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"When you think of the music of New Orleans, chances are you're not imagining anything like Whadeva—semi-avant-garde improvisation with light electronics is hardly the first association that comes to anyone's mind. Nonetheless the Big Easy's personality is still clear through this freewheeling EP, which was knocked out in a Ninth Ward studio in one free-spirited day. The trio of players are all based in the city, if not lifelong natives, and they like to channel its spirit of celebration and spontaneity alongside any other parts of their respective backgrounds. This session got a little extra dash of seize-the-day spirit from being made at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, just when everyone was aware something was going on but not yet realizing how big it would be."

-Read the full article: Geno Thakara, All About Jazz

Billie Davies Nominated "Best Drummer" By Best Of The Beat 2019 Awards
The OffBeat Music and Cultural Arts Foundation’s Best of the Beat Nominations are in.

This is the second time that Billie has been nominated for her exceptional talent since she has moved to New Orleans. The 2017 Best Of The Beat awards nominated her for Best Contemporary Jazz Artist.

Billie would like to express her sincere thanks for the recognition.
“Given the melting pot that New Orleans continues to be for jazz, it is not surprising that Davies has based herself here, nor that the musicians she gathers around her are not easy to pigeon-hole into one style of jazz (or even one style of music in any wider sense). This is another very successful experiment by Davies in mining the creative depths of improvised music making, producing a sound that cannot be simply labelled as jazz (even if it fully has the swing of jazz in all of the pieces brought by Davies and Watkinson in their dynamic partnership) and which really does respond to the cosmic dimensions of its inspiration.” - Chris Baber, Jazz Views (May, 2019)
Read the full article here released by Billie Davies PR.

“BILLIE DAVIES TRIO - Perspectives II Given the melting pot that New Orleans continues to be for jazz, it is not surprising that Davies has based herself here, nor that the musicians she gathers around her are not easy to pigeon-hole into one style of jazz (or even one style of music in any wider sense). This is another very successful experiment by Davies in mining the creative depths of improvised music making, producing a sound that cannot be simply labelled as jazz (even if it fully has the swing of jazz in all of the pieces brought by Davies and Watkinson in their dynamic partnership) and which really does respond to the cosmic dimensions of its inspiration.”

-Read the full article:  Chris Baber, Jazz Views (May 03, 2019)

“The spiritual jazz tradition, as exemplified by John Coltrane, Alice Coltrane and Pharoah Sanders, has been having a resurgence over the past few years in places like Los Angeles and Great Britain. Now here is evidence that some musicians in New Orleans are going down that path as well. Billie Davies is a drummer from Belgium who now lives and works in the Big Easy and this recording, available only in download form, captures a live performance of her trio, plus added guests, creating over an hour of heady, uplifting music. This is a loose, free-flowing concoction not quite like anything else out there. Like the best forward-thinking music, Billie Davies' work reminds you of many different things but in the end, it is its own original beast, as powerful as anything more well-known musicians have created this year.”

-Read the full article:  Jerome Wilson, All About Jazz (Dec 17, 2018)

"Billie Davies releases new Live digital album "PERSPECTIVES II"​." An ever evolving improvisation, a message to raise the awareness of life and living, love and loving from a deeply natural, instinctive perspective. A symphony to mother nature, to the tree of life and people. One big conversation where each artist responds to another artist’s call, where each and every action taken is in response to another, all being influenced by each other, all being one and one with mother nature. A spontaneous expression through sound, through words and through movement, all expressing perspectives of Nature, Life, Happiness, Love, Freedom, Art and Rhythm.

