» Music » Radoslav Lorkovic Croatian-American musician ranging from classical and jazz styles to blues, country and soul
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Radoslav Lorkovic Croatian-American musician ranging from classical and jazz styles to blues, country and soul
Radoslav is a grandson of great Croatian pianist Melita Lorković
Radoslav Lorković, Croatian-American musician, source of the photo Flickr
Radoslav Lorković with his accordeon
Drawing from a multitude of influences ranging from elegant classical and jazz styles to the rawest, most basic blues, country and soul, Radoslav Lorkovic has taken on an unusually broad musical spectrum and refined it into his distinctive piano style. His tenure on the R&B and folk circuits has culminated in five critically acclaimed solo recordings and numerous appearances on the recordings of and performances with artists including Odetta, Jimmy LaFave, Ribbon of Highway Woody Guthrie Tribute, Greg Brown, Richard Shindell, Ellis Paul, Dave Moore, Andy White and Bo Ramsey. His twenty year touring career has led him from the taverns of the upper Mississippi River to the castles of Italy, The Canary Islands, The Yup'ik villages of Alaska and Carnegie Hall.
Born in Zagreb, Croatia in 1958, Lorkovic's initial exposure to music can be attributed to two grandmothers. Antonija Bujas, his maternal Grandmother, sang him Croatian, Slovenian and Czech folk songs since birth. At age one he was reported to be singing back on pitch. By age three he was putting on floor shows for his grandfather and friends who would respond by showering him with coins yelling "pivaj Radoslav pivaj!" During this time classical music played in the home constantly due to the influence of his paternal grandmother Melita Lorkovic, a internationally renown classical pianist. After this blend of central European musical influences Radoslav moved to the United States at age six. He had a foothold on a classical music career when at age fourteen he was sidetracked by a blues scale that a friend had taught him.
Melita Lorković, distinguished Croatian pianist, is Radoslav's paternal grandmother
After several years and countless hours of expounding on this spark, Lorkovic began touring at age 20 with Bo Ramsey and the Sliders. Lorkovic entered the band having mastered the styles of boogie-woogie greats such as Albert Ammons, Pete Johnson, Freddie Slack etc.. Ramsey's influence drove Lorkovic deeper to the core of the blues. The music of Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters and Little Walter shifted Lorkovic's focus to the basics as he began to draw from the styles of Otis Spann and Pinetop Perkins. Several years later Lorkovic and Ramsey joined forces with Greg Brown adding musical authenticity to his deep Iowa Roots. At this time Lorkovic was simultaneously brushing up on his classical heritage and looking south to the polyrhythmic sounds of Professor Longhair and James Booker. He had picked up Tex-Mex and Zydeco accordion as well. In 1990 he made his solo recording debut. Six CDs later, Lorkovic currently tours the world regularly appearing at prestigious events such as the Woody Guthrie Festival, Womad, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Mountain Stage, Prairie Home Companion as well as a litany of Italian castles and villas.
Radovan Lorković, author of the book about his mother Melita Lorković. He is a concert violonist and professor at the Music Academy in Base, Switzerland. Professor Radovan Lorković founded the Music School on the island of Hvar in Croatia, and he supports music schools in Croatia.
Odetta accompanied by Radoslav Lorković. Festival Macerata, Arena Sferisterio, Italy, 15 June 2008.
Radoslav Lorković's legendary accordeon suitcase. Note Croatian Coat of Arms on the bottom, second from the left.
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