Very Into American Jazz: Håvard Wiik

Although he doesn’t reject the marketing term Nordic Jazz, Berlin-based Norwegian pianist Håvard Wiik tells DownBeat’s Brad Cohan that American music and Jazz has been an influence on him since he first started playing. Explaining that while the newest disc by the co-op band Atomic takes its name from a Beach Boys tune, the veteran Scandinavian quintet idea of  playing other people’s music included tunes from the likes of committed Jazz musicians clarinetist Jimmy Giuffre and tenor saxophonist J an Garbarek from their most experimental period. At the same time Wiik says that the compositions he writes for his own trio with drummer Håkon Mjåset Johansen and bassist Ole Morten Vågan are more personal and reflect a certain sound the three have created together over the years.