Cover Artwork by Kryss Rubio

For World Jazz Day, update your playlists with new songs by these talented artists from both the local and international scene

Just in time for World Jazz Day, update your playlist with new songs to binge wherever you may be to match your mood. Then swiftly dive into the unique and soulful world of jazz by listening to these singers and musicians from the local and international scene:

1. Casey Abrams

Casey Abrams rose to fame when he took the sixth spot on the eleventh season of American Idol, proving his impressive flair for music. Apart from having powerful vocals, Casey can play the bass, cello, drums, melodica among many others which has helped him produce his albums with brimming artistry. As of writing, the musician has released three studio albums, one live album, two extended plays, alongside hit singles like Get Out and Simple Life, to name a few. Casey is also part of Postmodern Jukebox and has joined the band on tour.

Must-listen: Casey Abrams’ rendition of Why Don’t You Do Right (that’s right—the song from Who Framed Roger Rabbit) is phenomenal, especially the song’s outro.

2. Mishka Adams

Mishka Adams first learned to play the piano at a young age before falling in love with the saxophone. While she was born and bred in the Philippines, Mishka moved to London to pursue Masters in Jazz on top of the degree she earned previously at the University of the Philippines. All the while, Mishka has released a few albums before starting a choir called London Vocal Project, joining the samba group Rhythms of the City, touring and performing at the Malasimbo Music and Arts Festival.

Must-listen: Mishka Adam sounds divine in Autumn Leaves. It's a good first song to listen to before binge-listening to her newest songs including her recent album Mabuhay.

3. Christian Scott

Christian Scott knows his way around the trumpet, eventually earning him five Grammy nominations. You'll admire Christian's unique sound—a combination of jazz and hip-hop to name a couple—as he impresses an audience with calculated notes, impressive breathing techniques, and a passion that he himself exudes.

Must-listen: Christian Scott's The Walk might sound ominous but you'll be swept away by his terrific flair for the trumpet. 

4. Nicole Laurel Asensio

Nicole Laurel Asensio’s velvety vocals is as alluring as her presence on stage. Since the release of her solo album titled Schizoprano in 2015, many who have learned her name have returned for more music. Quite brilliantly, Nicole’s track titled Leader for a Day has lyrics that have been derived from strangers’ replies when asked what they would do if they became president for a day. With her theatrical background and incredible vocal range, Nicole poses a great musical presence that is yet to be discovered by many others—jazz fans or not.

Must-listen: Nicole Laurel Asensio’s most recent performance of Summertime has proven yet again her prowess for music.

5. Madeleine Peyroux

Madeleine Peyroux began busking in Paris before snagging the BBC International Artist Of The Year in 2007 and singing a rendition of La Javanaise which was included as a soundtrack for the highly-acclaimed film The Shape of Water in 2017. As someone who has discovered “music’s soothing power” at such a young age, Madeleine gifts us with nine albums that comforts and enlivens just about anyone.

Must-listen: Listen to Madeleine Peyroux’s Dance Me To The End Of Love and become entranced in her vintage jazz magic.

6. Esperanza Spalding

Esperanza Spalding gained international recognition after winning Best New Artist in the 52nd Grammy Awards, surpassing other popular artists at the time. Before then, however, many have admired Esperanza’s zest and soft vocals as she plays the bass on stage. With Esperanza’s adventurous musicianship, she was able to release seven studio albums.

Must-listen: Esperanza Spalding's Thang (hips) is a fun and light track you'll enjoy apart from her splendid vocals—and runs!

7. Baihana

Baihana, a girl group based in Cebu, consists of three talented singers namely Anna Achacoso Graham, Krina Cayabyab and Melinda Torre. Since 2008, the trio has swept the stage with Filipino classics and recently some pop song medleys sung in the style of barbershop music. But what’s more impressive about these gals is that they can conquer the stage just by singing acapella!

Must-listen: Baihana just added an acapella twist to Spice Girls’ Mama, leaving many to wish there was a full studio version of it.

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