Richard Pavlidis is a fresh faced jazz troubadour in Australia’s jazz scene. Origins, the title of his show at the Melbourne Recital Centre’s Salon on Friday 7 February launches a sterling career for this young jazz artist after a year of touring.
“I’ve been around for a little while,” Richard laughs when I ask if he considers himself as an emerging artist.
Pavlidis graduated from the Victorian College for the Arts, Melbourne University in 2011 under Alex Pertout the international renowned Latin Jazz percussionist.
Pavlidis came to the attention of the Melbourne Recital Centre after critical acclaim for his first album ‘Without Within’. The Australian labelled his work ‘Versatile and passionate’ while Brisbane Jazz Guide conferred on him the title of a ‘Saxophone powerhouse’.
“I try and approach composition and performance the way a pop song writer might, I try to create emotions and moods – I like to move beyond jazz as a technical art form only” says Pavlidis says about his music.
He listens to the “Beatles a lot” and while musically the album was not inspired directly by George Harrison’s classic ‘Within you, Without you’, “the sentiment was” says Pavlidis.
“Beatles are great at using simplicity to express alienation and loneliness” he adds.
Pavlidis pays homage to his Greek roots, and reflects on the music his parents listened to. Born and brought up in Australia, he always had a love of Greek and Balkan music.
“I picked up the clarinet when I was younger, and I still go home and play Greek music.
“There is a strong tradition of Balkan, Roma and Greek jazz, on the surface level if you listen to a Greek improvised music, and it makes me think of Ornette Coleman.
“Look at Dave Brubeck’s ‘Take 5’, it was inspired by a Turkish taksim he heard while on tour in Istanbul in the 50s” enthuses Pavlidis.
READ MORE: ‘Rebetika will always be relevant’
Pavlidis is working on a new album and after touring Australia this year he is looking to tour Greece, especially Athens the new global contemporary arts hub, then Europe in 2021.
It is hard to tell, however it seems this young artist will garner much respect and accolades as his career progresses.
Link to album ‘Without Within’: https://richardpavlidis.bandcamp.com/releases