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Marijke Jährling

With nearly a four octave range, Dutch-German vocalist and lyricist, Marijke Jährling paints pictures, builds sculptures of transparent beauty, and tells touching stories of life. Her singing reflects her artistic career, her life, and her various experiences.

Educated by various international artists including the Countertenor Oliver May,  she was taught Jazz singing by Diethra Bishop (Hilversum, NL) and Fay Victor (NY,USA). The New York based vocalist said about Marijke’s  skills: “You’re a great jazz singer, great affinity, very musical”. Additionally she worked with, among others, bassists  Jürgen Wuchner , Norbert Dömling (Darmstadt, Germany), Jon Sass (Vienna/New York) and Oliver Steidle  (Berlin, Germany), as well as with  New York based pianist Marco di Gennaro. His said her singing was: “Outstanding! It was a pleasure for me”.

In 2011 she appeared as a vocalist on the CD “Lunch Love Live”(Sound&More), produced by composer/ guitarist André Cézanne. For that CD she wrote most of the lyrics and performed in  a wide stylistic range: from Blues to delicate Bossa, French chanson to classical interpretations of Fernando Pessoa-poems.

From 2012 until 2016 she embodied Billie Holiday in the play “Billie’s Blues” which she wrote.  It was highly acclaimed and ran at the West Side Theatre (Darmstadt/Germany) . The CD “Portrait of a Lady” was released in April 2013 (Sound&More) as an homage to Billie. Also in 2015 she toured successfully as a leader of her own band, NOLA.

In 2016 she wrote the play “Mensch, Kurt!” about German journalist and author Kurt Tucholsky (1890-1935). She wrote the music to some of his poetry.  Again her singing and acting were acclaimed by press and public. She also performed “Stummvogelschreie,” which is an avant-garde program based on her own poetry.  Here she improvised with the saxophonist Eric Plandé, using all sound possibilities, including that of the bodies of their instruments as percusion. “An astonishing evening, crossing all borders” according to Johannes Breckner (Darmstädter Echo).

But her greatest love belongs to Jazz.

Her upcoming release on Dot Time Records “Spheres of Monk” brings her back to her mid twenties when she heard some of the tunes Monk was playing with Coltrane. This led her to learn how to play the tenor saxophone.

Her idea for the Monk album came from inside the musical stories. So it was only natural for her to write some lyrics for his music. As she is very sensitive to the pictures music brings to her mind, her personal approach to the material tries to answer the question: What is the story that is told and what is needed to create the atmosphere of these stories?  For instance; “Crepuscule with Nellie” was changed to “Crépuscule avec Nellie.” A leading picture for the lyrics was Monk walking down the alley, on crepuscule, with Nellie.  But then she found that she wasn’t able (since she is not native speaker of American English) to capture the delicate shape of their relationship without going into clichés of songwriting. So she switched to French . She stayed in the original key of the tune finding that the quality of her voice went well with the idea that Monk would have been lost without his spouse, both being of an ancestry of painful experiences. You might hear this in the collective improvisation in the middle of the tune.