Meet Down for the Count's Musicians: Ineza Kerschkamp
We're delighted to announce that on our 2023 Swing Into Christmas tour, we'll be joined by the amazing vocalist Ineza Kerschkamp. Read on to find out more about her!
How/when did you first get involved with Down for the Count?
I got involved through Lydia Bell, who is another of Down for the Count's vocalists. She’s my friend, and I know her from the London Vocal Project which is a choir that we are both in. My first gigs with the band were at Twinwood Festival in August 2023.
Ineza performing with the band at Twinwood Festival, 2023
What was your first experience of jazz and swing music?
I got onto it quite late I would say. In my family no one listened to jazz, we listened to a lot of classical music so from a young age I listened to a lot of violin concertos, piano concertos, operas and all of that stuff, that was really what I knew. Then my mother listened a lot to either religious music or Andrea Bocelli, so that was my musical upbringing - no jazz whatsoever.
Then when I was 16 I studied at an acting school, because at the time I thought I was going to be an actor. We all started singing lessons there, and because the school wasn’t near where I lived I was a boarder at the school, and I was just one of those kids who was always singing in the hallway - it must have been incredibly annoying, but that was me. And one of the caretakers there heard me sing and said “you know what Ineza, my sister studies jazz at a conservatoire and I think it would really be something for you”. I didn’t really know what jazz was, I kind of thought Amy Winehouse was jazz, and then I realised that her music is influenced by jazz. Then I basically looked into who she said were her influences, and Ella Fitzgerald was one of them… and then that’s how I got into it. I was about 17 at the time.
Who are your musical influences?
Definitely Ella Fitzgerald, but also Nancy Wilson, Carmen McRae. I guess it’s sort of the same names for everyone really isn’t it?
Do you have a favourite jazz song/album/recording?
Yes, I very much like anything that Count Basie did, in particular his album with Ella Fitzgerald, Ella and Basie.
I also like the album that Nancy Wilson did with Cannonball, it’s called Nancy Wilson/Cannonball Adderley.
What other musical projects are you involved with outside of Down for the Count?
I am involved with London Vocal Project, which is a contemporary jazz choir under the direction of Pete Churchill.
I also have my own Nancy Wilson project that I do. And I am also involved with a piano player called Alex Webb, we are doing a project around female jazz singers, female jazz composers and female jazz songwriters.
I also do my own music as well, I am currently writing an album which I hope to record very soon.
What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
I have been to a lot of great gigs! However, I think it has to be a gig I went to around 10 years ago. I went to a very very cool jazz festival called North Sea Jazz Festival in Rotterdam, which I would highly recommend to anyone. I saw Earth Wind & Fire there and it was incredible, I don’t think I’ve ever danced so much in my life! I really really enjoyed it.
What are your hobbies when you’re not performing?
The thing is my job is sort of my hobby. I picked up a guitar recently, and my boyfriend said “yeah, but it’s still music though”.
I do love listening to podcasts and I love a bit of gaming, if those can be considered as hobbies?
Do you have a favourite song to perform?
It changes literally every week. So, at the moment as it stands, I really like Give Me the Simple Life - there is a lovely version of that by June Christy, and yeah, I like that tune a lot.