JOCHEN RUECKERT QUARTET
My quartet will be in Asia in mid June- also booking Europe for mid July
"purring excellence" live at Smalls in December 2017
Mike Moreno Joe Martin Mark Turner
"Pretty from afar" live at Smalls February 2019
Chris Cheek, Lage Lund, and Matt Penman
"Parasitosis" in Muri November 2018
Mark Turner, Lage Lund and Joe Martin
"Billy's bounce" at Cornelia street cafe (RIP) June 2018
Melissa Aldana, Matt Penman and Lage Lund
I've been teaching increasingly: private lessons at home and on the road, masterclasses, workshops and occasional lessons for the New School in NYC. I almost always come across some common problems. For those unable to come to see me in person, I have teamed up with a pro cameraman, video editor, recording engineer, and a decent espresso machine to create these videos covering some of the topics most discussed during teaching. I have over 25 years of experience playing all over the world, with jazz artists like Kurt Rosenwinkel, the Melissa Aldana trio, the Marc Copland trio, Sam Yahel, Nils Wogram's Root 70 as well as leading and composing for my own Quartet with Lage Lund and Mark Turner.
Each episode is around 20 minutes and focuses on one topic so you don't have to buy videos on topics you don't need or want advice on.
Includes English subtitles
Chinese subtitles for episode 1-4
Japanese subtitles for episodes 1 and 2
You're downloading a .zip file, which includes a video, subtitles file(s), playback instructions, and, in some cases, a .pdf file. Please make sure you download on a device that can download .zip files ( Ipads and Iphones generally can not) and make sure you're on a solid internet connection, as the files are between 120- 300 MB. Once downloaded, unzip/ decompress ( just double click on a mac) and then either use VLC player on your computer to play back, or transfer to whatever mobile device you would like to watch it on.
The webstore has a limit of 10 download attempts to prevent phishing- if you accidentally exceed this , please email me to reset the link.
each episode is $11.99
here is a little interview about the video series on
This first episode focuses on improving your general time, swing time feel, feathering the bass drum and has some tips on playing fast.
Just over 20 minutes - includes English, Chinese and Japanese subtitles
This second episode contains pretty much everything i have to say about playing brushes.
21 and a half minutes, includes English, Chinese and Japanese subtitles.
This third episode is a collection of things I hear people do all wrong, over and over
Just over 19 minutes, includes English and Chinese subtitles.
This fourth episode focuses on the way I like to practice improvising and soloing
Just shy of 20 minutes, includes English and Chinese subtitles.
This fifth episode focuses on everything connected to touch and sound, including ways I hold a stick, where I hit a cymbal, but also what cymbals and sticks I use for example
Just over 23 minutes, includes English subtitles and a list of equipment I use.
This sixth episode focuses on getting comfortable in odd meters like 5/4 and 7/4 as well as more composite time signatures, like 15/8.
Just shy of 20 minutes, includes English subtitles.
This seventh Episode offers some thoughts on how to interact in a band, some tips on playing in 2, and how to navigate original music. Around 17 and a half minutes. Includes English subtitles.
$9.99 for a short while
This eighth episode outlines my general influences as a composer - especially besides jazz, and offers some thoughts about 4 of my songs from "we make the rules ": Alloplasty, Yellow Bottoms, Saul Goodman, and Pretty From Afar
This one is extra long - almost 38 minutes - includes English subtitles and chart to those 4 songs.
This ninth episode focuses on background and analysis of 4 songs off my album Charm Offensive: Purring Excellence, 5-Hydroxytryptamine, Stretchmark, Charm Offensive, as well as Hayden Chisholm's arrangement of "Just friends" from my very first album "introduction".
33 and a half minutes, includes English subtitles and sheet music to those 5 songs.
This tenth episode focuses on answering the question : "who are your greatest influences as a drummer ?". I discuss all of the ones that made a big impact on me, specially when I was in my early 20's, try to explain why, and give listening examples. Included is a .pdf with a few of each drummer's records that I listened to a lot. This is the final episode and it's close to 43 minutes long. Includes English subtitles.
$9.99 for a short while
You can download charts of Jochen's original music from his last three albums, as well as the 3 songs he wrote for Nils Wogram's Root 70 over the years and the 2 songs on Melissa Aldana's record. For 20 bucks. Most charts are handwritten C lead sheets, not very well written but somewhat legible, a few are music notation software generated, a few have separate parts and all are either .jpg or .pdf
"The group played masterfully, performing Rueckert's compositions with authority and refinement."- Do the Gig
"there's often a kindred and appealing combination of quirkiness and catchiness.... Excellent" Ottawa Citizen
"Melodies that have a habit of insinuating themselves deep in your head" Downbeat
"a rarely heard warmth from the drums, that perfectly fits this timeless modern music"- Rondo
"It’s perhaps most engaging as a postbop soloists’ album, and the improv is very good indeed." The Guardian U.K.
"Playful yet profound..... you'll want to hear this invigorating sound over and over again" Classicalite
"radiates an understated warmth and sophistication which is so very appealing." AP reviews
"....a fluid, open-minded, post-bop record that is pretty much state of the art as far as contemporary improvised music is concerned." Irish Times
"A drummer and bandleader remains a relative rarity. Jochen Rueckert , however, adds an extra dimension." some dutch blog
"This is music that's contemporary - in the best sense of the word. The guys play with a technique that isn't misused, a technique that stays true to tradition ... yet still reaches out to the unknown." bebop spoken here
"unfassbar, dass das hier erst das zweite Album ist." jazz thing
Here's a long ass interview with German Bonedo.de
Jochen Rueckert Quartet technical rider ( English and German .pdf)
Jochen Rueckert Quartet high resolution press pictures and Bio (English, German, .zip)
This will take you to a google drive page. On the top right corner will be a downward arrow which will start the download of the .zip file containing 6 pictures and three pdfs according to line-up.
