While women clearly call the shots in vocal jazz, they are still a minority in instrumental jazz. However, bands like the Sisters in Jazz, formed by seven female jazz instrumentalist from Europe and Japan, prove that things are changing. Closer to home the saxophonist Nicole Johänntgen is another example of a powerful female jazz instrumentalist. Her mentor Dave Liebman says about her: “She plays like her life depends on it and draws anyone within range into the center of her music.” During the last few months Nicole Johänntgen has been gathering new experiences in New York , the Mecca of Jazz.
Not just in his home country but also in Japan the exceptional Thierry Lang, who can celebrate his 60th birthday next December, is one of the best-loved jazz pianists. No wonder: Lang is a gifted melodist and a lyric harmonist in the footsteps of the pianists Bill Evans or Keith Jarret. Furthermore, Lang isn’t just an elaborate interpreter of standards, but also composes his own material, combining musical beauty and romantic emphasis. At the heart of Lang’s musical work is his trio, featuring the bassist Heiri Känzig, who has been playing alongside Lang for over a quarter of a century.
Nicole Johänntgen – alto saxophone, soprano saxophone
Izabella Effenberg – vibraphone
Naoko Sakata – piano
Federica Michisanti – bass
Dorota Piotrowska – drums
Thierry Lang – piano
Heiri Känzig – double bass
Andi Pupato – drums