What's Hot With Jazz Guitar: Tomas Janzon

by Doc Dosco

It's time for some European flavor, so this week we feature Swedish born jazz guitarist Tomas Janzon.

Online Bio

Tomas Janzon was born in Stockholm, Sweden. His musical quest started at the age of 7 playing the recorder. At 8 he began studying the cello and by 12 he was performing with the chamber orchestra Collegium Musicum. Later he would pursue and focus on the guitar.

After studying at Musikhögskolan, The Royal School of Music in Stockholm he embarked on his professional career: touring, performing and recording in Sweden and northern Europe with such artists as Berit Andersson, Bronislaw Suchanek, Anita Strandell, Twice Guitar, Casa Grande and others. Tomas composed and recorded music for TV and films: "Vargavår" for national TV, the documentary "Kvinnor på kontor", art-film "The King of Siam".

Tomas arrived in Los Angeles 1991 to study with Joe Diorio at GIT, graduating as "The Outstanding Player of the Year", teaching as an adjunct staff member from 1994 to the present. May 2000 he completed a MM with honors in Classical Guitar at USC Thornton School of Music, studying with Scott Tennant and James Smith, also teaching at the Jazz Studies and Studio Guitar Departments.

Since coming to the United States Tomas has played clubs and/or sessions with: Billy Higgins, Alphonso Johnson, Sherman Ferguson, Dave Carpenter, Bob Sheppard, Ricky Woodard, Brandon Fields, Melvin Davis, Jimmy Earl, David Goldblatt, Joel Taylor, Billy Mintz, Joe Brancato, Frank Wilson, Ken Filiano, 5th Dimension, Ben Vereen, Charo and others. He has appeared on TV on "L.A. Jazz" and BET on Jazz. He and his group has appeared at The Playboy Jazz Festival, The City of Angels Jazz Festival, The Stockholm Jazz Festival and many other venues.

2001 Tomas spent in Canada as an Artist-in-Resident at Selkirk College, teaching and performing. 2002 to the present has included several trips to New York, Seattle, Phoenix and Sweden for concerts, festivals and clinics. The last two years has also seen Tomas' articles published in Guitar Player, Down Beat, LA Jazz Scene, Orkesterjournalen, Jazz Stage and Fotnoten.

Tomas recorded with Sherman Ferguson, Nedra Wheeler and Billy Higgins and has received positive reviews and international airplay with this, his Changes Music label recording X-Changes.

His recent live national radio broadcast concert from jazz club Fasching in Stockholm with Bobo Stenson, Petur Östlund and Christian Spering has been reviewed by www.allaboutjazz.com and Orkesterjournalen, see www.tomasjanzon.com/reviews.

Tomas Janzon's website:


Doc Dosco is a jazz guitarist, composer and audio consultant living in Los Angeles, CA. His website is located at http://www.docdosco.com, where you can find more information on the 'What's Hot with Jazz Guitar' columns, audio clips of Doc's playing, and many additional features. Doc now endorses Peerless Guitars and has the website Jazz Guitar Zone to help promote Peerless jazz guitars in the US. He also endorses the new Pignose Valve Tube Amps -- great for jazz (and anything else!)

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One of the best jazz guitar records from the past year.

New release Experiences now available at www.tomasjanzon.com

press release:

Tomas Janzon: Experiences

....“Float” is a Janzon original with a spooky, off-kilter feel
where his bop solo fits perfectly. The other original,
“Blue Bee,” has an airy feel that makes it stand out from
the blues and funk. The record closes with a beautiful solo piece,
“En Dejlig Rosa,”which showcases everything about Janzon’s playing
that make this one of the best jazz guitar records from the past year.
- John Heidt, Vintage Guitar April 2011.

New release Tomas Janzon: Experiences, (Changes Music CM 113)
has been listed on radio list Jazz Week Top 50 for eight weeks,
and a string of reviews from JazzTimes, Cadence, Just Jazz Guitar,
and many more is posted on our website www.tomasjanzon.com

Clips from reviews:

Tomas Janzon: Experiences
(CM 113, Naxos Sweden)

“New York-based guitarist Tomas Janzon plays
tasty renditions...original territory ...with soulful authority. “
-Bill Milkowski, JazzTimes Dec 2010.

“With Janzon's velvet-like textures floating as if on water,
the quartet's music moves with soul.”
-Jim Santella, LA Jazz Scene Oct 2010

one of the best jazz-guitar tones you'll hear....
one of the best jazz guitar records
from the past year. "
- John Heidt, Vintage Guitar April 2011.

“This is one of those unique albums that will please ordinary music
lovers as well as jazz guitar aficionados. Mr. Janzon’s style ranges from
cool to passionate but always melodic and eminently listenable.”
-Dave Walker, Dave Walker Music, Just Jazz Guitar

“Janzon’s warmly soul-tinged lines over Hillery’s
staccato chords and Heath’s winking, on-and-off shuffle.”
-Alan Young, Lucid Culture

Guitarist Tomas Janzon’s Experiences is a
fine exercise in tonal contrasts. And it swings.
-All About Jazz New York, Nov. 2010

…the guitarist’s subtle, feeling way with a melody.
–Michael Steinman, Cadence jan-feb-mar 2011.


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