We’ve updated our Terms of Use to reflect our new entity name and address. You can review the changes here.
We’ve updated our Terms of Use. You can review the changes here.
Safe Home 10:08
Cagey 04:26
Surfaces 02:40


German reed-player Frank Gratkowski and Russian-born pianist Simon Nabatov have been making music together in a wide variety of constellations and contexts for over 30 years. The fruitful collaboration began in Klaus König’s large ensemble projects, found the two interpreting Nabatov’s musical readings of Russian literature, or as members of numerous ad hoc settings. Playing in duo, however, always allowed them to get to the core of what is essential in improvised music – open dialogue, the joy of surprising oneself and each other, cohesive story-telling next to abstract entanglements. The duo documented their elegant yet powerful approach on two CD releases thus far.
Tender Mercies is their third and most mature and expressive musical outing to date.
There is a little „tradition“ of sorts – Simon Nabatov often celebrates his birthday by playing a concert with a friend or two in Cologne’s venerable venue LOFT. The following party with Russian food and drink is a part of it. But it wasn’t the anticipation of the festivities that propelled Frank and Simon to the musical heights captured here, it was rather the joy of playing together again, after a longer pause, caused by the nasty Covid times…
The scope of the subjects, technics and emotions is truly impressive – from exquisite flute playing of the title piece to the glorious re-instatement of true Jazz spirit on „Safe Home“, from delicate impressionistic smudges of „Surfaces“ to brutal outbursts of „Disgruntled Settlement“ – and everything in-between – the listener is treated to an absorbing and exciting experience.


released February 11, 2023

Frank Gratkowski - alto saxophone, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet
Simon Nabatov - piano

All music by Frank Gratkowski (GEMA) and Simon Nabatov (GEMA)

Recorded live January 11 2022 in LOFT Cologne by Christian Heck
Mixed and mastered by Stefan Deistler
Produced by Frank Gratkowski and Simon Nabatov
Executive production by Pedro Costa for Trem Azul
Clean Feed Records CF618CD
Design by Travassos


all rights reserved



Simon Nabatov Cologne, Germany

Simon Nabatov, pianist and composer, was born in Moscow in 1959.
In 1979 he emigrated to the USA, spent in NY next 10 years and 1989 he moved to Germany.
Simon Nabatov played with the "who's who" of the jazz and improvised music community, gave concerts in over 60 countries, appeared on the numerous international festivals, received prizes and documented his music on 30 CD's under his own name.
... more

contact / help

Contact Simon Nabatov

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Report this album or account

If you like Tender Mercies, you may also like: