Susanne Alt
Susanne Alt


Press Kit


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Reviews of "Royalty For Real"



Jazziz 02/24 (US)



Jazzviews, 15-02-2024

"Susanne Alt has put together a terrific band. If you’re looking for a modern straight ahead jazz album I think you’d like this."
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Jazzenzo, 25-03-2024



Saxophonist Susanne Alt has been a prominent figure in the nightlife of major cities in recent years. We found her in the company of DJ Spinna, DJ Maestro, Ronald Molendijk, Promiss, Cassie 6, Graham B, and Natarcia, among others. Her spirited, soulful, and funky sound is highly valued in this hip scene.

Now, this powerhouse presents her sixth album, 'Royalty for Real', a tribute to the prematurely deceased trumpeter Roy Hargrove, with whom she often crossed paths during the after-hours jam sessions at the Bel Air Hotel following the Hague years of the North Sea Jazz Festival. Events that have become legendary and often lasted until dawn.


The idea for this production arose during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Alt has surrounded herself with three top players from the New York scene: keyboardist James Hurt, bassist Gerald Cannon, and drummer Willie Jones III. This time, acoustic jazz takes center stage: in seven compositions, she showcases various facets of the genre.

The album kicks off strongly with 'Roy Allan', in which the unrivaled rhythm section naturally plays a significant role. The spirited alto saxophone triumphantly sounds above the raucous groove. Attention is definitively captured, and the more reflective 'Blue Notes & Fairy Tales' provides a nice follow-up with plenty of room for Alt's shining tone. A track followed by the introspective 'Rue Lepic': a melody that remains indelible in your ear.


The atmosphere of the old North Sea Jazz Festival is captured in 'Bel Air Bop': a time when programming was still done with heart and soul, not just with the cash register in mind. You can envision Roy Hargrove sweating in front of you, spurred on by the enthusiastic audience. An energy that we also find in 'Classy Cats', where James Hurt makes the distinctive sound of the electric Fender Rhodes shine.

Perhaps the most beautiful illustration of her highly successful return to real jazz is heard in Alt's brilliant version of the ballad 'The Nearness of You', in which she, along with her band, delves into and penetrates the essence of this classic for a full eight minutes. A more than impressive moment, after which Alt concludes with the delightful title track 'Royalty for Real'. An album begging to be listened to over and over again, at home and on the go!


NRC, 19-02-2024

(NRC, 19-02-2024)



Susanne Alt on jazz trumpeter Roy Hargrove

"He was the epitome of infectious jazz"

"In his hotel room, Roy Hargrove always played cassette tapes of pure bebop: Miles Davis, Charlie Parker. All uptempo. He constantly wanted to be in a jazz flow of playing and listening. He also enjoyed playing with soul artists like D'Angelo, funk musicians, and rappers. I learned from him that it's okay to be a dedicated jazz musician and still have an interest in other genres."

Saxophonist Susanne Alt, who resides in Amsterdam (born in Würzburg, 1978), pays tribute to the early deceased, influential American jazz trumpeter Roy Hargrove on her new album, "Royalty For Real," with whom she was friends. It marks a return for her to acoustic jazz after Alt developed an electronic sound in recent years and established herself as a DJ and producer. The album was recorded with former band members of Hargrove.

"Roy was one of the first musicians I truly became a fan of. He was the epitome of infectious jazz. His sound moved between very lyrical and very exuberant, almost like gospel. He didn't play as many notes as others. Sometimes, the barrage of notes from others becomes a bit of a circus for me, so that really appealed to me. "Wherever he played, he would always jam afterwards with young local musicians. That's how I got to know him when I was seventeen. A year later, I saw him again at the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague. Afterwards, musicians often played next door at the Hotel Bel Air in The Hague until dawn. There I was on stage with Roy, but also with drummer Questlove and trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. Unbelievable. I've tried to capture that atmosphere on the album in the song "Bel Air Bop." "We became friends, I always tried to search him up when he was in the area. For him, jamming was really the foundation, the beauty of spontaneous interaction. It's not just about musicians among themselves, but also about the audience. Jazz isn't just listening music for the elite, but about having fun and making connections. Roy made jazz more open and inclusive."

"I was so devastated when he passed away. I was in a hotel room in Prague in November 2018 and saw the news on Facebook. I actually thought he could go on for a long time, despite his kidney disease. He was only 49 years old."

"I recorded this album, dedicated to Hargrove, in 2022 in New York with musicians from his circle. I was lucky that it was still the tail end of corona, drummer Willie Jones III and bassist Gerald Cannon were just in town and were happy to participate. They both played in Roy's band for seven years. Keyboardist James Hurt is also a world-class player."

"I was a bit starstruck in the studio, I must admit. We're colleagues and have gotten to know each other over the years, but I was still mainly just a fan of them. Still am, actually. I had to redo a few solos because of nerves, or because I was distracted because what they played was just so beautiful."
Leendert van der Valk


The album "Royalty For Real" is out now.

Concert: 24/3 Lantaren Venster, Rotterdam; 1/6 Verkadefabriek, Den Bosch


Volkskrant, 23-02-2024

(Volkskrant, 23-02-2024)

German saxophonist Susanne Alt, based in the Netherlands for many years, seemed to embrace electronic jazz and funk more and more.
But on Royalty For Real, her sixth album, she looked for inspiration at the more acoustic jazz of trumpet player Roy Hargrove who passed away 6 years ago. Alt didn’t only know him well but they also played together, for example during the famous North Sea Jazz Festival jam sessions.
Bel Air Bop revers to the latter, one of the five original compositions by Alt, a steamy piece of hardbop with James Hurt on piano, Gerald Cannon on double bass and Willie Jones III on drums. Cannon and Jones played together in Hargrove’s band for years and seem to sense what Alt intended here.
She might not play the trumpet, the emotion she puts in The Nearness of you, a standard Hargrove often played, is exactly of the same expressiveness.
And how delightful: pianist Hurt playing the Fender Rhodes in Hargrove’s Roy Allan and Alt’s funky Classy Cats. The already exciting music is getting wings in a way Hargrove would like. 


Soul&Jazz&Funk, 07-02-2024

February 7, 2024 by Bill Buckley Soul&Jazz&Funk



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