(Amsterdam, The Netherlands) With the January 12, 2010 release in the U.S. of The Traveller, the award-winning Dutch saxophonist Tineke Postma is poised to claim within the all-important American jazz community what she has already earned in Europe and Japan: A legitimate place among today's leading jazz instrumentalists and composers.
The Traveller (EtceteraNow KTD 6003), Postma's fourth album as a leader, is unquestionably her most impressive recording to date. She is as talented a writer as she is a player and the CD showcases eight original compositions and her arrangement of part of a Heitor Villa-Lobos string quartet that are each superbly interpreted by an all-star quartet featuring pianist Geri Allen, drummer Terri Lyne Carrington and bassist Scott Colley , three contemporary American jazz masters who are each leaders in their own right and among the most accomplished musicians in the world on their respective instruments. Postma debuted this sensational band earlier in 2009 at Barbican Hall in London (UK), the North Sea Jazz Festival (NL) and Jazz Ramatuelle (F).
Postma has in a few short years built up a global following through touring and performing in clubs and at festivals in over 20 countries. She fulfilled the promise of the title of her 2007 release A Journey That Matters that received rave reviews in DownBeat, JazzTimes and other influential publications and significantly raised her profile across the Atlantic from her home in the Netherlands. Postma is the only Dutch artist featured along with Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock and other legends in the critically acclaimed four- part documentary Icons Among Us - Jazz In The Present Tense" showcasing veteran and rising jazz artists that premiered on The Documentary Channel in April 2009. She also has the distinction of being the first European jazz musician signed by the respected American talent agency IMN (International Music Network) joining an illustrious roster of saxophonists including Shorter, Joe Lovano, Joshua Redman, Chris Potter and Maceo Parker as well as other renowned artists like McCoy Tyner, Dianne Reeves, Dave Holland and Brad Mehldau.
These are two of several highlights during a landmark year for the 31-year-old Amsterdam-based Postma during which she also won the coveted Revelations Award, the Jury Prize and the Audience Prize at the 49th Antibes Juan-Les-Pins Jazz Festival in France and was a finalist for the prestigious Paul Acket Award at the North Sea Jazz Festival. Postma will end 2009 on a high note, with a November 11th appearance at Zankel Hall in New York as a member of bassist and vocalist Esperanza Spalding's quartet, having previously performed with Spalding's band in July at the North Sea festival.
One of my goals has been to make music with as much feeling as possible, music that touches me and the audience on an emotional level," Postma said when asked what distinguishes The Traveller from her earlier releases. I feel on this album I'm playing in a freer, less inhibited way than ever before and creating music that's more developed than what I was playing, say, right after graduating from the conservatory in Holland and the Manhattan School of Music when I felt I needed to prove myself and impress people. I really learned a lot from playing with Terri Lyne and Geri," continued Postma, who first encountered Allen in 2008 when she performed several concerts in Israel as a member of a band led by Carrington that included bassist Esperanza Spalding (The Traveller is the saxophonist's third record featuring Carrington.). Terri Lyne and Geri have performed with two of my idols, Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock, and I could hear their influence in their playing and that in turn influenced me," Postma added. While I work regularly with my Dutch quartet, performing with these American musicians inspires me in a different way. They make me fly when I play and it's exciting and challenging to be creative and open to all the musical impulses they're giving me on stage."
Before I met Terri Lyne I was not really focused on the rhythmical and the timing part of jazz...as a horn player your first impulse is to focus on playing the right notes and melodies and harmonies," Postma explained. Terri Lyne made me aware of how important it is to avoid playing cliches and to take musical risks, to really search for inspiration and not just play on automatic pilot. The same goes for Gerri and Scott who not only improvise on a composition's melody but also its rhythm."
Geri really knows the jazz piano tradition that preceded her while also having found her own style. In addition to being a soloist she's also an amazing accompanist who knows how to make you sound good and never plays the same melodic ideas twice," Postma said. And one reason Scott is one of the busiest bassists on the scene today and has played with practically everybody is that he's so versatile and has a deep feel for time. He's more than just an incredible sideman and soloist as he writes fantastic music as well. I don't think I could have found a stronger rhythm section to play with."
The feeling is clearly mutual, as the comments below from the other members of Tineke Postma's All-Star Quartet" make clear:
I've had the pleasure of watching Tineke grow and develop into a formidable force on the jazz saxophone and this new CD is her best yet. The compositions provide the perfect palette for the synergistic creative expression of this particular quartet and I'm happy I was a part of it! - Terri Lyne Carrington
Tineke's an expressive, and inspired player with a lyrical approach that embraces and challenges the listener. Her compositions and lithe execution served as fertile ground for the quartet to discover many enjoyable surprises. - Geri Allen
Tineke displays great focus and passion in every aspect of her compositions and performance. I enjoyed so much being a part of this recording and I look forward to witnessing her growth along whatever musical path she chooses. Making music with Terri Lyne - in so many different musical contexts and environments over the years - has been and continues to be a great experience for me. Geri is someone whose music I've long admired...a thoughtful, profound musician and an artist I've wanted to work with for a long time, but had not yet had the opportunity until this project. The Traveller truly documents the love and vision of dedicated musicians. - Scott Colley
About Tineke Postma
Born in Heerenveen, The Netherlands, on August 31, 1978, Tineke Postma earned an M.A. with honors from the Amsterdam Conservatory in 2003 and currently teaches there. She then received two scholarships to attend the Manhattan School of Music in New York, where she studied with Dick Oatts, David Liebman and Chris Potter. Postma has received, among other honors, the international Sisters In Jazz All-Star Award, the Singer Laren Jazz Award, the Heijmans Award and the distinguished MIDEM International Jazz Revlation of the Year award in 2006 during a French National TV gala broadcast Victoires du Jazz."