As much as I love singing with my group The Gift, I’ve always had the duo thing going on, too. I’ve played in the duo setting with Wolfert Brederode for a really long time and in many different places, and we’ve taught playing duo during masterclasses in Holland and Switzerland, too. It all started with him accompanying me during lessons at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, where we both studied. He’s not one to copy others, he never has been. I love his playing and his composing, and I feel that we developped what we both are doing at least for some part together – we are each other’s listeners.
I also have a long standing duo with French pianist Stéphan Oliva. He’s not one to copy others, either. From the first concert on, I felt good with him on stage: there was a connection that carried me and continues to do so when we play. We share some of the same deep musical loves: Miles. Chet. Jimmy Giuffre. Don Cherry. Sun Ra. Paul Bley.
It’s really no secret that I love pianists. But then, there’s this other love. Breath. Wind. Sound. Trumpet. Flugelhorn. And clarinet, too. My next duo concert will be the first full concert of that duo, the one with the wonderful Matthieu Michel on flugelhorn. Singing with him is like leaning back to back with someone whom you trust and somehow forming one voice. And well, again, there’s really no need for him to copy anyone. He sounds so good.