Passport – Handmade (1973)

FrontCover1Passport is the creation of saxophonist Klaus Doldinger, who has stated that Passport is not so much a set group but a label and a name for his many projects. Doldinger, who had started out playing Dixieland back in the 1950s, by the following decade was a modern tenor saxophonist who also worked in the studios. His mind has always remained quite open and in 1970 he formed Passport to explore the combination of advanced jazz improvising with rockish rhythms. Passport matches Doldinger’s reeds (tenor, soprano, flute, and occasional keyboards) with an electric rhythm section. The group’s first recording (1971’s Passport) also included Olaf Kübler on second tenor and flute, organist Jimmy Jackson, electric bassist Lother Meid, and drummer Udo Lindenberg.


Soon the group went through the first of many complete turnovers. The mid-’70s version usually teamed Doldinger with keyboardist Kristian Schultze, electric bassist Wolfgang Schmid, and drummer Curt Cress, and by 1978 the group had changed drastically again. However, no matter who was in the rhythm section, Klaus Doldinger’s lead voice and his band’s musical direction remained consistent through the years. Passport has released numerous albums, initially for Atlantic and subsequently via recordings and reissues for WEA and its subsidiaries and licensees, through into the 21st century, including 1996’s Passport to Paradise, 1997’s Passport Control (on Connoisseur), 1998’s Move, 2000’s Passport Live, and 2003’s Back to Brazil. (by Scott Yanow)


Here is their 4th album:

This 1973 album is another great recording from German jazz rock band Passport that fits nicely with the definitive albums released by from the band including Looking Thru (1974) and Cross Collateral (1975). As a fan of progressive rock and jazz rock I personally find their interpretation of the jazz rock style very enjoyable.

The lineup on Handmade includes bandleader Klaus Doldinger (tenor and soprano saxophones, mini-moog synthesizer, electric piano, and mellotron); Frank Roberts (Fender electric piano and Hammond organ); the great Curt Cress (drums); and Wolfgang Schmid (electric bass guitar and guitars). The album was produced by none other than Deiter Derks, who worked with a number of German experimental rock groups (e.g. Cosmic Jokers etc.).

The playing on this album is excellent and is in keeping with what you might expect from an instrumental jazz rock album: superb ensemble work and excellent soloing on saxophones, electric piano and other instruments associated with the genre.

Klaus Doldinger01

However, there is the prog rock side of the equation too, which includes spacier sections played on the mellotron/mini-moog synthesizer, harmonies/melodies associated with European prog rock, and on occasion, some heavy riffs played in unison on several instruments. Come to think of it, there are also some fairly psychedelic/experimental sections too. I find the overall combination very appealing. The seven tracks on the album range in length from 2:39 to the lengthy title track (9:26).

This album is recommended to those folks that like their jazz rock on the proggier side. Other albums by Passport that might prove enjoyable include Looking Thru and Cross-Collateral , which present a refinement of the basic formula presented on Handmade. Other bands operating in a similar vein include Return to Forever ( Where Have I Known You Before , 1974 and Romantic Warrior , 1976). (J.Park)


Curt Cress (drums)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, piano, mellotron)
Frank Roberts (keyboards)
Wolfgang Schmid (bass, guitar)


01. Abracadabra 7.23
02. The Connexion 5.38
03. Yellow Dream 4.22
04. Proclamation 2.42
05. Hand Made 9.31
06. Puzzle 4.08
07. The Quiet Man 4.37
08, Handmade (live Doldinger Jubilee Concert 1974) 6.10

Music composed by Klaus Doldinger



More from Passport:

Passport – Looking Thru (1973)

USFrontCover1Well, Passport is not really prog, but it’s still a excellent fusion/jazz-rock band with some progressive elements on some songs (like the title track on this album). I like the playing from the band, especially Curt Cress’s (later Triumvirat) fantastic drumming and Klaus Doldinger’s great saxophone playing. The songs, with “Eternal Spiral” beign a personal favorite are all very good and accessible, and this one should do the trick for fans of this genre. The overall result is a tight, fast and impressive Jazz-Rock album by this great german band. I’ll with pleasure recommend this one! (by Bj-1)

