The Z is so excited to announce the 2024 Headlining Act for the Vocal Jazz Summit…
GRAMMY-Award nominated säje
säje is: Sara Gazarek, Amanda Taylor, Johnaye Kendrick, and Erin Bentlage
Featuring: Michael Mayo, voice; Dawn Clement, piano; Ben Williams, bass; Christian Euman, drums
“säje is blazing a new trail for female composers and performers in the jazz world.”- Micah Hendler, Forbes
“…[säje is] taking the vocal jazz ensemble into the 21st century.”- Abe Beeson, KNKX/NPR
“…transcendent music.” – DownBeat Magazine
While it may come as a surprise to hear that the newly-formed vocal super-group, säje (rhymes with beige), received a GRAMMY® nomination for “Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals” for their first original composition “Desert Song”, a John Lennon Songwriting Contest Grand Prize Award for their second composition “Wisteria”, and a Jazz Journalists Association Award nomination for “Best Vocal Group”, those in the know continue to eagerly await the debut album from this transcendent and genre-defining group.
It is through their four previously released singles, ardent social media/patreon following, and multiple self-produced music videos that this all-female compositional/vocal collective has demonstrated their devotion to thoughtful, sophisticated original compositions and heartfelt covers, garnering critical acclaim and fostering a widespread and passionate fanbase.
In their first debut-album single (“As This Moment Slips Away” September 13th, 2022) from their self-produced debut album, listeners got a sneak peek into the sounds and energy that they can expect from the record itself. In collaboration with three-time GRAMMY® winning drummer Terri Lyne Carrington, the single positioned säje as an empowered, genre-defining, and socially conscious powerhouse ensemble. surpassing any expectations of what one might typically associate with a vocal collective.
With their second single, there is more to hear than just lush harmonies, powerhouse vocals, complex contrapuntal lines, and symbiosis with their band. There is a deep relationship with the value systems found in purposeful artistic collaborations, authenticity and connection to shape, texture, interaction, and storytelling. There is a real mastery of craft, not least of which can be heard in the mind-blowing improvisations from featured guest vocalist Michael Mayo. With “(You Are) The Oracle” we see that säje is a group to be watched – and that their newest single is only a mouth-watering snapshot of what’s to come.