Croatian jazz great Petrovic dies at 75


ZAGREB (AFP) – Croatian jazz great Bosko PetrovicBosko Petrovic, who has played and recorded with many international stars, died here Monday at the age of 75, the national musicians' association said.


Petrovic, born in 1935 in the northern town of Bjelovar, was a vibraphone player, composer, arranger, producer and pedagogue.


In 1959 he founded the Zagreb Jazz Quartet, inspired by the local musical tradition and known for its original style labeled Balkan jazz.


During an eight-year period the band performed throughout the former Yugoslavia and Europe.


Petrovic later led other jazz bands. In 1988 he founded his own jazz club -- 1B.P. Club and the Jazzete record company.

Petrovic played and recorded with international jazz stars including Clark Terry, Ernie Willkins, Art Farmer, Joe Pass, Buck Clayton, Joe Turner, Kenny Drew and Alvin Queen, his club said.


President Ivo Josipovic, in a letter of condolences to Petrovic's family, lauded him as a "jazz icon of European importance."


Peter Maguire writes:

During my last visit to Zagreb in October 2010 I visited the BP Jazz Club a couple of times. They were featuring various groups and performers during the course of the Zagreb Jazz Festival. A really well appointed club situated in the centre of town. On the occasions I had been to the club there was always a near capacity crowd of mixed age range.


I had been introduced to Bosko Petrovic on my previous visit to Zagreb. A large man, he had his own reserved table near to the bandstand, a glass of wine near to hand. I assume that he was a pretty good businessman in addition to being a top class musician.

I do hope that the BP Jazz Club will continue to exist and thrive on into the future. One of the sad things about the jazz scene in general is that once the patron is no longer around venues tend to vanish with some rapidity. Let us hope that the BP Jazz Club is an exception to this general rule.

Note: The club closed within a month of his passing.