Welcome to Tales from the Jazz Side first spotlight addition! This new segment features young musicians as they start their musical journey, creating their own stories to be passed on.
Tales is coming coming from singer-songwriter, Julia Blenzig.
I met Julia perhaps months after she was born. She is the daughter of pianist, composer, arranger, Charles Blenzig. Since Charles and I have been on the road together touring with Michael Franks for over 20 years, I’ve had the pleasure to get to know Charles’ family through dinners, rehearsals, events and celebrations. Watching his children as they grew from infants to teenagers, reminded me of how fast time passed, but I also discovered that perhaps time just does what time does and it was my measuring of it that created the illusion of swiftness.
Ever since she could walk and talk there was something unique about this beautiful and energetic young lady. And when she decided that she wanted to follow in her father’s footsteps and become a musician, we all knew that she had found her calling. I’ve watched and listened from her “baby days’ as she embraced and progressed through the musical territories, that can be fraught with many disappointments as well as ecstatic joys.
It was heartening to interview this teenager today and to hear her confidence that stems from real “payin dues” experience. She consistently shows her dedication and courage as she follows her dreams; displaying a wisdom beyond her young age that understands the value of discipline and the importance of having a true sense of mission. This gives me great hope for the future of music.
Last year she made her first CD, “A Kid’s Christmas”. Since then she has been working hard and moving forward building her own body work.
You can listen to samples and purchase Julia’s CD “A Kid’s Christmas” and you on Amazon, iTunes, and YouTube.
Everything is gestation and then bringing forth. To let each impression and each germ of a feeling come to completions wholly in itself, in the dark, in the inexpressible, the unconscious, beyond the reach of ones’ own intelligence, await with deep humility and patience the birth-hour of a new clarity: that alone is living the artist’s life: in understanding as in creating.
There is here no measuring with time, no year matters, and ten years are nothing. Being an artist means, not reckoning and counting, but ripening like the tree which does not force its sap and stands confident in the storms of spring without the fear that after them may come no summer. It does come. But it comes only to the patient, who are there as though eternity lay before them, so unconcernedly still and wide. I learn it daily, learn it with pain to which I am grateful: patience is everything.
— from “Letters To A Young Poet”, by Rainer Maria Rilke.
I feel somehow Julia has enough patience for all of us.
About Julia Blenzig
Vocalist, Julia Blenzig is a native New Yorker, having been born and raised in Queens. Currently a freshman enrolled in the music program at Bayside High School, Julia has grown up with music being an integral part of her life as her father, Charles Blenzig is not only a professor in the Jazz department of the Conservatory of Music at S.U.N.Y. Purchase, he is a seasoned pianist who performs, records, and produces both on the national and international stage.
As an emerging voice, Julia is still fleshing out musical styles and has fully embraced various genres while retaining her own distinctive sound. Her first CD entitled A Kid’s Christmas showcases this young singer’s ability, range, and innate talent. Julia is making a name for herself locally by performing at several community events including Bayside Day, 2014 held at the Fort Totten Historic District and the Annual Lawn Concert at Crocheron Park co-sponsored by Bayside Historical Society and NYC Department of Parks and Recreation.
Julia has also become a fixture at the Jazz at the Castle series held three times a year in Bayside where she performs with a piano, bass and drums trio. Recently, she has made her way onto Bell Boulevard, the renowned Queens hotspot where she recently performed at the Bourbon Street Cafe. When asked for her advise to fledging performers during an interview last year, Julia remarked: “my advice is to do it because you love it, and put everything you’ve got into it. Don’t forget to have fun when you perform- after all, it is called “playing” music.”
bio from Julia Blenzig press packet.