Fiona Ross gets the band back together — and back onstage — with her electrifying new Live Sessions Video Album, showcasing today on Tinnitist.
“I tried to do the whole live session at home, but it really wasn’t me,” the award-winning, internationally acclaimed contemporary jazz artist explains. “It also meant I didn’t have my incredible musicians with me. Part of my sound and what I love about what I do is the incredible people I get to work and play with. I feed off their energy and, well… I just love playing with them! Due to COVID-19, all of my gigs were cancelled for the foreseeable future, but as soon as the studio I normally rehearse at re-opened, I jumped to book it.”
The joint — one that’s also played host to the likes of Adele, Nina Simone, Patti Smith, Tom Jones, Paul Weller, Rhianna, and more — had been shut for nearly five months at that point, and the band hadn’t played together in just as long. Thanks to their undeniable creative chemistry, however, they instantly picked right back up where they’d left off. “It was so exciting to see everyone and play,” Ross recalls. “First time playing in months … It was a wonderful thing; there were smiles everywhere.”
Based in London and resonating throughout the international scene, Ross is known for her illustrative songwriting and unique fingerprint of sound that blends a Latin jazz with vintage club styles, plus a touch of neo-soul for good measure. Since the age of two, there has rarely been a day for the award winning vocalist, pianist, composer, producer, educator, and journalist that hasn’t revolved around music. Storied highlights include fibbing her way onto London jazz club stages to perform at age 14, and attending England’s prestigious Arts Educational School. As head of the British Academy of New Music for nearly a decade, Ross is credited for having a hand in training the likes of Ed Sheeran, Rita Ora and Jess Glynne, to name a few.
In her artistic career, Ross has released Black, White and a Little Bit of Grey, Just Me (and sometimes someone else), A Twist of Blue and her latest full-length, Fierce and Non-Compliant. The latter is not merely a sonic sojourn into Ross’ songwriting journal, but also her jotter notes as an esteemed jazz journalist. “I’ve interviewed some incredible people,” she shares, namechecking Maxine Gordon, Steve Gadd, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Terri Lynne Carrington and Kyle Eastwood for starters. “I’d wanted to include some people on the album that have really inspired me as a person and as an artist. I was truly blown away they said yes.”