Hennie Bekker - біографія, альбоми, пісні, кліпи

Hennie Bekker is a Juno nominated Canadian composer, arranger, producer and keyboardist based in Toronto, Canada. His career has run the spectrum from jazz fusion and film scoring to New Age and techno. A Juno Award winner for his work with techno-driven trio BKS, Bekker also helped pioneer melding soft melodies with the nature-driven environmental recordings of Dan Gibson, founder of Solitudes.

Together, Bekker and Dan Gibson recorded the first 14 albums in the Dan Gibson's Solitudes - Exploring Nature With Music series, including the 1989 best-selling, quadruple-platinum Harmony. Named "one of the most prolific and successful figures in contemporary Canadian pop music" [1] by Billboard and well into his sixth decade of musical recording, Bekker has issued over 50 albums - the most recent on his own Toronto, Ontario-based Abbeywood Records - and is still prolific, recording and issuing an average of one to two projects a year.

Born in the Zambian Copper Belt mining town of Nkana to a boilermaker and his wife, Bekker was raised 48 km down the road in Mufulira, also home to another future rock notable, songwriting producer Robert John "Mutt" Lange. Bekker first became enamored with piano when, at the age of 6, he heard his aunt Ria play the instrument. After his parents bought him a small piano, Bekker taught himself to play, at first leaning towards pianists like Carmen Cavallaro, Eddy Duchin and later the sounds of the jazz greats like Art Tatum, George Shearing, Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans for inspiration. In 1945, the family relocated to Bulawayo, Southern Rhodesia (later christened Zimbabwe). He attended Milton Junior School and then the Bulawayo Technical High School.

1950s to mid-1960s

At age 15, he and five of his friends formed a band called "The Youth Marvels" playing the hits of the day. At age 22, he worked with band leader Gerry DeVos for a few years until he formed his first band, the Hennie Bekker Trio with bassist Noel Kidwell and Drummer Eddie Van Diermen. Bekker then moved to Salisbury, Rhodesia (now Harare). During this period, he also served as a resident pianist for the Rhodesian Broadcasting Corporation's morning show featuring Rhodesian radio icon Leslie Sullivan. In late 1961, after a three-month stint in Elizabethville (now called Lubumbashi) in the Congo (the gig was cut short due to the Katanga war), Bekker decided to move to Johannesburg, South Africa, where he became a session musician. He returned to Salisbury in 1962 with his band to play at the Bretts supper club there until the end of 1963. Bekker then moved to Luanda, Angola with the his band (Doug Graham bass, Eddie Van Diermen drums and Derek Graham vocals) for a short stint at the Club Naval. With the band's return to South Africa in 1964, it was booked into a successful three-year residency at the Riviera Hotel in Durban.
[edit] Mid-1960s to late 1970s: The Branch Office, fusion, jingles

After the Durban gig, the band did a one-year stint at the Mikado night club in Johannesburg. Bekker then jumped into the electronic-based world of the jazz rock hybrid fusion, fronting a number of bands bearing his name and playing the South African hotel circuit, notably 'Bretts' at the Criterion Hotel in Johannesburg. A residency at the renowned jazz club "The Branch Office" was one of Bekker's regular gigs, having such talents in his band as guitarist Johnny Fourie (a Billy Cobham sideman recommended to Chick Corea by John McLaughlin as a potential Return to Forever guitarist) and bassist extraordinaire - and future Juluka collaborator - John Boshoff. He followed that up by becoming a staff record producer and music director as well as working with record producer Billy Forrest at venerable Gallo Africa, the eventual record label home of such international superstars as Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Mahlathini and the Mahotella Queens, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, Juluka, Lucky Dube and Letta Mbulu. Simultaneously, he became a master jingle writer, composing over 500 of them to air on the South African Broadcasting Corporation, sometimes recording the same jingle in nine different languages ​​in order to meet SABC policy of servicing nine different nations within their broadcast area. [Br ] [edit] Early 1980s to 1987: London, album production, film scoring

Tiring of the scene, Bekker traveled to London and, with future Pat Travers producer Emil Zoghby, co-produced and played keyboards on the 1978 album Prisoners On The Line by UK progressive rockers Magna Carta and pianist / bandleader Stanley Black's 1979 LP Digital Magic. Bekker simultaneously worked as a musical director in the West End theatre district, later returning Johannesburg to score a handful of motion pictures, most notably Tigers Don't Cry, starring two-time Academy Award winner Anthony Quinn.
[edit] 1987 to present: relocation to Canada, Solitudes, BKS, Junos, African Tapestries

In 1987, Bekker and his wife Jacky immigrated to Canada, hooking up with John Parry Music and a steady gig provided cue music for production libraries. In 1994, he was recruited by Somerset Entertainment Producer Gordon Gibson to add music to his father Dan's Solitudes environmental recordings. Their first collaboration, Harmony, sold over 400,000 copies, and Bekker provided the music for 13 more gold, platinum and multi-platinum Solitudes titles before striking out on his own with Spring Rain with Holborne Distributing and later, Tranquility, through Quality Records. His Quality years also led him into the BKS techno-dance trio partnership with DJ Chris Sheppard and Greg Kavanagh, churning out three albums - For Those About To Rave, We Salute You (featuring the Juno-nominated dance chart-topper "I'm In Love With You "), Dreamcatcher and Astroplane, which contained the Juno-winning 1997 Best Dance Recording track" Astroplane (City Of Love mix) ". The trio toured across Canada, filling dance clubs from Halifax to Vancouver, and spurred more gold and platinum certifications of several dance mix compilations.

Bekker has issued series of albums, most notably, his rhythmically robust African Tapestries series of CDs, consisting of Temba, The Smoke That Thunders, Kusasa, Amani and Jabula. In March 2009 Bekker issued the African Tapestries Collection, a 5-CD box set including all five releases in the series.

In 2009, Abbeywood Records secured Canadian distribution with Fontana North, a division of MapleMusic Recordings. A new album, Moving On, was released in June 2010.

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