Women in Jazz Media at the EFG London Jazz Festival: Monika Herzig and Alexis Cole: Both Sides of Joni
18th November 2023 - Toulouse Lautrec
The Both Sides of Joni project was the product of a period of soul searching during the Covid Summer of 2020. Vocalist Janiece Jaffe started listening closely to Joni Mitchell's music and lyrics with her jazz vocalist ears and found truth and wisdom that inspired her and that she wanted to share with the world to inspire others. She studied the words more deeply and got the urge to re-imagine them in jazz arrangements. "I could almost 'Hear' them!" Together with friend and collaborator Monika Herzig, they spent many summer days of 2020 in the barn with keyboard and masks working out arrangements and rediscovering Joni's music.
In March 2021, the arrangements were premiered at the Jazz Kitchen in Indianapolis to most enthusiastic response. Many audience members came together for the first time in over a year and the messages of overcoming challenges, endurance, rebellion, love, and regret rang deep. They decided to record the music with a group of outstanding musicians and with community support from a successful Kickstarter Campaign. Just days after the completion of the Master Recording, Janiece left this world unexpectedly after heart surgery. This album is her legacy and her dream and we are grateful for her musical gift to us to be celebrated throughout 2023 with extensive tours in the US and Europe featuring renowned New York vocalist Alexis Cole.