Estelle recorded for Warner Bros. South Africa, when she was 18 and her stage debut in 1987 with jazz super group Phambili at Kippies Jazz Club in Johannesburg caused a sensation. “South Africa, here is a real jazz singer” Don Albert, South Africa
In 1988 Estelle Kokot joined jazz fusion band Rush Hour and the group recorded their album ‘The Perfect Way’. It topped the charts and the band toured the South African club, festival and concert circuit.
Estelle moved to London in 1993 and soon established herself on the live scene, performing at Pizza Express and the Vortex Jazz clubs, the Cambridge Modern Jazz Cub and Band on the Wall in Manchester amongst others. She also played at the Cork, London and Soho Jazz festivals, Dusseldorf Jazz Rally and at theatres in Switzerland and Germany.
She released two studio albums ‘Alternative Therapy’ (1999) and ‘Information’ (2006) with London based line-ups. ‘Where Is the Rainbow’ from her SAMA nominated album ‘Information’ (2007) featured on South African TV series ‘A Place Called Home’. South African Strictly Come Dancing winner, actor/singer Emmanuel Castis recorded one of the album tracks on his CD ‘South of Nowhere’ (2008).
“Standards and originals perfectly compatible side by side, Kokot is an excellent arranger of her own and other peoples’ material” John Fordham, The Guardian, London
She performed at the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz Festival in 2015 with Chicago born saxophonist/composer Chico Freeman. They recorded an album called The Sound of You in Cape Town in 2014 with SA Jazz stars Herbie Tsoaeli and Kevin Gibson.
“Such narratives demand thoughtful phrasing and perfect diction as well as a melodious voice. On all counts Kokot delivers” Gwen Ansell Business Day
In keeping with the theme of National Women’s Month in South Africa, The Jazz Feminine will explore the concept of female song writing and jazz. Repertoire will range from my own material to Afrikaans poet Ingrid Jonker’s Die Kind (I have written music for this wonderful poem and will sing it in Afrikaans) to wonderful Zulu-Zambian composer/lyricist Dorothy Masuka.
Original arrangements of Joni Mitchell’s finest that embody the womanly spirit, Nina Simone’s fierce independence and Billy Holiday’s vulnerable interpretations will be saluted. I will also present Englishman Mark Hillman’s poetry that I have set to music, inspired by Homer’s Odyssey from Penelope’s perspective.
Estelle will be performing at The Orbit Jazz Club in Johannesburg, before returning to London for The London Jazz Festival in November 2016. She plans to record and release a solo album featuring her material in 2017. A digital release of her current album The Sound of You is on the cards with Sony ATV International.
“…A powerful, soulful and independent artist, if you want to hear a genuine innovator with a creative twist on Jazz vocals include Estelle Kokot” London Jazz Festival Preview The Guardian 2006
Have a listen… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzD6NVi80dY
***Please note that dinner is available from 7pm & show starts at 8:30pm