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Dominique Pièrard




Photo credit: ©Dominique Pièrard

Dominique Pièrard was born on April 14, 1962 in Brussels. He was introduced to music through his grandparents. His grandfather, a jazz violinist, and his grandmother, a singer and pianist, worked in the orchestra of the Maison du Peuple from 1927 to 1939. In 1975, Dominique began learning to play the guitar on his own, and experimented with various electric styles. It was through his long-time friend, Michel Clément, guitarist, songwriter and composer (Tomahawk Blues Band, Sunhouse, Verdine, Bonaventure...) that in 1983 Dominique discovered the music of the Hot Club de France and Django Reindhardt. He then founded his own band, Tinto Rojo, with Jako Pralle (double bass), Stéphane Noirhomme (guitar), Marc Willegems (clarinet, sax), Bruno Nuri (drums), which immediately specialized in this style, and which from a trio at the beginning will evolve into a quintet, as well as from Belgium to abroad until its dissolution in 1988.

Dominique was invited to join Koen Decauter's group Waso in 1988 as an accompanying guitarist. For the next six years he participated in various formulas, shows and recordings during which he rubbed shoulders with Joop Ayal, Ronnie Verbiest, Dick Van der Harst, Johan Verminnen, Wannes Van de Velde, Tango Al Sur, Brabants Volks Orkest, among others, for the European part. During the same period he was in frequent contact with gypsy musicians, the Lafertin, Lemberger and Rosenberg families. Annual tours in Europe have taken him to Great Britain, France, Germany, Switzerland and Portugal. He participated in the premiere of Paco de Lucia in his "Sirocco" tour in 1989 at the Stadschouwburg in Bruges. In 1989, 1990 and 1994, Dominique went on tour in the United States, New-Orleans, where he rubs shoulders with Butch Thompson, Dewee Simpson, Sammy Remington senior and junior, Louis Nelson, Tony Green, and accompanied, on the site of the New-Orleans Festival, Claude Williams (1st guitarist of Count Basie). In 1991 and 1994 he participated in the Feather Broom ensemble directed by Wim Hombergen in the Western Swing style with, among others, Peter Van Eyck, Pierre De Decker and Patrick Riguel.

In 1994, having been introduced to the Portuguese guitar, Dominique was asked by Fapy Lafertin to join his quartet. During the next three years, he accompanied the quartet in all its performances with Hadi Mouallem, Frank Van Oosterhout, Simon Planting, Hans Mantel, producing a show in two parts, traditional Fado with Anabella Da Silva on vocals, and jazz where the contributions from the contemporary and new-music point of view that Dominique produced are highly appreciated (Babik Reinhardt, Richard Galliano etc.).

He joined Le Jazz à Londres in 1997 as a soloist accompanied by John Rees-Jones, Dave Kelbie and Steve Elsworth. This stay abroad confirmed his need to express himself through a contemporary music with mixed colours, and to interpret it with a contemporary instrumentation, hence the formation of an electric trio with Dajo De Cauter and José Wampach in 1999. The following year, he created a "Guitar Duo" with Benjamin Clément (Michel's son) and took part in a number of festivals (Eurythmic's, l'Esprit Manouche, les Midis de Flagey etc.) and other Belgian stages until 2006.

Dominique collaborated with the Swiss soprano Béatrice Gründler in 2005 on the projects "Prévert/Kosma" in a Duo recital, revisiting the classics of this repertoire, and produced and released in the same year a CD for children "Urenschaumss und Zungerbrechen". He participated in "Bonaventure" in 2006 and in the production of a CD. In 2007, Dominique took part in the solo Fado Recital and the creation of the tandem " Troqueurs de Rêves " where he put his talents as an accompanist and multi-instrumentalist at the service of a storyteller, Jessy Ketels.

In 2008-2009, he participated in the creation of the formula " Autour de Sydney Bechet ", a tribute to the famous saxophonist in a Trio reworking of his repertoire and his great classics with André Donni (clarinet, sax) and Hendrik Vanattenhoven (double bass). The following year saw a re-creation of an acoustic Trio in the Hot Club de France style with Hendrik Vanattenhoven (double bass) and Gaëtan Brynaert (guitar), in commemoration of Django Reinhardt's centenary. In the same year, he began solo performances of "A Tribute to James Taylor". 

A lasting collaboration of the "Troqueurs de Rêves" developed in 2010-2011 in partnership with the Decroly Institute for Special Education and the COCOF. He directed the musical tale "Histoire d'Hêtre" which became Victoire aux ailes d'argent. In 2011, Dominique participated actively as a soloist in the orchestra "Domino's" by Patrick Ouchène, pure rockabily in an electrifying repertoire. The same year, he collaborated to the project and realization of the formation "Etoile Musette" in "C'est l'histoire de la Valse Musette" with Raquel Gigot (accordion).

2012 marked the creation of the rock'n roll formula Sofia Brown & The Sweet Revenge. In 2013, he elaborated a CD project comprising exclusively compositions, and recorded the album project " Deep Greens & Blues " with Hendrik Vanattenhoven (double bass), Nikki Verlinden (violin) and Nicolas Sand (drums). He created the show " The Jazz Guitar Pioneers " or a brief history of the Roaring 20's in 2014 based on a performance of a "mute" with a slide show on the period and a guitar duo replacing the upright piano, in partnership with a very young musician, Guillaume Gillain. He produced the slide show for this project in 2015, the recordings and preparatory sessions and staging, as well as a website, and launched a Europe-wide advertising campaign in 2016.  

In 2014-2016, he participated in a primary education in a specialized environment in an intercultural music project with 6 classes of third grade. 

Dominique accompanied Philippe Quevauviller in concerts in a tribute to Georges Moustaki (November 2019) and fado (January 2020). He participated in several recordings of pieces of the project « Brassens dans tous ses états » in 2021.

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