It is hard to believe when watching her perform on stage, but it was quite a challenge for Kris Berry to take up singing.
She was always surrounded by an abundance of music on the Antillean Islands where she grew up, as well as in the European cities where she studied and worked. At family parties she was expected to sing, but ever so stubbornly refused to. Instead, she absorbed country, Latin, ska, jazz and Cuban music like a sponge, until eventually she had gathered enough confidence to toss away her diffidence and to start singing in a jazz band. But she wanted more.
In 2011 Kris Berry published her first EP. Five songs, including ‘Flower Empty Tree.’ In January, this song got its first airing on national radio when Giel Beelen played it on 3FM. Radio 6 made her EP "Schijf van 6" (high rotation) and Kris was elected their very first Soul & Jazz Talent. She did sessions on virtually every radio station, played venues in all four corners of the country and was support act for Eli 'Paperboy' Reed and Selah Sue. One particular highlight was her performance at the North Sea Jazz Festival 2011 in The Hague, and notably, next stop will be the North Sea Jazz Festival in her homeland Curacao.
When we heard Kris was about to record an album we knew that we could not let the opportunity slip. We invited her for a cup of coffee and we all felt an instant connection. At the time, she was already working on songs for her debut album ‘Marbles’ with guitarist and producer Paul Willemsen (Beans & Fatback.) She had developed a distinct language with him, giving the album a signature sound. Meanwhile she had signed with record label Wicked Jazz Sounds, which played an instrumental role in the process of releasing ‘Marbles.’
The album has turned out to be a beauty and we feel it is an absolute privilege to be working with Kris and her songs. We have already placed several of them in ad campaigns, series and leaders worldwide. Like ‘Love Trip,’ used in a SEARS commercial and ‘Stick To The Recipe’ which can be heard in the American webisode Wiggs.