The songwriters, Kormáksson and Soul, met in Iceland 1993 and soon began writing music together. In 1994 they made their first CD, “HUNGRY FOR NEWS”, with JJ Soul Band and “CITY LIFE” in 1997. On both CDs the music is many-sided; blues, R&B, fusion, rock, pop and latin, sometimes all in one (blues-confusion?). Singer/songwriter JJ Soul is from Oxford, England but Ingvi is from Iceland as the rest of the band. The band has hitherto mainly served as a vehicle for the songwriting team. The band’s third CD is “REACH FOR THE SKY. The band’s fourth album is BRIGHT LIGHTS (2008). – Two songs, “City Life” and “Do, Re, Mi”, appeared on 4CD-compilation “The 1st Smooth Jazz Avenue” (Sony BMG Music Entertainment) in Poland. The band’s rendition of “My Funny Valentine” is on 3CD-compilation “In Love With Jazz” (QL Music, Poland)
Nominated HMMA, Hollywood Music in Media Awards 2013.
Excerpts from reviews (Bright Lights) I seldom heard more talented musicians gathered on one album. Also the arrangements and lyrics are top level, and sound tight, complicated and easy listening at one time Harold van Dorth, August 12th, 2008 Bobtjeblues (August 2008)
Bright Lights, the newest album from JJ Soul Band, is a nice combination of easy listening blues and adult contemporary pop-rock. There’s a little something for everyone in this album. With a stellar band and instrumentalists at hand, the boys from Iceland execute nicely. ..All in all, it’s a well-produced and recorded album. Awakenmusic (October 2008)
Well played and arranged, unimpeachable mixing…excellent musicianship… JJ Soul’s voice sounds great….top level blues/jazz/fusion album. – Dagbjartur Gunnar Lúdvíksson – Monitor; 19/08/2008
The (musical) approach is characterized by artistic shrewdness and good taste. Bright Lights is a fine and solid album, unaffected and competent. Interpretation always full of artistic aptitude and perception. Orri Hardarson – Morgunbladid, 9. Aug. 2008.
LATIN FACULTY – LATÍNUDEILDIN (2012):
The album contains 2 discs.
CD-1: English lyrics by JJ Soul, Portuguese lyrics by Jussanam da Silva and two instrumental songs.
CD-2 includes the same songs with Icelandic lyrics written by various authors.
Nine vocalists perform on the album, veterans like Gudrún Gunnars, Eivor Pálsdóttir and Thor Breidfjörd and younger generation jazz-singers like Marína Ósk and Erla Stefáns.
The musicians include Jóhann Ásmundsson (of Mezzoforte) on bass who also engineered and mixed the album, Einar Scheving on drums, Vignir Thor Stefáns on kbs., Edvard Lárusson (of JJ Soul Band) on guitar, Birkir Freyr Matthíasson on trumpet and Stefán S. Stefánsson on saxophones who also produced the music.
Ingvi Thor Kormaksson is a native Icelander and has occupied himself with songwriting for the past 30 years or so and has to this day 11 albums to his credit. Altogether; he has had more than 150 of his compositions recorded by various Icelandic artists. He writes mainly in the AC (adult contemporary) genre, but jazzy chord progressions and bossanova rhythms are often featured in his music. Folk music traditions and blues can also be heard.
Collaborating with JJ Soul from Oxford, Ingvi has written music for JJ Soul Band’s 4 albums (see JJ Soul Band on Reverbnation and MySpace).
LYRICIST JJ Soul is from Oxford, UK; artist, art teacher, singer, songwriter, lyricist, author of books.
“Since my teenage years I’ve admired the music of Brasil; Jobim, Bonfá, Lins and many more composers, and all the wonderful vocalists. Bossanova and samba rhythms have been featured on my albums, even in the more blues or folk oriented ones. Finally I decided to write music for an album that would showcase Latin music only. There are two or three salsa songs here, but mostly the music nods towards Brasil and could also be categorized as AC or smooth-jazz.” – (Ingvi)