My fascination for guitar began when I was a child attending kindergarten
in Vienna, where I would admire the skill of my kindergarten teacher
as she played guitar and sang. Possibly, this planted the very first
seed for what was to become a career choice in music and teaching.
A few years later, at the age of12,
the rock band KISS
irrevocably ushered me into the world of music. This major musical
influence not only chaperoned my adolescence but also left its mark
in my musical work many years later.
I discovered the blues during my time
as an industrial apprentice.
I was 16 years old when I first picked up a guitar.
Influenced primarily by such guitarists
as John Mayall, Eric Clapton, and Mark Knopfler, I played rock &
blues music until one day I watched a video clip featuring the American
guitarist Stanley Jordan performing a jazz piece using the unusual
Little did I know how deeply this technique would change the way
I played guitar, and it was from this moment on that I became hooked
on jazz music.
Next to the profession I trained in,
I played in bands I founded myself for many years until I finally
left Austria for two years to study music at Berklee
College of Music in Boston.
Captivated by the sound of modern
jazz guitar music, I took private classes with various teachers,
including guitarists Joe Diorio and John Abercrombie. Upon my return
to Vienna, I graduated from the University
of Music and Arts in Graz where I majored in jazz
jam sessions in various Viennese clubs, I developed an affinity
for Brazil and had the pleasure of being invited
to play concerts in Fortaleza, Brazil, two summers long. During
this time, Ernst Ritsch, who studied guitar with me, founded the
Vienna Music Institute, a pop/jazz academy of music, where I have
been teaching since Spring 2000, in addition to my teaching at the
Association of Music in the Upper Waldviertel.
The Millennium brought a turning point
in my career as an artist. I launched the pop/jazz project “Camena”,
featuring me on guitar and for which I authored both the music and
Together, my duo partner Anne-Maria Höller and I published
the first album Camena “servant
of my soul” (2001).This
was then followed by a series of concerts, first in a duo formation
with just the two of us and finally in a trio which included the
percussionist Farid Al-Shami.
Aside from the live performances with
Camena, I found myself breaking new musical ground elsewhere: As
a consequence, I was booked for the contemporary
theater/opera productions “The Little Match
Girl” (2003), “The Threepenny Opera” (2004), “The
Seven Deadly Sins” (2005) and “The Knot Garden”
(2005) featuring as guitar and banjo player.
Influenced by the world of theatre,
new songs were born, resulting in the release of the second
album “camena to the fallen” (2005).
This time I invited a select crew of guest musicians and vocalists,
including New York jazz singer, Dean
Bowman, Broadway Musical singer, Drew
Sarich, the Viennese bass player, Volker
the Swiss avant-garde cellist, Clementine Gasser
to participate in the album’s
Aside from Dean
Bowman, the line-up for the live concerts that follow
(including Stadtfest Wien, Ö1 Bühne am Donauinselfest,
Porgy & Bess, Joe Zawinul’s Birdland, etc.), feature such
performers as jazz/soul vocalist Patrizia
Ferrara and English rock/musical singer Rob
As part of a professional continuing education I postgraduated in summer 2013 following a three-year PhD - doctorate study at the Institute for Jazz Research at the Art University Graz/Austria.
My thesis explores austrian jazz guitarist Karl Ratzer´s characteristic musical content or qualitative musical features and individual method of learning and playing.
Currently, I am working on new pieces for
a planned guitar solo album.