Primary Instrument: Vocalist
French Jazz singer/performer/song-writer, coming from the new generation of French jazz musicians, she went into music school at the age of 5 and studied the flute and singing for 13 years. She has always considered Jazz music as a large melting pot, a mix of influences and cultures, confronting Afro-American music with Latin cultures, mixing African folklore and the art of the words. We can find all this in her music: a reinvention of the roots of Jazz, a desire for originality and freedom, where poetry and the musicality of the words have a prominent place in a completely unprecedented artistic universe.
Fascinated by the great jazz singers of the past, she regularly performed as either a singer or an actress and a flutist. She continued her musical and regular studies apace, graduated from ESCP in 2001 (major French graduate school of management). However, her all-consuming passion for music led her away from such a conventional path. In 1999, she enrolled in a Vocal Jazz and Flute Jazz course of study at the I.A.C.P school (with Lionel Belmondo, Sarah Lazarus, Pascal Brechet) and learnt opera vocal technique with the tenor singer Peterson Cowan. In 2005, to achieve her studies, she graduated from the EDIM music school (learning with Laurent Coq, Vincent Jacqz and Eric Schultz), and received the FNEIJMA diploma. In 2007, pursuing her fascinating and enriching search for timbres and tunes, she met Martina Catella, a world- famous teacher and vocal techniques master, then started teaching at the Martina Catella’s school, Les Glottes-Trotters (Paris).
In 2003, she became a fulltime professional musician with the Gospel band Ritual song, and formed her own jazz duo Bab’blue as a singer and composer, with the guitarist Jean-Baptiste Laya. In September 2006, deepening this guitar live duo experience, she recorded her first self-produced album Live au 7 Lézards, the fruit of a year-and-a-half collaboration with the guitarist Hugo Lippi.
Meanwhile, she worked with many Parisian jazz musicians such as guitarists Jérôme Barde, Jean-Philippe Bordier, Dano Haider, Hugo Lippi, Frédéric Loizeau, Serge Merlaud, Jean-Luc Roumier, Sandro Zerafa; as well as pianists/organists Damien Argentieri, Emmanuel Bex, Florent Gac, Olivier Hutman, Guillaume Naud, bassists Matthieu Bloch, Fabien Marcoz, Gilles Naturel, Michel Rosciglione, Yoni Zelnick, and drummers Charles Bénaroche, John Betsch, Lionel Boccara, Mathieu Chazarenc, Gautier Garrigue, David Georgelet, Antoine Paganotti, Yoann Serra.
Mars 2008 is the beginning of a new ambitious project called In Extremis, a bass-less 4tet with Olivier Hutman (piano), Dano Haider (7-string guitar) and Antoine Paganotti (drums). Their hybrid music takes the audience to a place where the greatest jazz standards rub shoulders with world music, original compositions and pop songs. Deeply rooted in Jazz spirit of improvisation and drawing a parallel between tones and senses, this music of the past for the present plays with the endless variety of its influences to renew itself. Since June 2010, she is singing with Tristan Macé (composer, bandoneon) and Albin Lebossé (horn) in the so-called project : Le diable à froid, dealing with musical and literary creations largely inspired by the Surrealists, Dada and the Tango.
Since then, Clotilde has kept herself busy, narrating a show for young people called Sur la route des Tziganes (Avignon Festival, Le Cap, in Aulnay-sous- bois, Vingtième Theatre in Paris, Marne Festival, Parc Floral in Vincennes, Cité de la Musique in Paris), but also performing as the singer/narrator of Monsieur Jazz, alongside with Sophie Alour, Jean-Baptiste Laya and Jean- Daniel Botta. Finally, as a flutist, she was also part of the Léonore quintet with Olivier Zano, Jean-Daniel Botta, Alexandre Saada and Laurent Séries, and handled a series of recordings, as either a flutist or a solo/chorus singer and voiceover artist.
