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MIROSLAV VITOUS

Jazz Rock/Fusion • Czech Republic


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Miroslav Vitous biography
Miroslav Ladislav Vitous (6 December 1947), is a Czech jazz bassist who was born in Prague. He begun play violin at age of six, started playing the piano at age ten, and bass at fourteen. He studied music at the Prague Conservatory subsequently winning an international music contest in Vienna, earning him a scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston. One of his early music groups was the Junior Trio with his brother Alan on drums and young another future-great Czech fusion musicianJan Hammer on keyboards.

A year later after he came to Boston, in 1966, Miroslav moved to New York & collaborated with musicians such as Bob Brookmeyer, Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Art Farmer, Stan Getz, Charlie Mariano, and Herbie Mann. In 1970, the group WEATHER REPORT was formed along with Wayne Shorter and Joe Zawinul. After three years left the group due to musical differences. After brief break he formed Miroslav Vitous Group with John Surman, Kenny Kirkland and Jon Christensen, and recorded 3 albums for ECM. After 3 years group was disbanded.

Vitous has become a director of Jazz Department in New England Conservatory in Boston, and leads the department for 3 years. He reunited with Chick Corea and Roy Haynes (Trio Music): it was a very successful period for the trio for the following 2 and half years. Tours all over the world and 2 albums recorded for ECM is the outcome of this reunion.

After this time he made a very successful duet world wide tour with Stanley Clark.

Makes several performances as a soloist with Pittsburg Symphony Orchestra and Music of Viva of Boston.

He recorded also a solo album for ECM ("Emergence").

In 1988 he moved back to Europe. Stopped teaching completely and became full time composer/performer, once again.

He made a lot of different projects with his band or solo, appeared at many festivals and concerts and participated in other projects with different top European musicians. After 22 years he returned to Prague and recorded an album with his brother Alan Vitous.

In March 1989 he started playing solo concerts. He wrote and performed concerts for Orchestra and solo bass in Frieburg (Germany) and Italy. Prior to the release of 'Universal Syncopations', he took a seven year break from performing to concentrate his efforts at making orchestral sample libraries. He was in search of electronic sounds to assist him in composing, but discovered what was available in the marketplace to be ...
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MIROSLAV VITOUS discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

MIROSLAV VITOUS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.97 | 10 ratings
Infinite Search (aka Mountain In The Clouds aka The Bass)
1970
4.00 | 2 ratings
Purple
1970
3.42 | 10 ratings
Magical Shepherd
1976
5.00 | 1 ratings
Majesty Music
1976
4.00 | 2 ratings
Miroslav
1977
3.00 | 3 ratings
Guardian Angels
1979
4.50 | 2 ratings
First Meeting
1980
4.00 | 3 ratings
Miroslav Vitous Group
1981
4.25 | 4 ratings
Journey's End
1983
5.00 | 1 ratings
Emergence
1986
4.50 | 4 ratings
Atmos (with Jan Garbarek)
1993
3.40 | 5 ratings
Universal Syncopations
2003
4.00 | 2 ratings
Universal Syncopations II
2007
4.00 | 3 ratings
Remembering Weather Report (Miroslav Vitous Group with Michel Portal)
2009

MIROSLAV VITOUS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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MIROSLAV VITOUS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Guardian Angels by VITOUS,MIROSLAV album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.00 | 3 ratings

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Guardian Angels
Miroslav Vitous Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

3 stars The atrocious cover design notwithstanding, this is a pretty good fusion album.

It seemed in the seventies that Czech bassist Miroslav played with just about everyone. I am particularly fond of his performance on Larry Coryell's "Spaces" album. But he is best known for his work with Weather Report.

Here, he has assembled his own band, most notably featuring John Scofield and Kenny Kirkland. The pieces are good, but not terribly adventurous. And although this is Vitous' band, except for the piece Guardian Angels, the bass isn't really featured on the album.

The first half of the album, aside from the song mentioned above, appeared to be geared to feature soprano sax player Mabumi Yamaguchi. He's actually quite good. And Vitous' acoustic bass playing is nice as well, but none of the songs catch fire.

The second half is more electrified. Vitous switches to electric bass (where he plays with more fire), and John Scofield's guitar helps quite a bit.

 Magical Shepherd by VITOUS,MIROSLAV album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.42 | 10 ratings

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Magical Shepherd
Miroslav Vitous Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars It's not easy for me to review this album (on PA). Music there is great but far from what prog fans would like to hear under " jazz rock" tag. Only a real progressive fusion fans can easily imagine this album's content when I will say that year is 1976 and Vitous collaborators on this album are Herbie Hancock, Airto Moreira and Jack DeJohnette (between others).

Nearest shot is Headhunters, and Hacock's keys sound very similar there. Vitous plays guitar beside of bass there, but his main contribution is groove deep dark funky bass line. All music is quite similar to Headhunters sound of similar time, but even if Hancock's keys sound is easily recognisable, main accent is done on rhythm section there.

It's interesting, that even playing similar pure jazz-funk, because of specific rhythm section album often has almost zeuhl groove. Many songs have vocals, something between funky/pre- disco ones, but even voices are more jazzy, than soul-like.

