Wow. Here I am sitting at home its crazy to think that my trip is over. Looking back, I could not have asked for anything more from my Exchange experience. Originally I was a little bit nervous and didn’t know what to expect. Having family in the city, I had been to Stockholm before, but I had never stayed longer than a few weeks, let alone on my own. But everything just seemed to work out great.
Last week was a very special week at KMH. 3 weeks out of the semester we have intensive weeks in school, where there is no classes and it is a time for students to work on the term projects or to prepare for the large concerts (such as the symphony orchestra or big band).
This time year has been very different for me over here in Sweden particularly with Holidays. A few weeks ago was the 31st of October which is Halloween and in the states that is a big holiday nationally. Almost every kid dresses up and its a bit deal but over here in Sweden Halloween is not big at all. People actually look at others walking down the street in costume like they are crazy. Now that of course was very different for me, but what was even more interesting was the Saturday following. This day was the Swedish “Alla Helgons Dag” which is basically all saints day.
Never have I seen Dianne perform live before but man, she puts on a powerful show. First off, her voice alone is a massive force that fills the room and as a Jazz Legend and phenomenal vocalist, she definitely knows how to use it. I would not say her show was a “traditional” jazz show, but more a showcase of the range of styles that Jazz can cover. All the way from some Swing and Blues to Funk, Spanish, and even African styles, she covered a large variety of tunes in her show so every song provided a new sound.
Cindy Balckmans performance was in combination with Dianne Reeves as a double concert. Although I am not entirely sure why because their styles and audiences varied so much there was not any common ground between them. Although It was a headline concert at the Jazz Festival, I do not feel I am best suited to write a review of the music so much because I am not too familiar with heavy metal or rock music.
I have been a fan or the Norrbotten big band for a long time and am familiar with some of the projects they have done with different artists but I had never listened to Lina Nyberg, and after hearing what a big name Jazz vocalist she is in Sweden I was very excited for this show. I decided to go into this concert blind without doing any research to see what would happen and I was not disappointed. Combining her normal rhythm section with the Norrbotten horn sections, they played one tune together and then Lina Nyberg came out.
Much to my expectation, Friday night was a great night and as usual Snarky Puppy brought an intense great show with them. This was their first performance EVER in Scandinavia and it was to a sold out crowd. After a week of lecturing and master classes in the Netherlands, this Friday was their third consecutive day without sleep, but you could not tell that at all from their performance. Playing a lot of new music with some of the classis that every Snarky Puppy fan knows they kept everyone’s head bobbing the whole show.