January 2018, a new album, "Crime", by Penguins Too was released. The duo formerly known as "Two Penguins In The Desert" was founded in 1987 to play at Frank's and Michiel's finals at the conservatory, more specifically to play the Lennie Tristano tune "Wow". The cooperation felt very comfortable and the duo continued to play for 16 years, specializing in cool jazz and the "hotter" bebop tunes, resulting in its first album "Jazzs". After a sabbatical between 2003 and 2017, the duo currently focusses on music written for or associated with crime films and television series, such as the twelve tone music from the 1974 movie "The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three", Ennio Morricone's music from the television series "La Piovra", the main title of "Narcos", Duke Ellington's "Anatomy of a Murder". All these pieces, plus a Chopin prelude, a Misha tune and several duo improvisations will be issued as a suite. Visit our shop page to hear samples of the mentioned tracks.
March 2008 Dutch voice artist Greetje Bijma celebrated 25 years on stage at the Bimhuis, Amsterdam. On that evening she played with fellow Boy Edgar Prize winner Michiel Braam for the first time, and they decided to co-lead a sextet around 2011, also doing occasional duo performances. As of 2016 Greetje and Michiel form a regular duo, improvising freely and based on the Japanese epigrams by Lucebert and other poems, as well as playing plain songs, including Benjamin Britten's "The Last Rose Of Summer", Abbey Lincoln's "Caged Bird", "Throw It Away" and "Bird Alone" and several jazz standards such as "Stormy Weather".
In their music both musicians's idiosyncratisies are profoundly present and in dialog with each other. Bijma has a strong reputation as an improvising vocalist. With her souple voice and theatrical qualities, she is well known as an intriguing artist, her popularity reaching far beyond the jazz circuit. Braam comes from another world and has developed his own style of piano playing, composing and initiating musical projects based on an unbridled basis of jazz music in many forms, adding all kinds of personal elements to that without restraint.
This duo is a truly unique mix of those two voices, resulting in scrumptious and intriguing concerts.
Greetje Bijma voice, Michiel Braam piano