass) and Michel SEBA, a young percussionist already proved himself alongside Pierre VAIANA or Steve HOUBEN (Panta Rhei), and numerous other artists - a.o., Jean-Pierre CATOUL, Marcia MARIA, Eric LEGNINI, Jean-Louis RASSINFOSSE, ... - who often call upon his talent. Chris JORIS put together a new band, that he calls the CHRIS JORIS EXPERIENCE, with Sam VERSWEYVELD (trumpet), Bart DEFOORT (saxophone), Ernst VRANCKX (piano) and Chris MENTENS (acoustic bass). This new band made a very successful appearance at the Jazz Middelheim Festival '97 (Antwerp). The recording of this concert is available on CD. In '98, Chris JORIS was elected best percussionist of the year '98, both in the listeners poll (RTBF/VRT) (category : Belgium) and the critics poll (French speaking) (categories : Belgium, Europe). The same year, he receives the Belgian DJANGO d'OR. In 1999 and 2000 Joris toured with American Jazzlegend Mal Waldron (piano) in duo and groupform. Currently he leads The Chris Joris - Bob Stewart Rainbow Band with New York based tubaist Bob Stewart and played several festivals since 2006. Their newest CD: "Rainbow Country" was released on the Werf-label. In 2003, he creates with Daniel SCHELL the Oratorio Ishango, an African oratorio.