'Alexia's concert contained all facets of a perfect Jazz night. Music and performance at the highest level. A voice in full maturity. And on top of all: a full display of an open heart filled with Jazz. A heart that overflows with joy and generosity. A heart that shares and gives. A wide smile with many twinkles and true connections to the audience'.
An excerpt from a Jazz Fan, Dr Daniel à Wengen on Alexia's Blog on Jan,12th 2012.
This British Singer with Jamaican Roots is a Swiss Jazz Award Winner (2011) and had her 3rd Album - Chasing Hope - successfully through the first round Grammy Award Nominations in 2 catagories - Best Vocal Jazz Album - and Best New Comer (53rd Grammy Awards 2011).
Alexia Gardner began her career touring the British Cabaret Circuit in England and Wales during her teens. She toured with her gifted sister - Paula Gardner - as a sophisticated Accapella duo called 'High Profile' and got much acclaim for their wonderfully harmonic voices.
As a graduate of London's Central School of Speech and Drama with a Bachelor of Education Honours in Speech and Drama (B.Ed Hons) Alexia, at first, embarked on a very rewarding Teaching career in her home city of Birmingham. She taught Drama and English Language at Secondary Schools but soon began persuing her love of music, particularly that of jazz music.
A solo career took her across the Mediterranean on luxury Cruise Liners as well as to the luxury hotel groups in Asia. Part of her addictiveness stems from her Jamaican parentage where she is able to incorporate everything from Standard Jazz Classics, Latin grooves, a touch of Reggae vibes, soft Bossa Nova styles to gentle, familiar ballads.
"More than an accomplished jazz vocalist with a silken voice, Alexia Gardner a true entertainer". (That's Shanghai Magazine, April 2006)
With over a decade of tours and concerts in South East Asia, Alexia Gardner has recently returned to Europe. She is now resident in Basel, Switzerland and is enjoying the local music community.
Alexia is currently in rehearsals for the role of Aida in the Elton John and Tim Rice AIDA THE MUSICAL. The production will be the German version and the performance will be on April 26 - 27 and May 3 -4 2013 in the Swiss capital of Bern.
Below are some details on Alexia's 4 albums to date. They are an excellent documentation of Alexia's musical exploration of Jazz as she toured the world with truely gifted international musicans.
The Rest Of Your Life, Alexia Gardner Live At The Jazz Club -was recorded in 2001 at the `Jazz Club` in Hongkong. The suitably entitled - Jammin' Alexia Gardner Live In Shanghai - was recorded in the sophisticated Wine and Cigar Room of the JC Mandarin in downtown Shanghai. This second album of Alexia's was released in January 2006. Here is one of the many shining reviews:
"This is one of the strongest jazz Vocal CDs I've heard in a long time. Alexia Gardner comes across in the tradition of Sarah, Ella and Nancy but with her own uniqueness. A wonderful singer with a wonderful rhythm section!" (Phil Morrison, bassist, composer, lyricist August 2006)
Her Spring 2009 studio recording in the beautiful St Gallen Region of Switzerland, her adopted home, shows her creativity both in song writing and diverse musical styles. The recording resulted in the album - Chasing Hope Alexia Gardner and Offbeat Trio - and has earned Alexia and her band the prestigious 2011 Swiss Jazz Award. This album was also featured at the London Jazz Festival and BBC Radio 3 2009. It was successfully through the first round of the 2011 53rd Grammy Award Nominations in two catagories. 'Best New Artist' and 'Best Vocal Jazz' Album.
Special Guests on this album are saxophonist - Pius Baumgartner - and Backing Vocalists - Paula and Alexia Hope Gardner. This is the same 'Hope' in the title track and album - Chasing Hope. She is my 10 year old neice and is the inspiration for this lovely tune that I co-wrote with Oliver Von Essen some years ago; Oliver is a New York based Pianist/Organist/ Composer. Both my sister, Paula, and her daughter, Hope, are providing the backing vocals for Track no. 3 on the Chasing Hope album - the Jamaican classic 'Island in the Sun'.
Alexia Gardner has just released her 4th ablum. September 30th 2011. A Live Recording of Bass, Guitar and Voice - a sophisiticated trio setting - at the well known Basel Jazz Club - The Birds Eye Jazz Club. She has designed a website focused directly on this her latest album. Alexia Gardner, A Little Closer, Live At The Birds Eye Jazz Club. Please feel free to browse through this site and learn more about this exciting and swinging recording.
'When listening to vocalist, Alexia Gardner, you are reminded of that era when a jazz singer was just that, someone in that tradition who would take a song and tell its story musically, respecting the integrity of its original melody, yet using nuanced phrasing that would be uniquely individual.
For those 'jazz aficionados' or even those who are just lovers of good music. I would strongly suggest that you treat yourself to hearing one of the true practioners of this great artform, jazz! Truly a world citizen via Jamaica, England, Asia and Europe, and a world class jazz singer,
Ms. Alexia Gardner!"
Phil Morrison (Bassist/Composer/Songwriter)
Brunswick, Georgia US, Summer 2010