Biography in English
 

A singer, guitarist, composer, author of texts, singing in a country style, folk, blues, and rock and roll. He belongs to a group of top country performers in Poland, and is known to sympathisers and fans of numerous concerts, solo recitals, radio music broadcasting and TV programmes.
A start of Pawel Baczkowski’s professional concert work was his performance during the Warsaw festival called ”Country in Stodola” in 1987. His recorded music appeared in Katowice Radio. One year later, he was qualified - together with a band - to participate in the International Festival of Country Music called ”Picnic Country - Mragowo ‘88”, and he recorded his first TV programme. In 1989, he gave performance in Mragowo for the second time, made studio recordings in Cracow and went on a concert tour to Austria, Czech Republic and Russia.
In 1990, the first cassette appeared, called ”So Long”, containing American standards and author’s songs. The song ”Ciagle w drodze” (”All the Time Away”) won a reward in the contest for a premiere song within the framework of the Polish Song Festival in Opole. Two years later, the next three cassettes appeared, and the artist went on a concert tour to Sweden and Germany. Then he started his work with TV Katowice where till 1997 he was a co-author of the Country Bar music programme. He was also invited to take part in the final of the television contest called ”Welcome to America”, in the TVP II Programme. In 1993, he took part in a subsequent Country Picnic in Mragowo where he had an honour to perform together with a virtuoso of the mouth-organ, Charlie McCoy. His cassette entitled ”Country in a Polish Manner” was also issued.
In 1994, Pawel Baczkowski gave his performance for a next time in the Mrągowo Picnic Country. Then he recorded two songs to a collective cassette entitled ”An American List of Hits in Polish”, and to two live cassettes from the Mrągowo Festival. It was also when his carol cassette appeared. The song ”Jade na Slask” (”I’m Going to Silesia”) won the reward of a Gold Colt within the framework of the II Country Festival in Kielce. In the same year, there was his unique record of 121 singing concerts.
In 1995, he took part in the Country Club programme for the II Programme of TVP. He took part in the Mrągowo Picnic again, singing, inter alia, in his author programme. After the festival, he set off, together with other performers, for a concert tour called ”Country ‘95 Convoy”. He issued a cassette entitled ”I Wish You Merry Christmas” and recorded Christmas programmes for regional television stations in Warsaw, Rzeszow and Katowice.
A year later, he started to cooperate with the programme called “Stajnia” (Stable) within the I Programme of TVP, performing live, with the guitar and mouth-organ. He was conducting the ‘Débuts’ programme within the framework of the festival called ”Country in Bieszczady” in Lesko helping several young performers to become known. In a next festival in Mragowo, he presented new, premiere songs - the recital was considered to be the best element of the festival and was presented on TVP. The artist also recorded a teledisc for the music First Programme of the Polish Radio, to the song entitled ”Rock and Roll of a Teenager in the Middle Age”. During a venue in Osiek, he was awarded of the Star for achievements in popularisation of the country music. He also won a further Gold Colt in the festival in Kielce, this time for a song entitled ”I Know I Love You”. He started work on a further music material that a few months later was issued as a disc and cassette entitled ”Smak zycia” (”Taste of Life”) that received many good reviews (among other things, in the TRUCKER magazine, in the daily “Gazeta Poznanska”, in the professional magazine “Muzyk” [“Musician”]. Songs from this disc have been appearing till now in television programmes of regional stations. In the plebiscite named “Nowy Country Osobowy – Giganci Country ‘96” (“New Passenger Country – Giants of Country ‘96”), Pawel Baczkowski was elected the vocalist of the year, and he accompanying him band, The Super Band, the band of the year, and the song “I Know I Love You” – the song of the year. Participation in the “COUNTRY TOP ‘96” festival appeared to be a significant success where he had a privilege to perform on the same festival day as a legendary singer and actor, Kris Kristofferson.
In the spring 1997, he made a teledisc to the song “I’m Going to Silesia” for the I Programme of TVP, and during the festival in Mrągowo, he was invited to take part in the show named “Silesian and Kashubian Song-Book” by Katarzyna Gaertner. He also presented a completely new author programme. In September, he started recordings of a new musical material. He participated in five parts of the programme called “The Country Scene” for TV Polonia. In May 1998, his song “Moj glos – moj krzyk” (“My Voice – My Outcry”) entered the list of hits called “Your List of Hits”, and owing to the BBZ Artist Agency, there appeared a promotional single, teledisc and a new disc. Appearance in the Picnic Country Mragowo ’99 will take place under the banner of the ten-year participation of the artist in that festival.
Pawel Baczkowski’s music has been undergoing constant transformations. These are not only standards in the country or rock and roll style, but also music on the fringe of rock, pop and rhythm and blues. His music reaches everywhere and everybody. He is welcomed to rock and folk concerts, poetry meetings, festivals of the religious song. However, all the time, he has been looking for his way, and he resists against being captured by a single manner of expression. It is worthwhile to remind that Pawel Baczkowski has got a page of his own in a book by Dr Romuald Krygier entitled “Wpisani w dzieje Ziemi Szamotulskiej” (“Those Entered Their Names to the History of the Szamotuly District”), devoted to the people particularly connected with this region.
The best e-mail contact: pmb@red.alpha.net.pl

