Biography

As a child Boogie Phil had already a huge interest in the music of Little Brother Montgomery, Albert Ammons, Jimmy Yancey and numerous other pianists who lived and played music approximately around the first half of the 19th century. With patience beyond measure, he studied old blues and boogie woogie recordings for many years. Gradually he built up his own style and became a successful pianist who initially performed only as a solo pianist. After some time he started thinking about forming a band and a career as a professional musician. Between 1993 and 1997 he studied at the jazz academy in Ghent Belgium whereafter music became fulltime business. His first band was called THE CHEVY’S. Through his interest in the boogiestyle he discover the black jump bands from the fifties, often with a boogie pianist as key figure supported by a small hornsection, which are considered to be the pioneers of rock’n’roll.

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In 2008 he started a new project THE RHYTHM DEVILS, more or less in line with his previous band, but with a more obstinate repertoire. Boogie Phil started singing as well. Besides the piano, the tenor saxophone was a key feature here as it was within the original black jump bands who were successful for a short period of time shortly after the second world war.

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Later on, Boogie Phil started experimenting with jazz, old movie soundtracks and other “old school” stuff and started making compositions of his own. In 2013, he met bass player Kurt Lens and drummer Patrick Wante, two like-minded and skilled musicians with whom he formed his current band BOOGIE PHIL & THE WISE GUYS. Boogie classics spice up the setlist throughout a repertoire of swingblues, jazz, rhythm & blues, jump and so on. One of his objectives is turning music that has basically no boogie woogie influences at all into pieces with typical left hand riffs and other boogie features. Examples of this approach are Thelonius Monk’s “Well You Needn’t”, the Laurel and Hardy theme, Georges Brassens song Les Copains d’Abord etc… all turn out to be perfectly boogie woogie compatible. The trio occasionally becomes a quartet with tenor saxophonist and friend Xavier Saget.

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The band is touring mostly in France lately where they have been invited at numerous festivals across the country. The guys are also regular guests in the Parisian jazz temple Caveau de la Huchette. In December 2014, Boogie Phil and his Wise guys took off to Hastings (UK) to record a new album with an extended version of the band.