SOLID! has been one of Norway’s premiere organ trios for over ten years, comprising three of the country’s finest young jazz musicians. SOLID! takes the guitar/organ/drums format, so rich in tradition, into new musical territory with their interplay, inspired improvisations and original compositions. SOLID! was voted “Young Jazzmusicians of the year 2002” by the Norwegian Jazz Forum and the Norwegian Concert Institute. They also won the grand prize in the Getxo International Jazz Contest in Spain in 2003, and they won both the soloist prize and the ”audience’ favorite-prize”. SOLID! has over the last 5 years toured in countries such as Nepal, India, Ireland, Sweden, Belgium, Vietnam, France and USA.
The majority of the trio’s repertoire is composed by guitarist Bjørn Vidar Solli. The music is rooted in American jazz, but there is a certain undeniable European influence as well. The music varies between hard swinging jazz to more open and subtle soundscapes. They explore and exploit the sonic possibilities of the three instruments and draw on a variety of influences such as rock, pop, hip hop and classical music. And since Solli has spent most of his time in New York the last 5 years his compositions and playing contain a distinct New York-esque flavor. Organist Daniel Formo’s fresh and original sound combined with the elegant touch and incomparable drive of Håkon Mjåset Johansen, fronted by Bjorn Solli with his inventive and swinging guitar playing makes SOLID! one of Norway’s most exciting jazz outfits.
New York based tenor saxophonist/composer Seamus Blake is recognized as one of the finest and most creative young players in jazz. John Scofield, who hired him for his “Quiet Band,” calls him “extraordinary, a total saxophonist.” In February 2002, he took first place in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition in Washington D. C. As the winner, he performed with Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock.
“Visitor” is SOLID!’s 4th album and was recorded in April 2010 after a week-long tour in Norway with saxophonist Seamus Blake. Guitarist Solli has composed most of the repertoire, with additional compositions by organist Formo, the multifarious artist Lyder Janøy and producer/songwriter/film composer Jon Brion. The album was recorded in legendary Rainbow Studios in Oslo, Norway by Jan Erik Kongshaug and Peer Espen Ursfjord.
Seamus Blake – saxophone
Bjørn Vidar Solli – guitar
Daniel Formo – organ
Håkon Mjåset Johansen – drums