-Read the full article:  Billie Davies PR, Linked-In (Sep 08, 2018)

“New Orleans Drummer Billie Davies Announces Her New Release, "Perspectives II" By Billie Davies Trio, For September 27, 2018. "Freedom and expression. These are the things that matter most to Billie Davies, who has used the drums as a means to express herself freely for more than 40 years now. —Noe Cugny, Offbeat Magazine"”

-Read the full article:  Billie Davies PR, All About Jazz (Sep 12, 2018)

“Billie Davies ... plays her own music. Freedom and expression. These are the things that matter most to Billie Davies, who has used the drums for more than 40 years now. For Davies, seeking freedom is a purpose, a way of life. It stems from her days among bohemian communities in southern France, living in a DIY RV and playing music in the streets, where she shaped her chops early on, playing by herself or along manouche and blues musicians.”

-Read the full article:  Noe Cugny, OffBeat (Jul 02, 2018)

“Billie Davies Announces Perspectives 2 Performance At Art Klub Theatre In New Orleans On June 1. Billie Davies announces her Perspectives project finale performance, “Perspectives II”. The performance will be recorded live for sound by Mike Davies and video filmed by Marion Hill and her team and will be produced as a digital only release (music) and Digital Streaming Video/DVD (music/video) and is slated to be released in the fall of 2018. Following the improvisational exploration of “Perspectives I”, performed at the New Orleans Jazz Museum, Music At The Mint, on January 31 2018, the project finale, “Perspectives II”, continues an all spontaneous, instinctive, intuitive improvisation inspired by 7 Perspectives, words and 7 chakra musical keys, expressed by a quartet of piano / keys, baritone saxophone / flute, bass and drums, vocals / spoken word by 2 female vocalists and 2 female dancers.”

-Read the full article:  All About Jazz (May 01, 2018)

“Watch: Live Spontaneous Improvisation From Billie Davies Trio And Friends. The latest live performance video from the Billie Davies trio is an all-spontaneous improvisation with a piano, reeds, bass, drums and spoken word. It was filmed at the New Orleans Jazz Museum and is the second evolution of Davies’ PERSPECTIVES.”

-Read the full article:  OffBeat Staff, OffBeat Magazine (Feb 16, 2018)

“Billie Davies - A Nu Experience: On Hollywood Boulevard. It is clear that Hollywood Boulevard is a place of strong contrasts —lots of big money next to an evident seediness, beautiful sunshine and climate next to the ugliness of panhandling, drug abuse and pimps —with the musicians, and other entertainers, trying to do their thing in the middle of it all. There is a strong stream-of-consciousness feeling to the proceedings and a lot of echo/reverb which helps to create a sense of a dark, somewhat dangerous underbelly being present despite (or because of?) the natural beauty surrounding it. In the end, the success of On Hollywood Boulevard rests on whether it accomplishes what it set out to do, which here is recreate through music the vibe of a particular place as experientially remembered by Davies. In that it most definitely succeeds.”

-Read the full article:  Budd Kopman, All About Jazz (Feb 19, 2017)

“Despite the best efforts of James M. Cain, Chinatown and BoJack Horseman, L.A. noir still doesn’t get the respect it deserves next to what goes on in Gotham. This is doubly true for jazz, where a combo of experimentalism, perceived lack of gravitas and the general laid-back vibe of West Coast Cool doom it to second-fiddle status, seemingly forever. All these years later, and when folks want to feel how La La Land destroys the dreams of its citizens, they dig out “Hotel California,” not Chet Baker. Shame, really. If anyone could change that perception, it’s pioneering avant-garde drummer Billie Davies, a disciple of fellow “California Hard” stylist Max Roach and someone who, true to her gypsy resume, actually lived on Hollywood Boulevard for a time. Her latest release is typically daring, capturing the perfectly frightening freedom of being lost in El Lay ...”

