Masha Bijlsma (1971), the Netherlands
with great power of persuasion Masha Bijlsma sings classic jazzsongs as well as compositions from the members of her band, using repertoire from diverging composers as Monk, Fats Waller, Nat Adderley, Charlie Haden, Kate Bush and Coltrane.
After having played the piano and the bassguitar Masha started singing at the age of 19. At the end of 1990 she started the Masha Bijlsma Band. This group was an instant succes : in spring '92 it was the support act of the Billy Cobham Band at the Int.Jazzfest Gronau. Masha's career has rocketed since then: she very succesfully performs with her band, playing international jazzfestivals (North Sea jazzfestival) and doing club gigs, tv and radio performances all over Europe.
Guest–soloists with the Masha Bijlsma Band were among others: Tony Lakatos, Benny Bailey, Bob Malach, Jarmo Hoogendijk, Bart van Lier, Bert Boeren, Gary Thomas and Stanley Jordan.
Masha with Mr.Benny Bailey in Jazzclub Moods (Zürich)
Masha's debut cd 'Winds of change' was very well received by the press. Her 2nd cd 'Lebo' (with usa–tenorstar Bob Malach), released august '96; Masha's third cd 'Profile' (feat. Tony Lakatos, produced by Hein van de Geyn) was released march '99. may '00:'Profile' has been nominated for the Edison jazz award 2000. This 'dutch grammy' is the most prestigious award from the Dutch music industry. fourth cd: 'Lopin' produced by Hein van de Geyn (ex Dee Dee Bridgewater) march 2003. Masha’s ‘How long has this been going on’ from the 'Lopin’-cd has been released in aug. 2003 on the compilation-cd 'The finest in female vocal jazz' together with tracks from a.o. Cassandra Wilson, Diane Schuur and Diana Krall. 2004: the release of the cd ‘Three in one’ was a big succes; this compilation cd
with songs from Masha’s cd’s ‘Winds of change’, ‘Lebo’ and ‘Profile’ proved to be a big seller!
In 2008 Masha released the beautiful cd 'Whispers and Moans' ! Repertoir: ballads only!
In connection with the eightieth birthday of Ms. Abbey Lincoln on the 6th of August 2010 Masha decided
to release the cd 'For love of Abbey' as a sincere tribute to her favourite singer