Citations

“If he had only been singing ballads, he would have been considered as a representative of the land of gentleness; if he had been jumping on the platform to the rhythm of rock and roll, the rock scene would have spoken up for him. And he does not want to be classified, he is able to sing in various styles combining successfully various sorts of music”.

Editor Korneliusz Pacuda, journalist, music reviewer

“All competitors of the artist should listen to the Pawel Baczkowski’s disc in order to learn how the so-called bigger entities are recorded and directed. Since these are pieces of art with the scenario, logic of sequences and direction; there is no fortuity but a rich variety of rhythms, climates and arrangement, an ideal attuning of the soloist and his band, simply an ideal! The ideal of the so-called music of the centre”.

Editor Dariusz Michalski, journalist, music reviewer

“Baczkowski, irrespective if he is singing country, rock and roll, blues, or if this is his famous hit, “I’m Going to Silesia”, or “I Know I Love You”, is able to heat the audience. At last, it is time that there should be more room for him in main mass media. Large disc concerns should also be interested in him, as Baczkowski is an artist who has long ago gone out of the vicious circle of country, and he must become one of next authentic vehicles of the Polish entertainment industry.”
Editor Marek Zaradniak, journalist, music reviewer (“Gazeta Poznanska”)
“He has been known in this country for years. He has struck his music root both in the country and rock styles of music. Texts tell successfully of the everyday reality seen with eyes of a young man. Music is simple and communicative what is a compliment in this case. We must add that Baczkowski is an excellent showman we are still heavily lacking in our country. His concerts are accepted enthusiastically. Who has not heard a few thousand audience singing together with him refrains of his songs, then that fellow does not know anything of this prepossessing singer.”
Editor Marcin Andrzejewski, journalist, music reviewer (magazine “Muzyk”, July 1997)
“Agata Mlynarska, conducting the concert, is calling from the platform:
- Magnificent Pawel Baczkowski! Do you Love Paweł?
- Yeeees!, calling back the audience in the amphitheatre. Half of them are women.”

“Gazette Warmii i Mazur”, August 1997

“Prisoners fully filled in the audience room made up of the corridor of the Investigation House of Detention in Piaski (district of the city of Kielce - author). Baczkowski established contact with the audience without any problem. He was singing with a guitar accompaniment of ordinary people, their every day problems. Thanks to one hour concert, the prisoners might feel at least for a moment as ones being outside the prison’s walls.”

