Jazz interview with jazz singer Rebekka Bakken. An interview by email in writing.
JazzBluesNews.Space: – First let’s start with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music?
Rebekka Bakken: – I grew up in a small village outside of Oslo and music was a part of the daily life of my family. We would always be singing and playing one of the many instruments in the house. I grew up with little outside musical influence and learned early to use myself as the source for music and musical creation.
JBN.S: – What got you interested in picking up the jazz vocal?
RB: – As I was always singing and exploring music, always open to what appealed to me, I never thought of consciously studying any particular direction. I would not name my vocals as jazz vocals, but rather probably using elements of it.
JBN.S: – What teacher or teachers helped you progress to the level of playing you have today? What made you choose the jazz vocal?
RB: – I did not study with any teachers, I learned to learn from listening to and observing myself.
JBN.S: – How did your sound evolve over time? What did you do to find and develop your sound?
RB: – Selv awareness, developing consciousness within musical expression.
JBN.S: – What practice routine or exercise have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical ability especially pertaining to rhythm?
RB: – My practice routine is very simple, I sing, play and compose as part of my daily life, not as exercise or routine but because I need to for my wellbeing.
JBN.S: – Many aspiring musicians are always looking for advice when navigating thru the music business. Is there any piece of advice you can offer to aspiring students or even your peers that you believe will help them succeed and stay positive in this business?
RB: – Do what you love and do it a lot. This is what I do and this is what gives me what I need to carry on. Being concerned with the “how” in business is not what I burden myself with. I believe opportunities comes when there is sincerity and talent.
JBN.S: – How can we get young people interested in jazz when most of the standard tunes are half a century old?
RB: – My observations are that jazz has a good following amongst people, and jazz is much more than the great standards written long ago. Good music will always have an audience.
JBN.S: – John Coltrane said that music was his spirit. How do you understand the spirit and the meaning of life?
RB: – This is the ultimate human questions and there are so many different ways to answer this question. Here is one very simple: the purpose of life is to awaken. Awaken to spirit.
JBN.S: – What are your expectations of the future? What brings you fear or anxiety?
RB: – I Nothing, I can´t see the worth in spending energy on fear or anxiety.
JBN.S: – Who do you find yourself listening to these days?
RB: – I do not listen to music very often, but when I do I keep coming back to records from Bob Dylan, Wayne Shorter and Keith Jarrett that has been spinning for years when I want to enjoy music at home.
JBN.S: – What’s your current setup?
RB: – I am going to be on tour the next months with my quartet where I will playing music from my latest album Most Personal. In between the tours I will going back to the studio to finish up the next album to be released sometime next year.