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BAku Jazz Center
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Hiram Bullock GroupDenise Jannah
Grzegorz Karnas's "Dreams" Project "Djabe"  Group
Claire Michael Group "Elixir"Alexander Oseychuk - Janna Ilmer Quintet (Russia)

from June 22

The next, the third in a row Baku International Jazz Festival was held from the 7th of June 2007 to the 14th. As in the past years the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Azerbaijan, the Ministry of Youth and Sport of Azerbaijan, Friends of Azerbaijan Culture Foundation and Baku Jazz Center were the organizers of the Festival...>>>


Denise Jannah (Suriname / Hollandiya)

Denise Jannah

Denise Jannah – vocal
Wolfgang Martini - guitar
Taco Nieuwenhuizen - bass
Walther Muringen - drums

Special guest:
Emil Ibrahim – piano

-“This woman can make you dream, cry, and fall in love. What more could you desire…” (The Music Advocate) /
-“Quite simply, Denise Jannah is one of the best jazz singers to come along in the 25 years I’ve been writing about music.” (Award winning jazz author and critic Gary Giddins in the “Village Voice”)
-“Jannah’s voice is fine – rich , certain and teeming with a candor undiminished by the artifice of record-making.” (Down Beat)
-“If you’re having trouble keeping track of the score of female singers swamping the current jazz scene, let me save you some trouble: Denise Jannah is worth your time.” ( Detroit Free Press)
-“Her voice is so direct, the delivery so fresh and clear that she will surely withstand the test of time.” (Jazz Times)
Denise Jannah was born in Suriname, South America. With her family she moved to Holland in the mid seventies. For 4,5 years she studied Law at the University of Utrecht , but her love for music made her change her course: she enrolled into the Conservatory in Hilversum and completed her studies there, also earning her degree as a vocal educator.
In 1989 she won third prize at the Internationales Liederfestival “Menschen und Meer” in Rostock, former D.D.R. In that year she also was offered an important part in the musical “A Night at the Cotton Club” in which she starred in 347 performances in Holland, Germany and Belgium.
Her first album, “Take It From The Top” she recorded in 1991 with Timeless Records (Wageningen, Holland ). In that same year she won the “Golden Microphone” at he National Jazz Vocal Contest in Breda, Holland. 1991 was also the first year (of many) in which she performed at the international North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague, Holland.
In 1992 Jannah won first prize at the international Golden Orpheus Festival in Burgas, Bulgaria. There she also won third prize in the extra competition where the contestants were required to sing a composition by a Bulgarian composer (not necessarily in Bulgarian).
In 1993 Denise Jannah recorded her second album for Timeless Records: “A Heart Full Of Music”. This album was recorded in New York. For this album she received her first Edison Jazz Vocal Award (important Dutch music award, comparable to the US Grammy Award).
All through the years Jannah’s musical activities included numerous concerts in clubs, theaters and concert halls, teaching, and appearing in many television- as well as radio programs.
In 1995 she was contracted by the prestigious label Blue Note Records (New York, USA). Her first album with them was “I Was Born In Love With You”. On this album she was featured also with a Big Band. (Recorded in New York)
In 1996 she recorded a ‘cross-over’ album, a mix of different styles, titled “Different Colours”. She performed in the “EBU Jazz Night” from the European Broadcasting Union, broadcasted ‘live’ in 16 European countries.
Also in 1996 was the premiere of the movie- documentary “Denise Jannah, New Lady In Jazz” made by renowned Dutch film director Hans Hylkema, who is known for his music documentaries.
Among the highlights in 1997 was her performance for the European Union in The Hague, Holland in the Hall of Knights in January, and performing in May in the same Hall for Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of Holland, former president Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham-Clinton, and heads of states of Europe in the "commemoration of 50 Years Marshall Help Plan for Europe”. In the meantime she had toured in a.o. Chili and Japan.
In 1997 Jannah was offered one of the leading parts in “Joe, The Musical”.
In 1998 Denise Jannah and Marjorie Barnes were the leading ladies in Fats Waller’s musical show “Ain’t Misbehavin’ ”, (European Tour). The “Ain’t Misbehavin’ “ cast performed for Mrs. Rodham-Clinton when she hosted a reception during her visit to Holland that year.
