Zandscape – 2 dictionary results:
Zand·scape [Zand-skeyp] noun,
1. a musical landscape created by Mark Zandveld.
2. a band playing the creations mentioned above.

While it might be perceived as a gimmick, the dictionary entry actually gets to the heart of the band’s aesthetic. It points out that it relies on Mark Zandveld’s distinctive composing skills, but also that the music is conceived through collective playing and not only one man’s vision. Finally, there’s a great deal of humor and creativity involved, and this is also shown in titles like “Barhopping,” “Boptopus” and “What a Difference the Bass Makes.” Clearly, these guys like to play together, but make no mistake, behind the smile there’s also a stone-cold seriousness and an ambition to create an expression that is both musically curious and singular.

Jakob Baekgaard – All About Jazz

…and who am I to argue? After having been a bassist for decades, a fresh wind of inspiration led me to writing batch of compositions that you can find on Zandscape’s first CD.

Some of the pieces are written in the most common way jazz tunes are: in the form of a chord progression with a melody. Other pieces are more elaborate, with more information for each musician on the charts. Sometimes melodic ideas just flow and dictate the chords, and sometimes I pose myself the challenge to write a certain type, style or form of music. I consider tunes to be more than an excuse to improvise on, and I like to present a fresh variation, unified by the sound of the band.

As far as sources of influence you might hear (or not!): I’ve always loved the combination of vibraphone and guitar, plus the melodic and adventurous music of Corea, Burton, Jarret, Metheny and Swallow, and bands like Yellow Jackets and Steps. Thanks for the inspiration guys!

On the CD you hear: Mark Zandveld – bass; Gunnar Graafmans – vibraphone; Daniel de Moraes – guitar; Enrique Firpi – drums. These days you will hear us live with Jeen Rabs – guitar and Jurjen Bakker – drums.

Latest developments:
1. Wonderful vocalist Deborah J. Carter has written lyrics to a selection of Zandscape pieces, and performs with the group on special concerts. Check her out on deborahjcarter.com!
2. Now online, evolved out of Zandscape: Zandzemble – a project in which we combine a string quartet with jazz musicians in an ensemble that seeks to fully integrate the qualities of both the (mostly) written contemporary “classical” and the (mostly) improvised “jazz” idioms. zandzemble.com

Mark Zandveld


Chess

“The compositions of Zandveld contain substance”

Jan Jasper Tamboer – Jazzenzo.nl

“The tracks reflect the personality of the writer: precise, harmonious, thorough, relaxed and full of respect for the jazz tradition. Mark Zandveld has succeeded in creating his own sound.”

Hans Invernizzi – Jazzflits

“…a pleasantly captivating album…Zandscape is a valuable addition in the Dutch jazz landscape.”

Mark Rikxoort – Jazz Contrasts

“…it’s all about the music today and is fantastic, a combination of meandering soundscapes and tight Nu-Jazz that keeps captivating for three sets. The fun radiates from it…”

Muziekgezien blog

“To me, the nice thing about this music is its harmonic and technical complexity. I was very fond of the light sound of the vibraphone with guitar…..great!”

Jan Akkerman – guitarist

“….an extraordinarily beautiful, harmonious and melodic sounding album. Outstanding!”

Rolf Polak – All That’s Jazz