Yuliya Roma says Good-bye
Article on www.uajazz.com
I dare to express my opinion that the Art-club 44 still remains in Kyiv the only one place where one can hear high-quality jazz. Sure not, there are other clubs, though, it must be confessed that in most cases the music serves there as the background, the atmosphere is far from that of jazz; actually, jazz can be listened to though it is difficult to hear it.
And where, if not here, can be carried out Yuliya Roma's concert?..
Yuliya Roma is going to leave the stage for some time owing to some simple and plain reason - birth of a child.
On the one side, it seems to be good news. However, it is obvious that birth of a child is always a good fact especially taking into account the genes. On the other side, it is a little bit sad to realize that the voice of one of the most significant Ukrainian bands Night Groove will have to become unheard for some time...
44 is full. All the places are occupied, there are no free chairs. People are densely crowding at the entrances. There are a lot of Yuliya Roma's friends, old-hats, and disciples in here; sure, there also many casual visitors, whose talks keep flowing after Aleksey Kogan's coming out for representing the band.
At the stage you can see famous Ukrainian jazzmen: Nataliya Lebedeva, Igor Zakus, Aleks Fanatayev, Artem Mendelenko, and, that goes without saying, the hero of the occasion herself.
Now about the very music. New Roma's works were sung, which are likely to become the base of the her new album. These are lyrical songs filled with feelings, performed in Ukrainian, mostly tranquil ones. There's no wonder that most of them are filled with true mother warmness and care. The soft and at the same time anxious composition Moye-Moye can serve as an example that needs no additional explanation as for what this song is about... Of course there were such favourite Latin American rhythms, melodies, improvisations of the singer: the whole represented material can be easily called Ukrainian bossa nova.
Yuliya sings easily and at ease, though at the same time saving her efforts. Her solo parts are short but, as always, inventive and full of sincerity.
Sure, there were presents as well as flowers and warm words.
It goes without saying that storm of applause followed after each composition. Yuliya sang an encore of the title song of her album Heartbeats - On the Wings of Songs. That was the final part of the concert.
The time flows invisibly, so perhaps, soon we'll have chance to hear of the concert on the occasion of Yuliya Roma's coming back. And, by the way, it won't be surprise for me, if I find out that this concert takes place again in cosy and friendly atmosphere of the 44 basement...
CD of the Month
Magazine What Hi-Fi?
June of 2006
When a jazz singer records his or her first album, it is usually likely for him or her using trite standards mixed with up-to-date hits and arranged for personal style of the performer. That is how the result is achieved. Yuliya Roma suggested the program consisted of her personal compositions. Besides, Yulya's style of performing does not resemble anyone else's one. That is why the CD turned out to be fresh and original. Heartbeats is one of few albums at our music market, which meets generally accepted standards. It is easy to see from the cover with photos of the singer as well as from the lyrics and high level of performance. The bass guitarist Igor Zakus and the drummer Aleks Fantayev can easily be observed as stars of Ukrainian jazz stage, who managed to create a beautiful rhythm-section. Names of Aleksandr Pavlov and saxophonist Artem Mendelenko have also been on everybody's lips long ago. The pianist Nataliya Lebedeva with her subtle feeling for the instrument and ability to adorn the theme into individual manner makes every melody unforgettable. The quality of recording is high as well. Taking into account the above said the CD can be easily considered as the opening of the year...
Alexey Kogan About jazz
Magazine What Hi-Fi?
May of 2006
There is not too much time passed after the release of the debut album of the talented Ukrainian singer, composer, and author of English texts for Yuliya Roma's own songs. She is easily recognizable by those who are interested in Ukrainian jazz. Yuliya Roma's voice is bright and has no analogues in Ukraine.
... bright and noticeable performer. She is hard-working and obstinate; this is an enviable feature for a singer who devoted herself to jazz.
Perhaps, the most interesting things in Yuliya's life started from cooperation with an outstanding pianist and composer Nataliya Lebedeva. The result of work of this tandem was the creation of the Night Groove band, perhaps, one of the most distinctive Ukrainian jazz bands. It was NG where Yuliya Roma's talent flourished, the place where always reigned creative atmosphere -this is where original arrangements were given preference to, where personal sound and diversity from other bands. This is the period when Roma starts singing Brazil music. And she does brilliantly!
She has sensitive, soft, and very lively voice. She learnt to sing in Portugal and can feel all the fine points of Brazil harmony turning the voice into amazing instrument.
Yuliya's way is being formed in a right scheme: she is well oriented in jazz mainstream, Brazil, and Latin American music. But at some particular moment everything goes at the background :here come experience and comprehension of the fact that it is prime time to try oneself in composing music and texts, by the way, in English, performed well in specialists' opinion. As a result, there is a debut album called Heartbeats, released at the beginning of 2006.
Yuliya's songs are different moods with unusual harmony and bright vocal line. They are absolutely individual, an inclination for European jazz culture and some externally reserved and internally energy manner is felt in them. All the songs without exception are deeply lyrical and, as it seems to me, very resembling their author :
March of 2006
The record was made by Lemma studio in autumn, 2005. The author's album of the famous Ukrainian jazz singer and, as it turned out to be, talented English poetess and an interesting composer represents the young generation of Ukrainian jazz. Yuliya Roma has been singing in one of the best native bands, Night Groove, for about five years. The members of the band recorded the instrumental constituent of the album. The quality of the music, all its contents, sounding of the band and solo instrumentalists, created the unforgettable aroma and charm of the cycle. Reasoning, accuracy, and perfect setting of melodic, concord, tonal plans, sound timbre and racy methods, team-work of the band, mood changing reflected in tracks, general dramatic composition show the maturity and high level of the author and the rest of performers. Particular attention is paid to lyrical imaging, individualized musical intonation. Everyone who likes smart and deep music will feel true pleasure after listening to the marvelous music products created by Yuliya Roma and her gifted colleagues.