Max Vax playing a concert in Verden, October 2002


As early as at age of thirteen, I discovered and became completely obsessed with jazz piano, I also got into solo piano playing, or whatever it was at the time.

Being taught and musically brought up within the great Russian classical piano tradition, I realized that there is a connection possible between the great piano works Rachmaninoff, Prokofieff, Chopin and Liszt and my personal interpretation of the “Broadway Songbook” or, later my own compositions for solo piano. I felt I could apply what I learnt about the interpretation of these works to my creative work within the jazz idiom.

Later I discovered that application of certain musical principals is not only adequate to an entirely different musical world, but turned out to be very enriching and enabled me to discover almost limitless creative possibilities. My entry into the world of the Jazz Piano occurred when I heard an old LP I dug out at friends house. It was a recording by Art Tatum. Since then I became the biggest fan of this incredible genius. Later I discovered T.Monk’s solo playing, B Evan’s and of course the solo playing of the Jazz Liszt - Oscar Peterson.

Not willing to subdue my own musical personality to the influences of these titans, I have always tried to extract, mix and create a sound and style of my own that would enable me to say what I have to say musically and pianistically.

Max Vax