Marcin Olak. gitarzysta

Marcin Olak. Jazz guitarist.

Marcin Olak himself.

Marcin Olak. Jazz guitarist.

My acoustic guitar

fot. Beata Michalczyk, Photo AMD.

Marcin Olak on Facebook Check up my Instagram ...and my SoundCloud AAJ

The Suite for Variety Orchestra by Dmitri Shostakovich

I'm happy to announce that I've been invited to celebrate the ending of the concert season with Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra. I'll participate in performing The Suite for Variety Orchestra by Dmitri Shostakovich - pretty cool, optimistic piece. If you're in Waw, check it up!

11.06.2017, 19:00. Concert Studio S1
Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra, dir. Michał Klauza
George Gershwin - Overture from "Of Thee I Sing", Henryk Wars - Symphony no 1 i Dmitri Shostakovich - The Suite for Variety Orchestra

The Fryderyk Chopin Univercity of Music

It looks like I'm going to teach improvisation on guitar. On Fryderyk Chopin Univercity of Music. Well, this is something new. I'll try to focus on contemporary imrovised music, beyond jazz - something like that. I'll work with my students on their projects and help them learn everything they need during a process.

If you are interested you can apply online on FCUM website. More info can be found in the brouchre. I'm on page 27, included into World Music package - just to make your search easy :)

You can dowload your info here.

Marcin Olak Quartet hits JazzArt!

I've been invited with my quartet to play "Bessarabian Journey" on JazzArt Festival in Katowice (PL). This is one of the coolest avant-garde and jazz festivals in Poland, and I'm happy to be a part of it.

28.04.2017, 21:00 - Marcin Olak Quartet, Bessarabian Journey @ JazzArt Festival, Katowice (PL).

Polish Jazz Top Ten albums of 2016.

Polish Jazz portal pulished some Top Ten rankings. My both albums released in 2016 made it to two of them. Mateusz Megierowski appreciated "Spontaneous Chamber Music vol. 1" by Zakrocki/Olak/Wielecki as one of the 10 best Polish jazz albums, and Piotr Wojdat appreciated "Spontaneous Chamber Music" and "Bessarabian Journey" by Marcin Olak Quartet.

I'm happy and proud to be mentioned among such great artists. Thanks, Polish Jazz!

Polish Jazz Top Ten 2016 according to Piotr Wojdat
Polish Jazz Top Ten 2016 according to Mateusz Megierowski

Download alert!

I've just decided to give you a free download of two alternate takes from "Bessarabian Journey" session. Yes, it's free. Enjoy!

Download @
You can buy Marcin Olak Quartet "Bessarabian Journey" @

Special Trio.

On Saturday, 07.30, I'll play with a new band. We play themes by Wes Montgomery, Charlie Parker, Ornette Coleman and more. And some tunes of mine. I fact Special Trio is pretty mainstream thing - until we go free... Enjoy!

30.07.2016 : 20:00 : Marcin Olak Special Trio @ Do widzenia do jutra, Królowej Aldony 17, WAW (PL)

"Bessarabian Journey" - the first review!

Here it is, the very first review of my new albums. The author reviewed two last ones, "Bessarabian Journey" by Marcin Olak Quartet and "Spontaneous Chamber Music", with Patryk Zakrocki and Miki Wielecki. The review will apear in a Maciej Lewenstein's book, "Polish Jazz recordings and beyond", extended reprint, in June, 2016. Just in case you don't want to wait till June you can read it here, by the kind permission of the author. Enjoy!

**** Zakrocki/Olak/Wielecki: "Spontaneous Chamber Music vol. 1", Fundacja Słuchaj! FSR 05|2016, January 2016.
Patryk Zakrocki (vla, v, tuning forks, chromatic mbira); Marcin Olak (acous g, class g, elec g);
Mikołaj Miki Wielecki (perc).

**** Marcin Olak Quartet: "Bessarabian Journey", Fundacja Słuchaj!, March, 2016.
Marcin Olak (acous g, class g, elec g); Patryk Zakrocki (vla); Maciej Szczyciński (b);
Krzysztof Szmańda (dr).

