Sanem Kalfa developed her own style by enriching jazz with colorful Turkish tradition.
This style is brought to the audience when listening the way Sanem approaches arrangements of jazz standards and her own jazz interpretations. Her distinctive interpretations include the ones which evoke strong emotion through traditional Turkish and jazz pieces including her own compositions.
Sanem started her musical carees with plying cello. After 12 years of her cellist career, she decided to pursue a life singing jazz and moved to the Netherlands in 2007. in February she won 2nd prize in the Nederlands Jazz Vocal Concour in De Spieghel Theater, Zwolle She was credited with being the most “under the skin of the audience crawl” by the jury, according to the critiques in the press following the competition.
In July 2010, Sanem won the 1st prize at the 44th annual Montreux Jazz Festival for Jazz Voice, where the jazz legend, Quincy Jones was the head of jury.
Sanem Kalfa has been receiving a great attention of international critics, with remarks such as: “This was contemporary music making of the highest order, with the stunning vocals of Sanem Kalfa finessing their already intoxicating brew with a beguiling approach that found common ground between plaintive folk and excitable jazz harmonies.” (Jazzwise Magazine, England), “Turkish singer Sanem Kalfa threatens to steal a show with her melancholic, dramatic vocal that haunts the instrumentation and holds the whole proposal together.” (Irish Times, Ireland), and “Sanem Kalfa brought her own folk music into the band, creating a fine, and, for many new sound in music.” (Jazznyttred, Norway).
She has been performing in several festivals and venues within Europesuch as Montreux Jazz Festival(CH), St Moritz Art Masters (CH), Bimhuis (NL), Lanteren Venster(NL), 12 Points Festival(IE), Skopje Jazz Festival (MK), IKSV Istanbul Jazz Festival(TR), Festival Keltika(SI), Jazz Etno Funky Festival(SI), Festival Lent(SI), Barana WerledJazz Festival(NL), Midnight Express Jazz Festival(NL), Tritone Festvial(NL), Vossa Jazz Festival(NO), JazzKarr Festival(EE), Ljubljana Jazz Festival(SI), Akbank Jazz Festival (TR), Jazz Club Unterfahrt Munich (D), Brokken Festival(NL), and several other venues.
Sanem Recorded several cd‘s with acknowledged bands as Kaja Draksler Acropolis Quintet, Steven Kamperman Horizon Trio and more others. She also recorded her first album “NEHIR” at the prestigious Balik Farm Studios in Switzerland. Released in November 2014.