“Echo Dnia”, September 1996

“To be sure, in the festival in Mragowo those soloists and bands prove true who, besides a perfect music, can manage to create show. The audience have their favourites whom they appreciate more than others. Pawel Baczkowski belongs to them. It is worthwhile to look at them and to listen to them, their artistic achievements have already been considerable. They have an absolute control over the audience, and they know how to use it in order to create a completely successful spectacle.”
Editor Marcin Andrzejewski, journalist, music reviewer (magazine “Music”, September 1997)
“A charming voice that is singing the whole truth about life.”

Barbara Kiona, teacher

“With thanks for superb impressions in the course of listening, and for the possibility to return to remembrances of ‘lofty and fool’ youth.”

Malgorzata Dyzert, teacher

“Sincerity and courage in the words uttered are what is most valuable in life, so never be afraid of sincerity and truth, and always utter yourself in compliance with your conscience in what you are doing as an artist.”

Elzbieta Bielawska, Justyna Pietraszewska, Alicja Huciuk – fans.

“With your voice, you are able to sing everything, to provide people with much pleasure and emotions. I wish you that people in difficult moments for you could be what you are for them during each your performance. You are a surprise of many capabilities, open as everything on front of us. You are conquering hearts of people with your songs, you are singing the whole truth of life. From your music, there is flowing sincerity, love and truth, and do combat evil with this.”

Bernadetta Nowak, teacher

“Paweł is like Kris Kristofferson Kenny Rogers, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and even Dolly Parton in one piece. He is also himself, and he is good.”

Korneliusz Pacuda, announcement of the concert in Lesko in 1995

“In your songs, there is a piece of life, also mine.”

Lukasz Bernady, teacher of Polish, writer

“You are music.”

Irena Maliborska, culture promotor, Ustron

“Thanks to your concerts, I had an honour to see and hear a great musician. You can reach the innermost recesses of the human (woman) heart, and to truly touch it, leaving permanent traces. From all my heart, thank you for the possibility to experience this. I cordially wish you much of happiness, as you deserve it for that you make happy others with your music.”

Anonymous letter from Bydgoszcz, 23 August 1993

“Pawel Baczkowski, a great showman of the platform, an untiring musician who could play for ever, and one day more.”

Monika Rozwarzewska, journalist

“There was time when it was very difficult for me in life. And I was all the time listening to a Pawel’s cassette that one of my friends had lent me. The cassette included his songs. And though many years have passed from that moment, those words helped me much. Than you, Pawel, for emotions, and I wish you a great career and luck in life.”

Marek Cybulka, colleague from the courtyard

“I have learned Pawel Baczkowski’s pieces of artistic work by chance. I had never before been interested in the country music, and I did not suppose it would be left in my memory for ever because of this charming man. Today, listening to his voice, each time I know “I am going there where paradise”, I believe again that „life is not an enemy”, and I “am cuddling his voice to myself”, as “there are in life such days where there is only a flicker of hope”. He is fine, and he has got a unique personality. I am his fan.”
Urszula Munzger, specialist of marketing

“I see a fellow who can laugh, and be awfully brave. He can love, and he himself desires love. He can be tender, and unyielding at the same time. He has his hand open friendly, but when it needs to be so, he can clench his fist. He prefers to live among friendly people than to withdraw into oneself and in loneliness. He addresses his songs to young and adults, sentimental as well as to crazy about rock and roll. A singer-perfectionist who is singing emotionally, with zest and feeling.”
Krzysztof Cedro, a many-year colleague and collaborator, author and co-author of many Pawel Baczkowski’s songs

“I am singing for those who want to stand on their feet again, to start the life from the beginning, as we have so much of it before us. It does not matter that once we have been past 30 or we come from places that sometimes you hardly can find on the map. I have written, “I am not afraid of having brave dreams, since I was born to live”. Wilfulness, belief, hope and Providence are the basis. It is just God who deserves great thanks, who has always been, is and, I do hope, will remain my best life manager. I believe that despite my faults He is guiding me through the whole my life. Some speak of me Pawel Baczkowski, a rock man, and I am answering them, ‘thanks’, it is good you think so. Others say these are songs of the centre, these are pop, and I am replying them again, ‘Thank you, I am very glad’. Still others say, Pawel was, is and will be a country singer, and I am answering, ‘Fine, this also needs to be sung well’. Then others called me a real rock and roll successor of Elvis and Jerry Lee Lewis; I felt still more honoured and embarrassed (but happy). One thing is obvious - there is only one music: either good or bad. And if everybody hears in it something different, this is the sign I have achieved the intentioned goal.”
PAWEL BACZKOWSKI OF HIMSELF

