Small Regrets

Approaching the jazz scene from the Pop side I always had a special affinity for Smooth Jazz. Nevertheless the steady contact with musicians of the Smooth Jazz scene also stimulate my contacts of artists of the so called straight jazz scene. The most iridescent personalities are those musicians playing the best of both genres. I don't speak today about Herbie Hancock but about Werner "Vana" Gierig.

Listening to his album "Small Regrets", which was already released in 1999, is a musical high-pleasure. His music is sophistcated and ambitious, but at the same time earcatching.

You understand, what I mean, sampling the first track Accent. His special approach to some fusion elements combined with Latin jazz rhythms convinces. Mayra Casales' percussion and Rocky Bryant 's drums are just the perfect frame for Vana's masterly piano play.

Perfectly engaged starts with a Hip-Hop-influenced beat introducing into a furious fusion jazz piano play. Marcus MaLaurine's dynamic acoustic bass is the ideal counter part to Vana's piano solo.

Mayra Casales' Brazilian quica and Vana 's pipe organ sound open for a wonderful children choir directed by Manfred Knoop and Vana. Small Regrets is something in jazz ( the piano part) and something in nursery-rhyme (the choir). Together with the jingle of bells the song gets a nice Christmas flavor.

The Logo goes straight ahead into jazz. Vana's keyboard-generated big band arrangement reminds at early swing time. Excellent Marcus MaLaurine's acoustic bass solo. 

Bäumchen - Little Tree ( part 1) and Bäumchen - Little Tree ( part 2) are an epic oeuvre. After a contemplative slow beginning Vana flies into piano runnings before part 2 takes over the main-theme. Dark-mooded bass with piano short attacks accompanied by a rich rhythm assortement, human mind is searching in mystical dreams.

Healing intro, a short piano interlude guides over to Healing In Foreign Lands. A dreamy piece in typical red-wine/fireside atmosphere but the jazzy attitude is as obvious as entertaining.

New Yorkin' conducts into the urban streets of New York. A little of Gershwin a little of George Duke garnished with subway and other NY-sound samples the piece is pulsing like Big Apple.

Visions Of Brazil is Vana's slowtempo thoughtful piano play with a fading in and out of Brazilian sounds.

The album is finished by an extended version of the title song Small Regrets.

The album is easy to find in Internet. Jazz and Smooth Jazz fans will enjoy this wanderer between both genres.




The Musicians:

  • Werner "Vana" Gierig - Grand Piano, Keyboards, Drum Programming, Percussion

  • Marcus McLaurine - Acoustic Bass (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11)

  • Rocky Bryant - Drums (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11)

  • Mayra Casales - Percussion (1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 11)

  • Mohammed Ali - Percussion (4, 9)

  • Ed Cavalcanti - Scratching (4)


More informations:



The album is available at


  • CDs may also be purchased directly for $10.95 incl. shipping by sending a check or money order to:

    Vana Gierig Music
    62 Avenue C
    New York, NY 10009