WOLFF PARKINSON WHITE
Wolff Parkinson White is Jochen's programming alias. The music is mostly programmed on the road on a laptop, contains none of his own drumming and concentrates heavily on confusing rhythms and the quarter-tone scale.
So far, WPW has released 3 full albums, 2 EPs as well as remixes for Kudu, Ilhan Ersahin, Nils Wogram, and the Leboeuf brothers
a music video Jochen made for a song off "forlorn"
a new-ish 6 song EP for detund , October 2014
Wolff Parkinson White's latest self-release "Gonaïve", a 6 song EP with a slightly more Dub feel. The novelty of Jochen using samples of his own drumming on each song sets this one apart from the other releases. Features a song named "Uncalled for minor 9th" March 2014
Wolff Parkinson White's latest full album "forlorn" from 2012
featuring everybody's favourite songs " Ben Street loves drinking Yellowtail" and "tranny surprise"
Wolff Parkinson White's previous album "rest from what" from 2010
featuring everybody's favourite song (including Ben Street) "Ben Street plays strings made from outer labia reduction surgery waste" and "anal Jesus"
a remix for the leboeuf brothers 2013
READ THE RUECKERT
This series of ebooks has hundreds of self-timer pictures of Jochen in his hotel room du jour and dozens of little anecdotes about the inanities of traveling as a jazz musician. You can buy the .epub file here and then read them on any computer or mobile device
Volume 1 and 3 feature a beautiful foreword from Hayden Chisholm, comparing Jochen equally to none other than Thomas Mann and Elvin Jones.
Peter Hum writes in his top 10 jazz for bookworms list of 2013:
"Rueckert’s is a must-read, if rambling, reality check. His marvelously aware, painstaking accounts of shabby treatment at the hands of airline staff, promoters, baristas and the like, told in a second-person stream-of-consciousness, evoke sympathy and schadenfreude in equal amounts."
Read the Rueckert Volume 4
download - 5 bucks- It's an .epub file
Read the Rueckert Volume 3
download - 5 bucks- It's an .epub file
Read the Rueckert Volume 2
download - 5 bucks- It's an .epub file
(this one is not very well formatted)
Read the Rueckert Volume 1
download - 5 bucks - It's an .epub file
(this one is badly formatted and not really spell-checked.)
With the reign of social media, a fair amount of people contact me with questions- here are the most frequently asked ones:
Where are you from/ Where did you grow up?
I grew up on the outskirts of Cologne, Germany.
When did you move to New York?
I moved around 1995, when i was about 19, after realising Germany wasn't for me, musically.
Did you go to music school?
After quitting high school in 1992, i went to the music conservatory in Cologne for about 2 years, I didn't learn all that much there. I didn't go to school in the US, I had a few private lessons in NYC.
How was it moving to New York that young?
It was a little rough, I didn't have much work and had visa trouble. It took me quite a while to get a real gig, about two years. I was lucky enough to have enough work in Europe to keep me going. Eventually I got settled with an O-1 visa, then a green card and now citizenship.
How long has your Quartet been playing ?
I started the band in 2009 and we've been playing consistently since then, with Brad Shepik at first,now with Lage Lund and sometimes Mike Moreno. We released an album called "somewhere, meeting nobody" in 2011 on Pirouet records in Germany. It was my first album with original songs.
How do you write your songs?
Usually, on the piano, after some wine. My piano skills are close to zero, so it takes a lot of time and imagination; I try to avoid using computers.Often, I write after studying/transcribing.
Who books your band and how much do you play and rehearse?
I do all the booking myself ( email@example.com) and it sucks.We play roughly 2 two-week tours in Europe a year, do the odd Goethe Institute tour in weird places as well as a few gigs in New York at Smalls and the like. Initially we rehearsed twice for the first album, now we do it during sound check for new songs since everybody is familiar with the older songs.
You program a lot of fairly crazy electronic music under the alias "Wolff Parkinson White"- how did you start and does your jazz music and your programming influence each other?
I always have been fascinated by "Venetian Snares", who programs a lot in confusing odd meters, some amazing stuff, but maybe not the most interesting melodically/harmonically. I felt like I can bring those aspects to the table, so i started programming in 2005. The jazz part does influence the electronic part a fair bit, but not really the other way around.
Do you have plans to move back to Europe ?
What's with the Ben Street slamming song titles on Wolff Parkinson White albums?
Nothing, it's a joke, he loves the attention, the racist fatso.
What kind of Equipment do you use?
Drum-wise I still use my late 60's Ludwig kit I bought in 1995, bebob sizes, I now play a somewhat deep 6.5" 1930's WFL snare drum. Haven't really looked at other drums since i got these. Cymbal wise, I use some old K Zildjian, some Craig Lauritsen and Spizzichino cymbals, all 24" and 22", I recently started using a very thin 24"old A Zildjian somebody lathed and hammered. I use 15"old K Zildjian and 16" old A Zildjian hihats. I have a 26" 30th anniversary Agop i play occasionally. I have a very light Frank Gegerle MK III 24". For sticks, i play mostly Vater maple bebop 550 or "super jazz models", I use Otis' "Bomber" fluffy bass drum beater and coated Remo Ambassador heads.
Programming-wise I am in Ableton live plus anything I can get my my hands on. I generate a lot of the sounds used in plugin-synths, most of the songs use 24 notes in an octave and a comprehensive list of metric analysis can be found in the album description on the albums' bandcamp sites.