AROUND SLOVAKIA

Trnava jazzer is 90

NEW YEAR’S Eve is a normal workday for only a few occupations, such as musicians. And one of Slovakia’s oldest musicians, Eugen Nemeš from Trnava, remains quite active: even after celebrating his 90th birthday over the Christmas holidays he spent the turn of the years performing at the Piešťany spa with his Old Boys Jazz Band.

NEW YEAR’S Eve is a normal workday for only a few occupations, such as musicians. And one of Slovakia’s oldest musicians, Eugen Nemeš from Trnava, remains quite active: even after celebrating his 90th birthday over the Christmas holidays he spent the turn of the years performing at the Piešťany spa with his Old Boys Jazz Band.

Nemeš started performing at a young age and has played several instruments over the years but now sticks to the piano. When he turned 70 he founded his own band – the Old Boys Jazz Band – which performs swing and world-famous tunes but also plays its own compositions. Nemeš recorded his first album after he turned 80 and, appropriately enough, it is titled Viagra Swing. His band has become a well-established ensemble in and around Trnava, playing at various kinds of events, the SITA newswire wrote.

Nemeš has had other loves in his life apart from his music. As is often the case with musicians, he loved women. But he has been a big fan of mountains as well and was chairman of the mountain climbers’ club in Trnava for half a century, despite the town having no true mountains nearby. At the end of the 1950s he chaired the Slovak Climbers’ Association and holds a Golden Badge from the Slovak Mountaineering Association, the TASR newswire wrote. Nemeš still hikes often, with a camera, and has published his photos on the internet, which he said has become an inseparable part of his life. He told TASR his credo is: “The older I am, the more I have”.

Nicknamed Bubo, Nemeš said he likes performing with a band in which the youngest member is well over 60. He denied a rumour that he had gotten the money to buy a new keyboard from funds carefully saved for his funeral – adding that even though he had neither started nor spread this rumour, he found it to be a “quite good story and a keeper”.

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