Elisabeth Lohninger
Gig Seeker Pro

Elisabeth Lohninger


Band Jazz Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Elisabeth Lohninger - The Only Way Out Is Up"

Elisabeth Lohninger is one of the more busy and familiar faces on the New York City downtown music scene. The Autrian-born vocalist is a part of the Jazz Department faculty at The New School, has produced and performed music for television (Alias and the venerable daytime drama, One Life To Live are just two of her credits), she also performs as a pop soul artist under the pseudonym “Tera” and now, she has released The Only Way Out Is Up, her second jazz release under her own name.
This CD caught my attention immediately, with the opening track, “Mirage”, a haunting, sensual piece, that I feel can be best described as Scheherazade and King Shahryar spending a few of their 1001 nights in a jazz club. Ms. Lohninger’s subtly erotic lyric, and her voice, a rich, passionate alto, come together to create a perfect after-dark in the desert atmosphere. Cnadian electric bass master Chris Tarry, then takes the track to an even higher level with a dexterous solo that reminded me of Stanley Clarke at his best. By the time Elisabeth returns to restate the theme, you’ll know that Midnight at the Oasis was never like this. The mood and the tempo then shift quickly, with the next track, “The Weather in New York City”, a bright, bustling piece, which describes the scene outside during a snowstorm in lower Manhattan. The track is enlivened further by Walter Fischbacher’s energetic and tasty piano solo. At three and one-half minutes, it is a delightful track that, like a good time in NYC, goes by much too quickly.
We are then taken in another direction, with the title track, a piece of writing that, with its’ jazz funk rhythm and sardonically witty lyric, would make Donald Fagen proud. It is my favorite track on the album, if only for the fact that you have got to love a song with a lyric that admonishes someone to “get up and get your butt out of the mud”. As an extra treat, this track also features some marvelous tenor sax work from Donny McCaslin, one of the great, under recognized saxophone players working today.
Of the ten cuts here, seven have been penned by Ms. Lohninger, which is just fine, for as you may have guessed by now, she is a talented composer and lyricist. However some of the most unusual and interesting work on the CD, comes in the three tracks that Ms. Lohninger did not write music for. One of them is a very well known jazz standard, that has been covered by the greats from Getz, to Ella, to Betty Carter and more, another is a piece from a Broadway musical classic, that is rarely heard outside of the show and the third a piece that has been played often, but has to my knowledge, not had a lyric until Ms. Lohninger came along. “Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most”, the aforementioned jazz standard, is usually taken at a tempo that fits its’ wistful lyric. By Lohninger and her cohorts turn the melancholic ballad, into a swinging samba, highlighted again by Mr. Fischbacher’s joyous, creative piano work and Ms. Lohninger’s festive, sact-filled vocals. I have heard many versions of “Spring…” over the years, but until this version, never one that made me feel upbeat after it was over. “Be A Lion” is from the score of “The Wiz”. Once again here, a piece that is known widely as a ballad, is given an up-tempo treatment, with excellent solo work from the guest stars; McCaslin, this time on soprano sax and percussion superstar Mino Cinelu, who adds his distinctive touch to four other tracks, as well. Finally, Steve Swallow’s “Falling Grace” is given a beautiful reading here, with the addition of Ms. Lohningers poignant words. Fischbacher’s piano solo here, is the best of his many memorable ones on this CD.
The Only Way Out Is Up is, on the whole, an eclectic, risk-taking and pleasing disc that, manages to successfully find a balance between a hip, downtown New York City vibe and the conventions of jazz traditions. I have seen many artists try for this type of balance before and fail, because their efforts leaned too far toward one side or the other of the fence. Elisabeth Lohninger, however, is a performer with enough of equal parts of intelligence, nerve, imagination and talent that are necessary to pull it off and she does so, marvelously.
- Jazz Improv Magazine

"CD Review/Elisabeth Lohninger/”Beneath Your Surface”"

No cliche ridden heavy amateur vocal recitation here!! Elisabeth sings the song!!! It's hard to define Lohninger's artistry except to say: Her voice is unusual, hypnotic, & strangely attractive. And talk about your inherent infusion of solid viable musical inspiration??.. She gets this from her consummate sidemen, who create the wonderful platform upon which Elisabeth is able to ply her vocal wares. Succinctly stated: This CD project is a killer!

George W. Carroll/The Musicians Ombudsman
- ejazznews.com

"All About Jazz: Beneath Your Surface"

By William Grim

Austrian-born but New York-based Elisabeth Lohninger is a first rate singer and talented composer. Backed by a superb rhythm section, Lohninger delivers impressive performances on Beneath Your Surface. Singing in English, French, and German, Lohninger displays an extraordinary stylistic fluency and versatility.
Lohninger herself composed most of the songs. I was particularly impressed with “I Remember,” a beautiful ballad about the fleeting nature of love which features a highly chromatic melody with difficult intervals and a lot of harmonic twists. It's a real challening tune, and Lohninger pulls it off with considerable aplomb. Walter Fischbacher's understated piano solo fits perfectly, underscoring the close communication among the musicians. This is jazz as chamber music, a synchronization of musical ideals.
Lohninger excels in writing with unusual time signatures. “Lost in You” is an eccentric jazz waltz in 7/4, while “Home” is a swinger in 5/4. Wit and a good sense of humor are also Lohninger hallmarks. It's hard to keep a straight face while listening to her tango arrangement of “Frag mich nicht, ob ich dich liebe” (”Don't Ask Me Whether I Love You”), which literally drips with irony and fake Weltschmerz. Sally Bowles, call your office.
Lohninger's husky alto voice is shown to great effect on her arrangement of Joni Mitchell's “Both Sides Now.” Normally this hackneyed tune is right up on the nausea scale with “What the World Needs Now” and “Feelings,” but Lohninger manages to find depths of emotion that one would have thought impossible given the material at hand.
Beneath Your Surface is, simply put, one of the most satisfying jazz vocal recordings of this year. Elisabeth Lohninger manages to swing and make you think at the same time, and that is no easy feat.

