jazzahead! Day 2

jazzahead!Singer Kellylee Evans rocked the Schlachthof last night during the jazzahead! overseas night in Bremen showcasing tracks from a forthcoming album. She’s a very energetic performer with a lively stage presence and sometimes reminded me of Janelle Monáe, not genre-wise, but in her overall stage persona. Otherwise, the Canadian singer offers a very distinctive mix of Jazz, Soul, and a touch of Hip Hop as well.

Earlier that day, between meetings, I had the chance to listen to Quincy Jones Productions artist Justin Kauflin, a young pianist who happens to be blind and who was the protégé of the late great Clark Terry. Justin did the almost unthinkable: he could get things out of well-worn standards like “All The Things You Are” that it was really a joy to listen to. But most impressive were his own, original compositions from his recently released album with tracks like “The Up And Up” or “The Tempest” showing that he is capable of writing imaginative, complex, but still highly entertaining songs. Check him out he’s really fascinating.

I was also able to witness the showcase of Julia Kadel and her trio, although briefly for a couple of songs. She’s destined to become a household name because she, too, has her very own, unique approach on the piano.

I also want to congratulate my friend Wolf Kampmann who received a well-deserved award for German Jazz Journalism and held a moving speech where he also remarked that he is not only doing his job to comment on things, but also to try and put the music in the context of everyday life. Other than that, I was talking to a lot, really a lot of people and will make sure that the output of those many meetings will be published here in one way or another in the future.

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