"Petit Standard"
voice: Vesna Pisarović
drums: John Betsch
double bass: Joe Fonda

Vesna Pisarović was immersed in music from an early age: through formal education in flute, through youthful experiments in punk-rock, through a rigorous study of vocal techniques, and, even more distantly, through a degree in phonetics and linguistics at the University of Zagreb. And yet her route to jazz and improvised music seems quite circuitous. At the age of twenty, Vesna embarked on a path of stardom in the popular music industry in Croatia, releasing five commercial albums which reached golden or platinum sales, performing uncountable concerts, appearing in numerous live broadcasts. Vesna even competed at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2002. However, an encounter with the music of the free jazz artist Peter Brötzmann in a Berlin club would turn this experience around. Enchanted by such intensity and expressive freedom, Vesna decided to devote herself to the study of jazz, enrolling at the Royal Conservatory in the Hague and earning a Master’s degree in musical performance at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. In 2012 she released her debut jazz album With Suspicious Minds for the well-known German label Jazzwerkstatt. She currently resides in Berlin where she performs with many renowned musicians such as Greg Cohen, Tony Buck, Chris Abrahams, Zeno de Rossi, Chris Dahlgren, John Betsch, Gerhard Gschlößl, Steve Heather, Clayton Thomas, Dieb 13, Martin Sasse, Frederick Köster, Francesco Bigoni and many others.

Band Members
  • Vesna Pisarović


    was for almost a decade a renowned singer of popular music in Croatia and other countries of the former Yugoslavia. Since a dramatic turn in her professional career, and a change towards the jazz idiom she has collaborated with many artists, including Greg Cohen, Tony Buck, Chris Abrahams, Gerhard Gschlößl, Zeno de Rossi, Dieb 13, Martin Sasse, Wolfgang Schmidtke, Frederick Köster, Matija Dedić, Clayton Thomas, Steve Heather, Jan Roder and many others. She currently lives and works in Berlin.

  • John Betsch


    is a celebrated American drummer noted for his collaborations with major voices in free jazz and the avant-garde of the seventies, eighties and nineties, including Steve Lacy, Mal Waldron, Max Roach, Kalaparush Maurice McIntyre, Dewey Redman, Jim Pepper, Archie Shepp, Henry Threadgill, Marilyn Crispell, Abdullah Ibrahim, Marion Brown, David Murray, Don Byron, Jeanne Lee and Billy Bang, to name only some. As a frontman, he headed the John Betsch Society and the John Betsch Trio.

  • Joe Fonda

    double bass

    is a renowned American double bassist who, alongside his own ensembles, performed and collaborated with artists such as Anthony Braxton, Archie Shepp, Ken Lou Donaldson, Bill and Kenny Barron, Leo Smith, Perry Robinson, Dave Douglas, Curtis Fuller, Bill Dixon, Han Bennink, Bobby Naughton, Xu Fengia, Randy Weston, Carla Bley, Carlo Zingaro, Barry Altschul, Billy Bang, to name only some.

  • Gebhard Ullmann

    tenor saxophone and bass clarinet

    is one of the leading voices of Berlin’s free-jazz scene, celebrated regularly in Downbeat Critics’ Polls, with albums as leader released on labels such as Blacksaint/Soul Note, Leo Records, Clean Feed and Jazzwerkstatt. His long list of collaborations includes work with Ellery Eskelin, Tony Malaby, Steve Swell, Julian Argüelles, Han Bennink and George Schuller, Barry Altschul, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Michael Zerang, Satoko Fujii, Paul Bley, Keith Tippett, William Parker, Bobby Previte, Lauren Newton, Andrew Cyrille, Sylvie Courvoisier, Willem Breuker, Tom Rainey and many others.