violin, trumpet, vocal
He was born in Budapest in 1957. His father was a Munkácsy Award winner sculptor, his mother is a painter artist. He graduated from Ferenc Liszt Teacher Training College for Music as a singing, solfeggio and trumpet teacher.
He began to work for the Postás Symphonic Orchestra as a first trumpet, later for the dance company of the People’s Theatre (Népszínház). During his career he has taken part in the work of several contemporary creative studios. He worked with the 180 Group and in the MAKUZ band of Szabados György. He was a founding member of Budapest Ragtime Band for which he worked for 15 years. He used to be a pillar of the Mihály Dresch Quartet for a long time, but the cooperation with our saxophone artist, who is deep-rooted in folk art, still goes on.
He has worked with the Kálmán Balogh Gipsy Cymbalom Band since 1994, of which he is nowadays becoming a key member. As a solo violinist, he played in several plays of Péter Gerzson’s TRANZ DANZ company. Among the international stars he has collaborated with Balanescu, Steve Hackett, David Murrey, Hamid Drake and Archie Shepp, who claimed “apart from being one of the best violinists of the world, he can play the trumpet like Miles Davis.” In the year 2009, he got a commission to compose the soundtrack to the film “The Last Report about Anna” directed by Márta Mészáros.
In 2001, his most notable solo production in the Hungarian music scene, the CD Magony came out, for whose performance a band was established. The Magony Orchestra, which plays Hungarian rustic baroque music, is one of the most individual Hungarian musical formations.
His compositions are based on Hungarian folk music, jazz and contemporary music as well. In the past ten years, Ferenc Kovács has brought out several important albums with Gramy Records that were received both by the critics and the public well. On these albums he collaborated with such performers as Mihály Dresch, Kálmán Balogh, Mátyás Szandai, Szilárd Banai, Zoltán Kovács and Péter Bede.
He was already a true performer on the first recording of Djabe band in 1996. From 2001 he has been a permanent member, an essential soloist of the band. Not only his authentic playing the violin, which can be traced back to roots in the folklore, but his characteristic singing voice is also an essential carrier of Djabe’s world of Hungarian music. Kovács is a European champion of kendo, he is still an active trainer. The wine he produces and the meals he prepares are famous all over distant lands, his rustic carved pieces of furniture have gained many admirers. Ferenc Kovács, aka “Öcsi” is a Hungaricum.
Kovács Ferenc - Magony / 2001 GR-024
Kovács Ferenc - Magony Vonósok / 2003 GR-043
Kovács Ferenc - Tranzit / 2005 GR-056
Kovács Ferenc - Hatok / 2006 GR-064
Kovács Ferenc - Beli Buba / 2006 GR-068
Kovács Ferenc - My roots / 2009 GR-083
Official homepage: www.magony.hu