Benjamin Gísli-Line of Thought
I really enjoy trio albums from northern Europe. Recently I did an email interview with Benjamin Gísli, about his recent album Line Of Thought.
Check it out here:
Hello Benjamin what are you influences as a musician?
Hello! Wow, that is a big question, I could list many things here. I am very influenced by classical music. That is where I started my musical journey before turning to jazz and improvisation. Especially composers like Chopin and Debussy. Now I’m mostly listening to Aaron Parks and Keith Jarrett.
I also have to say that I am very inspired by the people around me and the incredible musicians I play with all the time. Sharing music, talking about music, trying to decipher what is the meaning of our music and what are we trying to portray with it.
How you found your trio?
We all studied together at the Jazz Conservatory in Trondheim, which is an incubator for many great jazz musicians and bands in the past, the present and the future. We started out jamming a lot about 3 years ago and it was an instant connection. Starting out as a Carla Bley cover band playing her tunes and improvising freely. At one point I started to bring my tunes to the rehearsals and last summer we recorded some of them. And it took off from there.
Is the Icelandic folk music important for you?
Yes, of course. I think it is very important to stay true to where you come from and study it. I can’t say that I’m an expert but the folk songs and melodies that I know are very close to my heart and I perform them at concerts from time to time.
How the idea for record this album came about?
The general idea was to document the songs that we had been rehearsing and playing at concerts. From there the album took a few turns and we eventually decided what songs we were going to record and the idea for the album was born. The songs convey an array of visceral emotions, from emptiness to hope thus switching the mundane narrative to something inspiring and uplifting.
I love the wide sound of the song „line of thought“ what this an intention of you?
Thank you! The turnout for this song was much greater than I ever expected. We had never played this song before the studio session. It is based on a very old song I composed about 4 years ago and I decided to bring it to the studio session. Then I taught it to Andreas and Veslemøy in about 15 minutes in the studio and then we did one take and that was it. Later when l was listening back to the record I fell in love with the take we did and it ended up as the title track for the album.
Why you chose a gospel song for your record?
Me and Andreas the bass in the trio both love gospel music and hymns. We had a rehearsal on his birthday last year and I brought this groovy riff idea I had been working on the same day. This idea eventually turned into “Gospel Song For Andy” and that is why I named the song after him.
What does Rökkur means excatly ?
Rökkur means Dusk or “a period of time occurring at the end of the day during which the sun sets”. The song explores this feeling of when the light shifts from evening sun to night time. I think the music reflects this feeling quite nicely.
Are you planing to make a tour in Germany?
Yes we are planning an Europe tour in the fall 2024. If there are any clubs out there that are interested please shoot a mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
What are your next projects?
Now I’m rehearsing and preparing for a
recording session with Bento Box Trio. We are recording our second album in September, to be released next year. Then I’m going on tour with Bliss Quintet, Tuva Halse and Miriam Kibakaya. All of
which are releasing albums this fall. Bliss Quintet plays at Donau115 in Berlin on the 13th of October.