Singer and composer Karmen Rõivassepp debuts as big band arranger with the album Ambivalence on February 3rd 2023 in collaboration with the frontier-seeking big band Aarhus Jazz Orchestra.
”Imagine standing with one foot in the most peaceful, untouched nature and the other in the middle of a noisy and pulsating city, without being able to decide where you belong.The feelings that this kind of back-and-forth evokes are at the very heart of Ambivalence.” - Karmen Rõivassepp
Karmen Rõivassepp is an experienced composer, but this is her first big band album with her own composi- tions – and this is not something she takes lightly.
”Trusting that what you do as a musician is sufficient and valuable, while at the same time shaping the music to suit one of the best big bands I’ve ever worked with - that takes a lot of courage,” says Karmen Rõivassepp. She continues:
”But all doubts aside, I am excited to present this beautiful collaboration with the Aarhus Jazz Orchestra, and I look forward to inviting you to experience my very first journey as a big band composer and arranger.”
Award-winning jazz singer
Estonian Karmen Rõivassepp has lived in Aarhus for several years, and over time she has created a large and loyal fan base. In 2018 she received the Aarhus Jazz Talent award, in 2019 she received the Estonian Young Jazz Talent award, and since then she has performed as a guest soloist with a number of orchestras, including DR Big Band and Ensemble Edge.Aarhus Jazz Orchestra has also previously collaborated with Karmen Röi- vassepp, i.a. in connection with the concert and albumrelease The Kiss Your Darlings Suite together with the indie jazz group I Think You’re Awesome.
Rõivassepp also has her own musical projects, with whom she has released several albums.
With the album Ambivalence, Rõivassepp and the Aarhusian big band present the very latest answer to what Nordic jazz sounds like. Since her album debut, Karmen Rõivassepp has been the spearhead of Nordic vocal jazz, and she is admired for her instrument-like voice, clean sound and always playful nature. Rõivassepp’s background in Nordic jazz thus also brings completely new sides to Aarhus Jazz Orchestra and explores the framework for the dramatic big band sound.
The listener can therefore look forward to an album that explores the many (and perhaps even ambivalent) sides of Nordic jazz - the ferocity against the fragile and melancholic, the strong melody against the ambient sound universe.