Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
€12.00 - €24.00

  • Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
  • Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
  • Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
  • Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
  • Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80

Gulda/Rabl/Anders - Live Recordings 1979-80
€12.00 - €24.00

Friedrich Gulda clavichord, recorders, krummhorn, voice
Günther Rabl double bass, prepared double bass
Ursula Anders drums, percussion, recorders, voice

disk 1
[1] Konzerthaus Wien 1 29'12
[2] Stadtsaal Ulm 9'19

[3] Konzerthaus Wien 2 11'45
total 50'32

disk 2
[1] Session Wessenbach 1 60'34
total 60'34

disk 3
[1] Session Weissenbach 2 47'19
[2] Probenfragment 10'17
total 57'39

The beginnings

In the spring of 1977 I produced two albums on audio cassette,
'Mugl Entsteigt' (my first tape composition) and 'Flaschenpost' (a collection of double bass solos and overdubs).
A cassette of the latter ended up in the office of the record company Amadeo, where Friedrich Gulda was also under contract.
Gulda listened to the cassette and was immediately so taken by it that he instructed his agent at the time to get in touch with me.
That was the beginning of a fruitful collaboration. From then onwards we met regularly, together with Ursula Anders on drums, in Friedrich Gulda's rehearsal room in Weißenbach am Attersee - a converted garage with a view of the lake.

Inner Circle

After a phase of short collaborations with a few smaller performances, the ensemble was called 'The Inner Circle' for marketing reasons and posters and folders were printed. But since there was also a reggae band of the same name, which was also on tour in Germany at the same time, the marketing was dropped again and our trio was again announced simply as 'Gulda-Rabl-Anders'.
There were some great and successful performances under this name: Konzerthaus Vienna, Kongresshaus Salzburg, Stuttgart Liederhalle, etc....
However, it was not that easy. Organizers and agencies tried by all means to get Friedrich Gulda to play classical music and not free music, which was inferior in their eyes.
It borders on a miracle that the trio held together for so long under the constant tensions that resulted. In the summer of 1980 it finally broke up for good under this pressure.


We always recorded each concert, each session, each rehearsal. Listening to and discussing these recordings together was an important part of our work.
The recordings were not originally intended for publication. They were taken from the central mixing desk, where the individual instruments and voices were adjusted to the respective room sound with the use of amplification. Of course, this deferred from the sound in big concert halls.
Nevertheless, there were always excerpts in them that seemed worth saving and suitable for further use.

Rehearsals & Sessions

Fragments of concert recordings form the content of the first CD of this edition.
At least as important as these are recordings of the rehearsals - but they were not rehearsals in a traditional sense! In free improvised playing there is nothing to 'rehearse'. These were sessions in which we explored ourselves and tried out our playing.
The procedure was simple:
A session in the morning - lunch break - a session in the afternoon - supper - listening to the recordings of the sessions together in the evening.
These sessions were in many ways much more daring and experimental than the concerts. One could try out playing techniques and new forms of playing together.
Particularly the last two recordings from March 1980 are exceptional. There is a polyphony of tonal systems and of independent arcs of tension that point far into the future of improvised music.
The other two CDs are dedicated to these recordings.


The release of these is by no means meant to be nostalgic.
This kind of thing only works to a limited extent (like family photos, which evoke fond memories in us but are at best politely acknowledged by outsiders).
In contemporary music today, there is a strong, internationally networked improvisation scene, driven primarily by the advent of live electronics on the laptop. Much of this ties in with what was already being prepared in the 1980s (still without computers !).
To us it is important that these 'historical' recordings are available and accessible to the public.

Guenther Rabl 2022

Free vibrations of the soul
The Gulda-Rabl-Anders Trio
A treat for listeners with a broad horizon and certainly the fulfillment of one of Friedrich Gulda's heartfelt wishes, which Günther Rabl presents here. A production in which one can concentrate exclusively on what Friedrich Gulda has called "Freie Musik / free music".

A look back:
In 1971, at his third Ossiach Music Forum, Gulda met the artist-couple Paul and Limpe Fuchs, who had created the sound on instruments they had built themselves, that they called "Anima". Completely freely improvised sounds that came as if from nowhere captured the sensations of the soul and allowed them to hover for the duration of the interplay, only to then disappear again into nothingness.
Gulda, who was always broadening his horizons, was thrilled by the couple and joined them. What followed were many performances by the "Animatrio" where Gulda expanded his set of musical tools with the clavichord and recorders, initially also performing on the electric piano.
At that time, only a few listeners were prepared to follow Gulda's turn to free music and many viewed this development with much skepticism.
However, Gulda would not have been Gulda if such reactions would have thrown him off course. He pursued this way of making music with his typical consistency, later in a duo with his partner Ursula Anders.
The Gulda-Rabl-Anders trio is the sonic extension of this development. The trio performed for the first time in Salzburg in 1978, and later at the World Music Days in 1979.
The recordings presented here date from this period and reflect
the giving and taking within the group.
Here Friedrich Gulda's remarks from 1974, which also find their equivalent in this trio. "We play our music. Sometimes alone, sometimes together. There are no agreements, no criteria, no mistakes. Everything is as it is. In free music, all the commandments or restraints that were or still exist in unfree music are suspended. Likewise the previous ideas, what music must or must not be, what purpose it must or must not serve.... Free music emerges from the unconscious, an original source that comes from the self. The act of liberation for players and listeners is to entrust themselves to it. This act lies in stark contrast to the pride of the ego and its fears, inhibitions and aggression."
Two of the three CDs contain rehearsals, whereby listeners oriented towards conventional acoustic events will probably ask themselves what there is to rehearse in completely free improvised music, where nothing is planned beforehand. Rehearsal here means fathoming and questioning the mental states of the respective person - listening into the momentary self of the other, reacting to it if necessary or even remaining silent. These processes naturally occur in private as well as in public interactions, so the so-called rehearsals are the seeking of the spirit of the other. Whether this kind of soul interaction is at all something for a public performance remains to be seen, as the author of these lines has experienced disruptive actions on the part of the audience. Gulda, Rabl and Anders did not allow themselves to be irritated by such acts. For the unprejudiced audience, it was interesting and exciting to follow how the three interact, how they withdraw when there is nothing to say or spontaneously rejoin the action. In this sense, we wish the listeners a fantastic journey of discovery.

Thomas Knapp September 2022