Ah Passport. Underrated and sadly overshadowed by bands like Mahavishnu, RtF and Weather Report. This has always been one of my favorite jazz fusion albums. Not having heard any of their other albums means I have a fresh take on this album and I won’t be comparing it to other albums they have done. Anyways, “Looking Thru” is a very good fusion album slightly similar to Mahavishnu or Return to Forever but a bit more melodic and accessible than them while still remaining complex. “Rockport”, “Tarantula”, “Ready for Take Off” and the title track are prime examples. They are very well structured and played though. My favorite songs however, are when they branch out to a bit more of a progressive feel in the rhythm and keyboard playing.


“Eternal Spiral, “Eloquence”, “Things to Come” and the title track all have fantastic keyboard, drum/percussion and sax playing with a slight prog feel. As with many fusion groups, the piano (electric here) is the main keyboard instrument and it sounds wonderful though there is also organ and moog abundant here as well. Great sax playing as well from Doldinger. His styie is very unique with a fantastic sense of style. I have many fusion albums and still have never found a band very similar to Passport so if you want a fairly unique progressive jazz-fusion album with great playing and VERY memorable melodies, give “Looking Thru” a chance. You probably won’t regret it. (dalt 99)


Curt Cress (drums, percussion)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, synthesizer, piano, mellotron)
Wolfgang Schmid (bass, guitar)
Kristian Schultze (keyboards)

01. Eternal Spiral 4.04
02. Looking Thru 8.01
03. Zwischenspiel 1.37
04. Rockport 3.36
05. Tarantula 4.53
06. Ready For Takeoff 4.50
07. Eloquence 5.17
08. Things To Come 2.46

Music composed by Klaus Doldinger



More from Passport:


Passport – Running In Real Time (1985)

FrontCover1.jpgIt’s quite impressive knowing Passport as they were very productive in generating albums and this “Running in Real Time” was their 14th studio album since their first inception in 1971. Many have considered this Germany-based band in comparison with its American counterpart Weather Report eventhough the music is not quite the same. This release is quite surprise to me as it features two kind of music: the original root of Passport with its jazz-rock fusion style with many saxophone work and those with vocals where the music tend to be R&B instead of jazz.

The opening track “At Large” demonstrates the original root of Passport in jazz-rock fusion style featuring sax solo combined nicely with guitar work laid over jazzy rhythm section. The next track “Auyrin” is a slow speed jazzy tunes with sax as main melody backed with solid basslines. There is also nice guitar solo right after sax. These two opening tracks resembles the original style of Passport music. “Talisman” is explorative in nature, demonstrating bamboo flute played by the band leader Klaus Doldinger cmbined nicely with vocals as well as excellent percussion by the band’s long serving drummer: Curt Cress. Starting with “Help Me” Passport made an effort to do differently, introducing vocal by Victoria Miles. The music has the kind of R&B style. But of course it’s not a typical R&B you can hear easily at radio station. It’s in fact quite enjoyable.

Overall, I consider this album is a good one especially for those who love jazz-rock fusion but don’t get surprises if you find some kind of R&B music as the vocal enters. Keep on proggin’ ..! (by Gatot)

Klaus Doldinger

Curt Cress (drums, percussion)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, bamboo flute, keyboards)
Victoria Miles (vocals)
Kevin Mulligan (guitar)
Dieter Petereit (bass)
Hermann Weindorf (keyboards)
Bill Lang (guitar 0n 01., 03. – 06.)
Claus Reichstaller (trumpet on 08.)
Franz Weyerer (trumpet on 08.)
Roykey Wydh (guitar on 07. + 08.)


