10.07.2009 | 17:00 to 21:00

Concert: Lisette Spinnler / Lisa Sokolov / Melody Gardot

Stimmen festival 2009

Music magazine Jazz'n'more celebrated her as "Switzerland's most promising voice". Classically trained singer Lisette Spinnler was soon intrigued by Jazz, from free forms to standards. While still a student in Basel she already received appreciation from George Gruntz, formed a small quartet and in 2001 was awarded with prizes in Zurich and Montreux. International recognition followed immediately. Spinnler introduces a youthful spirit to the Jazz canon, even turning it upside down with her unusual voice: she whispers, whistles and whines, contributing daring improvisations to her performance. A very special aspect of her work is the quintet Siawaloma (community): the principles of collective creation from African music and avantgarde meet in a timeless and sensuous fashion.

One of the most astounding personalities of the New York scene is free-thinking singer, composer and musical therapist Lisa Sokolov, whose work covers various areas between Jazz and New Music. She started singing with Coltrane-bassist William Parker by the end of the 1970s, continued to collaborate with the who-is-who of the Big Apple's Jazz community from Bill Dixon to Cecil Taylor and showed flexibility, performing in duos and Big Bands. Sokolov's biggest achievement is the school of the Embodied VoiceWork, a method of training the voice and the body that she teaches to musical therapists and medical doctors at New York University and internationally at workshops and courses, also at the STIMMEN festival. A true vocal artist in the most comprehensive sense.

Melody Gardot discovered music as a form of therapy for herelf as well. In her teenage years she played the same Philadelphia bars as had once done Bessie Smith and Dinah Washington. Three years later, she was struck by a blow of fate: on her way to college she was hit by a car and had to spend a considerable length of time in hospitals, where she took up songwriting. During her physiotherapy she was listening to Stan Getz and developed the urge to write herself. Her first recordings were literally made at her bedside. Nowadays, the woman from New Jersey with the unique voice performs with Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter. Gardot characterizes her music, ranging from Blues and Folk, dreamlike understatement and Jazz as "post-midnight, mellow".

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University of Basel
Centre for African Studies
Petersgraben 11
CH-4051 Basel
Tel.: +41 (0)61 267 34 82