Interview with

Natalie Sandtorv

Natalie Sandtorv (b. 1988) is a vocalist and songwriter who has made a strong profile on the European jazz scene in recent years, and in 2016 she received the Sparebank1 Jazz Talent award at the Moldejazz festival. She then began to work with the assembly of a new band, and wrote the music to the project „Freedom Nation». Premiering the music in Norway, they will be performing at the main program of Moldejazz 2017! The album was recorded in Ocean Sound Recordings in the idyllic surroundings of the small norwegian island Giske in february, and is released on the label Øra Fonogram, October 2017. A releasetour will be taking place in Europe, and the official release concert will take place at Terminalen in Sandtorvs home town, Ålesund. In addition, the band will perform at Copenhagen Jazz festival and at the Geoff Stern Art Space in Berlin. Natalie Sandtorv will appear with the NEW ROOTS TRIO (with Zoe Efstathiou (GR/DK) — prepared piano & Ole Mofjell (NO/DK) — drums) at A L‘ARME Festival 2017 on 3th August at Radialsystem in Berlin.

FACTS:

1: Karma!
2: I am half norwegian, and half hungrarian, but I don`t speak a word hungarian. Shame!
3: On tour in Japan, I had to pick up one of my band members in jail. Rockstars!

QUESTIONS:

1. What is the biggest inspiration for your music?
Nature, society, documentaries, traveling, and Twin Peaks.

I don`t know if I would, in all cases, call it inspiration. Sometimes it is the situations, and matters that provokes me that drives me to create comments in the shape of music.

2. How and when did you get into making music?
At the age of 4, I actually had a little Sony cassette player with a microphone with a rec. button. I took it with me everywhere and recorded everything. One could say I was doing field recordings back then. I wish I still had those tapes from 1993, so that I could release it now..

But when I was a youth I went to a lot of different shows, jazz concerts, and free improv events. They all spoke to me in a way, and I wanted to be part of it. So I formed some bands, did some gigs, and one thing led to the other.

3. What are 5 of your favourite albums of all time?
Max Roach – We Insist!
Elin Rosseland – Fra Himmelen
Mariam The Believer – Blood Donation
John Coltrane – Crescent
Frank Ocean – Blonde

4. What do you associate with Berlin?
Blending cultures, energy and freedom.
The freedom to be whoever you want, is a strong feature that Berlin should be very proud of.

5. What’s your favourite place in your town?
My favourite place to be is in my yellow, velvet couch in my appartement in Copenhagen. I don`t have to much time to stay at home and relax, so whenever I get the chance Im the most happy when I can hang out at home. It really beats all hipster cafes and crowded museums!

6. If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
Never, ever thought about it. And now when you are asking me this question, my brain just shuts down.

7. What was the last record/music you bought?
Shabaka And The Ancestors – Wisdom of Elders

I really love this one, and I got really excited when I discovered it recently. Its so rare these days that I discover something that gets me excited.

8. Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Alive: Anouska Shankar and Jöelle Leandre
Dead: Alice Coltrane
In general, strong women!

9. What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?
Performing solo at the Invisible Show series in Bergamo, Italy.

It was one of those days where everything was just right. The organizers were amazing, the food was beyond, and the audience was so open and they gave me so much energy and warmth. This concert really opened my mind to how far I am able to go as a performer. Boarders got pushed.

10. How important is technology to your creative process?
I don´t know if I really think it is important at all. But I use different media to research concepts, listen to and observe music and art. So in a huge way it is, but then again I really love working without any technology around me, because It sometimes can drain my focus.

11. Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career/art?
I have two half sisters, I think they are excited about it?

It can be a very selfish thing to be an artist, and I think in some ways people can have trouble understanding what it is that we are doing. But I have a very loving family thats always been supportive of what I do.

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