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Hendrik Meurkens

Ever since he started taking harmonica solos in the mid-'50s, Toots Thielemans has been without any close competition on his instrument, at least until Hendrik Meurkens arrived on the scene. Born in Germany to Dutch parents, Meurkens began as a vibraphonist, not playing harmonica until he heard Thielemans when he was 19. He traveled to the U.S. to study at Berklee and spent time in Brazil in the early '80s, during which he immersed himself in Brazilian jazz. Back in Berlin, Meurkens worked in the studios, but also recorded with the Danish Radio Orchestra and had his own jazz group. He made a record in Brazil for the Bellaphon label (1989) and since 1991 has recorded several sets for Concord and Concord Picante as a leader, in addition to appearing on records as a sideman with Charlie Byrd. ~ Scott Yanow, Rovi
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Comments

Wow!!! I think I'm in love.
Such an nice tribute to Toots! I am glad to see the tradition continue. With so many harmonica vitruosos (little known, however) in the 30s and 40s, it is strange that the instrument did not break into the jazz world earlier, but thanks to Toots joining Shearing in the 50's to move it along from novelty act to featured instrument. Thanks Hendrik!
Nobody will ever unseat Toots, but this wonderful musician offers us a great insight to an often maligned instrument. Laugh if you will, but the harmonica as well as the accordion just don't get the creds they deserve in the jazz panoply. Oh, Check out Angelo diPepo on the accordion.
drmichaelsca l i a
Hi michael, Do think this guy looks like Hassam "hendrik meurkens"

Thanks for the info on Adler Gene. I hope he's available on Pandora.
This guy is an absolute pleasure to listen to !
gene.burger
Yanow's omission of Larry Adler is striking. He preceded Thielmans by decades, overlapped him by more, and did so much to popularize harmonica/mo u t h organ as an instrument to be taken seriously in general, including jazz. His recordings of standards are as dynamic and creative as anything in music. Adler played with other jazz greats including Django Reinhardt, Duke Ellington, Bill Evans, and Dizzy Gillespie.
I have seen Hendrik play many times. Don't overlook his vibes playing , he's very strong and melodic. His continued growth is really impressive.
He has the new sounds of Samba mastered.
Hendrik is awesome - what a musician!
As good or better than Jimmy Buffet's harmonica player...OK better....an d diverse. Brazil does rule!(especi a l l y Rio! et Amazonia!)
Brazil rules. I'm surprised he, or myself for that matter, ever left.

Toots is a tough act to follow but hendrik can hold his own! I particularly love the Brazilian slant.

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