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Bria Skonberg puts her twist on the standards!



 I love good strong melodies, classic lyrics and am inspired by many artists. One of the themes of my new album (With A Twist) is strong women, so I chose songs that were hits for artists like Peggy Lee, Nina Simone, Valaida Snow and Sarah Vaughan. 


 Doing a standard is taking another kind of risk because there are already iconic versions of many of the songs. The challenge is in how to make it your own, in how to retain the character of the song and play it in a style that represents your tastes.  I did a lot of covers on the last album but presented them with new twists.


Bria Skonberg on her 2017 release, with an amalgamation of Peggy Lee's "Alright, Okay, You Win" and Quincy Jones' "Soul Bossa Nova"


 I hear a lot of new artists discovering classic jazz and interpreting it in a new way. I think that is healthy for jazz which has always been kept alive by new ideas and reflecting the time we live in.  There are also many who want to recreate the music exactly as it was and this is being done in the highest level; There is a lot to learn from this experience that will create the foundation to stretch later on. 


 The most authentic new thing we can give music is ourselves; I like to write songs now, not necessarily complicated, but they tell my story and I'm the only who can tell that story. This is what keeps it new.


Bria Skonberg performing her composition "So Is The Day" from the previous album with the same title



FIND OUT MORE HERE

BRIA SKONBERG HAS PREVIOUSLY CONTRIBUTED TO MUSICIANS' CORNER. READ THE ARTICLE HERE.

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How it first began...

   How do people first connect with music? Discover how. This is what a few of the contributors to this site said on this topic.

   When you read it you might realize that two of the most important people in this perspective could very well be our parents... And it may just be some food for thought to those out there who are parents to young children now, when music might have taken a back seat to other things that go on in their homes.







TK Blue:
 - There were several factors that influenced my early attraction to the saxophone. I used to listen to James Brown as a teenager and I love Maceo Parker on alto sax. I used to pretend that I was playing those sax solos with “The Godfather of Soul”.





Kris Bowers:
 - My parents got me started in music. They aren’t musicians, but they put me in lessons when I was 4 or 5. They let me try other things as well besides music.







Lige Curry:
 - When you are a kid you are trying to figure it out. I had relatives who thought that I should get into sports and others who thought I should be a doctor. But my auntie, one of my mother’s sisters, got me a toy guitar and she was right. I started playing with it like I did with the rest of my toys, but the guitar was more interesting.





Joey DeFrancesco:
 - It definitely meant a lot that I grew up in a musical family – it’s why I play music! It is also why I play the organ. I got the love for it at home. If I hadn’t been around it I wouldn’t have known about it.





Jennifer Johns:
 - My parents say that I was singing before I could speak. As a child I sang with my dad, who was my first voice-coach.





Steven Kroon:
 - At a very early age I became paralized by the music on the radio. My older brother Bobby started playing before me, and I chose to follow in his footsteps. He was a great inspiration to me and my first mentor.
When our parents discovered that we wanted to play musical instruments, they went and bought us our first drums, and were happy to let us practice in the basement.
I often tell people that music chose me. I felt like lightening struck me the first time I heard music coming out of the radio. From then on it was love at first sight.





David Murray:
 - Music was always in front if me.  My mother was a pianist and the director of music in a church, where she played the organ and piano, and directed the choir. My father played the guitar. I started taking piano lessons at five years old, for a local piano teacher. I started playing saxophone at nine. My brother played the clarinet by then.





Bria Skonberg:
 - My family were supporters of music, and there were musical instruments around the house. My brother played the fiddle. I picked up the trumpet in 7th grade, and then I joined the school band.

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The top 15 most liked articles on Musicians' Corner - to date !

Find out which articles were the most popular to date



  
Here at Musicians' Corner we normally keep the "Like"-buttons static. But they are getting a lot of clicks, and today it is time to lift the veil on the 15 articles that got the most clicks to date! David Murray remembering Butch Morris made the list. Check out which other articles did! And we really want to thank our readers for your many visits and your awesome music-love!




