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January/February 2008

Katja Rieckermann
Katja
Digital Zoo

If you tuned into the worldwide telecast of the Concert for Diana in London this past summer, you might have spied a leggy blonde tearing it up in Rod Stewart’s band, much the way Candy Dulfer has done in the past for Prince. It turns out the 40-year-old Katja Rieckermann is so much more than good looks, even if she does play off them on her self-titled CD. Unlike her brother Ralph, who would go on to play guitar for the righteous German heavy-metal band Scorpions, Rieckermann fell in love with David Sanborn and Wayne Shorter from afar and sax lessons soon followed. Katja, co-produced by Rieckermann and studio wiz Jeff Carruthers, has several tunes geared to the R&B/smooth crowd, most notably covers of the boss man’s “Do You Think I’m Sexy,” as well as “What You Won’t Do For Love,” “I’m Not in Love” and “Natural Woman.” Most impressive, though, are two tunes Rieckermann wrote, “Tribute to Michael” and “And Then There Was Harry.” The former’s a pleasant midtempo number that shifts slyly into a jazz song midpoint, while the latter is a funk ’n’ blues throwdown. Add Nat Adderley’s “Worksong” and a few other tunes that sparkle with alto, tenor and baritone creativity, and it’s apparent Rod the Mod made the right choice with Rieckermann.

Originally published in January/February 2008
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