This Second of Jazz post is about the Norwegian horn player Hildegunn Øiseth. I heard Hildegunn play at the Molde Jazz Festival this year, with Espen Berg and Trondheim Jazz Orchestra. I had the pleasure of hearing a breathtaking trumpet solo at this concert, and I also got the chance to talk a little with her afterwards. She gave me a copy of an album she released last year called “Time is Coming”. I have listened to it several times since then, so I thought I’d write about it in this post.
But first, a few words about Hildegunn; After graduating from the Swedish Academy of Music, Ingesund, in 1990, she was employed in Bohuslän Big Band. After nearly a decennium she relocated to South Africa, where she explored African music and started the group Uhambo. After many years of traveling in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, she returned home. Hildegunn is engaged in many musical projects in the Middle East and Asia. Furthermore, she has been touring and recording with Trondheim Jazz Orchestra, as well as with her world-jazz ensemble Rabalder with musicians from different parts of the world.
With her on the album, "Time is Coming", Hildegunn has brought three musicians, Espen Berg on piano, Mats Eilertsen on bass and Per Oddvar Johansen on drums. The album consists of compositions by all four members of the group, as well as one composition by Frode Fjellheim. My two favorite melodies are “Skoddefall” by Espen Berg, and Hildegunn’s own composition “Time is Coming”. The latter is an interesting tune where Espen introduces the melody by playing repetitively on one key, almost like a clock ticking, reminding the listener that time is indeed always coming. Espen continues this rhythmic and repetitive play for a couple of minutes while Hildegunn plays beautifully on the goat horn. She gives this melody a dreamy and melancholic vibe. In the middle of the song, Espen delivers a piano solo before the song ends in the same way it begins, with the repetitive piano play accompanying the goat horn. These musicians manage to paint a picture of time. It’s nice to be reminded that time keeps coming, especially when the reminder itself is time well spent!
This coming Saturday Hildegunn will play with Espen Berg and Trondheim Jazz Orchestra at Victoria National Jazz Scene in Oslo. They will be performing «Maetrix», Espen Berg's commissioned work for Molde Jazz Festival 2017. If you’re in Oslo this weekend, this will be a very good way to spend your Saturday evening.
Listen to the album here.