Blue Lines Trio

'Good music should be round and must have everything life has; it has animals, it has people, it has events, it has politics, it has religion, everything' - Steve Lacy

George Hadow - drums        
Michiel Scheen - piano
Raoul van der Weide - contrabass, crackle box, sound objects 
The Blue Lines Trio brings together three generations of improvising musicians. In an inimitable mix of throbbing swing, survey-ing impro, nomadic chords and sincere lyricism, the trio continues its restless quest for new possibilities of ensemble-playing. It is not a traditional pianotrio, but a trio, founded by Raoul van der Weide in 2012.
In these disturbing times, George, Michiel and Raoul also are submitted to unknown musical processes, however: with unbridled devotion, the group plunges in situations where direction and grip are well remembered, but cannot function as firm values and fundamentals anymore. Balancing on the cliffs of musical existence, the ensemble manages other essentials, such as shaky dance rhythms, sharp razored lumps of chopped harmony, spaghettiplates, sucked-in melodies, stadsklanken, caressing desire, flexible manifesto’s, secret transfusions and interim scores. 

The trio received rave reviews on their in september 2014 released debut CD (Casco Records 002). See also Blue Lines bandcamp and Toondist.

sparkling compositions and tingling free improvisations … a beauty of a debut album … a little gem to discover ... music for connoisseurs … clear compositions with strong contrasts, sometimes smooth, sometimes jerky ... no improvisation resembles others, every track is an entity and has a character of its own … musicians with particular melodic and harmonic alertness … the cd is full of hidden intelligent musical jokes … a very diverse and colorful ‘contemporary improvised music’ album …”

Reactions on earlier work of the band members:
- George Hadow: ‘A f***ing good drummer!’ (Han Bennink, 2012)
- Michiel Scheen: 'Odd twists and sharp angles, post-Monk, post-Mengelsberg, even' (The Village Voice, 2004).
- Raoul van der Weide: ‘Klankmagician Raoul van der Weide.’ (Tim Sprangers, Gonzocircus, 2012)

For decades, Van der Weide and Scheen worked within leading formations in improvised music. For instance with Maarten Altena, Guus Janssen, Misha Mengelberg, Paul Termos and in many international ensembles. George Hadow is an example of a new generation of improvisers who recently enrich the Netherlands’ music scene.

See further information about the trio and an extended edition of the group: The Blue Lines Sextet at:their Bandcamp website. 

Contact Raoul.
Contact George.
Contact Michiel.

Since 2014, the Blue Lines Trio features master-saxophonist and key figure in the Chicago music scene, Mars Williams on a project basis. 

Mars Williams is an open-minded musician, composer and educator who commutes easily between free jazz, funk, hip-hop and rock, Mars has played and recorded with The Psychedelic Furs, Billy Idol, Massacre, Fred Frith, Bill Laswell, Ministry, Power Station, Die Warzau, The Waitresses, Kiki Dee, Pete Cosey, Billy Squier, DJ Logic, Wayne Kramer, John Scoffield, Charlie Hunter, Kurt Elling, Swollen Monkeys, Mike Clark, Jerry Garcia, Naked Raygun, Friendly Fires, The Untouchables, Blow Monkeys and virtually every leading figure of Chicago’s and New York City's "downtown" scene.

John Zorn credits Mars as "one of the true saxophone players--someone who takes pleasure in the sheer act of blowing the horn. This tremendous enthusiasm is an essential part of his sound, and it comes through each note every time he plays. Whatever the situation, Mars plays exciting music. In many ways he has succeeded in redefining what versatility means to the modern saxophone player."

In 2001 Mars received a Grammy Nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Record with his group Liquid Soul. 

Despite his busy touring schedule with Liquid Soul and The Psychedelic Furs, Mars manages to stay active on the Chicago underground improvising scene. In recent years he has toured and recorded with the Peter Brötzmann Tentet, Switchback, Full Blast, Scorch Trio, the Vandermark 5, Boneshaker, Chicago Reed Quartet and Cinghiale, teaming him with such musicians as Ken Vandermark, Hamid Drake, Michael Zerang, William Parker, Kent Kessler, Fredric Lonberg Holm, Peter Brotzmann, Joe McPhee, Paal Nilssen-Love, Mike Reed, Jeb Bishop, Harrison Bankhead, Dave Rempis, Kidd Jordan and Matts Gustafson.

He performs weekly in Chicago along with Jim Baker, Steve Hunt, and Brian Sandstrom in the improvising quartet “Extraordinary Popular Delusions”. As a bandleader, he continues to perform and record CDs with his own free-jazz groups, the NRG Ensemble, Witches & Devils, Slam, XmarsX, Mars Trio, Boneshaker and The Soul Sonic Sirkus which features improvising musicians and aerial circus performers. Along with Die Warsau’s Van Christie, Mars has started Ratking Music, a production company focusing on music for film and television.

