NOTED JAZZ MUSICIAN K.J. DENHERT TO PERFORM ON BRANFORD TOWN GREEN, AUGUST 9
Known for her special intermingling of urban folk and jazz, musician K. J. Denhert will be performing on the on Thursday, August 9th as part of the Branford Jazz 2012 summer concert series, starting at 6:30 p.m.
A four time nominee of Independent Music Awards and in 2009, named as one of Jazz.com’s top featured vocalists, K.J. has appeared at numerous jazz festivals and has residences at the ’55 Bar’, Smoke in New York City, the Baz Bar in St.Barthelemy of the Caribbean, and the prestigious Umbria Jazz Festival in Italy. Her latest, “Album No. 9”, a collection of 60’s jazz, pop, and rock standards was released in the fall of 2010. Consistently recognized and praised for her pathos, originality and musicianship, K.J., is a one of a kind songwriter, guitarist, and performer.
Born Karen Jeannne to parents from the island of Grenada, she was the first US citizen born to a small family. Her only brother, born in Aruba, had taken an interest in music and it was on one of his discarded guitars that K.J. wrote her first song.
Back in the late 1980’s, she toured for six years as the lead guitarist and occasional vocalist with an all-female band called “Fire”, playing rock and top-40 music throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. While working in Cleveland, Ohio, she started the “Mother Cyclone” label and made her first recording. Moving home to New York in 1997, she formed the “New York Unit”, a group she still performs with. K.J. was named among the six winners of the Kerrville New Folk Song contest in June 2006 and in August of 2005 won the Mountain Stage New Song, for “Little Mary”.
Although she continues to define herself as an urban folk and jazz artist, Denhert decided to explore her talents in Album Number 9, which resulted in a collection of jazz, pop, and rock. Unrestrained in its musical content and delivery, Album No. 9 marks a number of firsts for KJ, including performing for the first time without a guitar on “Alfie”, to writing and recording her first French song –“Chanson Baz Bar”- and her first reggae song –“Choose Your Weapon” to unveiling her first video for the iconic Beatles song, “Help”.
K.J’s inimitable way with lyrics is obvious throughout her career, whether she’s singing about the misadventures of trying to make a record on her remarkable version of Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” or learning not to sweat the small things on “Let It Go”, which was co-written with German singer San Glaser, and which contains what she claims is “her favorite bridge of all time, offering a tip of the hat to Donald Fagen”.
Recording at Bicostal Music Studios in K.J.’s home town of Ossining, New York, she co-produced Number 9 with studio owner Hal Winer, whose world class facility has hosted the likes of Rob Thomas, the Yellow Jackets and Bjork. She is supported by a strong cadre of players, including longtime band members Mamadou Ba (Harry Belafonte, Regina Carter) on bass and drummer Ray Levier. Saxophonist Aaron Heick (Richard Bona, Chaka Khan, Sting) has remained a regular since his debut on K.J.’s 2007 recording Dal Vivo a Umbria Jazz.
“Performing in the Branford Jazz Series is a favorite thing to be part of,” said Denhert. “These local concert series are very interesting and something I look forward in doing. I like getting close to people and it is fabulous routing for me coming from the Cape Cod Jazz Festival to the Branford Jazz Series was a perfect fit.”
More information on Denhert and future artists of the 2012 Branford Jazz Series can be found at: www.branfordjazz.com. For questions about the series or to become a sponsor, please call 203-488-8304 or email: email@example.com.