Born on 07.04.1966, Gdańsk (Poland)
Composer, saxophonist, bass clarinetist.
In 1989 he starts studies at the Academy of Fine Arts, Painting Institute in Gdańsk in Włodzimierz Łajming's atelier. At the same time fascinated by jazz from the 60-ties, especially by music of John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman he starts to learn by himself how to play alto saxophone.
Soon afterwards he joins the group of the bassist Tymon Tymański "Sni Sredstwom Za Uklanianie". This group was a germ of the biggest ferment in Polish jazz of the 80-ties and the 90-ties - Miłość.
In 1991 he leaves the Academy and devotes himself to music.
1992-2001 cofounder and saxophonist of Miłość, one of the main pillars of so called yass scene. The group cooperated with among others Lester Bowie and Tomasz Stańko. They recorded five albums together.
In 1993 he tries his hand at composing and as a leader, he founds Łoskot which made its debut on the first Gdynia Summer Jazz Days Festival.
In April 1994 together with Ryszard Tymański they found duet Masło, known of pure nonsense sense of humour. They performed their favourite rock and jazz standards in various, often strange versions.
In October 1994 the first common tour of Miłość and Lester Bowie crowned with recording of the album "Not Two".
In 1995 he records his first solo album ?Cześć, Cześć, Cześć? for Gowi Records publishing house. In the album he?s accompanied by Jowita Cieślikiewicz, Tomasz Hesse and Jacek Olter.
In 1996 Mikołaj starts a yearlong cooperation with Świetliki ? a group from Cracow, recording an album "Cacy, cacy Flaeishmaschine" with them. Later he decides to cooperate with Marcin Świetlicki in a project which combines poetry with improvisation on saxophone and bass clarinet. In 2000 they record the album "Cierpienie i Wypoczynek".
In July 1997 there was a second tour of Miłość with Lester Bowie resulting in recording of the album "Talkin' about life and death" in the studio of Radio Gdańsk.
In 1998 quartet NRD that is Jerzy Mazzol, Ryszard Tymański and Jacek Olter start their few months? activity. The lineup played a few concerts and recorded the album "Sport i Religia".
In 1999 project The Users together with Robert Brylewski, Marcin Świetlicki, Ryszard Tymański, Milo Kurtis. and Jacek Olter. Album "Nie Idź Do Pracy" is recorded.
In 2000 together with his wife Ola Trzaska he founded a publishing house Kilogram Records, which publishes Mikołaj?s albums and impro-free jazz music.
In 2001 he starts cooperation with Andrzej Stasiuk, writer and publicist, six years later they publish an album entitled "Kantry".
2001- 2004 he cooperated with an instrumental ? composing duet - Marcin and Bartłomiej Oleś. Their first album "Mikro Muzik" is thought to be a very important event in contemporary Polish jazz. Next albums are "La sketch up" and Trzaska's album with participation of Oleś brothers ? "Danziger Strassenmusik" ? recorded on the streets of Gdańsk. They also recorded an album "Suite For Trio + 4", together with a French trumpeter Jean Luc Cappozzo.
In 2003 when he was in Ukraine he created a music ? literary project with an outstanding Ukrainian writer and poet Yuri Andrukhowych. The result of their cooperation is the album "Andruchoid".
In Autumn 2003 he meets a French guitarist Noël Akchoté with whom he plays concerts and spends one day in the Warsaw Music Academy studio.
In May 2003 on the Festival ?Blooms Days? in Dublin he plays with Austrian cellist and composer Clementine Gasser, it is the beginning of a long cooperation in duet and other lineups.
In September 2003 during his stay in Scandinavia Trzaska starts a permanent cooperation with musicians who form Peter Brötzmann's rytmical section - bassist Peter Friis Nielsen and drummer Peeter Uuskyla. They record albums (2004) "Unforgiven north" and (2006) "Orangeada".
In Spring 2004 on the occasion of Polish Year in Germany Trzaska starts cooperation with musicians from Germany: drummer and electronic engineer Paul Wirkus and double bassist Johannes Firsch. They go on two concert tours in Germany.
In April 2005 Peter Brotzmann joins the trio Trzaska/Friis/Uuskyla. In this way North Quartet is founded and the album "Malamuth" is recorded.
Also in 2005 in trio with Danish musicians Peter Friis Nielsen and Peter Ole Jorgensen. In April 2007 in Copenhagen, the premiere of their common album "Volumen" published by a Danish publishing house Ninth World Music took place. The same year he cooperates with Paul Wirkus recording an album inspired by Andrzej Stasiuk's prose "Nacht".
In May 2006 project Shofar with participation of guitarist and composer Raphael Rogiński and drummer Macio Moretti is started. The idea of the project is to find a common denominator for traditional Jewish music and contemporary creative jazz. In 2007 their album "Shofar" is published.
In Autumn 2006 he starts cooperation with Joe McPhee and Jay Rosen - he records the album "Intimate conversations" with them. In 2007 he plays a common concert tour with Trio X, and shortly after that they record material for a common album under a working title "Magic".
