We're an all volunteer website and need your help to keep going. Here are five ways you can contribute:
2 Buy something
3 Submit a story
New in the gift shop, virtualitalia.com logo wear and use items!
PLEASE NOTE: We are experiencing unexpected
technical difficulties caused by our web host. We apologize for
the inconvenience. During your visit you may experience service
and page interruptions - we are in the process of fixing everything and hope to be
fully back on our feet soon.
rita di ghent
Comments about the artist's music
Reviews of her debut album, "Mindin' the Shop" -- a neo-traditional tribute to her musical influences -- all decreed Rita a unique voice. Her latest project marks the birth of a jazz style of her own invention: "Sprawl". Whereas Sprawl shares features with other swing, funk and hiphop styles, its uniqueness lies in the incorporation of melodic, harmonic or lyrical elements from classic repertoire. For example, di Ghent's Signs of Spring ... (recently licensed to the U.K. major label "Time Warp") is modern-day beat poetry with a bass-line that paraphrases the theme of Spring is My Joy, an intro that borrows from Stravinsky's Rite of Spring and horn shots devised from other jazz standards about spring.
Sometimes shifts gears from a her interpretation of jazz standard into a groove invention that expands upon the standard's lyrical content; e.g. Whiting and Moret's "She's Funny That Way" becomes Ghent's "Jazz Habit". Miles Davis' "So What" (lyrics penned by di Ghent) becomes "So What, the Funk!" McCoy "Tyner's Search for Peace" informs di Ghent's "Peace Conspiracy".
The beginnings of Sprawl took shape as far back as 1989 when Rita started incorporating contemporary urban music into jazz standards. Rita was struggling to reconcile the need for the thematic content of vocal jazz to evolve and the need to retain the "jazzness" of the new compositions. It's often been pointed out that one of Rita's distinct feature is that she doesn't just limit herself to singing about love relationships. Her lyrics delve into the realness of her inner-city world: poverty, prejudice and hostility that exist alongside humanity's longing for spiritual evolution.
About the Artist
Rita has studied with many great musicians at several highly distinguished institutions and
holds BFA and MA degrees. She regularly produces and performs in large-scale shows. Some of
her recent productions include "Two Generations of Jazz", a double-bill with bebop great, Sheila Jordan,
"the Great Jazz Piano and Voice Series", and "The Canadian Independent Jazz Vocal Artists (CIJVA)
Showcase". In the summer of 1998 Rita toured with the self-written and -produced show
"Great Ladies of Jazz". In 1999 Rita undertook a 10-city Canadian jazz festival tour and was nominated for the
prestigious Montreal Jazz Festival's "Prix de Jazz".
You may contact Rita at:
Rita di Ghent
© 1998-2005 by virtualitalia.com unless otherwise noted