Liudas Mockūnas

Liudas Mockūnas is a multi-reeds player and composer, whose name stands for masterly performance and intriguing compositions. His 'natural' idiom is an explosive mixture of free jazz, lyricism and expressionism combined with highly unconventional performance techniques. His in-depth exploration of the properties of sound lead to an innovative and personal approach to wind playing techniques. This allowed him to escape from stylistic conventions and form an entirely original style, distinguished for multiphonics, expressive discharges of sound, overbends and unusual sound effects. Trained as a jazz and classical musician, Liudas Mockūnas has a deep understanding and practical knowledge of both fields, the boundaries of which he traverses back and forth in his own compositions.

Jūratė Kučinskaitė

 

Remigijus Merkelys - Compass
Liudas Mockūnas & Arkady Gotesman - Tamsta Blues

Biography

Liudas Mockūnas (b. 1976) is a representative of modern creative and free avant-garde jazz, his music obliterates the boundaries between jazz and academic music. Exploring the nature of sound and the potential of overtones, he has developed his own playing style saturated with multiphonic techniques. According to the critics, "this reed player works with highly unorthodox mixtures, with sounds ranging from expressive instrumental burnouts over filmic horror to apocalypse-hymns and transcendent bells. His music may be unpredictable with an energizing mixture of free jazz, lyricism and mid-European expressionism."

The musician's education is both in jazz and classical fields. A graduate of M.K.Čiurlionis School of Arts, he received his master's degree from the Lithuanian Academy of Music in 2002 (under Vladimir Chekasin). In 2005 he received Jazz Performance Masters from the Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen. He has further perfected his skills and knowledge through a number of courses and private lessons.
The saxophonist has accumulated a solid stage experience. He started playing jazz as a child of eight and made his stage debut in 1988 with the Youth Jazz Ensemble led by Vladimir Chekasin. From the age of 15 he has constantly been part of jazz festivals and emerged as a leader in 1996; he has performed with numerous Lithuanian jazz musicians.

Liudas Mockūnas truly merits the name of Lithuanian jazz ambassador. He is constantly involved in international projects both as initiator and member of different groups. His international collaborations were given a new impetus when in 1999 he started his studies in Copenhagen. In 2000 he and the Danish drummer Stefan Pasborg founded a highly acclaimed group Toxikum, their self-titled album in Denmark was hailed Jazz Discovery of the Year 2004.

A co-leader of the groups Red Planet, Baltic Trio, Artomic, and Revolver, he also collaborates with the Copenhagen Art Ensemble, Pierre Dørge and his New Jungle Orchestra. He has played with the Swinging Europe Big Band and has participated in the La Villet Jazz Festival's international big band project with the World Saxophone Quartet. Mockūnas has also collaborated with Marc Ducret, David Murray, Oliver Lake, Mats Eilertsen, Jaak Sooäär, Mikko Innanen, Jeff Arnal, Dietrich Eichmann, Scott Colley, Ryoji Hojito, Nasheet Waits, Mats Gustafsson, Chris Speed, Mike Svoboda and Andrew Hill. With different groups Mockūnas has performed across Europe, in the USA and China. In 2004 he initiated Traffic Quartet, a group of Lithuanian musicians (Valerijus Ramoška, Liudas Mockūnas, Eugenijus Kanevičius and Arkady Gotesman).

Liudas Mockūnas is a winner of a number of competitions. In 1993 and 1995 he became laureate of Juozas Pakalnis Wind Players Competition; in 1993 and 1995 he participated in the "Berklee in Germany" workshops (led by Gary Burton) and was granted a scholarship to study at the Berklee College of Music (USA). In 2000 he received the second prizes from Brilliant Note, an international saxophonists' competition in Latvia, and the international jazz soloists' competition in Klaipeda. In 2001 the MAP trio (Liudas Mockūnas, Jacob Anderskov and Stefan Pasborg) won the European improvisational music competition in France. His achievement in music was recognized by the Mūzų Malūnas Prize in 2004, and by the Vilnius Jazz Festival Prize "For Contribution into Lithuanian Jazz Culture" in 2006.

Liudas Mockūnas also performs contemporary classical repertoire (pieces by Bronius Kutavičius, Algirdas Martinaitis, Remigijus Merkelys and others). He has performed with the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra, the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra, the St. Christopher Chamber Orchestra and the Gaida Ensemble. He also composes music for theatre and cinema. Since 2004 he teaches at the Jazz Department of the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre.