In all, distilled product of early progressive jazz-funk era, this release really is a strong one and should be placed between best Hancock solo releases of same genre. Not recommendable for fans with allergy to funk vibes though.

My rating is 3+.

 Remembering Weather Report  (Miroslav Vitous Group with Michel Portal) by VITOUS,MIROSLAV album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.00 | 3 ratings

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Remembering Weather Report (Miroslav Vitous Group with Michel Portal)
Miroslav Vitous Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Miroslav Vitous is known for many as co-founder of Weather Report. He played with the band first three years and gone when WR turned to more funk/commercial direction. After he played jazz with Corea,Stanley Clarke,released some albums on ECM.

After his many years with interest to electric/electronic sound, he returned back to acoustic bass there. I've seen similar program as recorded on this album playing live by duo of Vitous and his regular collaborator Swiss trumpeter Franco Ambrosetti a year before this album was released. To be honest, I wasn't impressed too much that time. But there, on this recordings Vitous and four supporting musicians play excellent music.

First of all, there is no direct connection with Weather Report music at all. If Vitous years in WR was time of their innovative electric sound, this solo release is fully acoustic. But by it's free atmosphere and strong feeling of innovative sound this album could be really compared with WR first albums.

And it's really great how after all these decades Miroslav didn't miss that spirit of adventure, even when music he is playing is far not so innovative or experimental as genre. But in this album he shows his great acoustic bassist form and even better experimentalist soul, containing free jazz with contemporary, and his music being of free and not too structured form sounds there as real classics.

This excellent release is far from any form of fusion or jazz rock and contains music,oriented to free jazz fans mostly. So think twice before paying for it, but jazz adepts will find there tons of great music.

 Magical Shepherd by VITOUS,MIROSLAV album cover Studio Album, 1976
3.42 | 10 ratings

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Magical Shepherd
Miroslav Vitous Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by G. Hogweed

4 stars My rating of four stars is based on the assumption that the listener considers the confluence of jazz-rock fusion, disco and almost Zeuhl-like Magma-ish material, from a pioneer Miles Davis Alumni, of interest to a progarchives denizen. Admittedly, it's hard for me to imagine how this album might come across to a modern listener who didn't live through the disco age, the Miles late 70's electric period, and the Prog heyday of the mid-late 70's. The closest modern reference I can think of (minus the disco era vocals) is Squarepusher's "Music is Rotted One Note". I was notorious for toting the vinyl of this album with me circa 1977, and subjecting my friends to it. I found it's mix of booty shaking grooves, funky Weather Report and Miles-like textures, and spaced out background vocals to be a stand out of the era, and still enjoy listening to it today. If your taste in prog encompasses the jazz-rock and funk experiments of the mid 70's, Magma, or even the Japanese Zeuhl expressions of Koenjihyakkei and Bondage Fruit, I'd recommend giving this album a listen. Miroslav Vitous may not be a prog icon, but he certainly is a major figure in jazz and fusion history, and this particular entry should interest those with a broader interest and definition of what constitutes *prog*.
 Infinite Search (aka Mountain In The Clouds aka The Bass) by VITOUS,MIROSLAV album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.97 | 10 ratings

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Infinite Search (aka Mountain In The Clouds aka The Bass)
Miroslav Vitous Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Miroslav Vitous is probably most known for being part of WEATHER REPORT when they first started out, but he has a long resume. This is his first solo album released before WEATHER REPORT's debut which came out the following year. Miroslav is such a talented bass player but he also plays violin and keyboards, and when he was younger he was a world class free- style swimmer. In fact after winning a scholarship to Berklee College of Music he had to decide between swimming and music. Thankfully he chose the latter. The lineup on this album is such that you should be sitting down when you read off the names. John McLaughlin on guitar, Jack DeJohnette on drums, Joe Henderson on sax and Herbie Hancock on electric piano. Told you so. My first impression of this album was that it wasn't very dynamic. It's more Free-Jazz perhaps, certainly not in the MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA style. And Vitous is very dominant here along with DeJohnette as the guitar, piano and sax come and go.

"Freedom Jazz Dance" opens with seemingly everyone being part of the sound. Very intricate stuff. Piano comes to the fore 3 minutes in. Bass is just throbbing away then the guitar takes the spotlight after 4 1/2 minutes. McLaughlin is ripping it up. Henderson's turn after 6 1/2 minutes. This is the most dynamic track. "Mountain In The Clouds" is a short tune with cymbals and bass leading early. Check out the bass and drums !

"When Face Gets Pale" opens with cymbals, bass, piano and intricate guitar. The bass is incredible here. Deep bass lines late. "Infinite Search" is led by bass, piano and drums. "I Will Tell Him On You" features sax, piano, bass and drums standing out early. Sax leads before 3 minutes. It gets pretty intense a minute later. Guitar takes the lead then piano 7 minutes in. Drums pound away after 8 1/2 minutes. "Epilogue" is the only track that DeJohnette isn't on, instead we get Joe Chambers. This one's fairly laid back as bass leads the way. Piano becomes more prominant 4 1/2 minutes in.

For me this is one of those albums you really have to pay attention to. It's not background music, you have to give attention to the detail.

Thanks to snobb for the artist addition.

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