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The Czech Connection: John Abercrombie adds another page to his Prague playbook

Published: 2010-04-17
John Abercrombie John Abercrombie is considered a modern-day master on electric jazz guitar. His concert next week with his new organ trio is certain to be a highlight of the spring season.

Abercrombie, born in 1944, studied guitar at Berklee College of Music in Boston. While he was there, he developed some strong ties to the Czech jazz scene. Recalling those times from his home one hour north of New York City, Abercrombie tells The Prague Post, “I met Jan Hammer and George Mraz when I was living in Boston in the late '60s. They came on scholarships, and the three of us shared an apartment - it was a terrible place!"

But the living arrangement quickly turned into something special. “I actually didn't realize they played so well," Abercrombie says. “But then we started to play, and I found out how amazing they are ? especially when I first played with Jan. When I heard him play, I just flipped out."

Superstar bass player Miroslav Vitous was also at Berklee. “He came before Jan and George," recalls Abercrombie, though none of them stayed for long. “There was nothing they could teach them at school. They all left right away to become professional musicians. A lot of it had to do with their classical training. They are technically so proficient, especially George and Miroslav."


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