Michael Kocáb needs little introduction. A civil activist, politician, entrepreneur, music composer, and singer, he is one of the most prominent figures in both Czech music and politics. His band, Pražský výběr, was a defining force in the Czech new wave scene, which is why the communist regime banned it for several years. Michael Kocáb's life has truly been a rollercoaster ride, and the celebration of his 70th birthday at Metronome Prague 2024 promises to be just that. He best describes it himself:
"Well, I tried to prevent it, but then something clicked, pulled, and twitched... and here we are. As they say: the mind is weak, the will is feeble, but the desire for novelty is immense. So, I (or rather my friends) decided to make this concert a bit different for this occasion - comprehensive. I've explored various types of music throughout my life, loved them all, and they all had one thing in common - a touch of wildness. It had to be a ride. Therefore, the concert will be an eclectic one. What if we kick it off with the music of Prague Castle? After all, my fanfares for the changing of the guards have been playing for 35 years. Then I'll dive into classical piano, touch on chamber and big band jazz, explore chanson and pop, and continue with wild strings, symphonic opera, the Aftershocks project, and finally, of course, Pražský výběr, solo and accompanied by an orchestra. It will be demanding, and if I survive it, I'll never have to worry again. Fortunately, I'll be joined by many of my talented musician friends, so I have something to look forward to," he says and adds, "So, I cordially invite you, and now I'm thinking - just to be safe, I'll bring the coffin I have tucked away from one of Pražský výběr's comebacks. You never know."