Genre: Jazz, Pop
Territories: Europe excl. IT
Availability: Spring 2018
As Grace Kelly defiantly reminds us on The Other One, a standout number from her upcoming Album, Trying To Figure It Out, she’s not looking to be like anyone else.
“Got my own thing,” she sings over the song’s urban, trance-like groove. Although the singer and saxophone player has been acclaimed by critics and audiences alike as a jazz musician, the track’s exhilarating chorus, haunting keyboard hook and brittle electro edge show an artist interested only in playing what she loves labels be damned.
While a current Kelly concert might delight jazz purists with Great American Songbook standards, it could just as easily inspire mainstream listeners with Gracei-fied takes on the likes of Daft Punk’s Get Lucky, Coldplay’s Magic or Sia’s Chandelier. In Dec 2015 Jon Batiste snagged Grace as a regular on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’s band, Stay Human, playing multiple reeds and singing.
But whatever the style, the 24-year-old winner of the 2016 64th Annual Downbeat Critics Poll (as a rising star in the alto sax category) and the eigth time she has been named to the poll, spices up the sound with the lyrical and soulful phrasing of her instrument. Kelly, who guested with the Jazz at Lincoln Centre Orchestra as part of the events surrounding Barack Obama’s inauguration celebration at the request of the ensemble’s director, Wynton Marsalis - remains as committed to superior playing as ever.
For Kelly, evolution is part of the jazz artist’s credo.
"I'm a very strong believer that jazz is about improvisation and about creating and spontaneity," Kelly once said in an interview. "That's what really drew me to it, but I think there's plenty of music that can fuse elements of jazz with its own type of sound whether it's rock or pop. I'm not into 'No, this isn't jazz.' I like everything that's good and I encourage people to think that way."
Kelly says she has been well served by applying those same jazz concepts
to the personal demands of everyday life. “I really take the concept of
improvisation and spontaneity in the music, and I live it,” she said.
That personal readiness for anything accounts, in part, for the open-spirited nature of her art. “I try to say yes as much as possible,” Kelly says. “If you have a closed idea of what you want in your head, and it’s only going to go this way from - A to B to C - you miss a lot of other things that could be popping up. And because you have such a small mind frame, you won’t be able to see those great opportunities.”
Grace Kelly Quartet
Line Up TBC:
Grace Kelly - saxophones/Vocals
Julian Pollock - piano/keys
Julia Pederson - bass
Ross Pederson or/ Jaime Eblen - drums