is a hard bop
Hard bop is a style of jazz that is an extension of bebop music. Journalists and record companies began using the term in the mid-1950s to describe a new current within jazz which incorporated influences from rhythm and blues, gospel music, and blues, especially in the saxophone and piano...
Post-bop is a term for a form of small-combo jazz music that evolved in the early-to-mid sixties. The genre's origins lie in seminal work by John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Bill Evans, Charles Mingus, Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock...
Hammond B3 organist
An organist is a musician who plays any type of organ. An organist may play solo organ works, play with an ensemble or orchestra, or accompany one or more singers or instrumental soloists...
At age 11, Dennerlein began playing electronic organ. After starting organ
The organ , is a keyboard instrument of one or more divisions, each played with its own keyboard operated either with the hands or with the feet. The organ is a relatively old musical instrument in the Western musical tradition, dating from the time of Ctesibius of Alexandria who is credited with...
lessons, she learned to play the two manual organ with a bass pedalboard. After one and a half years of lessons she continued to study without formal instruction. At age 15, she played in a jazz club for the first time. When leading her own bands, Dennerlein was often the youngest musician in the group, and she learned to cooperate with more experienced musicians. Her local reputation as the "Organ tornado from Munich" spread after her first TV
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...
appearances in 1982.
When her third LP Bebab
was issued, Dennerlein established her own record label in 1985. She received two German Record Critics' awards for self-produced albums.. Later, she made three recordings for Enja Records
Enja Records is a German jazz record label based in Munich, Germany. It was founded by jazz enthusiasts Matthias Winckelmann and Horst Weber in 1971....
and three for Verve Records
Verve Records is an American jazz record label now owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded by Norman Granz in 1956, absorbing the catalogues of his earlier labels, Clef Records and Norgran Records , and material which had been licensed to Mercury previously.-Jazz and folk origins:The Verve...
. On these recordings she worked with Ray Anderson
Ray Anderson is an independent jazz trombone and trumpet player. Anderson is a boisterous trombonist who is masterful at multiphonics. Trained by the Chicago Symphony trombonists, he is regarded as pushing the limits of the instrument. He is a contemporary and colleague of trombonist/composer...
, Randy Brecker
Randal "Randy" Brecker is an American trumpeter and flugelhornist. He is a highly sought after performer in the genres of jazz, rock, and R&B, and has performed or recorded with Stanley Turrentine, Billy Cobham, Bruce Springsteen, Lou Reed, Sandip Burman, Charles Mingus, Blood, Sweat & Tears,...
, Dennis Chambers
Dennis Chambers is an American drummer who has recorded and performed with John Scofield, George Duke, Brecker Brothers, Santana, Parliament/Funkadelic, John McLaughlin, Niacin, Mike Stern, Greg Howe, and many others. Despite a lack of formal training, Chambers has become well known among...
, Roy Hargrove
Roy Anthony Hargrove is an American jazz trumpeter. He won worldwide notice after winning two Grammy Awards for differing types of music, in 1997, and in 2002...
, Mitch Watkins, and Jeff 'Tain' Watts
Jeff "Tain" Watts is a jazz drummer born in 1960 who has performed with Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Betty Carter, Michael Brecker, and others.-Biography:...
Dennerlein's performances on the Hammond organ include solo performances as well as quintets (e.g. her "Bebab" band). She has MIDI interfaces and triggers built into pedals and manuals of her Hammond B-3 organ, which allows her to add synthesizers and sampler
A sampler is an electronic musical instrument similar in some respects to a synthesizer but, instead of generating sounds, it uses recordings of sounds that are loaded or recorded into it by the user and then played back by means of a keyboard, sequencer or other triggering device to perform or...
s to her sound.
After a variety of projects and after playing with renowned unconventional musicians, such as Friedrich Gulda
Friedrich Gulda was an Austrian pianist and composer who worked in both the classical and jazz fields.Born in Vienna as the son of a teacher, Gulda began learning to play the piano from Felix Pazofsky at the Wiener Volkskonservatorium, aged 7...
, Dennerlein started playing the pipe organ
The pipe organ is a musical instrument that produces sound by driving pressurized air through pipes selected via a keyboard. Because each organ pipe produces a single pitch, the pipes are provided in sets called ranks, each of which has a common timbre and volume throughout the keyboard compass...
in 1994. In 2002, she recorded the first of her two (to date) jazz albums on church organ. Since 2003 she has also developed jazz projects with symphonic orchestras
An orchestra is a sizable instrumental ensemble that contains sections of string, brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments. The term orchestra derives from the Greek ορχήστρα, the name for the area in front of an ancient Greek stage reserved for the Greek chorus...
Dennerlein's first album included four of her own titles. Her compositions
Musical composition can refer to an original piece of music, the structure of a musical piece, or the process of creating a new piece of music. People who practice composition are called composers.- Musical compositions :...
vary from traditional blues
Blues is the name given to both a musical form and a music genre that originated in African-American communities of primarily the "Deep South" of the United States at the end of the 19th century from spirituals, work songs, field hollers, shouts and chants, and rhymed simple narrative ballads...
schemes, romantic, melancholic ballad
A ballad is a form of verse, often a narrative set to music. Ballads were particularly characteristic of British and Irish popular poetry and song from the later medieval period until the 19th century and used extensively across Europe and later the Americas, Australia and North Africa. Many...
s to tempo driven compositions with elements of swing
Swing music, also known as swing jazz or simply swing, is a form of jazz music that developed in the early 1930s and became a distinctive style by 1935 in the United States...
Bebop differed drastically from the straightforward compositions of the swing era, and was instead characterized by fast tempos, asymmetrical phrasing, intricate melodies, and rhythm sections that expanded on their role as tempo-keepers...
Funk is a music genre that originated in the mid-late 1960s when African American musicians blended soul music, jazz and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground...
and Latin rhythms. The fast tempos and rhythmic figures she uses in her interpretations of well-known standards, and in many of her own compositions, requires fast bass pedalboard foot work . Dennerlein often uses changing meter (e.g., 3/4 to 4/4), as well as unconventional harmonic changes to add expression to her compositions.
- 1995: "German Record Critics Award" ("Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik") for "Take Off"
- 1995: "Jazz Award" for "Take Off" for holding the number one position in the German Jazz Charts for several months and for being best selling Jazz Album of the year in Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...
- 1983: Jazz Live
- 1984: Orgelspiele
- 1985: Bebab
- 1986: Days Of Wine And Roses
- 1987: Tribute To Charlie
- 1988: Barbara Dennerlein Plays Classics
- 1988: Straight Ahead! and Barbara Dennerlein Plays Classics
- 1989: Live On Tour
- 1990: Hot Stuff and Barbara Dennerlein Duo (Bootleg)
- 1991: (Friedrich Gulda) Mozart No End
- 1992: That's Me and Solo
- 1995: Take Off!
- 1997: Junkanoo
- 1999: Outhipped
- 2001: Love Letters
- 2002: Spiritual Movement No.1 (Church organ recording)
- 2004: In A Silent Mood
- 2005: It's Magic
- 2006: The Best Of Barbara Dennerlein
- 2007: Change Of Pace (with Philharmonic Orchestra)
- 2008: Spiritual Movement No. 2 (live at Kaiser William Memorial Church
The Protestant Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church is located in Berlin on the Kurfürstendamm in the centre of the Breitscheidplatz. The original church on the site was built in the 1890s. It was badly damaged in a bombing raid in 1943...
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...
- 2010: Bebabaloo