【Seung-Hee - Sketches on the Sky】(2012) ★★★★

(English follows Japanese)

 

★ My Favorite Album (377)

 

By Takaaki Kondo, Tokyo Jazz Review

https://www.facebook.com/tokyo.jazz.review

Seung-Hee
スンヒーさんはソウル出身、NY在住のVocalist,Composer6歳からピアノを始め大学時代にはクラシックのフルートのレッスンを受ける。面白いのは、彼女はソウルのSung Kyun Kwan Universityでフランス文学を専攻していること(この作品にもその特徴が生かされています)。1994年に渡米してBerklee College of Musicに入学。2000年にNew England Conservatoryを、2006年にBrooklyn Conservatory of Musicを卒業。2001年にNYに移り、ピアノ、声楽、作曲をプライベートレッスンとBrooklyn Conservatory of Musicで教えている。


Seung-Hee
さんの2枚目のアルバムである本作品は、自ら作詞作曲を手がけた4曲(「軽いVocal曲」ではなく、楽曲としてインスト並の難曲です)に加え、Charlie Haden"Our Spanish Love Song"に韓国語の歌詞を付けた「Bohm So Ri」や、Bill Evansの「Blue In Green」に英語の歌詞を付けた「An Elliptical Note」、他エドゥ・ロボやスティーヴィー・ワンダー、スティングの曲、そして韓国の童謡など、とても色彩豊かな構成。ビブラートの少ない、澄んだ声はと~っても心地良いです。また、韓国語の歌詞の童謡「By The Sea」では何か懐かしいものが込み上げて来ます。参加ミュージシャンも、Adam Kolker(sax)Frank LoCrasto(p)Ike Sturm(b)George Schuller(ds)と、NYのダウンタウン・ジャズ・シーンのベテラン揃い。「テクニック偏重に走らない凄腕」達の演奏は単なる「Vocalのバック」以上です。彼女自身が作曲する楽曲の難解さをものともせず楽器としての声を前面に押し出し、アルバム全般に繰り広げるインプロビゼーションは圧巻です。ボーカルファンもインストファンも楽しめる、Qualityの非常に高い作品です。

 

Highly Recommended!

 

(Personnel)
Seung-Hee: voice, compositions and arrangements

Adam Kolker: tenor saxophone, bass clarinet

Frank LoCrasto: piano

Ike Sturm: bass

George Schuller: drums.

 

(Track Listings)

1. Sketch Part I

2. I`Ll Be Here

3. Winter And Then

4. Bohm So Ri (春の音)

5. Sketch Part Ii

6. Pra Dizer Adeus

7. Visions

8. An Elliptical Note

9. Valparaiso

10. By The Sea (海で)


Seung-Hee - Website

Offcial Website

www.Seung-Hee.com

tel: +1. 646. 250. 1177

email : seunghee7@gmail.com

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/seunghee?fref=ts

Myspace
http://www.myspace.com/seunghee


Preview

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/seunghee2

Buy CD

http://diskunion.net/jazz/ct/detail/JZ130305-01

EPK (Video & Audio)

Sketch Part I

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CkGDnzs5-ug

Winter And Then
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbxblvcx1QY

Review

Brooklyn-based jazz vocalist Seung-Hee possesses the composure of a seasoned chanteuse while demonstrating broader qualities that contain refined arranging skills, classical training, and multilingual singing. The South Korean native represents a soulfully empathetic performer and a composer who's not afraid to take chances as witnessed in Sketches on the Sky, the follow up to 2009's memorable self-produced debut, Waiting. With a top-notch band that includes the brown-toned reeds of Adam Kolker and rising pianist Frank LoCrasto, Seung-Hee offers an eclectic mix with new material and unique covers such as Charlie Haden's "Bohm So Ri" now colored with Korean lyrics. "Sketch Part I" begins the set with a chamber-esque theme that switches tempos and lifts to the skies with unison voice/instrumental acrobatics, and jubilant swinging solos held in check by bassist Ike Sturm and drummer George Schuller. It's followed by "I'll Be Here" where Seung-Hee's lyrics exude bittersweet longing and graceful symmetry with Sturm's affecting arco. Seung-Hee's fearlessness is displayed in the unique versioning of Stevie Wonder's "Vision" or when tackling the Edu Lobo Brazilian classic "Pra Dizer Adeus." She not only balances different languages but also the ability to use her voice as an expressive instrument that rivals Kolker's tenor flights in Bill Evans's "An Elliptical Note." Her artistry and passion for music is infectious throughout the set, culminating with the charming children's song "By the Sea."

By MARK F. TURNER, All About Jazz

 

Growing up in Seoul, Seung-Hees only exposure to anything approaching jazz singing happened around Christmastime, when her parents would play seasonal albums by Sinatra and Bing Crosby. Moving Stateside, she more than made up for the gaps in her jazz knowledge, earning degrees from Berklee and New England Conservatory and performing alongside the likes of Ran Blake, Lionel Loueke and Dominique Eade. Her deep appreciation for jazz harmony and her compositional skills were ably exhibited five years ago on her debut album, Waiting, but reach full flower throughout the boldly variegated Sketches on the Sky. She opens with the wordless Sketch, Part 1, a swooping exercise that showcases the purity of a voice as haunting as it is arresting. The wordless adventure turns darker, almost threatening, on Winter and Then, before returning to its unbridled whirls through the nine-minute Sketch, Part II.Seung-Hees lyrical explorations prove even more imaginative. Fitting Korean lyrics to Charlie Hadens Bohm So Ri, she shapes a slow-melting, softly budding answer to Winter and Then and, writing in English, beautifully pairs Bill Evans An Elliptical Note with gently undulating free verse. For covers, she opts for lesser-known selections from Stevie Wonder and Sting, demonstrating impressive soulfulness on Wonders Visions and ably probing the wide horizons of Stings Valparaiso. Most unexpected is her deftness in Portuguese, echoing Elis Regina on Edu Lobos mournful Pra Dizer Adeus.

