«There is so much, when I start telling, everything falls on my head, all sounds, all notes, the music and the experiences - actually the whole world! »
Harry Pepl, 2005

1945 - 1969

On September 10, 1945, Harry Pepl was born in Vienna, Austria. He grew up in a music-loving family where jazz was heard as well as classical music. These different influences laid the foundation for his versatility and joy of discovery, and even his first instrument, the accordion, gave him the "kick to improvise" at the age of eight. He learned classical guitar with Prof. Karl Scheit, completed a "distance learning" course with Jim Hall and Wes Montgomery through intensive listening to and playing records, expanded his education at the Vienna Conservatory and, in addition to his work as a dance musician (Austrian Evergreens), soon appeared as a jazz musician in various formations (Harald Neuwirth Consort, Erich Kleinschuster Sextett).

1970 - 1979

In the 70s Pepl was a much sought-after studio and live musician: On Peter Alexander tours or as a soloist in the ORF Big Band - everywhere his individual guitar playing left a strong impression.

1980 - 1989

In the 80s Pepl was one of the most renowned and internationally sought-after jazz guitarists in Europe. The recordings of his duo formation "JazzZwio" with the Tyrolean vibraphonist Werner Pirchner and his Austrian-American formation "Airmail" with Wolfgang Puschnig (saxophone), Mike Richmond (bass) and Wolfgang Reisinger (drums) are among the milestones of Austrian jazz history that are known far beyond the borders of Austria. It is therefore not surprising that the US-American jazz star and instrumental colleague John Scofield described him as "one of my favorite guitar players" and alluded to Pepl's technique: "He's like a machine gun.

1990 - 1995

Pepl's need to expand the boundaries of his own instrument led him time and again to engage in technical innovation. While he was a pioneer of the MIDI guitar in the 1980s, he was the first to use the Bösendorfer computer grand 290-SE in the early 1990s. Through the possibility of using MIDI technology to spontaneously put spontaneously played music into musical notation by computer, Pepl developed the method of "instant composing" or "real-time composing", a kind of fusion of improvisation and composition.

1996 - 2005

In Harry Pepl's complete works, which have not yet been completely catalogued, sifted and published, there is still much to discover, such as the recordings of "Harry Pepl's Lonely Single Swinger Band", which he himself bitterly ironically called "Harry Pepl's Lonely Swinger Band".

For health reasons, he was no longer able to perform publicly from 1996 onwards, but this did not detract from his productivity. In his recording studio in Hernstein, Lower Austria, he tried to record and name every inspired moment, especially in the last years of his life. As a result, his already considerable compositional output grew considerably. 

Harry Pepl‘s Lonely Single Swinger Band

Pepl became more and more involved with the piano and drums, was also active as a scat vocalist, but still played the guitar. Thanks to the technical possibilities of the MIDI guitar, he was able to expand the sound spectrum in many ways - for example, he could make it sound like a bass or various other instruments. In this creative process Pepl created his own "One-Man-Band". He interweaved the soundtracks and reacted spontaneously to what he had just recorded: a musical dialogue with himself.

The music of Harry Pepl's Lonely Single Swinger Band is pure Pepl. The compositions are frozen real-time improvisations of different instrumental constellations and styles, whose tracks have been improvised reacting to each other. They offer chamber music works, up to beautiful melodies, samples, soundscapes and jazz with Pepl's unmistakable guitaristic signature. 

Harry Pepl died on 5 December 2005 in Wiener Neustadt, Austria.