One of the greatest Polish jazzmen, Zbigniew Jacek Namysłowski, died on February 7th, he was 82. Namysłowski was a multi-instrumentalist – by education a pianist and cellist and by choice an alto and soprano saxophonist, flutist and trombonist. He was also an excellent composer and arranger.
He began his musical education in Krakow, where the fate of the war threw him and continued in Warsaw, where he moved to live again in 1954. He started his adventure with jazz in 1957 in Klub Hybrydy, playing in Dixieland bands, as well as piano and trombone ensembles. Then he became interested in modern jazz and started a career as a saxophonist. He devoted his entire life to this instrument and this music.
He recorded dozens of his own albums, and participated in the albums of many other artists, including Krzysztof Komeda or Czesław Niemen. In 2007, he was awarded the “Gloria Artis” Gold Medal for Merit to Culture.
He was an Honorary Member of the Old Barn. He often visited our meetings. Friendly, cheerful, kind and modest. He did not show off his artistry. Recently, one of his saxophones was auctioned for the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity.
For over 30 years, Zbyszek and I were neighbors in Powiśle. We had many happy memories together. I think his trombone playing is one of the best in the world. I grew up with his music and he makes me love JAZZ.
(Aunt Haggar’s Blues – 1962 recorded for Polish Radio)