Fascinating colour, soft voice, deep, meaningful lyrics and playful music brimming with imagery. That is how fans describe the music and expression of the songwriter, violinist and singer Miriam Kaiser.
Music had an important part in Miriam’s life from her early childhood. Her parents made sure that all their children are educated in music and encouraged them to perform in front of audiences.
It was when Miriam was invited to play with a band that became the defining moment in search for her own expression and developing her improvisation skills – no matter that she was only twelve at that time. Later, while she studied at the Bratislava Conservatory, her brother Marek asked her to create violin arrangements for compositions he planned to release. This opened the door to music making and she began to find how equally inspiring and joyful and frustrating and full of contentment this process can be. Miriam found a new way to express her feelings and thoughts and began digging deeper into the world of her own melodies and music.
Not long after a surprising offer came to open for Marián Varga at the concert where she performed her very first composition that later got the name Prvá (First). The audience responded very positively, which told her she embarked on a right direction and encouraged her to continue making music.
Then came her first vocal and instrumental song Premenená (Transformed), which was written while Miriam was still with the Slovak National Theatre Orchestra. This milestone track, which was released on Miriam's first EP Isté veci (Certain things), hit number one in Radio 7 and Radio Lumen music charts, and was aired on the Slovak national radio and Radio Regina, together with her other songs, including Prvá, Isté veci, Všetko má svoj čas and Svatební.
Her first album Deň dňu, which she recorded in cooperation with Milan Adamec, Andrej Hruška, members of the Slovak National Theatre Orchestra and the Slovak Philoharmonic Orchestra and other guests, was then a solid step further down her musical career. It had a more modern sound that mixed well with light pop – perhaps that was why the songs Lietam, Viem, Je to tu or Nebudem viac can reach much broader audience. Its eleven tracks reveal Miriam’s unchanging love to classical music but also her courage to experiment with soft electronics and various genres.
With her own group, she gave many concerts in towns around Slovakia, such as in the Kežmarok Wooden Church, at the Summer of Culture festival with many years of tradition in Trenčianske Teplice, in the Art House in Piešťany, or as part of the Bratislava summer festival Summer of Culture at Hviezdoslavovo Square.
Miriam makes very diverse music that is unleashed in style and colour and that can and does speak to broad audiences. Her musical inspirations are numerous and range from singers Avishai Cohen to Esperanza Spalding to Johny Mitchell, Markéta Irglová, Katie Melua, Anna Maria Jopek to songwriters such as Sting and Czech band The Orff Brothers. Her creative expression is also influenced by contemporary modern classical music including of The Cinematic Orchestra or the composer Olafur Arnalds.
“I am inspired by musicians whom I enjoy listening to, and by good quality music. They help me discover what is dear to my heart. I quite dislike superficial and very commercial style. I do not do things I don’t like or do stuff just because others might want it”, she says. “A lot of folks make music because they know exactly what people want. It is important to me but it is not the sole principle guiding my work. My music springs from my love for God. My creativity comes from Him.”
The rather unusual audio and visual project Colour Sounds, to be released this autumn, is inspired by classical Slovak folk melodies combined with very modern arrangements that are rooted in classical, popular and electronic music.
Miriam makes a link to her previous music typical for which are string arrangements supported by soft electronic music. Yet, compared her first CD, the new project Colour Sounds features much more instrumental music and inspirations drawn from Slovak folk songs. The composition, arrangements, interpretation and production was done in good care of her and Milan Adamec. The CD features wonderful pictures of Slovak countryside and folk culture that were craftfully done by the photographer and feature and documentary film maker Branislav Molnár.
The untypical arrangements of songs and compositions are reminiscent of film or scene music, which gave birth to an idea to mix the musíc and pictures both in the clips and on the stage. Those who came to like Miriam’s first CD will find on Colour Sounds a vivid mix of songs that features famous instrumentalists such as harpist Michal Matejčík and cellist Jozef Lupták.
EP titled Najlepšie veci (Best things) came out in June 2016 as foretaste of the great new project. The full album Colour Sounds was launched on December 7, 2016 in Bratislava.
Before the launch the Colour Sounds music was played at the Bratislava castle at the meeting of EU Parliament representatives. In December 2016 Miriam presented her music during a series of live advent season concerts for the national broadcaster, Slovak Television. She also played, together with Zoe chamber orchestra, a Christmas charity concert at Primate's palace sponsored by the Mayor of Bratislava.
Furthermore Miriam performed at numerous concerts held as part of various cultural events in Slovak towns and cities including Summer of Culture in Bratislava, Bojnice, Trenčianske Teplice, Kežmarok, Piešťany and others. She also attended a number of summer festivals including Campfest, Galotafest, Festival Záhrada. This year she will also perform for the first time at UNITED festival in the neighbouring Czech Republic. In addition, she performed at various conferences, charity and commemorative events. For a full list of concerts, please see the section Koncerty.
On November 8, 2018 she has launched her new album Tanec strún (Dance of strings) together with a Czech musician and singer Iva Bittová. The album Tanec Strún (2018) was nominated by international judges for the top 5 best Worldmusic/- folk to win an award at Radio_Head Awards for the year 2018. Her performance was met with critical acclaim at the showcase concerts World Music Festival in Bratislava 2018 and at the Czech Music Crossroads 2019.
Two years since Miriam’s last album Dance of Strings she is releasing her forth album titled Burning tear.
This spirited collection of songs and instrumental compositions, wrapped in beautiful string arrangements, was recorded at home by string quartet and later added with winds including clarinet, bassoon, flute and even lute. The postproduction and subtle electronic effects were again mastered by violinist, arranger and music producer Milan Adamec.
The titles of Miriam’s songs, such as Burning tear, Scorching furnace, Reigniting passion, Make the heart sing, express deep emotions which, in her own words, should revive a heart that has grown stiff and cold in the routines of the mundane life. The new album is a very palatable fusion of modern classical music, world music, song-writing and pop.