01. At Large 4.48
02. Auryn 5.37
03. Talisman 7.32
04. Help Me 4.14
05. Joy Riding 6.40
06. Slap Shot 5.47
07. Mr. Mystery 4.16
08. Running In Real Time 3.43

Music composed by Klaus Doldinger




More Passport:


Passport – Heavy Nights (1986)

frontcover1Heavy Nights finds Passport founder and veteran sax man Klaus Doldinger in rare form. On this offering from 1986, the veteran sax player delves into the world of pop-jazz. Although, given his vast palette and the different settings here, it would be a mistake to simply call Heavy Nights a pop-jazz record. Doldinger’s tastes have always been eclectic and he brings his own unique jazz contributions to the table. Furthermore, he possesses that rare ability to produce jazz that is accessible without having to sacrifice substance in the process. Whatever you chose to call it, Heavy Nights is just great music. The songs here range from the playful “Bahia Praia” to the upbeat, big-band feel of “It’s Magic.” On board for this incarnation of Passport are Kevin Mulligan (guitar), Dieter Petereit (bass), Curt Cress (drums), Herman Weindorf (keyboards), and Victoria Miles (vocals). The performances of this lineup are certainly noteworthy throughout, but Heavy Nights is really a one-man show. Doldinger takes charge here performing, producing, arranging, and, composing all of the tracks. As expected, he excels in all of these areas, but it’s his ability to speak in cohesive melodic sentences that are both lyrically and emotionally satisfying, and which makes this disc so enjoyable. The melodies aren’t just good, they’re memorable. The beautiful “Forever,” as romantic a piece as you will find, is not just memorable, it actually borders on unforgettable. In addition, Doldinger’s distinct phrasing punctuates each of the tracks adding the dramatic pauses that help to distinguish Heavy Nights.
The arrangements, for the most part, are straightforward with a few twists thrown in. Doldinger makes wonderful use of the sparseness constructing interesting passages that enhance the mood of each piece. On almost all of the tracks, Doldinger handles the lion’s share of the soloing chores. Not surprisingly, his focus and restraint speak volumes. When he steps forward he delivers, and when appropriate he steps back, allowing his bandmembers and session people to add the right touches. Benny Bailey’s flügelhorn solo on the title track, for instance, is the perfect contrast to Doldinger’s tenor sax, and is one of the records highlights. Some of the other stand-out tracks include the atmospheric “Here Today,” and the jazzy “Easy Come, Easy Go.” As he has been known to do, Doldinger continually experimented and found new directions for Passport. The rock guitar-based Running in Real Time and the spacy Earthborn, also from this era, are both noteworthy. Heavy Nights, though, is arguably the high-water mark for Doldinger thus far. (by Jeri Montesano)
Curt Cress (drums)
Biboul Darouiche (percussion)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, keyboards on 04., lyricon on 07.)
Dieter Petereit (bass)
Kevin Mulligan (guitar)
Hermann Weindorf (keyboards)
Benny Baily (flugelhorn on 05. + 06.)
Andreas Haderer (trumpet on 08.)
Nadeen Holloway (background vocals on 08.)
Franz Weyerer (vocals on 08.)

01. Bahia Praia  5.13
02. Playing Games 4.13
03. Here Today 5.57
04. Forever 4.50
05. Heavy Nights 6.03
06. Easy Come, Easy Go 4.24
07. Remembrance 5.36
08. It’s Magic 4.14
Music: Klaus Doldinger
Lyrics: Victoria Miles (08.)


Klaus Doldinger & Passport – Down To Earth (1993)

klausdoldingerfrontcover1Passport was a German jazz/fusion group formed in 1971. Founded by Ace Saxeman, composer and arranger Klaus Doldinger along with Curt Cress (percussion), Kristian Schultze (keyboards), and Wolfgang Schmid (bass & guitar). This was the classic lineup that started with their 4th album “Looking Thru” in 1973, their first US release. I’m not familiar with their first 3 albums, but outside Klaus, the lineup was pretty different. This classic lineup continued through the next 5 albums. Utilizing spacey electronic jazz with rock and classical styles, this group was very groundbreaking. Klaus has a knack for coming up with some of the most beautiful saxe melodies you ever heard. Curt Cress was probably one of the first drummers to experiment with electronic drums. Bassist Wolfgang Schmid’s classical guitar adds a nice demension. And Kristian Schultze’s use of synth and mellotron gives them an expansive orchestral sound. After their 8th album, PASSPORT went through many different incarnations with only Klaus as the common denominator in all of them. In the 80’s, Klaus did other projects like motion picture soundtracks, most notably “Das Boot”. But PASSPORT still to this day records and performs (mostly in Europe, they came to the US only once) with various personnel. But it was the classic lineup that expanded their audience and gave them critical acclaim. (by progarchives)

This is the 22th album (!) of Klaus Doldinger & Passport and it´s another fine example of his high energy jazz-rock … with “Down To Eart” he won the Gold Jazz Award in Germany.

