Karel Boehlee 

Growing up in a family full of music, from Chopin, Liszt, Debussy and Mozart, until Oscar Peterson, Ella Fitzgerald, Stevie wonder, James Brown and lots of english pop-music.

An important framework for future musical events.

Pianist Boehlee playing jazz mostly in the early days, been busy with all kind of music-styles since the 80s.

Not so much with his image as well with playing! And composing, mixing (at his home-studio) teaching at the Conservatory van Amsterdam ... making music! For example as a favourite pianist of All great dutch jazz musicians like Toon Roos, Martijn van Iterson, Jesse van Ruller and Fay Claassen, later he also played with Gino Vannelli, 

Roberta Gambarini. Jimmy Haslip, Bob Sheppard, Peter Erskine, Wynton Marsalis, Ernie Watts, Dannie Gottlieb, Philip Catherine, Gary Novak, Roy Hargrove, Phil Woods, Pete Christlieb and many more.

From 1996 Karel Toured a lot with The European Quartet, the European band from Toots Thielemans.

Playing around the world with him was the best thing ever happened to him. Toots made two records with us, which was also my regular trio, with Hein van de Geyn and Hans van Oosterhout.

Boehlee has made six CDs for the Japanese label Pony Canyon. Most fans are from japan and Korea.

The compositions, improvisations and the game of Boehlee have developed and deepened over the years. As a constant factor, his own sound is praised: ”Karels’ sound is unique and touches the center where music enters the soul" (Hein van de Geijn).

What Karel thinks about making music :


Besides Making music on stage, communicating at preferably high frequencies, and developing stuff on the spot, it is so appealing and interesting to work at home.

Like these short esoteric compositions I made for an audiobook.

So many possibilities for creating, no borders.

At home in my little studio I do all kind of productions, like composing my own music, and for others.

Music can represent so many different kind of emotions, I love the path to that point, to keep searching for those particular sounds and harmonies. When it is there I am already back on the path for more or different stuff.

Fragment VI - Karel Boehlee
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Just composed this week, It is a folksong, I believe, and I hear serenity, a story, Love. I can be delighted to express life as it comes to me.

Jiju - Karel Boehlee
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My dear friend fer van Duuren comes to my home, he brings an acoustic guitar and sings, or uses a simple drum which is in the corner of my studio, while he asks me to play whatever I want.."I will follow you" he says.....It's all a realtime recording, so fresh !

Tibet - Fer van Duuren - Karel Boehlee
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Jammin' - Karel Boehlee - Fer van Duuren
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Groovin' - Karel Boehlee - Fer van Duuren
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Boehlee likes to gather all those elements, jazz, funk, worldmusic, folkmusic, blending and grooving, partly with original compositions, but able to make it work with any core material, on the moment, it is a challenge but the only way to get close to real improvisation.

Not any performance is the same, when you have amazing musicians like Hans van Oosterhout and Theo de Jong, it will happen for sure.

So many years composing and making musid on stage, with Simone Pormes.
Check our website :
  • Lerra Woelna - Storybookmusic
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  • The Princess project
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  • Zoe - Storybookmusic
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  • The Princess Project
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First there is this great recording of the Toon Roos Group, Angel Dance with the amazing Peter Erskine and Hein van de Geijn, and then, months later you meet again, a short soundcheck, some music to recollect and to read, (my song Junglehurr), and go! Click below to watch the video :