“I envy you that easiness of writing harmonious songs, that easiness of writing simple, and not coarse texts which speak to almost every human being. You can write about usual matters in such a way that listening to these songs captures. You have correctly understood the mission of country music - to convey usual affairs in a usual, everyday language, as they concern all of us. You are such a rock and roll young man in the middle age, and do never get older.”
Editor Marek Gaszynski, journalist, music reviewer, text writer

“In the OKO Radio broadcasting station where I work, I am responsible for music programmes. Pawel Baczkowski is a frequent guest in my programmes. Almost for half a year, his songs have been occupying the top three position on the list of hits. This has been with the songs “You for Ever”, “Cuddle My Voice” and “I Know I Love You”. Sometimes, when songs are dropping it is enough to remind his name, and listeners are promptly sending their letters supporting his songs. He is very much liked within the range of the OKO Radio, and the whole region of Podlasie.”
Editor Wojciech Dudkowski in an interview for TKK Kielce Television, March 1996

ELVIS AND ME

“In his past disc, “Moj Głos – Moj Krzyk” (“My Voice – My Outcry”), Pawel Baczkowski thanked in a few words his idols who have affected his music, concert performances and everything what is connected with his work as an artist. Today, he has perfectly worked out his own style for himself, combining various sorts of music, what prevents from pigeon-holing him.
In his advertising leaflet it stands: “The whole programme comprises author songs performed in Polish, but also well known and beloved standards and American hits of the 1950. and 1960., sung in the original. In some compositions, the artist uses elements of the Springsteen’s rock and roll, in others, subtlety of works of the Dire Straits group, and the climate of songs by The Beatles.”
Pawel Baczkowski is also a great fan of Elvis Presley.
(More about Elvis can be found on http://www.kki.pl/elvisal/index.htm)
“When I was 13, he touched me with his voice. He fascinated me as a musician, artist and man. He fascinated me so much that I began to learn to play the guitar, and I was taking lessons of singing.”
In 1992, he and his band recorded 2 tape recorder cassettes entitled “Country Rock Around The Clock” and “Country Is the Best” where he, to some degree, pays tribute to a great singer. When in 1995 he recorded also a cassette with carols, he did not forget to put a few Christmas songs from Presley’s repertoire, writing Polish texts to them. He has written many Polish texts to Elvis’ songs, and even to one of his gospels, “Somebody Bigger Than You and I”, from the disc “How Great Thou Art”; the song in Baczkowski’s performance is entitled “When You Came”, and is a mostly evangelic message. To be sure, Baczkowski knows very many gospels and Negro spirituals. Sometimes, when he has to encore very long, he is singing “Amazing Grace:, “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot”, “Nobody Knows” to those most persistent. Any time he sits to the piano, he always starts from “Amazing Grace”.
At a certain moment of his career, he tried several times to impersonate this singer. In 1994, he recorded in TVP Katowice (within the framework of the programme called ‘Country Bar’) a programme devoted to Presley where he sang several songs out of the mentioned cassettes, and he referred with his clothes to the Elvis’ style, as well as he invited Mr Jacek Wilczynski, the author of a book on Elvis. Then, for some time, he was performing a concert programme called “I remember Elvis Presley” where he included the greatest hits by Elvis. He also belonged to one of fan clubs in Poland where they asked him often to give a concert. Then, Elvis’ and Baczkowski’s fans were coming from entire Poland to see that unusual event. A programme recorded of one of the meetings by TV Bydgoszcz (1993) was awarded in one of the festivals of documentary films. In each of those concerts, the Musician Editorial Office of the PIK Radio from Bydgoszcz was present, recording and issuing programmes from those recitals.
