Saturday, February 27, 2010

Artista da Semana (fevereiro 28 - março 6) - Brigitte Zarie

Artista da Semana - Brigitte Zarie

Introducing BRIGITTE ZARIE, vocalist , composer and lyricist extraordinaire. Her new CD release , "Make Room For Me". A fantastic collection of all new , all original Jazz compositions written by Brigitte & performed by Brigitte's BigBand and Jazz Quintet. Old school never sounded so new ! An incredible rhythm section & stellar guest artists including , Randy Brecker & Jeff Golub , Tom Malone -Al Chez & Bruce Kapler from the David Letterman Show , and a host of NY's top session players helped to make this a CD to remember. Brigitte's international flavor shines thru, (she speaks 3 languages), on a second version of the title track recorded in French. She has also had songs from her catalogue performed and recorded by UK pop/opera artist Russell Watson in English and Italian. Other compositions have been featured on TV shows such as the O.C. , MTV, The Real World & TV Movies like Snow2:BrainFreeze and Future Cars. Her voice has been featured on spots for The NBA , Southwest Air , Toyota , Scotch Tape , Kay Jewelers and 2 new Feature Films for 09, FoodFight and LonelyStreets , just to name a few. "Make Room For Me". A collection of great "NEW" jazz compositions destined to be the standards of tomorrow. Get a taste and get in the mood ! Check out Brigitte Zarie at MySpace for a preview ( or visit Brigitte Zarie_"Make Room For Me" produced by Neil Jason For more info contact: Neil Jason @ NJMusic Inc.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Artista da Semana - Elin

Brand new rising star, Elin (pronounced EE-a-leen), has reached astonishing
heights on the music scene by now twice selling out Jazz at Lincoln Center -
Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, and regularly performing at other prestigious venues
such as the Blue Note, Smoke, Sweet Rhythm, The Bar Next Door, and Zinc Bar.
Her star is also on the rise in other major cities such as San Francisco, Boston,
and Miami where she shared the stage with Chaka Khan, George Benson, and
Nancy Wilson at the 2008 Jazz in the Gardens festival. This year alone Elin has
performed in New York, Japan, El Salvador, Guam, Washington DC, Florida,
California, and Boston.

Born and raised in Sweden by Peruvian and Irish parents-and fluent in five
languages-Elin is the embodiment of multiculturalism. Her debut
album, Lazy Afternoon, released in the U.S. to rave reviews by jazz
radio and critics alike, is a genre-bending mix of American &
Brazilian standards combined with fresh new originals. On the US
JazzWeek charts, where it spent 22+ weeks, it debuted as the #1 most
added album on the World Music Chart then peaked at #6. On the
Traditional Jazz Chart, it debuted as the 6th Most Added CD, and on the
College Jazz Chart it peaked at #4. Performing in seven languages,
she's a polished jazz vocalist with a pop sensibility who showcases an
ardent vocal style and an uncanny ear for melody.

Elin grew up in three distinct cultures and continents - Europe, North and
South America. She's the oldest of six children, fluent in
five languages, an eight-year resident of New York City,
instrumentalist and student of music since the age of seven, and
utterly obsessed with Brazilian music! This should give you a start at
understanding the colorful complexities and remarkable adventures from
which Elin draws her inspirations and expressions.

It all began one lazy summer afternoon in Sweden when Elin was 15,
in a moment she says altered the course of her life forever. School was
out for summer break and I'd entertain myself, among other things, by
going through my parents' huge record collection. One day, she randomly
picked one out and played it, not really knowing why, only to become
mesmerized by a sound she had never heard before. It was Joao Gilberto
and Antonio Carlos Jobim. She assumed that this was jazz. Right then
and there, she knew she was meant to sing this music. I'm going to be a
jazz singer! she proclaimed. Someday, I'm going to go to Brazil, learn
to speak Portuguese, learn to play the guitar like that, and learn to
sing this music!

Although Elin had been studying music and playing instruments since
she was seven, she never liked jazz nor considered being a singer. But
after this, she started buying jazz albums of all the great female
vocalists including Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, and Sarah Vaughan,
and got heavily into American jazz, without realizing it wasn't exactly
the same as the music that had originally put her on this path. It
would be another seven years before Elin finally got back to her first
passion for Brazilian jazz. When my parents moved to the U.S., I was
able to attend the University of Florida. It was during this time that
I won a scholarship to attend a language course in Brazil where I could
finally learn Portuguese and delve into the music of all the great
Brazilian singers, such as Elis Regina, Leny Andrade, and Gal Costa.

But the major turning point in Elin's career as a singer came when she
met Miriam Jaskierowicz Arman, Ph. D., voice teacher extraordinaire, and
author of The Voice: A Spiritual Approach to Singing, Speaking and
Communicating (3 editions) and the CD "The First Lesson". The day
they met, Ms. Arman immediately asked one of her students to give up
her lesson just so she could teach Elin on the spot. From the very first
moment, she was convinced of Elin's talent, and it was then or never,
since Elin was scheduled to catch a flight back to NYC in just a few hours.
From then on, they worked long distance between NYC and South Florida
for several years before Dr. Arman finally moved to New York. Now, seven
years later, I can honestly say that I wouldn't have a career, or even a voice,
if it wasn't for Miriam. I owe her so much! She's the only voice teacher I ever had that taught me how to use my voice in the right way. And the learning is ongoing.

