Greg Houben Trio

Greg Houben Trio


These guys know each other well. They like hanging out together and it shows!They interact in a real and natural dialogue through their music. They are there to tell stories and they are fun to listen to. Their repertoire has compositions, songs and jazz standards they play in a straightforward way


Fifteen years ago when young jazzmen left school, their main references were – sometimes exclusively – records by Michael Brecker, Pat Metheny, Keith Jarrett and Aka Moon. Honorable references all, but ones that posed a serious problem to the apprentice jazzmen: what went before, what are the roots? Then jam sessions in Liege and later Brussels began to see the first faltering steps of a new generation with completely different ambitions and methods. Players such as Pascal Mohy, Quentin Liègeois, Sam Gertsman, Greg Houben and Urs Dubicki have inherited an authentic fever for the blue note and their ears are all the more open to different periods of jazz’s history.
With just a click, they could access bodies of work that were inaccessible to previous generations. This return to the
roots very quickly bore fruit. Clubs and festivals began to see young people playing jazz from the fifties and sixties of breathtaking authenticity, almost as if they were born in the Birdland or Village Vanguard’s attics. Or they had spent their childhood in the cellars of the Tabou or Club St Germain, or had spent their teenage years jamming at the Rose Noire or Jazz Inn. The idea, of course, was not so much to limit themselves to playing like so-and-so.
This is why this trio, clearly marked by the luminous shadow of Chet Baker, plays original compositions by Greg Houben and Quentin Liègeois that are in phase with those of Irving Berlin and Richard Rodgers. The instrumental line-up chosen by Houben for this first CD is nonetheless risky: there’s nothing like a drummer to calibrate the climates and intensity – particularly as the 20 minutes of vinyl have now been replaced by 60 of the CD.
The bet largely paid off, with clear highpoints such as the covers of «Daybraek» and «For Minors Only», where the trio works to its full potential. Music that is often, like Chet’s, on the knife edge. A jazz of yesterday and today, in which emotion and melody are not submerged by technical prowess and abstract compositional methods. Jazz, in a word.


Their first album called “How deep is the ocean” is now available (Igloo records- IGL211).

Set List

1.How deep is the ocean? (How high is the sky?) 9'19
2. Daybreak 5'40
3. From the root to the leave 6'28
4. With a song in my heart 7'51
5. Cup-up 5'18
6. I don't make set plans (I'm a good time guy) 8'55
7. For minors only 5'00
8. Close to Kenny 5'28