Genre: Jazz, Vocal
"Michael Schiefel is one of the few German jazz musicians who possesses a truly original style. He is a gifted solo performer who uses electronics to playfully expand and distort his voice in his a cappella performances. When performing in group formations, the androgynous quality of Schiefel's incredible vocal range helps to diversify and problematize the often macho world of jazz musicians."
Das Jazzbuch (German jazz encyclopedia), 2005
Inspired by a desire to join the emerging post-Wall jazz scene, Michael Schiefel moved to Berlin in the early 1990s to study at the city’s renowned University of the Arts. Since then, he has dazzled his fans at home and abroad with an array of solo and band projects that have yielded a dozen albums over the past decade.
To date, Michael has released three solo albums. His first work, Invisible Loop (1997), was hailed as one of the most promising debut albums of the decade; while his second release—a more introspective album entitled I Don’t Belong (2001)—met with equally critical acclaim. Michael’s latest solo album, Don’t Touch My Animals, has been released in 9/2006 on ACT. The album features songs about love and life in the big city and between the continents.
In all of his solo projects, Michael experiments with his distinctive virtuoso voice by combining it with loop machines and other electronic devices. In conjunction with his original compositions and lyrics, this dynamic mixture of vocals and electronics produces strikingly unique ways of expressing passion, joy, and alienation.
In addition to his solo performances, Michael collaborates with many other musicians on a wide range of projects. But no matter what genre he sings—be it funk and pop with JazzIndeed, classical-inspired big band with Thaerichen’s Tentett, modern jazz with David Friedman, or Balkan beats with the German-Bulgarian quintet Batoru—Michael’s multifaceted voice receives consistently high praise from audiences and critics alike.
In 2001, Michael joined the faculty of the Franz Liszt Conservatory in Weimar as a Professor of Vocal Jazz, thereby becoming the youngest music professor in Germany. In addition to playing at numerous festivals and teaching master classes throughout Europe, he has also performed as a guest artist of the Goethe Institute in the United States, Africa, and Asia.