|Kai Eckhardt (2014)|
|German-born Kai Eckhardt began playing bass guitar at age 15, but it wasn't his only interest as a teenager: he excelled in track, gymnastics and diving.
In 1985, his countryman, guitar prodigy Torsten der Winkel, invited Kai to join his recording ensemble, which included Alphonse Mouzon and Michael Brecker. A little later, he toured with Ernie Watts, and also Steve Smith, the latter leading to an invitation to join Steve's group Vital Information.
Kai accepted an invitation to come to the Berkeley College of Music, and graduating with honors in 1987, he began to establish himself in the United States. In 1988 he joined the group of guitarist John McLaughlin with Trilok Gurtu, and began touring extensively. In the early 1990s, he moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, and turned his attention to composing, and to teaching—privately, online, in clinics, and as a member of the Jazzschool in Berkeley.
Besides music, he has developed a strong interest in social justice and environmental issues, and has put together rallies for green-collar jobs.
Kai lives in the perfect place for him, Berkeley, where he is married to his Brazilian wife. They have two teenagers who are growing up trilingual in English, German and Portuguese. They probably speak music, too.
|# 1||Joni Mitchell||Shadows and Light||In France They Kiss on Main Street||Elektra|
|# 2||Stevie Wonder||Journey through the Secret Life of Plants||The Secret Life of Plants||Tamla|
|# 3||America||America's Greatest Hits||Horse with No Name||Warner Bros.|
|# 4||Jan Hammer||Oh Yeah?||Magical Dog||Sony|
|# 5||Bulgarian State Radio and TV Female Vocal Choir||Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares||Kalimankou Denkou||Nonesuch Records|
|# 6||Donnie||The Daily News||Impatient People||Soul Thought Entertainment|
|# 7||Dou Dou N'Diaye Rose||Djabote||Cheikh Anta Diop||Real World|
|# 8||Rob Dixon||What Things Could Be||Looking Up||Owl Studios|
|# 9||Kai Eckhardt||Zeitgeist||Giant Slaps||Area 61|
|Book||Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, "I Am That"|
|Luxury Item||"The bass guitar that I brought from Germany: it's an acoustic six-string fretless bass guitar, made by Siggi Jäger, so it's a prototype. The company is Human Base."|
Maya Kronfeld and Valerie Troutt