About us


Band History/ Band Info


Žarko Jovaševic (guitars, vocals, flute, harmonicas)
Katya Tasheva (vocals, tapan)
Marjan Antic (trumpet)
Johannes Böhmer (trumpet)
Philipp Bernhardt (drums, percussion)
Matthew Bookert (tuba, sousaphone)
Marco Mingarelli (marimbaphone, darabuka, tapan)

Extended Lineup:
Marton Regöczi (tenor horn)
Orlando Belo (tenor horn)

Have you heard of  Šumadija ? 

A dreamlike landscape in central Serbia, between the river Morava and the mountains Ovčar and Kablar? 

Hidden behind those mountains, lies the small village of Guča, hosting the world famous “Dragačevski Sabor Trubaca “ for more than half a century. Year after year, the Guča Festival has been creating folkloristic virtuosos and musical legends. People from Šumadija are born, baptised, married, divorced and buried with the wild brass music resonating in the air around them. They laugh, dance, fight, cry and dream to this music. These people live and die like poets, with the sound of trumpets moving the ground beneath their feet…

Being born and raised in Šumadija , Žarko Jovašević was heavily influenced  by the dissonances of the brass instruments, jagged trance-like rhythms and untamed explosions of melodic lines. This later became an integral element of his compositions and musical expression. Growing up knowing that every night could be the last, and being surrounded by the fatality and the tragedy of war, also had a strong impact on his art. Apocalypse, lust for life and pure pain,  scream between the words in his lyrics and are hidden between the notes of  his compositions.

When moving to Berlin in the early 2000s, Jovašević rediscovered his “Balkan Roots” in a different way. Collaborating as a composer  and musical director in various theatre productions in Berlin, (HAU Theatre, Grips Theatre, Staats Oper Berlin) his compositions started to dwell on vast musical ocean beyond his roots. Pushing further the borders of balkan music, the clichés of folkloristic traditions were recontextualized. Being in Berlin provided the perfect opportunity to meet brilliant musicians from Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Turkey, Italy and the USA, who also came to the multicultural capital in order to participate in compelling projects. 

Being the composer, lyricist and founder, Žarko Jovašević thus became the godfather of his new band “MR ŽARKO”. 

The following years of the Band were filled releases of 4 Albums and with wild concerts and amazing festivals such as: Sziget Festival (Hungary), Lowlands Festival (Holland), Pannonica Folk Festival (Poland), Nilüfer Festival (Turkey), Fusion Festival (Germany), Rudolstadt Festival (Germany), Festival Mediteraneo (France), Berlin cult clubs SO 36, Lido and Kaffee Burger and an official concert at the german ministry of foreign affairs at   „Tag des Peacekeepers“ hosted by German president  Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Žarko Jovašević  and his eight amazing musicians from Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Turkey, Italy, Germany and the USA can’t wait to hit the stages and spread the gospel of MR ŽARKO´s Balkan music throughout the world.