At 26 years old, London trombonist Rosie Turton, who is a member of the Nerija septet, is releasing the EP Rosie’s 5ive as part of 5ive series launched by the Jazzre:freshed label. This first release as a leader is an indication of interesting upcoming possibilites.
Rosie Turton was already very immersed in the London jazz scene, playing alongside Nubya Garcia in the Nerija group and participating in the many gigs of the capital, alone or with her Rosie Turton Quintet, when she was pitched the 5ive project. She didn’t hesitate to accept this offer, which was to be supported by the Jazzre:freshed label, an institution that had already welcomed the talented Nubya Garcia in 2017.
Influenced by Indian music, jazz, and electronic music, her Rosie’s 5ive EP is surprisingly mature. All five tracks were composed by the musician, except for “Butterfly,” which is a bold cover of Herbie Hancock’s classic; he’s a figure from whom the trombonist draws her inspiration. “I wondered how I was going to make a Herbie Hancock piece different!” the musician confides. The gamble paid off. Played in unison with the violin, the easily recognizable theme takes on an almost hip-hop dimension, supported by the tireless groove of Jake Long’s drums.
The ideas for this project were born after several trips to India. The musician expresses herself on the composition of “Stolen Ribs,” a strange jewel totally imbued with claimed Indian influences: “This song is based on ragas [a melodic framework used in Indian classical music]. During recording, I couldn’t decide which take I wanted to keep. They were all different and all had something incredible about them. […] But the more I listened to the whole thing, the more I thought there was something missing. So I decided to add Luke Newman’s voice reciting his poem on top of it.” We appreciate the trombonist’s daring and the whole thing works perfectly.
The violin always holds a central place in this album. A sound that is very appreciated by the trombonist, Johanna Burnheart’s legato can indeed be found on almost all the tracks, in the exposition of the themes or in the solos.
Since the release of this EP, the young woman tells us that she would like to further develop her career as a leader, while continuing her participation in multiple groups. The best known, Nerija, is already planning many projects for 2019. With Nubya Garcia, Sheila Maurice-Grey, Cassie Kinoshi, Shirley Tetteh, Inga Eichler, Lizy Exell, the group merges hip-hop, afro-beat, and jazz inflections, winning the Parliamentary Awards’ Newcomer of the Year in 2017.
Almost all members of the Tomorrow’s Warriors collective where they met each other at the beginning, they naturally decided to form this group. “We didn’t want to make the fact that we’re all women an event, we wanted it to be natural. There are so many groups that are all male. […] I have often been told that this gives hope to many young girls, and it is really positive!” Tomorrow’s Warriors is an organization that works to connect artists, venues, and jazz broadcasting institutions; it mainly helps emerging artists from the African diaspora and young musicians with a bright musical future, in England and abroad. Before, Rosie Turton, Moses Boyd and many others took their first steps there.
Rosie Turton is inspired by Alice Coltrane, Madlib, Debussy, and Pharoah Sanders, whom she was able to accompany last summer with her Rosie Turton Quintet. She offers a colorful playfulness and a new energy that will certainly make her one of the future role models of the London jazz scene.
Rosie Turton, Rosie’s 5ive (Jazz Re:freshed)