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" Quentin is to me a revelation." - Toots Thielemans

" An album that is both deep, powerful, musical and on edge! A universe of great beauty, which flirts between minimalism and virtuosity. To discover! " - Manu Katché

" Like all good music, it has the most important quality: that is memorable." - Fred Hersch












After an eventful 2020, Quentin Dujardin returns to us with a studio album & a live concert, the result of a long collaboration with his stage partners: Manu Katché, Didier Laloy, Nicolas Fiszman & Boris Schmidt.

Composer & guitarist, Quentin Dujardin creates a unique universe around his nylon-string guitars. His musical projects are marked by lived landscapes or even people he meets along the way. Like a postcard, his music creates bridges between music from elsewhere and our Western musical heritage. His unclassifiable work thus touches on the universal. His path remains immutably attached to sound and emotion.

Notable musical collaborations include Belgian harmonica player Toots Thielemans, American producer Lee Townsend (Bill Frisell, Pat Metheny, Dave Holland), drummer Manu Katché, Iranian singer Mahsa Vahdat, Richard Bona as well as Bijan Chemirani, Olivier Ker Ourio, Bert Joris, Matthieu Saglio, Ivan Paduart and many others.

His work as a composer also leads him to produce the soundtrack for the theatrical adaptation of Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt's best-selling novel, Monsieur Ibrahim & des Fleurs du Coran. In 2011, Quentin Dujardin is invited to join the International Yehudi Menuhin Foundation to become an artist ambassador of this association with international influence. His soundtrack for the film Ma Forêt wins an award in 2012 at the United Nations Forum on Forests (US). In 2022, the guitarist received prize of Best Composer at Toronto Independant Film Festival (CA) & Nederland Intrnational Film Festival (US) for its music on the film Paradisiac. After more than a thousand concerts, his music now counts more than 7 million streams in more than a hundred countries.

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About 2020

So, what happened during this surprising year we just went through? For Quentin Dujardin, 2020 will certainly turn out to have been the busiest year of his eventful career. More than a journey, it has been a solo experience carried out at the frontier of our freedom to continually remain creative and alive.

Today, he once again makes his indelible mark on the guitar world. He tells us about this period, both strange and accompanied by a terribly noisy playlist of trash guitar and shrieking vocals. A year that, in the end, was very inspiring in his fight against the silence imposed on artists.

Returning to the music, let’s say at the outset that it is the fulfillment of one of his childhood dreams to bring together two big names: Manu Katché and Nicolas Fiszman. Quentin collaborated with them previously, notably on the albums Catharsis with Katché (2016) and Veloma with Fiszman (2007). This new track list includes Blues for M&N, tailor-made for this unstoppable rhythm section so clear in its approach to groove. Quentin Dujardin began listening to them at a young age and is inspired by the solidity of their playing – like an open-sesame to music itself.

For this new album, the guitarist surrounds himself with his four favorite guitars – nylon, baritone, fretless & acoustic – a wide palette that expands the colors and sound spectrum. In the piece 2020, his electric guitars speak to us with a loud cry about the landscapes in his native region of Condroz. In this vast space, where leisure for rambling reigns (La balade de Nils), he finds the fountains of his childhood (Val de Gore).

Everyone knows the artist for both his highly crafted melodies (Michèle & Philippe) and his fluid improvisation (Aimé). He couldn't resist sharing these different realms with his partner Didier Laloy, always ready to dive right in. The mad, windy energy of his accordion, in perfect harmony with the guitar strings, heralds the cyclone over Madagascar. Together they take the occasion to revisit Baroque, with sorrow issuing straight from the bow of cellist Adrien Tyberghein. Also Avril in a live studio version that amplifies this sumptuous month. These two bonus tracks close the disc, a reminiscence of their last album Water & Fire. We should also note the presence of the American, Doron David Sherwin and his cornetto. The international artist is highly appreciated for both his delicate, melodic interventions and the imagination he brings to the world of baroque music today.

Quentin Dujardin quietly pursues his path, remaining resolute in sound and emotion. It is this combination that moves his audiences, an approach he has maintained for almost 30 years sprinting across national and international stages. In 2005 Toots Thielemans saw in him “an extraordinary revelation”, a bottomless well of finesse: in composition, touch and sensitivity. Along the way, the guitarist proved himself fascinating on his album Distances, in collaboration with the American producer Lee Townsend (Bill Frisell, Pat Metheny). He also performed live or in the studio with Bijan Chemirani, Olivier Ker Ourio, Richard Bona, Matthieu Saglio, Mahsa Vahdat and Ivan Paduart, to name a few.

Since February 14, 2021, when his live Ave Maria performance was banned by the authorities(*), the artist has become an icon of our freedom of expression. Taking legal action against the improper state of emergency imposed on the art world, he aims to win his case against the government. Continuing to perform during lockdown, Quentin Dujardin is combining his unclassifiable work with that of a committed citizen. The impact is universal.

(*) The Belgian government began permitting religious gatherings of up to 15 people, while still prohibiting live cultural events. Protesting this double standard, Quentin Dujardin gave a public performance, titled Ave Maria, on a Sunday in a local church. He was arrested after five minutes.

(English translation: Daniel Brandt)





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