Marcin Olak, who started as a mainstream/ECM jazz guitarist, became in the recent years one of the important figures of the avantgarde scene. He played in The Intuition Orchestra and participated in the Agustí Fernández Ad Libitum Ensemble, where in fact he first met Patryk Zakrocki. Marcin and Patryk formed also a duo during the 9th edition of the Ad Libitum Festival and performed Bogusław Schaeffer's "Media". On "Spontaneous Chamber Music" they are joined by the phenomenal Wielecki and present their own vision of the XXIst century improvised chamber music. It is really a wonderful set, with some Asian and ancient music influences, and perfect synergy between the members of the group. My favorites are the two long tracks: "Into the Dreamtime", with Patryk's bowing and an amazing work of Wielecki, and "Carbon Tears". The latter is particularly interesting for the work of the leader - beautiful guitar riffs that meet with the viola sounds.

The second CD in contrast belong to the Radical Jewish Culture: it is a set of songs based on traditional melodies from the Bessarabia region, arranged by Marcin. Only the title tune is his own composition, while "Missing Landscape" is a joint composition with Patryk. It is an ingenious record, reminding of some projects of Raphael Rogiński, but original in any sense. Olak plays wonderfully from the opening "Doina" till the closing "Bessarabian Journey". My favorite is "Shabes Nign" in three parts, lasting in total over 16 minutes. Olak plays here a lot of electric guitar, while Szmańda provides great accompaniment.

One of the mainstream Polish jazz musician told me recently, that for him the fact that many young musicians play avantgarde jazz and chase for something new does not have any sense, since "everything was already". In physics we know this kind of negative and destructive feelings very well: Everything was discovered before, in particular by a Soviet scientist, who published it in some obscure journal like "Zhurnal Obshchei Fiziki Archangelskoi Akademii Nauk". Listen to the both records of Marcin Olak - you will see that there are new things in avantgarde to be discovered. Bravo Marcin, Patryk et consortes!

Maciej Lewenstein "Polish Jazz recordings and Beyond", extended reprint to appear in June 2016

"Bessarabian Journey" in stores now!

My latest album - Marcin Olak Quartet, "Bessarabian Journey" - is now available on Foundation Listen!'s Bandcamp. You can buy a CD or download. If you want to buy my album, then consider, please, buying it directly from the publisher - in my opinion is the best option. BTW: you can also buy two other discs that I play on: "Spontaneous Chamber Music Vol.1" by Zakrocki/Olak/Wielecki trio and "River, Tiger, Fire", recorded by Agusti Fernandez and Ad Libitum Ensemble. And some other ones that I don't play on, but they are great as well ;) Check it up!

New album: Marcin Olak Quartet, Bessarabian Journey

Ladies and Gentelman, I'm so proud to present my new band. Marcin Olak Quartet (Patryk Zakrocki, Maciek Szczyciński, Krzysztof Szmańda and me) will play tunes from our new CD, "Bessarabian Journey", at the concert opening the New Jewish Music festival @ Polin Museum, Warsaw (PL).

It has all begun with music of Bessarabian Jews - BTW. Bessarabia is a historical region in Eastern Europe, it used to be between Dniestr and Prut rivers, where Moldova an Ukraine are now. Bessarabia is gone, and so is its music - I had to look for it in old scores and recordings. Found tunes were incorporated in modern compositions - it's jazz, mixed with contemporary improvised music. I started writing that suite in December 2015, finished in January 2016. Everything was recorded live - no editing, overdubs or studio magic of any kind was used - on March 3rd, in NInA (Warsaw, PL) and mixed by Michał Kupicz. We worked under big pressure, we wanted to have album ready for the festival... I've finally managed to relax a bit at the end of March, when I receiver mixes. Now our album is being released by Fundacja Słuchaj.

I'm so happy about this album, and I can't wait to play it live! Our premiere performance will take place in Polin Museum, Warsaw, PL, on April 14th.

You can listen to the first tune from "Bessarabian Journey" - check it up!

14.04.2016, 19:00, Polin Museum, Warsaw (PL)
Marcin Olak Quartet, Bessarabian Journey

concert opening the New Jewish Music festival

New album is out: Olak/Zakrocki/Wielecki, Spontaneous Chamber Music, vol. 1

New album, recorded in cooperation with Patryk Zakrocki and Miki Wielecki, is now beeing released. I'm so proud of those sounds, just check them up! Here is short story behind this recording...

Patryk and I first met during the 9th edition of the Ad Libitum Festival. We performed Boguslaw Shaeffer's Media there, but more importantly we formed a part of the Ad Libitum Ensemble, an improvising orchestra, under the direction of the festival's resident conductor, Augusti Fernandez. From the very first notes we knew our cooperation would not end with the festival. Sometimes musicians who haven't known each other before are able to communicate as if they had played together for a hundred years - it is an extraordinary, inspiring experience. Sounds combine into motifs, blend into phrases and textures almost on their own, and the music just flows.