15. MONICA BORRFORS











14. PAUL JOSEPH











13. ZAM JOHNSON











12. MOTOSHI KOSAKO









11. KENNETH MEREDITH










10. YUVAL AVITAL









9. BRIA SKONBERG










8. DAVID MURRAY REMEMBERS BUTCH MORRIS










7. BEN CAPLAN








6. BOB HEMENGER










5. TITO PUENTE JR









4. CHRIS SIMMONS










3. BRYAN BELLER









2. LIGE CURRY









1. SARAH LONGFIELD










The story continues...!

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Bria Skonberg: I have to use a different bathroom. That is the difference.

 



grew up in a town east of Vancouver in British Columbia. My family were supporters of music, and there were musical instruments around the house. My brother played the fiddle. I picked up the trumpet in 7th grade, and then I joined the school band.


I first performed on trumpet, but I always loved singing. I’m a girl and we love to sing. By grade 11 they went side by side. I use the keyboard for composing. As the trumpet is a one note-instrument it doesn’t lend itself to that very well.


Bria Skonberg at the Atlanta Jazz Party in 2015


It was a good career counselor who helped me pick music. I was very active at school, doing lots of activities and playing sports.


Today I’m inspired by the experiences I get to have now. Traveling a lot, meeting people, watching other performers.


I have to use a different bathroom. That is the difference between me and male artists. I don’t focus on a difference. And I have never relied on that to put me ahead of the game.


 



I’m currently wrapping up finishing a recording. Tomorrow I’m going in the studio. So my future plans are mixing and mastering, and bringing the album to people’s attention. My band and I have been together for three years now, or two maybe, no it’s more like three.


I’m also into music education, and I’m starting a New Orleans-themed camp that will take place in New York in May 2016. It’s for people who want to learn to play that kind of music.


I like teaching because a workshop is like a higher form of improvisation. You walk into a room of people and never know what’s going to happen. And teaching also solidifies your knowledge. It’s one thing to know it and a completely different thing to say it.


"So Is The Day"



Bria Skonberg is a Canadian trumpeter, vocalist and composer, based in New York. She released her album "So Is The Day" in 2012, and she is working with a five piece band that includes Damon Ridenhour on piano, Darrian Douglas on drums, Evan Arntzen on clarinet and sax, and Sean Cronin on bass.

Find out more HERE.






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Mino Cinelu: -It takes strength and humility to be yourself in music


 


Music often has to be new to excite me and awake my curiosity. I want to explore when I play, and when I listen. New is hard to achieve. It is an objective to find me some more. I get a lot of pleasure from music that has already been done too, in a piece of baroque music for example perhaps, in a classical string quartet. It’s nothing new but it may be incredible. However I want to try to find a new way. When people call me for projects they don’t know what I will bring.

 

Mino Cinelu World Jazz Ensemble at The Blue Note 2014

 


Of course music also always has roots, even when it is expressed in the most modern way. It is subjective. I hear the roots the way I hear them. There are influences all the way up to that moment. All the music that I ever heard had roots. My music is a reflection of my upbringing, from the rural Martinique, my parents’ background and history, and my own life. I am very passionate about my roots. With my World Jazz Ensemble I ask the musicians to tell their story. The story is in their voices as musicians and artists.

 


How you find your voice as a performer is both obvious and awkward. I chose between my two passions in life, between music and nature, at a very early age. I was about seven or eight years old when I chose music. I also paint. And it is simple. What you express is you, if you are yourself. But you must be courageous enough to bare yourself, and that is the awkward part. It takes strength and humility to be yourself in music.

 



 


I live in New York, but I don’t know the new New York-scene very well. I travel a lot. I have just now been on tour with Kate Bush for eight or nine months. The clubs in New York probably don’t pay what they used to, but there are always young players here who play many kinds of music very well.

 


I still often think of what Miles Davis told us, if we were lucky enough to be close to him. He told us things through his horn and through his words. It is only now that I find out about the full impact of those words. Every time I meet Herbie Hancock we talk about what Miles Davis said. ‘’Oh, did he tell you that?’’. Miles used to call me Frenchy. He called me many things. I recall being in Italy once when I heard his voice on the phone. I told him that I was there playing with Weather Report, and he replied ‘’Those are my children!’’.

 

Mino Cinelu ''Confians''

 

 


Mino Cinelu is a French multi-instrumentalist based in New York. He has done work with Miles Davis, Weather Report and Sting among many others, and has an extensive solo career. Find out more HERE.

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