Klaus Doldinger is today 80 years old and … believe it or not … he´s still touring through Germany and Europe … A master of his own !


Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, flute)
Roberto Di Gioia (keyboards)
Wolfgang Haffner (drums)
Peter O’Mara (guitar)
Jochen Schmidt (bass)
Allen C. Cuffey (rap vocals on 07.)


01. Wise Up 5.25
02. Lowdown And Flyin’ High 6.55
03. Korako 6.32
04. Allemande Deux 6.32
05. Nighttime In The City 5.03
06. Esperanto 5.24
07. Passport’s In The House 5.01
08. Missing You 5.00
09. Ridin’ On A Rainbow 5.19
10. Never Ending Blues 6.55

All compositions by Klaus Doldinger





Passport – Doldinger Jubilee Concert (1974)

FrontCover1Klaus Doldinger (born 12 May 1936) is a German saxophonist, especially well known for jazz and as a composer of film music. He was the recipient of 1997’s Bavarian Film Awards.

Doldinger was born in Berlin, and entered a Düsseldorf conservatory in 1947, originally studying piano and then clarinet,[1] graduating in 1957. In his student years, Doldinger gained professional performing experience, starting in 1953 in the German Dixieland band The Feetwarmers, and recording with them in 1955. Later that year he founded Oscar’s Trio, modeled on Oscar Peterson’s work.

During the 1960s he worked as a tenor saxophonist, working with visiting American jazz musicians and recording in his own right.

Doldinger is perhaps best known for his film scores to the acclaimed German U-boat film Das Boot (1981) and later The NeverEnding Story (1984).

Doldinger married Inge Beck in 1960; they have three children, Viola, Melanie and Nicolas Doldinger. Since 1968 they have resided in Icking, a small Bavarian village, south of Munich.

Doldinger’s recurring jazz project Passport, started in 1971 (then called “Klaus Doldinger’s Passport”), still enjoys huge success in Germany. In its influence it was sometimes called the European version of Weather Report.

The “classic” Passport line-up, 1974
Curt Cress – Kristian Schultze – Klaus Doldinger- Wolfgang Schmid

At various times members of Passport included Peter O’Mara (guitar), Roberto DiGioia (keyboards), Patrick Scales (bass, since 1994), Ernst Stroer (de:Ernst Ströer) (percussion, since 1989), Christian Lettner (drums, since 2000), Michael Hornek (keyboard since 2009), Biboul Darouiche (percussion, since 1995) and others. Guests include Brian Auger (1973), Johnny Griffin (1973) and Pete York (1973). (by wikipedia)

And this is the live album from this unique “Jubilee” Tour through Germany … Passport and friends like Alexis Konrer, BrianAugen, Johnny Griffin and Pete York !

This was a sensational tour and definitely one of the many hightlighs of Klaus Doldingers long career … Today he is 80 years old and still alive and well … I saw him last year in a great concert and he played more than 3 hours !


The private Doldinger with his wife Inge and their two daughters at the
their house in Icking (near Munich/Germany)

Curt Cress (guitar)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone)
Wolfgang Schmid (bass)
Kristian Schultze (keyboards)
Pete York (drums, percussion)
Brian Auger (organ bei 01., 02., 04. – 06.)
Johnny Griffin (saxophone bei 01., 03., 04.
Alexis Korner (guitar bei 04. – 06., vocals bei 05.)
Volker Kriegel (guitar bei 01., 03., 04. – 06.)