However, Baczkowski did not want to be bound by this stream for ever. Nevertheless, it was an episode in his career he recollects nicely, as he tied up many constant acquaintances then, and many became fans of his music later. The below photos (they will appear soon - editors) were taken just in those concerts that were held over the period of 1992-1994. Later on, he abandoned the programme, but whenever he appears on the platform performing his own compositions, he does not forget to refer to works by the giants of rock and roll, i.e. Elvis, Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, Ricky Nelson or Roy Orbison.
He was saying several times, “Singing Elvis’ songs gave me a great joy, you could learn to sing on those songs, to develop your voice. Wherever and whenever I sang those songs, people were smiling. I remember while being yet in the secondary school, I was playing the guitar and singing at the customary party arranged by and for schoolfallows a hundred days before school-leaving examinations “That’s All Right, Mamma”, standing on the stove in the school kitchen. My colleagues; joy was enormous, and suddenly the whole party was passed to the school kitchen, and I was continuing my performance on the stove. I was wearing hair done in ‘duck’s rump’, and I had a tick in the lapel with Elvis’ portrait on it. The teacher of Polish told me to take it off threatening me she could ban me from coming to the class. So I did not... I also remember when playing in Vienna cafes, and in the Vienna underground, whenever I was singing “Love Me Tender” or “Are You Lonesome Tonight?”, or other songs, people were more eager to stop and put money. I could earn a little on the wave of fascination over Elvis, but, first of all, thanks to him I tied up many constant friendships and acquaintances that have been lasting till now. I have experiences on my own how much Presley’s songs mean to people. I wished to sing my songs, but I never forget Elvis. Even today, playing concerts I am singing “Blue Suede Shoes”, “Johnny, Be Goode”, and even “Unchained Melody”, and this works.
I even met and was playing with Charlie McCoy, a musician who was cooperating with the king of rock and roll.”
Besides rehearsals before the concert and the very concert, the gentlemen had a longer chat how they had been used to recording with Elvis. Charlie McCoy spoke very warmly of Baczkowski’s vocal artistry, congratulated him, and wrote in the dedication: “To Pawel. I knew the King. He was the greatest. Best wishes - Charlie McCoy.”
“Around an early spring, I will record, as a tribute to Elvis, 22 his songs. Music undercurrents (arrangements) have been prepared, it is enough to enter the studio and record vocal. I like “My Way” very much - this is a difficult song, but I am ready to record it.”
These are Pawel Baczkowski’s opinions on his ties with Elvis. There are rumours that Pawel, being en route, used to sing after the concert to his fans till the morning, and then to go on. One of his tour companions said that Baczkowski could sing and play more than 100 Presley’s song by heart, and, in general, he can sing for six hours non-stop, and everything by heart.
Baczkowski was struggling very long for that his own style was appreciated, his author compositions and texts. At a certain moment of his artistic career, he put all on one card, on his creation, and he won. The audience wants to hear “I Am Going to Silesia”, “Cuddle My Voice”, “Rock and Roll of a Teenager in the Middle Age” or other  songs from the disc “My Voice - My Outcry”. His compositions have been noticed in various competitions, and he was admitted to such prestigious organisations as ZAKR(The Association of Polish Authors and Composers) and ZAIKS(Societe Des Auteurs) He told us: “Now, when I have grounded my position as a composer and author, and when I am associated with my own music, with my own style, I can afford myself to do such experiments as recording Elvis’ songs. I will travesty a little, I will imitate a little, but all will know that this is only for a while... Well, but I have worked hard for this. I do hope you will readily listen to Elvis in my issuance, but you will come back to “I Know I Love You”, “You for Ever”, “Now I Am Going There Where Paradise”.
PB Mangement