Laufey dressed in white
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Jazz Starlet Is Born

Meet Laufey, The Artist Who Brought Jazz To Gen Z Playlists

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November 1, 2023

Laufey's distinctive fusion of modern jazz has not only sparked intense debates among music critic, but has also led to remarkable achievements. Her sophomore album "Bewitched" became the most listened jazz album on Spotify's history, recording the biggest debut for a jazz album on the platform. Amidst these accolades and the discussions surrounding her genre-defining sound, it leads to the emergence of the question: Who is Laufey?

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aufey Lín Jónsdóttir, known professionally as Laufey, was born on April 23, 1999, in Reykjavík, Iceland. From a young age, she was immersed in a world of music, thanks to her family's rich musical background. Her mother, a classical violinist, and her grandfather, Lin Yaoji, a renowned violin educator at the Central Conservatory of Music in China, played pivotal roles in shaping her early musical inclinations.

Laufey's formal introduction to music began at the tender age of 4 when she started learning the piano. By the age of 8, she had taken up the cello, showcasing her versatility and passion for different instruments.

In 2010, when she was just 11 years old, Laufey achieved a significant milestone by winning Best Female Artist at the Icelandic Music Awards. This early recognition set the tone for her future successes and validated her as a prodigious talent.

At just 15, she performed as a cello soloist with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Moreover, in 2014 Laufey showcased her talent on a larger platform, reaching the semi-finals of The Voice Iceland. This made her the youngest competitor in the series' history at the time. The same year, she was also a finalist in Ísland Got Talent.

Her academic pursuits mirrored her passion for music. Laufey graduated from the Reykjavík College of Music in 2018. Her exceptional talent earned her a presidential scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston, from which she graduated in 2021.

2020 marked a significant year in Laufey's career. She released her debut single "Street by Street," which quickly climbed to number one on Icelandic Radio. This was just a precursor to her rising fame. In 2021, she released her first EP, "Typical of Me," on April 30. The EP garnered attention from renowned musicians like Willow Smith and Billie Eilish, signaling her entry into the global music scene.

Her debut album, "Everything I Know About Love," released in 2022, further solidified her position in the music industry. It debuted at number one on Billboard's Alternative New Artist Album chart. In August 2023, Laufey signed a global publishing deal with Warner Chappell Music (WCM). Shortly after, Laufey announced her second album, "Bewitched," released in September 2023. The album not only broke a Spotify record by recording the biggest first day for a jazz album in the platform's history but also debuted at Number 23 on the all-genre Billboard 200. This marked Laufey's first appearance on this prestigious chart, and the album continued to remain in the top 100 almost a month after its release.

Musically, Laufey describes her style as "modern jazz," a unique blend of jazz pop and bedroom pop. She often cites musical legends like Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Chet Baker, and contemporary artists like Taylor Swift as her major influences. Her collaborations extend to artists like Dodie, Adam Melchor, and most recently, Beabadoobee, with whom she released the track "A Night To Remember."

On November 1, 2023, Laufey announced a new single titled "Christmas Dreaming," set to be released on November 3. And we can't wait.

Laufey's 2023-2024 tour started in San Francisco on October 9, with performances lined up across the United States, Europe, and potentially more locations in the future.

Remaining 2023 US tour dates:

  • November 1, 2023: The Town Hall, New York, NY
  • November 2, 2023: The Town Hall, New York, NY
  • November 3, 2023: Theatre of Living Arts, Philadelphia, PA
  • November 4, 2023: Lincoln Theatre, Washington, DC
  • November 6, 2023: Riverside Revival, Nashville, TN
  • November 7, 2023: Variety Playhouse, Atlanta, GA
  • November 9, 2023: White Oak Music Hall, Houston, TX
  • November 10, 2023: Paramount Theatre, Austin, TX
  • November 11, 2023: The Echo Lounge & Music Hall, Dallas, TX
  • November 13, 2023: The Van Buren, Phoenix, AZ
  • November 19, 2023: The Theatre at Ace Hotel, Los Angeles, CA

2024 international tour dates:

  • February 10, 2024: The Academy, Dublin, Ireland
  • February 12, 2024: Galvanizers Yard, SWG3, Glasgow, UK
  • February 14, 2024: Albert Hall, Manchester, UK
  • February 15-17, 2024: EartH, London, UK
  • February 20, 2024: Le Trianon, Paris, France
  • February 21, 2024: La Madeleine, Brussels, Belgium
  • February 23, 2024: Grosse Freiheit 36, Hamburg, Germany
  • February 25, 2024: Nalen Stora Salen, Stockholm, Sweden
  • February 26, 2024: VEGA, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • February 27, 2024: Astra Kulturhaus, Berlin, Germany
  • February 29, 2024: Magazzini Generali, Milan, Italy
  • March 3, 2024: Les Docks, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • March 5, 2024: Carlswerk Victoria, Cologne, Germany
  • March 6, 2024: Melkweg, Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • March 9-10, 2024: Eldborg Hall, Harpa, Reykjavík, Iceland
  • March 13, 2024: Roundhouse, Camden, UK

Laufey has sparked conversations about genre, with her music often blurring the lines between jazz, pop, and classical. Her unique sound, combined with her deep-rooted musical knowledge, positions her as a refreshing and innovative voice in the contemporary music scene. As she continues her musical journey, one thing is clear: Laufey is a force to be reckoned with, and her story is just beginning.

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