Jakob Buchanan Biography

Jakob Buchanan

Jakob Buchanan Biography


Jakob Buchanan was born in Viby, Jutland. He was raised in Rosenhøj by his Danish mother and British father. He was the first jazz student ever to be accepted at soloist class of the Royal Academy of Music Aarhus, Denmark. A position from which he has been able to work closely with familiar artists while also creating unexpected con- stellations. His early works were composed for a jazz sextet and released on his first two albums ‘Dreamfactory’ and ‘i’. Since 2008, Jakob Buchanan has been playing and touring with his quartet for longer periods. Percussionist Marilyn Mazur and guitarist Jakob Bro have been members of the Jakob Buchanan Quartet from the beginning. Bassist Jonas Westergaard replaces pianist Simon Toldam on the latest quartet album ‘Some People & Some Places’. The album was nominated in two categories
at the Danish Music Awards Jazz 2014: ‘Jazz Album of the Year’, and ‘Jazz Composer of the Year’. For his album ‘Requiem’, Jakob Buchanan won the Danish Music Awards Jazz 2016 ‘Release of the Year’ and ‘Composer of the Year’, and in 2015 the Jazznyt Award. Jakob Buchanan teaches trumpet and composition at the Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus, Denmark and has toured in all Scandinavian countrys, Germany, France, Luxemburg, Switzerland, Poland, America, Canada, and Russia. With Marilyn Mazurs Special 4 and the Aarhus Jazz Orchestra.

The Requiem:A large-scale work which combined elements from the Latin mass for the dead with European choral tradition, Nordic orchestral music and improvisation. In 2001, Jakob Buchanan became the first jazz musician at the Royal Academy of Music, Aarhus to take part in the soloist programme, previously reserved for classical students. Today he teaches composition in the rhythmic department: ‘In Aarhus, you are part of a diverse environment, where jazz is close to classical music, because the Academy has merged the courses. I have always loved the great works and, when I was a student, I could find a way of sneaking in and attending conductors’ rehearsals with strings and orchestras. I studied Russian for a couple of years at the university, and there I discovered Russian avant-garde art from the beginning of the 20th century, including the painter Malevich, who worked with points, lines and surfaces. When I listen to Bach, Tchaikovsky, Mahler or James Macmillan today, I can find myself listening for the points, the lines and the surfaces of the music.

It can be a new way to experience how works are composed.’

Since Requiem, which also saw the beginning of a fruitful collaboration with choral and orchestral conductor Carsten Seyer-Hansen, several orchestral projects have seen the light of day. In 2017, as mentioned, it was The Voices from Rosenhill written to celebrate Aarhus 2017 – European Capital of Culture. In 2019, Songs To The Green Land for big band, choir and soloists was performed in Aarhus and Copenhagen a co-writng project w. Norwegian drummer Helge Andreas Norbakken. Buchanan has also written and recorded with guitarist Jakob Bro a work for choir and instrumental soloists, that have not yet been published. And a new commission awaits it’s release a piece for Aarhus Jazz Orchestra and the Copenhagen Royal Chapel Choir under the direction of Carsten Seyer-Hansen and featuring Marilyn Mazur on percussion. Jakob Buchanan has quietly become a new and exciting voice in Danish orchestral music.

Christian Munch-Hansen

Født 1968 i Viby J/Aarhus, Danmark. Komponist og Trompetist

Prizes og Nominations

2016 2 Danish Music Awards for: Jazz release of the year and Composer of the year.

2016 Nominated for the Carl Prize ”Jazz release of the year”

2015 The Jazz Nyt Prize (Buchanan Requiem)

2012 Nominated for 2 Danish Music Awards: Jazz release of the year and Composer of the year.

2010 Nominated for a Danish Music Award: Jazz release of the year

2007 Nominated for a Danish Music Awards: Jazz release of the year w. John Tchicai

2007 Gaffel Prize

Selected compositional works

2020 On Rosenhil released on Dacapo-Records feat. Chris Speed and Indra Rios Moore.

2018/2019 Songs To The Green Land w. Helge Norbakken og AJO + Aavaat og Aningaqq koret

2019 quartet + choirwork ”Lamentations” a collaboration w. Jakob Bro and the Concert Clemens choir conducted by Carsten Seyer-Hansen. Quartet: J. Buchanan (flghn) , J. Bro (guitar), Thomas Morgan (acoustic bass), Marilyn Mazur (percussion)

2017 Voices from Rosenhøj/Dreamsuite Music for th opening of Aarhus European Capital of Culture 2017

2012-15 Buchanan Requiem feat: Indra Rios Moore (vocal) Marilyn Mazur (Perc) and Jakob Bro (guitar)

Jakob Buchanan releases

2020 On Rosenhill (Dacapo-Records) feat. Chris Speed (sax and cl.) and Indra Rios Moore (Vocal)

2019 ”A Language of My Own” (Skirl Records) Trio w. Chris Speed (sax and cl.) and Simon Toldam (piano)

2015/16: Buchanan Requiem (w. Jakob Bro, Marilyn. Mazur, Indra, Aarh. Jazzorchestra/Cathedral Choir)

2014: Jakob Buchanan Quartet: ” Some People and Some Places” (w. J. Bro, J. Westergaard og M.Mazur)

2010: Jakob Buchanan Quartet: ”i Land in the Green Land” w. (J. Bro, S.Toldam og M.Mazur)

Has Recorded and played w. Marilyn Mazur, Norma Winstone (UK), Chris Speed (US), Thomas Morgan (US), Jakob Bro, Mats Eilertsen( NO), Julian Argüelles (UK), Helge Norbakken (NO), John Tchicai amo.

Is a member of Marilyn Mazurs Special 4 and the trio “Dancer”



Politikenolitiken synes

– An eminently impressive contribution to new Danish music and an obvious candidate for the Nordic Council Music Prize.

– Would it be too much to describe this as a significant contribution to Danish culture!


– The CD is full of exquisite moments and beautiful details in the course of the pieces’ eighty minutes, where we are wrapped in the soothing ambiance of the chorus, which at times seems instrumental, Jakob Bro’s lyrical guitar playing, which fits in well with the main sound-picture, with Marylin Mazur’s orientalism on all kinds of percussion instruments and, not least, Jakob Buchanan’s ‘rainy-day’ blue and moving flugelhorn playing.


–Jakob Buchanan has crowned an already great musical carrier with a masterpiece, in a class of its own in Danish jazz.

–Buchanan plays possibly better than ever on both trumpet and flugelhorn.

–This is not just a highly recommended release. It’s one of this years greatest jazz releases.


“In every way, including the length, which clocks in at around 78 minutes, Requiem is a major work and, hopefully, it will put more spotlight on Buchanan. He shows himself as an ambitious and thoughtful composer who draws on the music of the past and brings the form of the requiem into the future.”


 stjerner stjerner stjerner stjerner stjerner stjerner “This is, without doubt, one of this decades most important jazz releases, a true masterpiece!”