01. Handmade (Doldinger) 5:42
02. Freedom Jazz Dance (Harris) 6.00
03. Schirokko (Doldinger) 9.30
04. Rockport (Doldinger) 9.15
05. Rock Me Baby (Traditional) 4.40
06. Lemuria’s Dance (Doldinger) 6.55



Passport – Iguacu (1977)

LPFrontCover1 Something strange happened when Passport went to Rio de Janeiro to cut the Iguacu album — they seemed to forget the entire basis for their previous success. The trademark Klaus Doldinger sax sound is muted and diluted by the attempt to fit the band into a Brazilian jazz mold, and the result sounds eerily like a pretty good lounge jazz band trying to sound like Passport. The long, liquid melody lines are gone, replaced by up-tempo but unmemorable frameworks for full-band jams. Guitarist Roy Louis plays an unusually large part, Doldinger an unusually small one, and the tracks with the local Brazilian musicians are energetic but unfocused. This is one of the least compelling Passport albums, one without a single tune that stays in your head long after you hear it. (by Richard Foss)


Passport was absolutely at their peak on this album. I had everything they released in the states , Infinity Machine was right before this. Not many Jazz/rock/fusion sets could hang with Herbie’s Headhunters or Return to Forever or Weather Report at the time, but Passport was just as large to me-much too underrated of a group.(justatuch)

This is a very good album, indeed.

Recorded at Union Studios, Munich and Level Studios, Rio De Janeiro

Passport1975Passport in 1975

Curt Cress (drums, berimbau)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, flute, synthesizer, organ)
Elmer Louis (percussion)
Roy Louis (guitar)
Wolfgang Schmid (bass)
Kristian Schultze (keyboards)
Mats Björklund (guitar on 08.)
Wilson Das Neves (congas), pandeiro on 04.)
Roberto Bastos Pinheiro (surdo on 04.)
Noel Manuel Pinto (cuica on 08.)
Clélio Ribeiro (berimbau on 04.)
Marcello Salazar (percussion on 04.)
Pedro “Sorongo” Santos (percussion, whistles on 08.)

01. Bahia Do Sol 5.53
02. Aguamarinha 4.10
03. Bird Of Paradise 5.36
04. Sambukada 4.30
05. Iguacu 8.42
06. Praia Leme 2.58
07. Heavy Weight 4.30
08. Guna Guna  4.28

All compositions written by Klaus Doldinger


Passport – Talk Back (1988)

PassportTalkBackFrontCover1This is pretty standard-issue ’80’s Passport; breezy, invigorating and laid-back jazz with traces of fusion.
As you can’t really go wrong with Passport, this is yet another worthwhile release. But this one does have some vocals, which never really worked out too well with Passport – still, “Talk Back” is a good set. (by burritobros)
In this Passport line-up you can hear two of the greatest american jazz-rock musicians: Alphonse Mouzon and Brian Auger !

Brian Auger (keyboards)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, keyboards)
Alphonse Mouzon (drums)
Jochen Schmidt (bass)
Hermann Weindorf (keyboards)
Roykey Whydh (guitar)
Todd Caneby (vocals)
Guillermo Marchena (percussion)
Julio Matta (percussion)
Victoria Miles (vocals)
Christin Sargeant (vocals)

1. Intro (Doldinger) 1.05
2. Dancing in the Wind (Doldinger) 5.34
3. Fire Walking (Doldinger) 3.17
4. City Blue (Doldinger) 5.14
5. Sahara (Doldinger) 5.30
6. Up Front (Doldinger) 5.19
7. Nico’s Dream (Doldinger) 6.05
8. Todo Legal (Doldinger) 4.44
9. Talk Back (Doldinger/Canedy/Miles) 5.49


Passport – Ataraxia/Sky Blue (1978)

FrontCover1With “Atraxia”/”Sky Blue”, Klaus Doldinger tips his hat and his planetary axis to German electronic music, while making it his own as only he can do. The two-part “Ataraxia” alone is worth the cost of the disk, beginning with gently hypnotic synths and building to a crescendo of vivacious sax-led testimonies that never completely drown out the keyboard rhythms. This is music that can appeal to jazz, progressive, funk, world, and even remotely adventurous new age fans.

