Steinway & Sons signs Connie Han to celebrated artist roster

23-year-old pianist Connie Han joins the Steinway & Sons artist roster alongside renowned jazz pianists McCoy Tyner, Art Tatum, Kenny Barron, Ahmad Jamal, Brad Mehldau, Renee Rosnes, and Fred Hersch.

“Only a Steinway piano possesses the raw power to satiate the hungry young lioness inhabiting my creative soul.” — Connie Han

View Connie’s artist page on Steinway’s website here.

Italian Culture and News Site Exclusive Interview with Connie Han, the Rising Star of Jazz

“Connie Han is one of the rising stars of the new American Jazz scene.

Born in Los Angeles in a family of musicians and raised in the myth of Chick Korea, Kenny Kirkland and Herbie Hancock, approaches the Jazz at Los Angeles County High School.

Is a jazz musician "with frightening technical skills, a wealth of history and a lot of originality to write melodies that capture easily hearing", writes about her to the New York Times, while Jazziz has included in this article between the artists to keep an eye on in 2019.

"With this album (Crime zone, ED), Connie Han has booked a place among the stars of tomorrow's jazz," are the words that has dedicated All About Jazz.

To present his latest work and to learn more about its main artistic influences, we we interviewed Connie Han.” (Translated from Italian to English. View the complete interview in English here. View the complete interview in Italian here.

ArtsBeatLA: Interview with Connie Han on jazz debut CRIME ZONE

“Connie Han strides onto the stage at Vibrato Grill in sky-high stiletto boots and skin-tight black leather. She props her cell phone at the deep end of her Yamaha piano keyboard and presses ‘record.’ Pretty soon the dynamic and expressive hands of this petite, slim woman are racing and gliding with alacrity. Burning up the keyboard, she snarls and grimaces as she creates extraordinary rhythms and melodies. The only thing restrained about this jazz artist are the two bobby pins in her extra long, dark hair.

At 22, Han is such a ferocious performer and composer that she’s already been referred to as a ‘young lioness.’ The moniker suits her perfectly.

Han’s professional career began when she was 17 with her independently produced 2015 album, The Richard Rodgers Songbook.

Now she’s launched her original compositions with her debut album, CRIME ZONE,which has just been released by Mack Avenue Records. With it, Han has created an edgy blend of modern and traditional jazz.”

View the complete interview with Connie here.

Jazziz Magazine - The Shape of Jazz To Come: Artists to Watch In 2019

“Jazz thrives on regeneration and invention, which means that each new year brings a new opportunity for artists to extend the tradition, challenge norms, make new connections and push the music into unforeseen territory.

Here are 19 artists we think will take jazz to new heights in 2019. Some have been on the scene for a while; others you should get to know. Young and visionary, they’re all linked by a desire to move the music forward, tugging the tradition along with them. Want to get a sense for where jazz is headed? Follow these players.”

“With the release of her debut album, Crime Zone, L.A. native Connie Han announced herself as a pianist keen on tradition yet unafraid to redefine it. The album pays tribute to her primary jazz influences — the pianists McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Kenny Kirkland — by way of spirit and energy, not mere reproduction. Her originals were firmly stamped with her own artistic vision, and it’s a vision that she will certainly continue to expand through 2019 and beyond.”

View the article here.

Jazziz Magazine: Crime Zone Review

“Los Angeles-based pianist Connie Han exhibits a refreshing inventiveness that belies her youth.” - Jazziz Magazine

“Han has been labeled a rising star and rightfully so — she’s an intriguing artist with mastery over her instrument as well as a deft bandleader. Given the maturity and brilliance she demonstrates on “CRIME ZONE", perhaps “rising” could be dropped from that designation.” - Jazziz Magazine

Read the full review here.

JazzBluesNews.Space Interview with Connie Han: Jazz at its best has a little grit and darkness

JazzBluesNews.Space: – First let’s start with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music?

Connie Han: – Born in Los Angeles to Chinese professional musicians, music has been part of my life since birth. My mother, a classical piano instructor, provided me the technical facility and instrumental command I needed to tackle jazz as a complete art form. I was brought up around traditional Chinese folk and classical music, so when I listened to jazz for the first time, I was enamored by the culture and its unique creative process. Since I was very young, there’d always been something brewing inside of me that needed a creative outlet: spontaneous improvisation. Jazz was calling to me.

JBN.S: – What got you interested in picking up the piano? What teacher or teachers helped you progress to the level of playing you have today? What made you choose the piano?

CH: – At 14-years-old, I was accepted into the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts as a double major in classical piano and voice. After proving my willingness to work hard to the jazz department faculty, I transitioned quickly into a full-time jazz piano major. My apprenticeship to LACHSA instructor Bill Wysaske was crucial to my “jazz IQ” development, as he was the guiding force in my transition from a beginner jazz student into a full-fledged jazz artist and professional musician. Working with him in my formative years helped me understand “the social equation” of playing with others and, most importantly, the absolute necessity of playing with great time and feel. As I did not have a formal “jazz piano” instructor, my rhythm-driven playing style (inspired by players like Kenny Kirkland) is heavily informed by my experience studying with a drummer. Asides from studying that side of the music, we also tackled learning diverse repertoire, interpretation of playing style, and composition/arranging through deconstructing concepts, pure problem-solving, and relentless practice.

JBN.S: – How did your sound evolve over time? What did you do to find and develop your sound?

CH: – Practice, listen, and transcribe — those are the three words I live by to this day in my work ethic. A key part of my evolution was my desire to sound and swing like my heroes: Mulgrew Miller, Kenny Kirkland, McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea, Hank Jones, Wynton Kelly. I constantly transcribed their solos and tried to incorporate their vocabulary into my own. It was important I balanced transcription with raw creative practicing as well, so I wasn’t constantly regurgitating “licks”, but I was also applying the larger abstract concept in my own voice. I consider myself an eternal student of this music, so I still live by these practices.

View the complete interview here.

Paste Magazine: 12 New Jazz Artists to Watch in 2019

Culture and entertainment media outlet Paste Magazine includes Connie Han as No. 2 in its “12 New Jazz Artists to Watch in 2019” article:

“As the jazz community bids farewell to some revered elders who passed away in 2018 (Cecil Taylor, Randy Weston, Nancy Wilson, Bob Dorough, Sonny Fortune, Hugh Masekela), some intriguing new faces are emerging on the scene, bringing fresh visions and expanding the boundaries of the music in the process. Here are a dozen to watch for in 2019…”

“The 22-year-old Los Angeles pianist combines astounding chops and rare maturity that belies her young age on her latest album, Crime Zone. Creating an edgy blend of modern and traditional jazz, Han is pushing the music forward with her own unique vision.”

Read the full article here.