Awards:**** & #5 best jazz album 2011 - SundayTimes / Among the best 10 Jazz albums 2011 of Citizenjazz.com / "Pick of the week" on Fip show on France Musique June 2011 / TT - Télérama / *** Jazzman 2009
Like the late, great Claude Nougaro, her tastes are strikingly eclectic (...). And she has the technique and imagination to hold all the myriad influences together, helped by a cultured band featuring Dano Haider (7-string guitar) and Olivier Hutman (piano). Her rich, deep timbre is a thing of beauty – the wordless vocals on the fragment of bill Evans’s Waltz for Debby are exquisite – but she can cope whenever Antoine Paganotti, on drums, raises the temperature. Clive DAVIS - **** & #5 best jazz album 2011 - SundayTimes (UK)
Clotilde Rullaud, while remaining faithful to the roots and tradition of vocal jazz, is a modern-day stylist. Much like an powerful magnet, she draws the listener near to her unique enticingly warm sound. I would recommend this excellent CD as an essential part of any Vocal Jazz library. Guy ZINGER - Adore Jazz Radio (NL) & Writer for All About Jazz
She has fine register and volume, with a tremendous sense of proportion. Waltz for Debby, the first track, is just an appetizer. And it’s with the following songs that we get her true purpose: challenging both song and voice in order to reach their full expression. That such a singer has been born shows that the history of the appreciation of jazz in France has not been just for show. Obari TOSHIO – JazzCritics (JP)
“This original and experienced singer is a real discovery. This eclectic lady reveals her voice and talent on tunes by Monk, Gainsbourg, Bill Evans, Sting, Piazzolla and Duruflé. She is clearly having fun, and so are we.” Michel CONTAT – TT – Télérama - http://sortir.telerama.fr/concerts/clotilde- rullaud-quartet,25080.php
“A bit like Nougaro (indeed African Sketches recalls the Toulouse singer’s Locomotive d'Or), it is the marriage of words and texts (often poetic) with the music that interests the singer above all, and which forms the very essence of the album. Baden Powell, Sting and Piazzolla, as well as several jazz tunes, are thus reinvented with a desire for originality that provides the whole album with an undeniable artistic unity. Although Clotilde Rullaud undoubtedly owes the success of this recording to her background as an instrumentalist (she is a flutist), she also owes it to her unusual trio (without bass) composed of top- class musicians who are much more than simple accompanists. An original and successful album for all those who like their jazz a little differently.” Philippe VINCENT – Jazzmag-man
“If a song is ‘a hummingbird perched on the great wall of sound’, as Nougaro once sang to a tune by Michel Legrand, then the singer and vocalist Clotilde Rullaud is one such beautiful creature. Her nimble mezzo voice is deep and swinging, seemingly raising from some faraway place, like the essence of the soul’s breath, a pure necessity to sing. (…) This is sensual chamber music that never takes itself too seriously, a record that is all about jazz, that enchanting melting pot of popular musical traditions. Therein lies, perhaps, the meaning of the album’s title, In extremis. For although these extremes may never meet, they do acknowledge each other, breaking down borders and letting the music wander free…but along a tightrope! And that, quite simply is what Clotilde’s path, her voice, is all about. A passion is born, and it’s time we listened to it. Laurent VALERO – Broadcaster of Easy Tempo show on France Musique - http://www.fipradio.fr/album-in-extremis
“The first thing you notice is her perfect elocution and the rich timbres of her voice, free from gratuitous effects and those frivolous ornamentations that all too often affect a singer’s clarity. Clotilde Rullaud moves smoothly between gossamer-delicate melody and decisive affirmation, for she knows how to happily alternate humour and seriousness, tenderness and energy, brio and simplicity, filled with groove and expansive emotion, from the unbridled scat of Sting’s Fragile to the unexpected and moving The Walk After Pie Jesu from Maurice Duruflé, all of it most uplifting. She has certainly found the kind of complicity with these musicians that makes you prick up your ears.” Jacques CHESNEL – Citizenjazz.com - http://www.citizenjazz.com/Clotilde- Rullaud,3465342.html
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Willing to teach:
Advanced students only.
Master-class: With Martina A. Catella, Steve Coleman, Peterson Cowan, Marc Ducret, Elisabeth Howard, Constantin Lacatus, Dave Liebman, David Linx, William Parker, Sandra Rumolino. Teaching @ Glotte-Trotters (Paris, FR) - Jazz à Tours ( Tours, FR), CMDL (Dammarie-les-Lys, FR)