Peter Herbolzheimer Rhythm Combination & Brass – Wide Open (1973)

FrontCover1Peter Alexandru Herbolzheimer (31 December 1935 – 27 March 2010) was a Romanian-German jazz trombonist and bandleader.

Herbolzheimer was born to a Romanian mother and a German father in Bucharest, Romania. His family emigrated in 1951 from Communist Romania to West Germany. In 1953, he moved to the United States, where he enrolled in Highland Park high school in Michigan, graduating in 1954. He was a member of choral groups and orchestra and played guitar in bands in Detroit. In 1957, he returned to Germany and began playing valve trombone in “open mike” groups. He returned to Michigan, but his visa was denied.


For one year he studied at the Nuremberg Conservatory. In the 1960s, he played with the Nuremberg radio dance orchestra and with Bert Kämpfert’s orchestra. In 1968, he became a member of the pit orchestra of Hamburg theater (Deutsches Schauspielhaus) directed by Hans Koller. In 1969, he formed the Rhythm Combination and Brass big band for which he wrote most of the arrangements. In the late 1970s, the band toured successfully with a “jazz gala” program with guest stars such as Esther Phillips, Stan Getz, Nat Adderley, Gerry Mulligan, Toots Thielemans, Clark Terry, and Albert Mangelsdorff. In later years, the band played concert tours, television shows, and jazz festivals.


In 1972, Herbolzheimer wrote music for the Edelhagen Band’s opening of the Olympic Games in Munich. In 1974, Herbolzheimer’s band entered an annual television competition in the Belgian seaside resort Knokke, winning the Golden Swan Award. He also won the International Jazz Composers Competition 1974 in Monaco. Herbolzheimer’s arrangements combine swing, Latin music, and rock music.

Quincy Jones, Paul Kuhn & Peter Herbolzheimer:

In the 1970s and 1980s, Herbolzheimer led his orchestra for German television networks with guest musicians such as Ella Fitzgerald, Benny Goodman, Sammy Davis Jr., Dizzy Gillespie, and Al Jarreau. Between 1987 and 2006, Herbolzheimer was the musical director of Germany’s national youth jazz orchestra, the Bundes Jazz Orchester. He conducted regular workshops and clinics for big band jazz. In 2007, he was chosen music director, arranger, and conductor of the European Jazz Band, which toured throughout Europe until 2009.

Herbolzheimer died at the age of 74 in his hometown of Cologne, Germany on 27 March 2010. (wikipedia)


This is the 3d album with his “Rhythm Combination and Brass Big band:

German writer/music critic Siegried Schmidt-Joos described RC&B founder Peter Herbolzheimer’s jazz-feel as “a sackful of soul”. The band offers up a full bag of brassy tricks on their second MPS recording of 1973 (see WAITAMINUTE). The amphibian in Frog Dance was definitely Latin, as the piece gets a jolt with an electrifying solo by trumpeter Mikkelborg. With a bold and brassy arrangement and soulful solos, That Old Bus Smell reeks of funk, whereas Babo takes the fusion trail with trombonist Jiggs Whigham going electric. There’s the Horace Silver classic Nica’s Dream, the warm Latin of Like a Soft Breeze with jazz giant Art Farmer’s breathless solo, as well as the hard-driving pulse of Blue Dervish swirling around powerful piano and soprano solos. The Dolphyesque melody of Cats stretches into swinging jazz punctuated by Van Rooyen’s and Reith’s hip solos, whereas Philip Catherine’s overpowering guitar solo steals the spotlight on Hi-Jack. Peter once commented that he made music for the stomach as well as the head. Wide Open offers up a full course with all the trimmings – luscious arrangements, a vibrant rhythmic foundation, and heady solos. RC&B at its brassy best. (


Philip Catherine (guitar)
Rudi Füsers (trombone)
Herb Geller (saxophone. flute)
Peter Herbolzheimer (trombone)
Tony Inzalaco (drums)
Rick Kiefer (trumpet)
Sabu Martinez (precussion)
Palle Mikkelborg (trumpet)
Horst Mühlbradt (piano, percussion)
Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen (bass)
Åke Persson (trombone)
Dieter Reith (keyboards)
Ack van Rooyen (trumpet)
Jiggs Whigham (trombone)


01. Frog Dance (Herbolzheimer) 5.16
02. That Ol‘ Bus Smell (Reith) 6.00
03. Babo (Herbolzheimer) 4.17
04. Nica’s Dream (Silver) 5.29
05. Like A Soft Breeze (Herbolzheimer) 5.33
06. Blue Dervish (Mühlbradt) 6.00
07. Cats (v. Rooyen) 4.51
08. Hi-Jack (Reith) 6.12



This album was released in Japan as CD in 1999:
Japan Edition

Peter Herbolzheimer1

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