- allaboutjazz.com

"Elisabeth Lohninger "The Only Way Out Is Up""

Austria is the mother source for composers. One of the latest progeny from the land of golden eighth notes is vocalist/composer Elisabeth Lohninger. Lohninger has been performing from an early age, beginning her career at age six, performing Austrian folk songs with her sisters. It did not take long for her to venture in other directions, leading her to study classical and jazz, achieving a Masters Degree in music, English language and literature. This blend of education is perfectly manifested on The Only Way Out is Up.

Backed by a core trio of long-time collaborating pianist Walter Fischbacher, bassist Chris Terry and drummer Hari Ganglberger, Lohninger assembles eight originals, one standard, and one standard bearing her lyrics. The Only Way Out is Up is very much a New York City disc: it's frenetically paced, like city life in the Big Apple. The subject matter is mostly urban with the pulse of city life as it courses through the subterranean subway. “Winter in New York City” very much captures this feeling. Lohninger conversationally propels this tome on a winter’s day in Gotham. The singer displays her varied vocal abilities, ranging from abstract modulation to scat. Lohninger also shows off her exceptional alto voice, which is rich like dark chocolate and sharp like fine cognac.

On the supremely conceived and performed “Spring Really Can Hang You Up the Most,” Lohninger pulls out the scat stops and really shows her stuff. Mino Cinelu’s percussion gives the slightest piquant to the flavor of the song. The title song illustrates Lohninger compositional talent. On this svelte, hip tome, Fischbacher trades the acoustic for the electric piano and Donny McCaslin provides his muscular tenor as the wheels for Lohninger to weave her sunglassed hard bop vehicle. Her lyrics are sardonic, knocking hard knocks.

“Swimming up Stream” is Lohninger’s song without words. She displays every acre of her alto in this vocalese vehicle which features Donny McCaslin’s soprano horn. Hari Ganglberger provides the Tony Williams to Fischbacher’s Herbie Hancock in the rhythm section.

In a recording with several treats, this disc ends with a dandy, Steve Swallow’s “Falling Grace,” with words by Lohninger, and the pop-oriented original “Free to Fall,” again featuring Fischbacher’s electric piano. The Only Way Out is Up is the best independent vocal jazz recording I have heard this year, and it may very well outlast the big-label offerings. - Allaboutjazz.com


This is a collection of reviews put together by publicist Kari Gaffney. - Visit this link for more press


Elisabeth Lohninger: The Only Way Out Is Up (2006)
Elisabeth Lohninger Quartet: Beneath Your Surface (2004)
Elisabeth Lohninger: Zarah Lebt Anders (EP, 2003)
Teradox: If (Electronica, Chillout, 2003)
Tera (alias): Alien Lovers (2000)
Elisabeth Lohninger, Walter Fischbacher: Austrian LiedGood (SBF Records, 1998)



"..one of the best vocal jazz recordings this year!" allaboutjazz.com

"A rich, passionate alto“ and “A haunting alto of controlled force” , that is how critics describe Elisabeth Lohninger’s voice. Lathered on lusciously all over her new release “the only way out is up” (Lofish Music, 2006), it catches the listener by surprise with its sheer sonority and smoothness. Having lent her vocals to a very diverse range of releases over the last ten years, Elisabeth Lohninger is not only a seasoned, polished singer but a vocalist with tremendous depth and range.
An internationally touring artist, Elisabeth Lohninger has performed at Festivals and jazz clubs in the US, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Italy and Slovakia, with performances at world renown jazz clubs such as A-Trane (Berlin), Porgy & Bess (Vienna) and the Jazz Standard (New York).
Born and raised in Austria, Elisabeth started her performing career at age six, singing Austrian folksongs in three-part harmony with her sisters. Driven by her musical curiosity, she soon ventured into other stylistic directions and studied classical music and jazz, finishing her studies with a Masters degree in music and English Language and Literature. In 1994 Elisabeth Lohninger relocated to New York City and teamed up with pianist Walter Fischbacher to co-found the duo "Perfect Roommates". This collaboration resulted in a much-lauded CD called "Austrian LiedGood" – a cross between Austrian folk music and jazz - and concerts at American and European Jazz Festivals (such as Texaco Jazz Festival, Chopin & Friends Festival/NYC, Jazz Festival Seeon/Germany). Her pop-soul album "Alien Lovers", released in 2000 under the alias Tera further portrays her stylistic versatility. Further collaborations with Walter Fischbacher led to an album comprised entirely of electronica chill out tracks, which were featured extensively in the daytime drama “One Life to Live”.
Elisabeth’s first film score for Helena Smith's short film "I'm Thursdays" promptly received the Wasserman Craft Award for Original Score (awarded during the First Run Film Festival, NYC) and led to other film scoring projects such as Ms. Smith’s short film “No Verbal Response” and “A Dogday Afternoon” by New York City writer and filmmaker Claire Moed. Additional TV credits include writing songs for shows such as “The Precinct”, “Alias” and “General Hospital”. Since 2002 Elisabeth Lohninger is a faculty member at the prestigious New School Jazz Department in New York. Her 2004 CD with the title “Beneath Your Surface” (Lofish Music) garnered a flock of stellar reviews, while her brand new CD “The Only Way Out Is Up” draws from jazz, pop and drum&bass, creating a mood that is exciting and emotionally charged while staying completely authentic.