“Shyu's powerful and sensuous music paints landscapes.”– All About Jazz
Jen Shyu is not your run of the mill singer. An Illinois native of Taiwanese and East Timorese roots, she brings a stimulating anthropological and musical dimension to a very personal jazz perspective. Her formal studies in ballet bring movement and an interesting depth of field, and she’s a highly accomplished classical pianist too. Her appetite for deeper ethnographical insight has brought her to Cuba to investigate its enigmatic Chinese Diaspora, Brazil for its folkloric dance and Taiwan for its shamanistic tradition.
It’s all feeding into a formidable vocal approach that is both direct and theatrical, and places her in the heart of New York’s creative music firmament. Since 2003, she has been a member of Steve Coleman’s adventurous Five Elements outfit, as well as leading her own groups populated by musicians like Dave Binney and releasing albums like ‘09’s acclaimed Jade Tongue. She makes her Dublin debut in solo, all the better to appreciate the focus, physicality and creative intensity that are the hallmarks of this exceptional performer.
Shyu is juxtaposed with the brilliant Greek pianist George Kontrafouris, who opens proceedings in organ trio with two young Dublin musicians in drummer Matt Jacobson and guitarist Chris Guilfoyle, part of his long established tradition of putting emerging European players through their paces.
“Shyu crafts a personal synthesis, bringing tight, jazz-informed interplay to bear on themes of Asian-American Diaspora.”– Time Out New York