Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
Gregor, Valentin, violinist; b. Bonn, 13 May 1963. Gregor enjoys a repertoire ranging from the violin and voice to the viola. Otto Kirchenmaier, former concertmaster at the Beethoven Hall in Bonn, began giving lessons to the boy of seven, directing him towards a classical education in music. This path never quite seemed to suit Gregor's temperament, for he was searching for the musical means of expression outside the classical repertoire.
He could soon be heard in Hanover performing with a gypsy swing band. He then started an a capella group "Echo Echo" (presently "Meier & die Geier") together with Hans-Werner Meyer, Volker Dittmann and Christian Taube. The band later signed a contract with WEA Records - Hamburg. In 1988, he became acquainted with a jazz violinist by the name of Hajo Hoffmann, an encounter that inspired the young musician to begin his studies in "jazz violin" that very year at the College of Music, Cologne, where he graduated in 1992.
While touring with the well known German acapella band "Sechszylinder" (1992-1994) Valentin Gregor performed as singer at 350 concerts and TV-shows throughout Europe. From there he journeyed to Boston, more specifically to the Berklee College of Music. This was followed by seminal concert performances with jazz greats including Stephane Grappelli, Herb Geller, Ed Harris, Ed Schuller, Garrison Fewell, Duduka da Fonseca, Hans Glawischnig and Nicolas Simion, performing at venues in such cities as Boston, New York, San Francisco, Atlanta and Portland.
In 1999, Valentin Gregor met the pianist Ekkehard WSlk at the Berlin Jazz-Club "b-flat". This turned out to be more than just a chance encounter. The two shooting stars of the Berlin music scene formed the group Duo Escapade. The Valentin Gregor Quartet was an award-winner at the prestigious "Berlin Jazz and Blues Award 2002."
He works with Valentin Gregor Quartet (World Music Jazz), Duo Escapade (Classic/Jazz Fusion), Carlos Bica Quintet featuring singer Ana Brandao, Trio Valentino (Swing, Bossa Nova) and the Hans Hartmann Trio.
Duo Escapade: The Gentleman Tramp (2002, unissued), Songs of Imagination (2003); This Way Please (2003)
Back to the Rock - from Israel (1994); Chalk Circle (1996); Wood - Rumble Man (1996); Exotic Feeding (1996); DYAD (2000); Andy Winter Group: Delicate Move (2002); Am offenen Herzen (2002)