In 1999 Jannah’s fifth album was released: “The Madness Of Our Love”, also on Blue Note Records and recorded in New York. This album was nominated for the Edison Jazz Vocal Award. Also in 1999 she performed at the prestigious “Spoleto Festival” In Charleston, South Carolina (USA). In a huge ‘live’ broadcast (54 countries) during the change of the Millennium Jannah performed the song "Different Colours, One Rainbow" (her own lyrics) with about 100 children at the Dam Square in Amsterdam. The program was called “Hello 2000”. Also in January she opened the Barbados Jazz Festival, at the same time opening for Wynton Marsalis’ Lincoln Centre Jazz Orchestra. Apart from leading her own group Jannah had also performed several times as a featured guest with the Willem Breuker Collective.
In 2000 their album “Thirst!” was released, on which Jannah performed 5 songs. She was again nominated for the Edison Jazz Vocal Award for her contribution to Willem Breuker’s album. The Willem Breuker Collective has been around for 27 years and has toured all over the world. Jannah has joined them on trips to Italy, Switzerland and France.
In July 2000 Jannah was presented with the Edison Jazz Public Award, during her 7th appearance at the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague, Holland.
In 2001 Jannah performed in Curaçao for the Curaçao Jazz Foundation, and at the festival “Jazz en Tête” in Clairmont-Ferrand, France. In 2002 she performed at “Printemps du Jazz” in Nîmes, France.
Denise Jannah is a person of many interests. She is a vocalist actress, educator, theatre vocal coach, composer and lyricist, who has made her mark in the world of jazz but who does not at all shy away from other styles like Latin, Fusion or World music. She claims her artistic freedom and loves to blend styles, of course also including her rich Surinamese cultural background. She is multilingual, from which she also benefits in her music. Jannah has been teaching Jazz at the World Music department of the Conservatory in Rotterdam, Holland for several years. Numerous have been her private classes, workshops and master classes. As a theatre vocal coach she has worked with theatre companies as “De Nieuw Amsterdam” and “Theater Cosmic”, both in Holland. She has been a vocal coach for 7 theatre productions so far, including “Antigone” and "Regenboogvrouwen" (For "Coloured Girls Who Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Was Enough" from Ntozake Shange, USA). She was last vocal coach for “Romeo ‘N Juliette, A Caribean Xperienz” from Theater Cosmic, spring 2003 and "Ajax From Africa" from th New Amsterdam Fall 2003.
Denise Jannah has been featured as a guest with numerous bands, groups and orchestras throughout the years. Besides touring with her own group she has, among others, performed with the Orchestra of the Royal Dutch Navy, the Orchestra of the Royal Dutch Air Force, the Royal Police Orchestra, The Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, the Rosenberg Trio (she also toured Holland with them in the fall of 2002), the Cyrus Chestnut Trio (USA), the renowned Dutch men’s choir Maastreechter Staar, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band (USA), the Metropole Orchestra, the Holland Big Band, the Dutch Jazz Orchestra, the Bob Belden Big Band (USA), the Berget Lewis Gospel Train and of course the Willem Breuker Collective. She has furthermore shared the stage with distinguished colleages such as the well-known soul singer Eddie Floyd, (“Knock on Wood”), jazz veteran extra-ordinaire vocalist Jon Hendricks, pianists John Hicks and Kenny Barron.
International tours and/or performances included countries such as Suriname, South Africa, the Caribbean, the Netherlands Antilles, Canada, Japan, Indonesia, several European countries and the United States.
Jannah has also performed for the Dutch Crown Prince Willem Alexander and his wife Princess Maxima, former president Kenneth Kaunda from Zambia and former president Nelson Mandela from South Africa, and on a separate occasion for Mr. Mandela’s wife Mrs. Graça Machel Mandela.
In the fall of 2003 she played one of the leading parts in the music theatre production “Jona” from Willem Breuker (Willem Breuker Collective) and Karel Deurloo, based on the book of Jona from the Bible.
Early 2002 Jannah started to set poetry to music, and has been singing poetry in literary festivals in Holland, Suriname, South Africa, Aruba, the Netherlands Antilles, and Indonesia. On January 17 2004 her first album containing only vocal poetry was released, and titled “Gedicht Gezongen” (Poetry Performed). This is her first self-produced album, which she has licensed to Plattèl Music 2004, and her 6th album all together as a leader.

Take It From The Top - Timeless Records, 1991
A Heart Full Of Music - Timeless Records, 1993
I Was Born In Love With You - Blue Note Records, 1995
Different Colours - Blue Note Records, 1996
The Madness Of Our Love - Blue Note Records, 1999
Gedicht Gezongen (Poetry Performed) - Plattèl Music, 2004

-as a featured guest Jannah can be heard on:
The Birthday Concert - Jack van Poll - October Records, 2002
Thirst! - Willem Breuker Kollektief feat. Denise Jannah - BV Haast, 2000
Night Train - Amina Figarova - Munich Records 2002
El Sendero - The Amsterdam Jazz Sextet - 2006

Time Date Place Price, AZN
16:00 June 12 Baku Jazz Center
18:00 June 13 M.Magomayev Philarmony 10-30