PRAŽSKÝ VÝBĚR [CZ]
The roots of Pražský výběr reach back to the mid 1970’s when the band, led by the keyboard player Michael Kocáb, played the then popular jazz-rock fusion before publishing its debut album Žízeň. In the early 1980’s, upon the arrival of guitarist Michal Pavlíček, drummer Jiří Hrubeš, and later the bass player Vilém Čok, the band changed its overall style and belonged to the leaders of the Czech New Wave. This was the “classical line-up” who recorded the iconic album Straka v hrsti with the band’s greatest hits such as Hrabě X, Na Václavským Václaváku, Pražákům je hej, or Zubatá. In the same year the communist regime banned Pražský výběr alongside other rock bands so the album could not be published officially, and an underground record was released – it quickly gained immense popularity.
The ban was not relieved until 1986 when the band came back with Klaudius Kryšpín behind the drums and shortened its name to Výběr. A year later their de facto first officially published eponymous rock album was released. Straka v hrsti was first officially published in 1988, a year before the Velvet Revolution. One of the band’s key performances was a 1991 concert at the Prague Sports Hall that celebrated the withdrawal of the Soviet troops from Czechoslovakia with Frank Zappa starring as a special guest.
In the times of freedom, the band – under its full name again – published its last album titled Běr in 1997. After a long pause, Pražský výběr announced their comeback in 2012 and went on a highly successful tour of five concerts for over hundred thousand fans. Four years later, Pražský výběr staged their biggest concert ever, at the O2 Arena in Prague where they played with the ČNSO Symphonic Orchestra conducted by the world-famous conductor Steven Mercurio from the USA and many other guests. The last big moment in the history of the band so far was their position of special guests at a Rolling Stones concert in Prague held in July 2018.
The gig of Pražský výběr at the Metronome Festival Prague will be the band’s only open-air performance at a Prague venue in 2019. The fans can look forward to a special repertoire prepared specifically for the Metronome Festival as well as to unique and interesting guest performers.