was named after Japanese samurai fighters who prefer to fight alone. A warrior without a clan fights single-handed, without any protection and without obligations, and therefore should be extra careful. He has no respect at all and is considered very dangerous. The zen-funk quintet Ronin led by composer and pianist Nik Bärtsch explores its own boundaries in a willful and flexible way. With a variety of instruments they draw from different styles, from funk to modern classical music, or from Japanese ritual music. Bärtsch sums it up under the motto ‘ritual groove music’, which is also the title of his debut album. The musician from Zurich, who also spends a lot of time in Berlin, started his band in 2001. Recently his new CD Stoa
was released on the quality label ECM.