We are talking here about improvised, intuitive music. This means that nothing has been previously planned or composed. Every sound is a unique phenomenon which may appear only here and now.

In the studio we were joined by the brilliant percussionist, Mikolaj Miki Wielecki. It was the first time we had all played together.

The album is a literal record of our session. The pieces come in the exact same order we played them in. Nothing has been edited, nor recorded later. We wanted to respect what happened in that moment.

I would like to thank Maciej Karłowski for inspiration and inviting us to be a part of Ad Libitum Ensamble, where it all has begun.

Official album premiere performace:
10.01.2016 (niedziela), 20:30, Pardon To Tu, Warsaw
Olak/Zakrocki/Wielecki, Spontaneous Chamber Music

Tickets (20PLN):

You can listen to our music at

Agusti Fernandez @60, River Tiger Fire (Ad Libitum Festival Residency)

Last year I've played at the Ad Libitum Festival. They have invited the best polish improvisers to form a residency band, Ad Libitum Ensamble. We've been led by Agusti Fernandez, great catalonian pianist, composer and performer. After some rehersals we've played in Polish Radio Concert Studio an improvised suite. And now it's beeing released. I'm proud to be a part of this project, it's definitly one of the best things I've plaed lately.

You can buy our album on

Progressive Baroque/Barok Progresywny

Here it comes, new release by Nikola Kołodziejczyk Orchestra, Barok Progresywny (Progressive Baroque). This is a suite, composed for a pretty strange ensamble. We've got baroque violins and cello, viola da gamba, and drums, double bass, electric and classical guitars (that's me), piano, bass clarinet, saxophones, trumpet. And some polish and indian folk instruments. It's strange. And it's really cool. U better check it up!

You can buy the CD @

Progressive Baroque on tour:
07.10.2015 : Nikola Kołodziejczyk Orchestra, Barok Progresywny @ Sopot Jazz Festival
28.10.2015 : Nikola Kołodziejczyk Orchestra, Barok Progresywny @ NOSPR, Katowice

Some new stuff...

Well, it's time to get back to work again. Some new albums should be released soon - actually one is out already. It's Nikola Kołodziejczyck Orchestra, Barok Progresywny (Progressive Baroque): it's unique piece for pretty unique band. There are baroque violins, baroque cello, viola da gamba, sarangi, suka biłgorajska (ancient Polish folk instrument), trumpet, bass clarinet, sax, drums, piano, double bass. And me on classical and electric guitars. It's definitely worth checking up. And two more albums are about being released soon - so better stay tuned!

OK. Time to rest.

Ladies & Gentelmen, I'm out for a moment. It's time to rest, but also to look for new ideas. I'd like to present my new band in September, so I've got to finish the scores. I think of playing some gigs with new gang, then - I hope this fall - I'd like to record a new album. So keep your fingers crossed!

I'll be back and playing at the end of August. There'll be some cool music out there, so I hope to see you there. Bye!

Nearest concerts:

Anna Riveiro Trans'Sefarad, Jewish Theater, Singer's Festival, Warszawa (PL). 29.08.2015, 16:30
Marcin Olak Special Trio, SDQ, Warszawa. 20.09.2015, 19:00 - new band!
Marcin Olak Trio, Klub Muzyczny Filharmonii Opolskiej, Opole. 27.09.2015, 19:00

The Last Laugh (Der letzte Mann)

Next Thursday Ryba (Patryk Zakrocki & me) will improvise music to the silent movie from 1925 "The Last Laugh". This German production in 1958 was inscribed on the list of the ten best films of all time. Movie is pretty weird - it combines action with drama with comedy with psychodelic with... Well, just come and see. And listen.

Ryba/The Last Laugh, Iluzjon Cinema, Warsaw (PL). 25.06.2015, 20:30

Marcin's jazz improvisation clinic at the University of Music in Warsaw

I was invited to lead a improvisation guitar classes with students of Warsaw University of Music. I'm happy even more, becouse not so long ago I've played a diploma at the university myself... I look forward to meeting young guitarists and playing with them. I'll also play a short set of improvised music with Maciek Szczyciński on bass, so if you happen to be in Warsaw, why not come and listen? Pictures and more information will soon appear on my Facebook.

Marcin Olak & Maciek Szczyciński, Sala im. Melcera, UMFC, Warsaw (PL). 17.05.2015, 15:00
Marcin Olak jazz impro clinic, Fryderyk Chopin University of Music, Warsaw (PL). 19.05.2015, 10:00

Ryba @ Fala dźwięku #30.

