Nils Wogram

Nils Wogram
Birth name
Nils Wogram
07 November 1972
Braunschweig, Germany
Main Instrument
Trombone, composition
Years active
1994 - Present

Nils Wogram Biography


Nils Wogram (born 1972 in Braunschweig, Germany) started playing the trombone at the age of 15. He started classical and jazz trombone simultaneously.

Nils was a member in the national German youth big band, participated in classical competitions and formed his own bands at the age of 16.

Form 1992 to 1994 he studied in New York City and continiued at Cologne university until 1999 when he graduated. Since then Nils has relased 21 albums as a bandleader.

Nils Wogram counts as one of the most important jazz musicians in Europe. He appears on many important festivals and tours worldwide with his own bands and as a featured soloist.

Nils is known for his highly virtuous trombone playing, his very original compositions and as a band leader of long-term working bands with a unique ensemble sound. In 2010 he started his own record label nwog-records on which he releases his albums. Nils Wogram’s bands play exclusively his own music and other ensembles commission pieces by him.


The Best of Nils Wogram

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“… leads his genre out of the retro trap. Drawing from the well of tradition, connected with the curiosity for discovery like an intrepid seafarer — this is what characterizes Nil Wogram’s work. … Wogram thinks … in long arcs. This doesn’t only apply to his soli, breathtaking in the truest sense of the word, but also and above all to the musical, interpersonal relationships in which he moves.”

– Die Welt, October 23, 2013

“Brilliant tones ….traditional education, modern sound: the trombonist Nils Wogram”

– Kulturspiegel, November 2013

“Riomar is a perfect example of relaxed, natural and sensuous music making with depth.”

– Jazz ‘n’ More (CH), November/December 2013

“Communication and interaction are the reasons why Riomar has succeeded in building a bridge between a jazz band and classical strings.”

– Jazzthing, November 2013 —January 2014

“And once again, an accomplishment from Nils Wogram. This jazz trombonist, who won this year’s Albert Mangelsdorff prize, adds three stringed instruments to his quartet, Root 70. The result is a sublime synthesis of jazz craftiness and opulent sound.”

– Der Landbote (CH), October 3, 2013

” … bound up with tradition and modernity as well as complex, catchy and playful … and all along there’s Wogram himself, whose trombone remains in the service of the band sound in spite of his soloistic brilliance…. compelling, clear music, which is organically integrated in itself.”

– Jazzzeitung, #4/2013

Interview with Nils Wogram

Earlier this week, Festival Archive was able to touch base with one of our all-time favorite trombonists, Nils Wogram. Here’s what he had to say…

If somebody has never heard your music before, how would you describe it to them in one sentence?

Jazz coming from the tradition with a strong sense for modern movements and composition.

Who were your main musical inspirations growing up?

Miles Davis, J.J. johnson, Hermeto Pascoal

What made you choose to become a jazz trombonist/composer? Has it always been a dream of yours?

My father is a hobby trombonist. I heard all his great jazz records and decided to become a trombonist.

What made you choose to play the trombone and do you remember buying your first one?

the great sound of Jimmy Knepper and J.J. Johnson

On a weekly basis, about how much time do you spend practising?

3 hours a day

Do you attend sessions, if so, what do you think makes a good session?

a good spirit.

Do you have a fixed preparation regime before going out on stage? How do you cope with nerves?

I am not nervous when stepping out onto stage.

How do you handle mistakes during a performance?

no problem

What has been your most memorable gig?

La Paz Jazz Festival at the opera house

Which is the one place where you’ve always wanted to perform?

Village Vanguard, NYC

If we were to walk into your studio, what equipment are we likely to find?

trombone, piano, manuscript paper.

Which famous present day musicians do you admire the most and why?

Hermeto Pascoal – He made something original and new out of his tradition.

What’s it like being a professional musician, playing gigs, releasing CDs, etc.? Do you feel you’ve reached your goals?

Could not be better

How do you balance your music with other obligations? – Besides music, what else are you into?

I like to play soccer and spend time with my family

What are you goals and aspirations for the future?

To keep doing what I do

What advise would you give any aspiring musicians wanting to make a name for themselves?

Eork hard. Do what you like. Don’t listen to others who know it all better.

Who are your top all time favourite jazz musicians?

Mils Davis, John Coltrane, Hermeto Pascoal, Duke Ellington

Please tell us a little more about your latest album “Riomar”

My last Album is “Riomar” A recording with my long term band Root 70 and three extra string players. Pretty romantic music with some inspiration (besides jazz) from film and classical music.

We would like to thank Nils for taking the time to talk with us, we hope you have enjoyed learning a little more about this talented musician. Remember to check out his website for further details on upcoming gigs, album releases etc.

Thank you Nils and best of luck with your future endeavors.

The Festival Archive team
– Comprehensive Jazz Festival Information Worldwide

Author: Paul Thomson