Sunna Gunnlaugs Trio
Icelandic pianist Sunna Gunnlaugs was born near Reykjavik, and studied organ
and piano as a child. By her teens, she began playing jazz, influenced by Bill Evans,
Keith Jarrett and Bobo Stenson.
In 1993 she made her way to the US as a student at William Paterson College and began to
hone her own distinct musical voice.
After graduating in 1996,
she moved to Brooklyn and made her debut recording "Far Far Away" with
bassist Dan Fabricatore and drummer (and future husband), Scott McLemore.
In New York her focus shifted decidedly to performing her own music. She began appearing at
listening rooms such as Cornelia Street Cafe and the Knitting Factory, and was proclaimed an "impressive newcomer" by the Village Voice.
However, the music she was writing began to need more than just a trio.
She called upon
saxophonist Tony Malaby and bassist Drew Gress. In 1999, along with McLemore,
the quartet recorded "Mindful" and, with time left over on the same day,
"Songs from Iceland."
In 2002 she released "Fagra Veröld"
(music written to Icelandic poetry), featuring Gress and McLemore as well as the
voice of Kristjana Stefánsdóttir and saxophonist Sigurdur Flosason. In 2003, the
high-energy "Live in Europe", recorded in Prague in the middle of a three-week tour of Europe
with saxophonist Ohad Talmor and bassist Matt Pavolka.
2010's “The Dream” featured saxophonist Loren Stillman, bassist Eivind Opsvik and
Her latest CD, from 2011, is
Long Pair Bond.
(Click to listen to this lovely recording, featuring the trio that will appear at Chez Hanny.)
The 7 CDs she has released as a leader have consistently met with critical praise over the
years, and she has appeared in publications such as JazzTimes, Downbeat, Jazziz,
Jazz Podium, Concerto, Stereo, Jazzman, Village Voice, Time Out New York, Swing Journal,
Jazzwise, All About Jazz and The Washington Post.
Gunnlaugs has performed throughout the US, Canada and Europe, as well
as in Tokyo, Japan.
Bassist Thorgrimur Jonsson was born 29 of May 1976 in Reykjavik, Iceland.
He graduated with a B.M. from the Royal Conservatory in Haag, Netherlands in 2006.
After moving back home to Iceland he has become one of the most in demand bassists in
the country. He has recorded with various Icelandic artists and has been a member of the
Sunna Gunnlaugs Trio since 2007.
Scott McLemore (b. Feb. 1, 1973 Norfolk, VA) is a drummer based in Reykjavik, Iceland.
He attended Old Dominion University 1992-93 where he studied jazz performance and
composition and studied drums privately with Howard Curtis.
In 1993 Scott transfered to William Paterson College where he studied
with John Riley, Vic Juris and Rufus Reid, and began playing professionally in New York City.
In 1997 he moved to New York where he lived for 8 years and played with such talented
musicians as Ben Monder, Tony Malaby, David Berkman, Chris Cheek, George Colligan, Mark Helias, and Tim Berne.
His work as a leader has resulted in a recording with Tony Malaby, Ben Monder and
Ben Street called "Found Music" on Fresh Sound New Talent Records.