By Christopher LoudonJazz Times

 

Beautiful work from Seung-Hee a vocalist who splits her time between Korea and North America, and who has a scope of sound that really lives up to her global stance! Seung-Hee has a really classic approach not 50s torch, but that really inventive period of the 70s, when female jazz vocalists were really breaking free finding new ways to inflect their notes, and often adding their own words too in ways that made the music even more expressive than before! Seung-Hee's got a great way with a tune, and turns in some excellent compositions here including a few set to music by Bill Evans and Charlie Haden often with that freewheeling mix of breezy and soulful styles that we love in our favorite European jazz vocalists from years back. This album's a great step forward for the singer and may well put her in a lineage that includes the best work by singers like Sheila Jordan, Monica Linges, and Karin Krog. Titles include "Sketc Part 2", "I'll Be Here", "Winter & Then", "Valparaiso", "An Elliptical Note", "By The Sea", "Visions", and a version of Edo Lobo's "Pra Dizer Adeus". 
--Dusty Groove

 

I would call Seung-Hee a Seoul singer because she is from the capital of South Korea, but actually shes not a soul singer. Her métier is jazz, of a very pure variety. Listening to her wordless vocal on the opening track of her new CD, Sketches on the Sky, the airy sound of her composition Sketch Part I reminded me of Flora Purim, who is from Brazil. Seung-Hee is able to sing complex lines that weave in and out of the instrumentals from her excellent band (Adam Kolker on sax and bass clarinet, Frank LoCrasto on piano, Ike Sturm on bass, and George Schuller on drums). At slower tempos, as in her affecting English language ballad about a lost love, Ill Be Here, she conveys melancholy. (Seung-Hee may not remember her exs face, but she doesnt get even in the manner of Norah Jones or Taylor Swift.) The singer seems equally at home in Portuguese (the Brazilian Pra Dizer Adeus) and reworks songs by Stevie Wonder (Visions) and Sting (Valparaiso). She also pens interesting lyrics to pieces by Charlie Haden (in Korean; the translation is included in the notes) and Bill Evans (in English). She ends with a Korean childrens song. The fact that the CD was produced by the tasteful trumpeter and composer John McNeil is further confirmation of Seung-Hees talent.

By Barry Bassis, Epoch Times 


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http://www.seung-hee.com/html/notepad.php

 

Bio

Seung-Hee is a Korean-born, New York City based jazz vocalist and composer whose music has started to bloom with its own voice. Her debut release, Waiting has been raved by numerous New York jazz artists and critics as well as her native, South Korea. Seung-Hee had started to learn classical piano at the age of 6. She has won several awards from children piano competitions in Seoul. Later she became a member of her school choir which she

performed solos at annual concerts. While she kept her interest in music on the side by joining different music activities in schools, and theater productions in church, she stayed academic and entered Sung Kyun Kwan University in Seoul majoring in French Literature. During the college

years, she continued her musical journey by learning to play classical flute and performed festivals as a member of the Sung Kyun Wind Ensemble.

In 1994, she moved to the States to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, where inspiration by many young musicians from all over the world was so great that she was determined to study voice and writing with Dr. Art LaPierre, Mili Bermejo. She joined different choirs such as Gospel Choir, College Singers, Vocal Jazz Ensemble etc., to experience various style of music. Exposed to diverse style of music in the States by studying and performing, she grew enormous interest in improvisational music so she entered New England Conservatory in 1997, where she achieved a Master's degree, having had studied with a RCA Victor recording artist Dominique Eade, Jerry Bergonzi, John McNeil. During those years, she won the Honors Ensemble Awards with an experimental a capella group 'Onomatopoeia' in 1998, which premiered at the prestigious Jordan Hall and also performed Korean traditional folk music in style of improvised experimental music which she has been called 'a unique voice' by Boston Globe in 1999. Upon graduating, with sincere devotion to teach at Weston High School, Hyde Park Music School, and different educational institutes, she has recorded an album, With every breath I takefor MMJAZZ, a renowned Korean jazz publication with monthly audio file that Seung-Hee was

interviewed as a Korean pioneer in vocal jazz. Since she relocated to New York City in 2001, she has continued to teach piano, voice and composition at her private studio as well as at Brooklyn Conservatory of Music. In pursuit of sincere musicianship, she continues to study and experiment extended vocal technique with Jeannette LoVetri at the Voice Workshop and is certified for Somatic Voicework by Ms. LoVetri offered at Shenandoah University. As a professional vocalist and composer, she has led and performed in South Korea and the United States in various setups. Through the journey of finding her own voice and her true self, she has released an album, 'Waiting in 2008 with her quintet which displays her original compositions and arrangements of others' compositions infused with her Korean cultural background. Senior Contributor at All about jazz, Mark F. Turner has described it as With a voice that is a lovely as a songbird coupled with exquisiteness... The set is informed of both classical music and jazz improvisation... these elements come together exceptionally well as on the title track, where the singer's voice is a finely tuned instrument, singing a stunning wordless melody followed by verses in Korean, as her quintet performs sumptuous music...

In recent years, Seung-Hee has expanded her writing criteria and been involved with 9 other composer-performers and formed
Cortelyou Composers Collective which premiers its members own original compositions around New York area. Seung-Hees diamond atonal lyricism continues to be favored around New York area such as Cornelia Street Cafe, Brooklyn Lyceum, Caffe Vivaldi, Puppets Jazz, etc., and her quintet anticipates for a new recording with more original compositions and more.