In addition to performing and creating music, Mars has been an educator in the field of woodwinds and jazz improvisation for over thirty years. Mars held the position of Woodwind Instructor at Bard College for two years. In the last few years Mars has presented Master classes and clinics to a number of private and public institutions including, the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, the University of Chicago, Roosevelt University (Chicago, IL), and June Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art (Auburn, AL).

Four improvisations, live at The Ruimte, Amsterdam - May 26th, 2016:

Biography Raoul van der Weide

Contrabassist, cellist and crackle box player (Fontenailles - France, 1949) has a background as classically educated violinist but works as a professional double bassist, cellist and improvising crackle box-player since 1978 both as a soloist and as an ensemble player Having a broad interest in historical, ethnical and actual musical cultures worldwide, his focus is on exploring the boundless if not dazzling possibilities and challenging promises composing/improvising of free and structured improvised music. 

Raoul has toured Europe, Indonesia, Russia, Argentina and the Baltic States. Performed with a numerous amount of great improvisers ranging from Frank Wright, Louis Moholo, Derek Bailey, Steve Lacy, Vincent Chancey, Herb Roberston, Ernst Reijseger, Tristan Honzinger, Tobias Delius, Terrie EX, Peter Evans, Paal Nilsson-Love, Fred van Hove, Gunda Gottschalk, Andrew Drury, Mike Reed, Keefe Jackson, Mars Williams, Misha Mengelberg, Han Bennink to mention a few and was member of the 'Guus Janssen Septet' + 'Guus Janssen & His Orchestra' (1979-1990) , 'Paul Termos Trio' (1979-1984) , 'Burton Greene Trio/Quartet'(1982-86) 'Ab Baars Sextet' (1986-87) , 'Spazio trio' (with Guenther Sommer/d and Conny Bauer/trb) (1985-88) , 'The Gravitones' (1990- 1995) AS IF trio (1997- 2010) , 'Sound-Lee! 4tet Plays the Music of Lee Konitz' (2002-2006) 'Trialectics'(since 2012) 'Boucale! Quartet' (2010-13) and is actually performing with 'Dikeman/Kugel/Van der Weide' trio, 'Blue Lines Trio and Sextet', 'STRINGS5' quintet, 'The Mulligan-Baker Project', 'Xavier Pamplona Ensemble 'and 'New Rumours And Other Noises' trio and ad hoc combinations.

1978 member of the short lived but burlesque and formative 'Punt-Uit Orkest' initiated by trombonist Bert Koppelaar. Other musicians included: Guus janssen/p + compositions, Paul Termos/as + compositions, Peter Cusack/gt, Wim Janssen/d. 

1998-2002 boardmember of the Beroepsvereniging van Improviserende Musici (BIM) > Dutch Association Of Improvising Musicians.

In 2010 he started 'The White Noise Orchestra', an ongoing experimental collective instant composing 10 piece ensemble including 2 dancers working specifically in low dynamic areas exploring an open and undogmatic 'playing with silence & non-silence' approach.

In 2009 till 2017 he initiated and hosted the Amsterdam based improvising programming curators platform called 'OORSPRONG curators series/OCS', a monthly all-volunteering collective project promoting the concept of high degree zero 'blinddate+instant composing' lineups on different locations notably 'Het Poortgebouw' (Amsterdam) and 'DokZaal' (Amsterdam). Each month these lineups were curated/casted and presented by 3 different curators form different improvisation backgrounds: notably dance, electronics and acoustic music. OCS was assisted by George Hadow and cooperating with Dutch leading Studio for creative Electro-Acoustic research, development and practice STEIM as supportive content and facility partner. In these 8 years 240 curators were participating in this series presenting around 1000 different 240 blinddate+instant composing sets.

In 2014 he started on request of Huis de Pinto organisation a new monthly improvising series 'Pintotonics n+1' at Huis de Pinto venue in Amsterdam. This series focuses on presenting pro evening a solo and an small ensemble set bringing refractory quality soloists and ensembles both young talented as well as older 'proven quality' performers in the context of composed/improvised repertoires.

In 2016 he started with guitarist Henk Zwerver and violonist Jacob Plooij the 'New Handicaps All Strings Pool' project. Promoting all-kind-of strings improvisations in different formats. This 'strings only' pool organizes regularly performances on different locations in Amsterdam.


Raoul van der Weide.

