Susanne Alt
Susanne Alt

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!

on 26/03/2024


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