We Are Leif
Wednesday 6 March 2019 8.30pm Churston Golf Club
We Are Leif are comprised of four established improvising musicians and led by the songwriting team of vocalist Louise Victoria and drummer, Mark Whitlam. We Are Leif deftly span the balance of jazz sensibilities with the groove and sound world more associated with Neo-Soul, R’n’B and Down Tempo genres.
A chance meeting of Louise and Mark on a gig, led to a conversation about the frustration of wanting to stretch out musically in a different direction. This direction was looking towards New York’s contemporary scene of groove-based, jazz-infused musical scene – sharing influences from the likes of Gretchen Parlato, Becca Stevens, Esperanza Spalding and Taylor Eigsti, yet not forgetting references closer to home, such as Portishead, Massive Attack and Lamb.
Formed in 2016, all four members of We Are Leif are established jazz musicians, they invite the audience into moments of exciting improvisational flights within the narrative of the song as a key component to their live performance. Between them, they span a wide musical landscape, having previously worked with jazz artists Iain Ballamy, Jason Rebello, Andy Sheppard and vocalists Claire Martin and Clare Teal, through to soul songstresses Beverley Knight and Joss Stone.
With flagship jazz festivals including Cheltenham, Manchester, Bristol and North Sea Jazz Festival’s sister So What’s Next?(Eindhoven, NL) under their belt, together with Jazz FM’s Chris Philips and Tony Minvielle giving regular airplay to their 2017 EP and current single, Imperfect, the band is steadily gaining recognition and establishing their musical identity.
Line-up: Vocals – Louise Victoria, Drums & Electronics – Mark Whitlam, Piano & Keyboards – Dale Hambridge, Bass – Chris Jones
“Soulful business from We Are Leif … a particular favourite of mine … look out for them!” Tony Minvielle, Jazz FM
“Splendidly crowd-pleasing” Tony Benjamin, Bristol 24/7
“We Are Leif are steadily building a buzz around themselves” Mike Collins, jazzyblogman
“Blending their improv Jazz chops with neo-soul and grown up R‘n’B, and then giving it a smoky, backstreet club vibe borrowed from Trip Hop and unmistakably Bristolian, We Are Leif have created something that is reassuringly familiar yet excitingly new” Tap The Feed