Dainius Pulauskas (b. 1960), an accomplished pianist, keyboard player, outstanding band leader and composer plays a defining role on the Lithuanian jazz scene. The success of his groups has rested largely on his compositions - eloquent tone poems, performed on electronic and acoustic instruments and imbued with northern serenity and romantic moods.
Jazz critic Jan Patterson, in his article portal All About Jazz (October 10, 2011) , this group described as “The Dainius Pulauskas Group is a unique sextet whose mixture of melody and muscle, lyricism and the unexpected, places it firmly at the forefront of progressive European jazz-fusion.” and the group leader is characterized as “pianist/keyboardist Pulauskas is without a doubt, one of the most interesting composers at the fusion end of European jazz, and has been at the helm of this sextet for seventeen years”
"Pulauskas together with his colleagues makes the best ever possible fusion. Diversity of their musical expression is overwhelming. It is head over heels of audacious swings and rhythms, and... the most real, unadorned jazz. Obviously, the leader and the pianist of the group Pulauskas and his friends are excellent arrangers; there is always a room for improvisation left in their precisely planned arrangements. (...) It's been long time since I heard such talented jazz masters," - writes Swedish reviewer Bo Levender.
Dainius Pulauskas born in the town of Vievis, the musician learned playing piano and violin at the local children's music school. He majored in piano at the Vilnius Conservatory and the Lithuanian Academy of Music. Still a student, he won the Piano Improvisation Competition in 1980. Since 1981 he started playing with the orchestra Oktava. With Oktava he has toured numerous countries and has tried his hand in arranging and composing. In 1990 the pianist emerged on jazz stage with Skirmantas Sasnauskas Quartet. Pulauskas has performed with many Lithuanian and foreign jazz musicians. Dainius Pulauskas occasionally presents solo programs and has released a solo album Moods (2000). He has been featured by the international jazz piano festivals (Piano Stars Festival Liepaja, in Latvia, 1991, and the International Jazz Pianists Festival in Prague, 2001). Pulauskas performing with horn player Arkady Shilkloper, trumpeter Valery Ramoška, folk singer Veronika Povilioniene, is a member of Lithuanian Radio and Television Jazz Group. In 2008 D. Pulauskas was invited to represent Lithuania in the “Baltic Jazz Trio”, which plays the most prominent jazz musicians from the three Baltic countries - Maris Briežkalns from Latvia, and Toivo Unt from Estonia.
Since 1995 he has been leader and composer with his own Dainius Pulauskas Group.
During the years of its existence D.P.G. participated in many prestigious European, Asian, African and American jazz festivals.
The merits of the musician have been recognized by a number of awards. In 1998 he became the first and only jazz musician to receive the Bravo Award as the top Lithuanian jazzman. In 1999 his arrangement of John Lennon and Paul McCartney's song "Yesterday" won the Grand Prix of the Yesterday Pärnu International Competition in Estonia. In 2000 he received the Birstonas Jazz Festival Grand Prix. In 2001 Dainius Pulauskas Sextet was awarded the Gold Disc of the Lithuanian Musicians' Union, and in 2004 the LT Identity award of the Lithuanian Institute, recognizing their contribution to promoting Lithuanian jazz. “Vilnius Jazz” festival Award for contributions to the Lithuanian jazz culture (Lithuania 2010).
© Jūratė Kučinskaitė
About Dainius Pulauskas Group