This Sunday I'll play with my new project called Ryba in Białobrzegi. Fala dźwięku (Sounwave) is a pretty unpredictable event, dedicated to avant garde improvised music, so Ryba seems to fit in there pretty well. Enjoy!

Ryba a.k.a. Marcin Olak & Patryk Zakrocki, Stowarzyszenie Inicjatyw Twórczych "Trzecia Fala".
18.04.2015, 19:30, Aleja Wojska Polskiego 108, Białobrzegi (PL)

Ryba @ YouTube.

Marcin Olak Solo @ Centrum Kulury Łowicka.

Next Wednesday (February 18) I'll play at the Centrum Kultury Łowicka. More info about my solo performance - antyrecital, as I call it - can be found here. You can also check my solo rewiev at (Polish text only, sorry). And, of course, you can come and hear me live.

Marcin Olak Solo, Guitar Wednesdays @ Łowicka. 18.02.2015, 19:00
Centrum Kultury Łowicka, Łowicka 21, Warszawa (PL)
tickets: 20PLN/10PLN

Marcin Olak Trio @ Nowodworkie Spotkania Jazzowe.

OK, it's time to hit the road again. We begin in the Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki (PL). We'll play mostly tunes from "Crossing Borders", but I also would like to pley some new pieces. I'm writing some tunes for the new album, so I think it would be good to play them live before we go to the studio. Come and listen, if you want to check'em out!

Marcin Olak Trio, Nowodworskie Spotkania Jazzowe. 11.02.2015, 19:00
Nowodworski Ośrodek Kultury, Paderewskiego 1A, Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki (PL)

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone!.


akiko & Marcin Olak Trio on tour.

I'd like to invite you to the two concerts I'll play with great Japanese jazz vocalist, akiko. Our new album, Kono Michi, should be released this Spring, but you can already hear us live at Jazz For Sale (Kosice, Slovakia) or Dobry Wieczów Jazz (Warszawa, Poland). Hope to see you there!

akiko & Marcin Olak Trio, Kono Michi: 15.11.2014, 19:00
Stara Radnica, Kosice (SK)

akiko & Marcin Olak Trio, Kono Michi: 18.11.2014, 19:00
Teatr Roma, Warszawa (PL)

Marcin Olak @ Ad Libitum 2014.

I've been invited to play at one of the most important European festivals dedicated to improvised music. First I'll join the group performing "Media" by Bogusław Schaeffer, then I'll play in Ad Libitum Ensamble - the festival orchestra, led by great pianist and improviser, Agusti Fernandez.

Bogusław Schaeffer, "Media": 17.10.2014, 20:00
Centre For Contemporary Art. Laboratory - Wojciech Krukowski Hall, Warszawa (PL)

Agusti Fernández & Ad Libitum Ensemble: 19.10.2014, 19:00
Witold Lutosławski Polish Radio Concert Studio, Warszawa (PL)

More info at

Take Five with Marcin Olak @ All About Jazz.

I have answered Take Five questions, and my answers are published at the best jazz website on the planet - All About Jazz. Enjoy :)

Read: Take Five with Marcin Olak.
Visit: Marcin Olak @ All About Jazz.

Mosty/Hidak/Gesharim/Phurta/Bridges 2014

This August I'll play at the Bridges festival. (Liptovsky Mikulas, SK). The idea look like this: musicians from Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia meet at the spot, and after two days of rehersals play a concert in a beautiful Old Synagogue. The gig is recorded by Slovak TV, and then beeing transmitted in December. This year invited artist are: Petr Breiner (SK-USA) - piano., Jiří Stivín (CZ) - flutes, clarinets, Gyula Babos (H) - guitars, Stano Palúch (SK) - violin, Boris Lenko - accordion. And me, the only one representing Poland.

This year the festival is about mixing folk and improvised music. The organisers commissioned from me three pieces, so I can proudly announce, that my new compositions "Minimazurka 3.0", "I zapłakały wierzby (And The Willows Cried)" and "W polu lipeńka" (my arrangement of traditional Masovian tune) will be performed there for the first time.

Mosty/Bridges/Gesharim 2014: 27.08.2014, 19:00
Old Synagogue, Liptovski Mikuláš (SK)

You'll be able to find some photos from Bridges at my Facebook:

© 2014. This site - as everthing I do, I do to the Glory of God, and dedicate to my Wife

Marcin Olak. Jazz guitarist, composer Info Concerts Music Discography Download Contact Marcin Olak. Jazz guitarist, composer Marcin Olak. Gitarzysta