Soesja CitroenView in iTunes
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Although not well known in the U.S., Soesja Citroen is among Holland's top jazz singers and has commanded a lot of respect in European jazz circles. Her influences include Abbey Lincoln, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald, among others, and she is an expressive interpreter of lyrics as well as a talented composer/lyricist. Though Dutch is her native language, Citroen's English is excellent--and she sings with only a slight trace of a Dutch accent. The vocalist was born and raised in the Hague, and as a young adult, she moved to Amsterdam to further her education and earned a masters degree in social psychology. Citroen was 32 when, in 1980, she recorded her debut album, To Build--and she went on to provide seven more albums in the 1980s, recording for Turning Point, Varagram and Timeless. It was in 1983 that she recorded the Turning Point release Soesja Citroen Sings Thelonious Monk, which received rave reviews from European jazz critics and is considered one of her best albums. Another conceptual offering that enjoyed high marks from European critics was 1987's Soesja Citroen sings Fred Astaire on Varagram. Citroen was equally busy in the 1990s, when she recorded for Varajazz and Challenge and often worked with the well respected British producer Chris Ellis. ~ Alex Henderson