Discography: Ensembles & solo
Guus Janssen Septet: 'Guus Janssen Septet', Claxon 84.14, 1984 LP With Guus Janssen/p+comp; Maud Sauer/ob+alto ob; Ab Baars/ss, ts, bs + cl; Michael Moore/Annemarie Roelofs/trb+vl; Wim Janssen/d; Raoul van der Weide/cb+vcl 

Burton Greene Quartet: 'One World Music', Cat Jazz Records 1984 LP With Burton Greene/p+comp; Fred Leeflang/ss, as, ts; Raoul van der Weide/cb; Max Bolleman /d+perc

Burton Greene Quartet: 'Valencia Chocolate'. Cat Jazz Records 1985 LP With Burton Greene/p+comp; Paul Stocker/ss, as+comp; Raoul van der Weide/cb; Clarence Becton/d+perc 

Guus Janssen Septet : '1985-86', Claxon 87.18, 1987 LP. With Guus Janssen/p+comp; Maud Sauer/ob+shanai; Ab Baars/ss, ts, cl; Michael Moore/as, cl; Ernst Reyseger/vcl; Maurice Horsthuis/vla; Raoul van der Weide/cb; Wim Janssen/d 

Guus Janssen & His Orchestra: 'Dancing Series'' GeestGronden GG1, 1988 With Guus Janssen/p+comp; Vincent Chancey/fr horn; Ernst Reyseger/vcl; Wolter Wierbos/trb; Herb Robertson/trp; Ab Baars/ss, ts/ Paul Termos/as; Jacques Palinckx/gt; Raoul van der Weide/cb; Wim Janssen/d 

Sound-Lee! 'Plays the Music of Lee Konitz' GeestGronden GG21 2001 With Guus Janssen/p+comp; Jorrit Dijkstra/as; Raoul van der WEide/cb; Wim Janssen/d 

AS IF trio Casco Records 001 2009 With Frank van Bommel/p+glockenspiel+vibrafonette; Raoul van der Weide/cb+crackle box; Wim Janssen/d 

Royal Improvisers OrchestraRiOT 01 2010 With special guest Han Bennink/d; Yedo Gibson/ss,ts; John Dikeman/ts; Alfredo Genovesi/gt; Ofir Klempere/electronics; Ofer Smilansky/electronics; Angel Faraldo/electronics; Marie Guilleray/voice+accordeon; Sandra Pujols/voice; Renato Ferreira/cb; Raoul van der Weide/cb; Marcos Baggiani/d; Oscar Jan Hoogland/p; Mikael Zsafirovski/gt; Yolande Uriz/fl; Rodrigo Pajero/flt; Jose Rodrigues Gomes/dulcin+recorder; James Hewitt/baroque vl; Berta Puigdemasa/hrp; Gerri Jaeger/d 

Dikeman/Kugel/Van der Weide trio: 'Across The Sky', Nottwo Records 2012 With John Dikeman/ts; Klaus Kugel/d+perc; Raoul van der Weide/cb+crackle box 

Blue Lines Trio: 'Blue Lines Trio' Casco Records 002 2014 With Michiel Scheen/p+comp; Raoul van der Weide/cb+crackle box+comp; George Hadow/d 

New Rumours And Other Noises – 'The Moonlight Nightcall' – Casco Records 003 2015. trio With Ada Rave/ss,ts, cl+preparations, voice; Nicolas Chientaroli/p+preparations, voice; Raoul van der Weide/cb, crackle box, objects, voice. 

Mulligan-Baker Project: Mixing Memory And Desire' – WLWJC MM16 – 2017. Jan Willem van der Ham/bariton sax + compositions – Felicity Provan/trumpet – Raoul van der Weide/contrabass+percussion – George Hadow/drums+percussion. 

Blue Lines Sextet – 'Live at the BIMhuis' – Casco Records 004 – 2017.' Ada Rave/tenor sax, clarinet – Bart Maris/trumpet, cornet – Wolter Wierbos/trombone – Michiel Scheen/piano, compositions, arrangements – Raoul van der Weide/contrabass, percussion, compositions – George Hadow/drums. 

'STRINGS5' – 'Lost In Labyrinth' – Casco Records 005 – 2017. Jacob Plooij/violin – Marta Warelis/piano – Raoul van der Weide/cello, percussion – Henk Zwerver/guitar – Jan Nijdam/contrabass. 

'ZWERF!' – Creatives Sources Records/CR433 – 2017. Recorded January 10th 2017 at venue ZAAL 100 by Mark Nieuwenhuis and mixed/mastered by Arnold de Boer. Ziv Taubenfeld/bass clarinet – Luis Vicente/trumpet – Henk Zwerver/guitar – Raoul van der Weide/contrabas – George Hadow/drums. . 


'Passages': 11 pieces dedicated to Paul Termos', solo contrabass, GeestGronden GG24 2005 


“Earcinema' – 'Pictures 1 – 8' .Cylnder Recording 011 – 2016, With Goncalo Almeida/double bass & Raoul van der Weide/double bass, cello, crackle box, objects. 

'Duas Magens' – 'Live at De Pletterij'. Cylinder Recording 012 – 2017. With Goncalo Almeida/double bass and Raoul van der Weide/double bass and preparations, crackle box. 


Most of the releases are distributed by Subdist and Toondist.

* Video Interview 

Pianist and activist Thollem McDonas in conversation with Raoul van der Weide – 2016.