Elin continues to maintain a close connection to Brazil, the country whose
music she is so addicted to. Most recently, she spent a month in
Rio de Janeiro where she performed with world-renowned Brazilian
artists, including Durval Ferreira and Guinga. Based in New York City,
she continues to perform both in the U.S. and overseas. Her debut
album, Lazy Afternoon, showcasing a sublime mix of Brazilian and
American classics combined with original songs, was released on
September 5th, 2006 to rave reviews from critics and radio stations
across the country.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Artista da Semana (fevereiro 14 - 20) - Min Rager

Artista da Semana - Min Rager

Born in Seoul, Korea, Min Rager began her jazz career performing in local jazz clubs. Her reputation quickly grew and by 1996 she was performing with some of Korea's top jazz musicians in a variety of settings from clubs to concerts.

In 1997 she moved to Montreal to attend McGill University where she studied with Wray Downes, Jeff Johnston, Kevin Dean, Andre White, Gordon Foote and Jan Jarczyk.

While at McGill, she continued to develop as a pianist and composer and graduated 2003 with the distinction of Outstanding achievement in Jazz Piano.In 2003 Min formed a quintet as a vehicle for her original compositions and arrangements. This group, featuring some of Montreal's finest musicians, has performed in several premier venues including Upstairs and La Maison de la Culture Frontenac and toured nationally with the assistance of the Canada Council for the arts.

In 2004 this group with members Kevin Dean-trumpet, Kieran Overs-bass, Andre White-drums, and Donny Kennedy-alto saxophone completed a studio recording for the CBC Radio II program Jazz Beat. The show aired nationally in October 2004 and presented a repertoire of new compositions written especially for these musicians. The recording was released as Min's debut CD Bright Road on the EFFENDI label in October of 2005.

At the Montreal International Jazz Festival during that same year, her Quintet was nominated for the Grand prix de jazz General Motors. Also that year, Min's Trio (featuring Andre White on drums and Alec Walkington on bass) performed at Montreal's L'OFF Festival de Jazz where she was the recipient of the Best New Artist award.
In 2008 Min received a commission from CBC to compose a jazz suite for 2 pianos. The work, lasting 10 minutes, was submitted to the European Broadcasting Union as part of The Handel Project 2009 to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the composer's death. Min’s suite was recorded by CBC as part of a concert at Pollack Hall featuring NYC tenor saxophonist Walt Weiskopf and is available to stream on the CBC website Concerts on Demand.

Min is currently on staff both at McGill University as a part-time faculty member where she teaches courses in the jazz department and at the McGill conservatory where she teaches jazz piano.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Artista da Semana (fevereiro 7 - 13) - Jill Barber

Artista da Semana - Jill Barber

If you believe they don’t write songs like they used to, here is new hope for old romantics. On her new album Chances, Canadian chanteuse Jill Barber picks up the torch where the golden age of music left off. Taking a giant step forward from the typical confines of the singer-songwriter , Jill delivers an album of ten original, fully orchestrated songs that strongly evoke – and could themselves become - classics. From the moment you hear her sultry voice on the opening title track, you are transported to another time and place. “The best songs ever written are the ones that somehow transcend time and fashion, “says Jill. ”They may be old, but they haven’t aged.

It is that timeless quality that I aspire to in my own songwriting. A seasoned performer with a growing fan base across North America and the UK, Jill gained acclaim as a 2008 double-Juno nominee and multiple East Coast Music Award winner for previous releases For All Time (2006) and Oh Heart (2004). In February 2008, Jill was given the extraordinary chance to perform in concert with Symphony Nova Scotia as part of its Pops Series. The results evoked the rich sounds of Patsy Cline, Edith Piaf and Etta James. It was clear that Jill, previously a self-proclaimed “smoky folkie”, had reached a new level. To recreate the magic of a live orchestra, Jill enlisted producer and long-time collaborator Les Cooper.

His gorgeous arrangements for a skilled backing band with a 10-piece string section were recorded live at The Glenn Gould Studio. Exquisite guest vocals by the Good Lovelies and The Sojourners and a special appearance by Ron Sexsmith contribute to a contemporary album of songs that capture the lush sounds of a bygone era. “Now I can finally claim to be making ‘popular music’. So what if it’s only what was popular 50 or 60 years ago,” says Jill, who composed many of the songs during an intensive three-week artist residency at The Banff Centre For the Arts. “They were kind enough to give me a studio space and leave me to my own devices. It gave me a chance to devote myself entirely to the writing process.” Also a first, Jill co-wrote a number of songs with producer Les Cooper and renowned singer-songwriter, Ron Sexsmith, who has also collaborated with Elvis Costello and Coldplay. “At first I was a little intimidated to work with Ron, but when we sat down to work, we had such a good time that I forgot what it was I was nervous about. We wrote five or six songs together in short order. Three of them appear on this album.” (“Chances,” “Old Flame,” and “One More Time”.)

Jill chose the album title Chances as befitting her approach to both music and matters of the heart. “ “Chances” is a love song, but it’s really about the mysterious role that chances play in our lives.” Recently, Jill took another chance and relocated from her adopted home of Halifax to Vancouver, as a result of the chance meeting that inspired the song. “I am drawn to write about love because it is a theme for the ages. Romance, on the other hand, seems to have gone out of style in much of modern music. I like to think of myself as a hopeful romantic, rather than a helpless one.”