As a musical style, jazz breaks all the rules – and the irregular arrangements can make it a bit more challenging to follow or sing along to than a three-chord shuffle.
We chatted to acclaimed jazz vocalist Suzanna Wellink, who, at 21 years of age, has already performed in Vienna, Paris and Berlin.
Here, she provides a five-minute jazz run-down that’ll have you swinging like a cool cat or relaxing to your favourite jazz tunes in no time.
What should you look for if you’re watching a jazz set?
"How the musicians interact with each other. The phrases used by each melodical instrument and how they move from one motif to the other, sometimes moving completely away from the melody. It is great to listen to a piece of music and realise half way through that it is in fact a song you know, it has just been arranged differently."
What makes great jazz?
"The emotion behind and the voicing of a phrase. The many ways in which the story and journey can be told through the lyrics and music."
Why do you love jazz as a musical style?
"Jazz can be relaxing or energising depending on how it is being played and how the listener interprets it. Jazz musicians can play a song multiple ways depending on their mood. It is one of the only styles of music where you have the freedom to express what you want, how you want. Freedom of expression is a key to great jazz."
What's a great term to use if we want to impress a jazz musician?
“Dominant 7 slash 9 of the ionian scale in the key of Eb minor”
Translation: “Dominant 7” – Incorporating the minor seventh note in the key of your chord’s scale to the standard three notes (the root).
“slash 9” – Now add in the minor ninth note of that scale to the seventh and the root.
“ionian scale” – A standard major scale (Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti Do).
Learn more about the range of live entertainment options – from jazz to comedy to circus performers – onboard.