Didier Levallet

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b. 19 July 1944, Arcy sur Cure, France. Levallet is largely a self-taught bass player who studied journalism at L’Ecole Superieure de Journalisme de Lille (1963-66) and went on for a short time to study…
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b. 19 July 1944, Arcy sur Cure, France. Levallet is largely a self-taught bass player who studied journalism at L’Ecole Superieure de Journalisme de Lille (1963-66) and went on for a short time to study bass at Lille Conservatory. He moved to Paris in 1969 and played with a wide range of local and visiting musicians including Ted Curson, Hank Mobley, Mal Waldron and Johnny Griffin. He worked with the free-jazz quartet Perception through the 70s and worked in the USA with tenor saxophonist Byard Lancaster (1974-76). He also led Confluence, a group based on strings and percussion only. In the early 80s he played with Frank Lowe, Archie Shepp, Mike Westbrook’s Concert Band and Chris McGregor’s Brotherhood Of Breath as well as the Double Quartet with Tony Oxley. Levallet is a prolific composer who can combine free-improvisation and structure coherently. He works within four bands - the Quintet, a 12-piece band, Swing Strings System (which utilises seven string players plus drums) and a trio with Dominique Pifarely (violin) and Gérard Marais (guitar). In 1976, he founded ADMI (Association pour la Developement de la Musique Improvise), which acts as a pressure group and concert organizer. He teaches jazz at L’Ecole National de Musique in Angouleme.