© Jūratė Kučinskaitė

Mockūnas/Pasborg Project
Liudas Mockūnas - saxes, Mads Hyhne - tb, Jaak Sooäär - g, electronics, Jacob Anderskov - p, rhodes, Nils Davidsen - b, Stefan Pasborg - dr, perc, Mark Solborg - g, electronics
TCB Records 001, 2001 (CD)

rød planet
Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Jakob Riis - computer, Stefan Pasborg - dr
ILK/TCB Records 003, 2003 (CD)

Toxikum
Toxikum: Stefan Pasborg - dr, perc, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Jakob Riis - tb, computer, Jacob Anderskov - ky, Nils Davidsen - b + guests: Marc Ducret - g, John Tchicai - voc, Jakob Munck - tb, tu, Niclas Knudsen - g, Ketil Duckert - tp, Thomas Vang - mandolin, Darius Dikšaitis - v, Robertas Bliškevičius - va, Mindaugas Bačkus - vc
ILK/TCB Records 004, 2003 (CD)

Revolver
Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Mark Solborg - g, electronics, Mats Eilertsen - db
ILK/Quilombo Records q03.1, 2003 (CD)

saga
Andrė Pabarčiūtė - voc, p, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Vytis Nivinskas - db, Marijus Aleksa - dr, perc
Semplice SECD015, 2006 (CD)

 

As a group member

Sketches
Eugenijus Kanevičius Trio: Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Eugenijus Kanevičius - db, Linas Būda - dr
Lithuanian National Radio and Television, 1995 (MC)

Swinging Europe
European Jazz Youth Orchestra
Da Capo DCCD 9449, 1998 (CD)

Danielius Praspaliauskis Dixieland
Danielius Praspaliauskis - sax, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Valerijus Ramoška - tp, Skirmantas Sasnauskas - tb, Arūnas Šlaustas - p, Gintaras Šulinskas - g, Vladislav Borkovski - b, Linas Būda - dr
Lithuanian National Radio and Television LRCD 0004, 2000 (CD)

Singing and Swinging
Skirmantas Sasnauskas and Friends: Skirmantas Sasnauskas - voc, tb, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Valerijus Ramoška - tp, Arūnas Šlaustas - ky, Eugenijus Kanevičius - db, Arkady Gotesman - dr, and others
Skirmantas Sasnauskas, 2000 (CD)

The Day the World Stood Still
Andrew Hill Jazzpar Octet + 1: Andrew Hill - p, Staffan Svensson - tp, Klaus Löhrer - tb, tu , Peter Fuglsang - reeds, Thomas Agergaard - ts, fl, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Scott Colley - b, Nasheet Waits - dr + Lenora Zanzalai Helm - voc
StuntX, STXCD 20412, 2003 (CD)

 

As a guest musician

Making Blues
Neda Malūnavičiūtė - voc, Liudas Mockūnas - ss, Saulius Valikonis - ts + group "Blues Makers"
1994 (MC)

River of Time
Steponas Januška - voc, Valerijus Ramoška - tp, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Saulius Šiaučiulis - synth, Aleksandras Dunis - g, Virginijus Pažemeckas - g, Gintautas Litinskas - b, voc, Larisa Chekasina - voc, Irena Starošaitė - voc
JAM Records JMCD 024, 1999 (CD)

Artūras Bumšteinas: Retort
Artūras Bumšteinas - computer, Liudas Mockūnas - saxes, DJ Pitt - turntables
Nexsound ns32, 2004 (MP3)

Sutartinės Party
Loreta Sungailienė - voc, Audronė Vakarinienė - voc, Asta Adomaitytė - voc, Jolanta Černiauskienė - voc, Aistė Smilgevičiūtė - voc, Svaras - rap, Alvydas Mačiulskas - sax, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Tomas Bieliauskas - ob, Linas Rimša - ky, programming, Linas Paulauskis - ky, programming
Bėgantis Mėnulis BMCD-001, 2009 (CD)

 

In compilations

All That Jazz from Denmark 2004
"Iki"
Toxikum: Stefan Pasborg - dr, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Jakob Riis - tb, computer, Jacob Anderskov - rhodes, Nils Davidsen - b
"The Boxoffice Escapeplan"
Revolver: Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Mark Solborg - g, Mats Eilertsen - db
Danish Music Export & Promotion MXP 0304, 2004 (CD)

Jazzy Lithuania
"Social 2"
Liudas Mockūnas - bs, Darius Dikšaitis - v, Chordos String Quartet: Ieva Sipaitytė - v, Eglė Jurašūnaitė - v, Robertas Bliškevičius - va, Mindaugas Bačkus - vc
"Another Day"
Liudas Mockūnas - ts, Arkady Gotesman - dr
Judita Bartoševičienė VMJ 001, 2004 (CD)