Keyboards do tend to dominate when the sax is not to the fore, and on the title cut, “Sky Blue”, the synthesizer doodling reaches its apex without wearing thin. Roy Louis’ guitar and Dieter Petereit’s bass provide the backing that makes Passport one of the more listenable groups of their ilk. This is jazz for sure, but in a more loosely structured rather than free form sense. Listen to “Mandrake” for an even better example, with guitar leads not unlike some of Andy Latimer’s workouts on “Rain Dances”, but with a greater respect for the overall piece. It’s not so much dance music, but music that dances. Another highlight is the chugging “Loco-motive”, in which Doldinger’s flute simulates the whistle of the train when actual audio samples are not being used, and his flutes elsewhere are sprightly and melodically integrated with the sax. Quintessential travelling music, it skips and careens along the rails with its own frothy character.

A refuge of level headed coolness as it was in 1978, “Ataraxia” remains as relevant today as then, and a passport to further enjoyment of this classy act.(by kenethlevine)

Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, flute, keyboards)
Willy Ketzer (drums)
Elmer Louis (percussion)
Roy Louis (guitar)
Guillermo G. Marchena (percussion, vocals)
Dieter Petereit (bass)
Hendrik Schaper (keyboards)

Alternate frontcovers (from the GDR label Amiga + from the US release called “Blue Sky”

01. Ataraxia Part 1 2.55
02. Ataraxia Part 2 5.20
03. Sky Blue 4.35
04. Mandrake 4.25
05. Reng Ding Dang Dong 3.00
06. Loco-Motive 5.01
07. The Secret 4.30
08. Louisiana 5.12
09. Alegria 5.12

All compositions by Klaus Doldinger


Klaus Doldinger´s Passport – Back To Brazil (2003)

FrontCover1Klaus Doldinger, best-known for leading the excellent fusion group Passport in the 1970s and ’80s, has had a diverse and episodic career. He started out studying piano in 1947 and clarinet five years later, playing in Dixieland bands in the 1950s. By 1961, he had become a modern tenor saxophonist, working with such top visiting and expatriate Americans as Don Ellis, Johnny Griffin, Benny Bailey, Idrees Sulieman, Donald Byrd, and Kenny Clarke, recording as a leader for Philips, World Pacific, and Liberty. However, in 1970, he initiated a long series of fusion-oriented sessions for Atlantic that featured his tenor, soprano, flute, and occasional keyboards with an electric rhythm section. In addition to writing music for films (including Das Boot) and television in Europe, Doldinger has remained active as a player who occasionally explores his roots in hard bop into the late ’90s, but because he has always lived in Europe, he remains underrated in the U.S. (by Scott Yanow)

And this is another brilliant album by Klaus Dolinger & Passport:

“Back To Brazil” is a tribute to a country with many musical flavours. In the late Seventies Passport played a tremendously successful Brazilian tour and produced a legendary album called “Iguacu” renowned group. This year, the band went back to Brazil and were highly impressed by new trends and sounds.

Biboul Darouiche (percussion)
Klaus Doldinger (saxophone, piano)
Roberto Di Gioia (keyboards)
Peter O’Mara (guitar)
Christian Lettner (drums)
Patrick Stroer (percussion)
Beto Cazes (percussion)
Jovi Joviniano (percussion)
Carlos Negreiros (percussion)

01. Samba Cinema (Doldinger) 5.19
02. Airport (Doldinger) 4:56
03. Praia Do Flamengo (Doldinger) 5:20
04. Melancholia (Doldinger) 2:28
05. Moon Over Bahia (Doldinger) 5:26
06. After Hours (Doldinger)5:42
07. Aurora (Doldinger)4:50
08. Boogie (Doldinger) 5:36
09. Where Have You Been? (Doldinger) 5:25
10. Bellydance (Doldinger) 4:31
11. Jazzaloop (Doldinger) 4:04
12. Rio Jam (Doldinger) 4:35