Emma Larsson

EC Music Agency

 

EMMA LARSSON

“A new sound, a new day and a new voice in the realm of modern jazz … Larsson is a gifted singer/songwriter that can hold her own with any of the major label talent working today.” (Brent Black, Critical Jazz, Five stars)  
 
When Swedish-born Emma Larsson first hit the New York scene (via ​Finland and South Africa) ​in 2010, she arrived with two critically acclaimed albums Irie Butterflies (Imogena Records, 2006) and Let It Go (Imogena Records, 2010) already under her belt. In the US, Critical Jazz praised her as a musician with “the seasoning and character of a veteran twice her age … and a flair and panache rarely heard on a debut release.”
 
Her sophomore outing, Let It Go (Imogena Records, 2010), co-produced with Kenny Garrett alum pianist Benito Gonzalez, and recorded with Gonzalez,  Finnish musicians Joonathan Rautio (saxophone) and Jukkis Uuotila (drums), and fellow Swede Christian Spering (bass),  raised the stakes considerably. A collection of vivid, self-penned originals and one non-original – a nervy, Coltrane-esque rendition of Mongo Santamaria’s ‘Afro Blue’ – it won praise not only for her singing and arranging but also her composing.
 
With a vocal sound that has been likened to 80s pop diva, Sade, and a predilection for Betty Carter-esque jazz phrasing, Larsson is reluctant to compare herself to other vocalists, but cites Carter as a major influence on her arranging and composing “… in how she uses accents and tempos to bring out the story.“ Other influences include Wayne Shorter, Shirley Horn, McCoy Tyner, Herbie Hancock and Billy Harper. (Larsson is part of his Speak To Me Of Love, Speak To Me Of Truth – a live concert, featuring his septet with 60 voices, which was recorded at St. Peter’s Church, New York, in December 2012).
 
Growing up in the small town of Uppsala, Sweden, Larsson heard a wide range of music as a child, from pop to jazz to classical, and right out of high school jumped at the opportunity to study classical piano at the Janáček Conservatory in the Czech Republic. And it was here, ironically, that she fell in love with jazz. “I got my first gig singing with a trio at a local jazz club, and that was it,” says Larsson, who immediately loved the freedom of improvisation. “Later, when I did my undergrad back in Sweden, I decided to focus on jazz.”
 
Now based in New York (where she has performed at the Iridium, Zinc Bar, The Bar Next Door, Kitano, St Peter's Church and Smalls) Larsson has come a long way (literally and figuratively) since then. Her release Sing To The Sky, made with first-call musicians Shedrick Mitchell (piano), Eric Revis (bass), Kenneth Whalum III (saxophone) and Billy Drummond (drums), was met with rave reviews.. “I think this particular combination of guys really worked well together in terms of chemistry,” she says. And chemistry in jazz (which is all about relationships and communicating in the moment), is the difference between good and great.

To learn more go to http://www.emmalarsson.com