Free Spirits: Jazz from Lithuania 2005
"Social"
Toxikum: Stefan Pasborg - dr, Liudas Mockūnas - ss, Jacob Anderskov - rhodes, Nils Davidsen - b + guests: Marc Ducret - g, Darius Dikšaitis - v, Robertas Bliškevičius - va, Mindaugas Bačkus - vc
Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD 026, 2005 (CD)

Laureates of the "Birštonas" Jazz Festivals
Vladimir Chekasin. "Paraphrase on Various Themes" (fragment)
Vladimir Chekasin - saxes, voc, Arina - voc, Liudas Mockūnas - saxes, Oleg Molokoyedov - p, tp, Leonid Shinkarenko - b, Gediminas Laurinavičius - dr, perc, Linas Būda - dr
Birštonas' Cultural Centre, 2005 (CD)

Giedrius Puskunigis: Music for Theatre
"Heda Gabler"
Gabrielė Kuodytė - voc, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Vaidas Tamošiūnas - vc, Giedrius Puskunigis - ky
"The Lighthouse"
Mindaugas Zimkus - T, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Mindaugas Gecevičius - hn, Saulius Žvirblis - tp, Giedrius Puskunigis - ky
"The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant"
Jurga Šeduikytė - voc, Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Vladimir Telukhin - dr, Giedrius Puskunigis - ky
Kaunas State Drama Theatre, 2006 (CD)

Note Lithuania: Jazz

"african saga II"

Liudas Mockūnas - reeds, Andrė Pabarčiūtė - voc, Vytis Nivinskas - db, Marijus Aleksa - dr

Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD+DVD 002, 2007 (CD)

 

As a performer of academic music

Lithuanian New Music Year 1997
Bronius Kutavičius. "Far Away, Till Midnight"
Lina Miniūtė - v, Aidas Jurgaitis - v, Renatas Jankevičius - va, Onutė Švabauskaitė - vc, Jonas Stalyga - db, Vytautas Labutis - ss, Danielius Praspaliauskis - as, Rimvydas Paulikas - as, Liudas Mockūnas - ts, Vytautas Mockūnas - bs, cond. Donatas Katkus
Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD 004, 1998 (CD)

Beads
Giedrius Puskunigis. "The Eighth Sonnet"
Edita Bagdonaitė - S, Irmantas Jankaitis - B, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Saulius Žvirblis - tp, Julius Taločka - tb, choir "Brevis", cond. Dainius Balsys
Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD 005, 1998 (CD)

Zoom in 3: New Music from Lithuania
Remigijus Merkelys. "Compass"
Gaida Ensemble: Rusne Mataitytė - v, Džeraldas Bidva - v, Vitalija Raškevičiūtė - va, Edmundas Kulikauskas - vc, Arnoldas Gurinavičius - db, Mindaugas Juozapavičius - fl, Linas Šalna - ob, Antanas Taločka - cl, Andrius Puplauskis - bn, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Mindaugas Gecevičius - hn, Tomas Gricius - tp, Marius Balčytis - tb, Pavel Giunter - perc, Tomas Kulikauskas - perc, Zbignevas Ibelhauptas - p, synth, cond. Jussi Jaatinen
Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD 024, 2004 (CD)

Zoom in 4: New Music from Lithuania
Raminta Šerkšnytė. "Vortex"
Irvine Arditti - v + Gaida Ensemble: Mindaugas Juozapavičius - fl, Robertas Beinaris - ob, Algirdas Doveika - cl, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Zigmantas Augaitis - hn, Tomas Gricius - tp, Marius Balčytis - tb, Sergejus Kirsenko - tu, Pavel Giunter - perc, Sergejus Okruško - p, Rusnė Mataitytė - v, Artūras Šilalė - v, Vitalija Raškevičiūtė - va, Edmundas Kulikauskas - vc, Arnoldas Gurinavičius - db, cond. Vykintas Baltakas
Vykintas Baltakas. "Ouroboros"
Gaida Ensemble: Mindaugas Juozapavičius - fl, Robertas Beinaris - ob, Algirdas Doveika - cl, Liudas Mockūnas - sax, Raimondas Sviackevičius - acc, Sergejus Okruško - p, Rusnė Mataitytė - v, Artūras Šilalė - v, Vitalija Raškevičiūtė - va, cond. Vykintas Baltakas
Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre LMIPCCD 032, 2005 (CD)

Lithuanian Voice
Bronius Kutavičius. "Far Away, Till Midnight"
Lina Miniūtė - v, Aidas Jurgaitis - v, Renatas Jankevičius - va, Onutė Švabauskaitė - vc, Jonas Stalyga - db, Vytautas Labutis - ss, Danielius Praspaliauskis - as, Rimvydas Paulikas - as, Liudas Mockūnas - ts, Vytautas Mockūnas - bs, cond. Donatas Katkus
His Voice, 2006 (CD)