Rale Micic/WCS

Rale Micic/WCS

“Rale Micic brings a unique voice to jazz guitar with his new album “Only Love Will Stay”. Rale’s great compositions retain some of his Serbian roots and his melodic playing is a joy to listen to along with the great Jared Gold on organ, and drummers, Geoff Clapp and Johnathan Blake. Thanks for the beautiful music Rale!”

Dave Stryker


“I’ve known Rale Micic for more than a decade. We’ve had the opportunity to play, and record with artists such as Tom Harrell, and Dayna Stephens, but I feel like I really got to know Rale when I began playing his original music. Rale’s personality shines through in his compositions. You hear the rhythmic, and melodic influences of his home country of Serbia, and you also hear the influences of his time living in the US. It’s been an absolute joy to get inside the mind of Rale and see, and hear his growth as a guitarist, improviser, and composer.”

Johnathan Blake


I actually sought after to play with Rale Micic. Since meeting him not only is one of my dearest friends but one of my musical heroes as well to this day. His composition “The World Doesn’t End” caught my ear years ago and I’ve been a fan ever sense. Being able to perform and especially record with Rale has been nothing but an honor and musical journey. One can hear and feel the beautiful spirit in everything he plays.

Geoff Clapp


Rale is a unique voice on the guitar. He combines a very melodic approach with an intricate knowledge of harmonies. His original compositions reflect his life experience and tell the listener a story of his heritage. It was a pleasure to be involved in this diverse and groove based project.

Jared Gold


Thursday, May 20, 7:00PM

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Jazz guitarist and composer Rale Micic has followed a path characteristic of many European jazzmen who settled in the United States. A native of Belgrade, Micic (born 1975), having already acquired a good jazz reputation in his native Serbia, went to Boston in 1995 to study at the famous Berklee College. Among his teachers there were such famous personalities as George Garzone and Bob Brookmeyer. In 2000, Micic moved to New York and over the years has become a prominent figure in the jazz scene of the Big Apple. Rale released his first album, Bridges, three years later, offering listeners a mixture of jazz with Balkan music. And already during the recording of the second album ,Serbia, Micic was helped by such a prominent master as the trumpet player Tom Harell. Micic played in his ensemble, worked with Greg Hutchinson, Don Friedman, Eric Alexander.

Today we present his new work Only Love Will Stay, Micic’s second album for Whaling City Sound. To create it, Rale chose the chamber format of a jazz trio, and without a bassist. His guitar voice is assisted only by the Hammond organ, with the famous Jared Gold and drums (Johnathan Blake and Geoff Klapp) sitting at the keys. The album was made up of recordings of two sessions, in the fall of 2019 and in the summer of 2020, hence the line-up and two drummers, each of whom worked in one of the sessions.

Of the eight compositions that made up the album’s program, five are the author’s music by Rale Micic. Covers here are his interpretations of Even Steven by John Abercrombie (symptomatic: many compare Micic’s playing style with Abercrombie, and, as he himself says, John’s organ groups served as a model for this project), Irwin Berlin’s classic “How Deep Is The Ocean” and “Lipe Cvatu (Linden Trees Are In Bloom)” by fellow countryman, Serbian composer Goran Bregovic. This, however, does not limit the connection with the homeland in this project. Micic’s opening and title track “Only Love Will Stay” also contains echoes of Balkan music. It seems to me that it was no coincidence that this piece gave the name to the entire album. Very beautiful, warm, a little sad melody, soulful sound of a guitar, delicate organ reprise – for me it became a personal favorite of the album. A brief and aphoristic assessment of the entire project was given by Micic’s partner Jared Gold: “In playing the guitar, Rale has a unique voice. He combines a very melodic approach with a keen knowledge of harmonies. His original compositions reflect his life experience and tell the listener about his roots …” It’s hard to disagree.


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 5/22 INSPIRED album release featuring Peter Bernstein, Rale Micic, Lage Lund, Vic Juris at BLUE NOTE at 8p & 10:30p

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“Micic is bringing an intriguing new perspective to the jazz guitar.” – LA TIMES

”Micic is subtle, intelligent player who echoes the likes of Jim Hall.” – DOWNBEAT

“The New York jazz scene, and by extension jazz’s modern mainstream, has Rale Micic to thank for a portion of its continued growth.” – ALL ABOUT JAZZ


“Rale Micic is one of my favorite guitar players on the scene today. He has a beautiful sound and lyricism that truly set him apart.” – PETER BERNSTEIN

“Rale is a soulful and thoughtful player” – TOM HARRELL

“Rale Micic has firmly established himself as one of the top guitarists in jazz today. I’ve enjoyed his playing both while sharing the bandstand with him and as a fan. He’s got great melodic awareness, a strong rhythmic concept, and a feeling for the blues that show he has studied the greats on his instrument while forging a singular style of his own. I’m excited to hear this new recording! “ – ERIC ALEXANDER

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“Micic is bringing an intriguing new perspective to the jazz guitar.”   LA TIMES

Born and raised in Belgrade, Serbia, guitarist and composer Rale Micic (pron. Rah-Leh Mee-chee-ch) skillfully fuses culture with timeless jazz.

Rale Micic is a CTA Records recording artist and has been featured in numerous publications including Downbeat, JazzTimes, LA Times, San Diego Tribune, Boston Globe, etc. He has performed at prominent jazz clubs and music festivals in US and Europe including Catalina Jazz Club, Blues Alley, Village Vanguard, Scullers Jazz Club, Dizzy’s, San Jose Jazz Festival, Hartford International Jazz Festival, etc.

Rale Micic recently signed an endorsement deal with D’Addario strings, joining the likes of guitarists Pat Metheny, John Scofield and Lenny Kravitz.

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Photo by Josephine Solimene
Show Dates:

6.10 Rale Micic & Peter Bernstein Duo — Guitar X2 Series, Bar Thalia at Symphony Space, New York, 9pm

6.17 Rale Micic & Lage Lund — Guitar X2 Series, Bar Thalia at Symphony Space, New York, 9pm

6.25 Rale Micic Trio, Bar Next Door, New York, 7:30pm

7.8 Rale Micic & Sheryl Bailey — Guitar X2 Series, Bar Thalia at Symphony Space, New York, 9pm

7.22 Rale Micic & Guilherme Monteiro duo at Bar Thalia, NYC
8.20 Alma & Rale Micic Duo at KC Grad, Serbia, Kc Grad, Belgrade, 9pm

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