In October 2007 on the occasion of Gunter Grass' 80th birthday he forms an orchestra consisting of twelve people: Johannes Bauer, Wacław Zimpel, Przemek Dyakowski, Tomasz Ziętek, Kristofer Winckel, Marcin Dymiter, Adam Witkowski, Olo Walicki, Kuba Staruszkiewicz, Michał Goss, Paweł Nowicki - Mikołaj Trzaska Mottlau River Band, the orchestra performs a suite devoted to the writer in St John?s church in Gdansk.
In November 2007 he is invited to join an international project of Ken Vandermark "Resonanse", where he cooperates with Tim Daisy, Steve Swelle, Magnus Broo, Yuriy Yaremchuk, Marek Tokar, Dave Rempis, Michael Zerang and Per-Ake Holmlander.
In December 2007 he founds a quartet with American pianist Noah Rosen, Danish drummer Peter Ole Jorgensen and Belgian double bassist Peter Jacquemyn ? they record an album as Trzaska/Rosen Quartet and go on a concert tour in Poland and Ukraine.
In January 2008 he records an album in trio with Peter Brotzmann and Johannes Bauer.
In Spring 2008 drummer from Chicago Tentet - Michael Zerang joins the duet with Clementine Gasser. They go on a concert tour in Poland and record material for a common album with a magic title Nadir & Mahora.
In Spring 2008 he implements two musical projects in Vienna together with Clementine Gasser and Bernhard Loibner for Essl Museum and with Joachim Roedelius and Clementine Gasser ? Secret Love. On that occasion he is invited to take part in Vienna Improvise Orchestra conducted by saxophonist and violinist Michael Fisher.
In June 2008 Mikołaj forms a quartet consisting of bass clarinets called IRCHA and invites Wacław Zimpel, Paweł Szamburski and Michał Górczyński to the group. The group has its debut on the Jewish Culture Festival in Cracow.
In October 2008 trio Trzaska/Gasser/Zerang goes on an international tour with concerts in Austria, Germany and Poland. At the same time Trzaska meets an Australian double bassist Clayton Thomas with whom he plays concerts in Germany and Poland and records material for an album in club Dragon in Poznań.
At the end of October 2008 the artist goes on a concert tour in the USA: he plays a few concerts in New York with Joe McPhee, Dominik Duval and Jay Rosen among others in The Living Theater within the program RUCMA series. Then he plays in New Haven, CT in Firehouse, concert and recording the material for an album. In Philadelphia in International House Philadelphia within a series prized by the critics Ars Nova Workshop. It was a tour promoting the album "Intimate Conversation" published by Not Two record company.
The second part of the tour are Mikołaj Trzaska's performances in Chicago during Umbrella Music Festival "European Jazz Meets Chicago" called by the critics the most important jazz meeting in Chicago. On 5th November in Chicago Cultural Center Trzaska performed together with Chicago jazz-impro stars ? bassist Kent Kessler and Michael Zerang. The tour was concluded by a concert in The Hideout club in Chicago on 8th November together with guitarist Evan O'Reilly, bassist Christian Weber and drummer Tomas Fujiwara. Moreover he played with Tim Daisy, Elizabeth Harnik and Taylor Ho Bynum.
When he comes back from the USA Trzaska implements a project planned a long time ago called Warsong with Raphael Rogiński on the guitar and Tomek Sowiński on the drum.
In the middle of November 2008 there was a tour of Reed Trio founded by Ken Vandermark accompanied by clarinetist Wacław Zimpel ended with the recording of the material for a CD and LP album. A few days later a British drummer Mark Sanders invites Trzaska to his trio where Peter Friis Nielsen also performs.
Chosen recording history:
Miłość (1992; with Miłość)
Taniec Smoka (1994; with Miłość)
Koncert w Mózgu (1994; with Łoskot)
Not Two (1994; with Miłość and Lester Bowie)
Cześć, Cześć, Cześć (1995)
Asthmatic (1995; with Miłość)
Sport i Religia (1998; with NRD)
Amariuch (1998; with Łoskot)
Talkin' About Life And Death (2000; with Miłość and Bowie)
Cierpienie i wypoczynek (2000; with Marcin Świetlicki)
Śmierdzące Kwiatuszki (2000; with Łoskot)
Ostrza (2001; with Cezary Ostrowski)
Mikro Musik (2002; with Marcin and Bartłomiej Oleś Brothers)
La Sketch Up (2003; with Oleś Brothers)
Dni Krytyczne (2003 ? international project )
Danziger Straßenmusik (2004; with Oleś Brothers)
Unforgiven North (2004; with Peter Friis Nielsen and Peeter Uuskyla)
Andruchoid (2005; with Yuri Andrukhowych)
Noc (2005; with Paul Wirkus)
Suite For Trio + 4 (2005; with Oleś Brothers and Jean Luc-Cappozzo)
Malamute (2005; with Peter Brötzmann, Friis Nielsen and Uuskyla)
Orangeada (2006; with Friis Nielsen and Uuskyla)
Volume: Aeter (2007; with Friis Nielsen and Peter Ole Jorgensen)
Shofar (2007; with Shofar)
Intimate conversations (2007; with Joe McPhee and Jay Rosen)
Resonse (2008 Ken Vandermark) with Dave, Rempis, Tim Daisy, Michael Zerang, Steve Swel, MagnusBro, Marek Kokar