-Read the full article:  Robert Fontenot, OffBeat Magazine (Feb 08, 2017)

“BILLIE DAVIES - A NU EXPERIENCE -On Hollywood Boulevard. On the one hand this set represents a very new direction for Billie Davies, working in Nu Jazz, which bridges jazz and contemporary R&B and hip hop. Her choice of an electronic drum kit also lends some really interesting textures to the sounds she produces. On the other hand, the drumming is as solid, nuanced and captivating as ever. Throughout the set, Davies leads the music, pushing the pulse and emphasising the words in ways that encourages keys and bass to find the gaps and cleverly work around and within them. I particularly liked the evocative playing of Oberla on trombone on several of the tracks. The group is a winning combination and one that promises an exciting change of direction for Davies.”

-Read the full article:  Chris Baber, Jazz Views (Feb 03, 2017)

“JAZZ'HALO. Billie Davies - On Hollywood Boulevard. The album is directly inspired by the famous Los Angeles Boulevard, where Billie Davies lived for several years. The project was born in 2012 and took its definitive form in New Orleans in 2016. The seven tracks of the album combine, on a very defined groove, original compositions of the leader and spaces for improvisation. A beautiful example of the vitality of the New Orleans scene.”

-Read the full article:  Claude Loxhay, Jazz'Halo (Jan 06, 2017)

“DownBeat Magazine. January 2017 Editor's Pick. Billie Davies, "On Hollywood Boulevard". As a bandleader, Davies delivers an ambitious program that incorporates r&b-flavored vocals, propulsive bass lines, drum patterns with a swing feel, occasionally blues-tinged keyboard work, growling trombone, epic prog-rock synthesizer washes and brief bouts of hip-hop turntableism, all tied together with an improviser's approach. Indeed much of the album feels like improvised adventure, but that doesn't prevent Iris P from injecting some memorable, repeated vocal hooks as on "The Girl In The Window" when she sings about an "unreachable dream".”

-Read the full article:  Bobby Reed, DOWNBEAT (Jan 03, 2017)

“On he new CD "On Hollywood Boulevard", two compositions out of seven were formed specifically into collective improvisation. They open and close the album, and are one of the most successful examples of that proclaimed new direction of New Orleans jazz... It starts rather underground, almost garage, but then the sound cleans up and even begins to discern some sort of Asian connotations, thanks to the coloring el. piano and synthesizer. But once the rhythm gains dominance, especially the very sparse and explosive el. drums, we begin to gasp.”

-Read the full article:  Jan Hocek, his VOICE (Jan 03, 2017)

“BILLIE DAVIES SAYS JAZZ EQUALS FREEDOM IN ALL OF ITS FORM AND EXPRESSIONS... Jazz enthusiast Billie Davies, came to the streets that is Hollywood, particularly Hollywood Boulevard, where she constructed her all new album “On Hollywood Boulevard”. Through the years, living there and going elsewhere, in which time, she says it’s about life, her life, as well as the lives in general, and how the media, it having such a big influence on our lives, through the means of TV, movies, magazines, music, and stars, of course. She then went on to experience, what can be said and seen within those streets, that it can be found upon this release, which she discusses dearly.”

-Read the full article:  Natalie Perez, Skope Magazine (Dec 19, 2016)

““On Hollywood Boulevard” is a glamorous, gorgeous mixture of jazz and funk displaying Billie Davies’s deft skill. Luxurious textures dominate the collection as Billie Davies draws from a wide variety of sources. Everything simply glistens as the attention to tone and texture are of the utmost importance. Bass works wonders alongside the rather loose, careful rhythms that adorn the album. Mood serves an important function as Billie Davies explore vast terrains, oftentimes delving into surreal, otherworldly soundscapes. Billie Davies offers a cool confident update on jazz with the playful nature of “On Hollywood Boulevard”.”

-Read the full article:  Beach Sloth, Skope Magazine (Dec 19, 2016)

“Clearly Billie Davies and A Nu Experience are a class act, one full of bold inventive and inspired interplay. Let us hope it won't be their only project together, and that there will be more adventurous music to come. Drummer Billie Davies began her career in Europe, performing extensively across the continent, before immigrating to America, until eventually she made her way to New Orleans in 2014, teaming up with IRIS P (vocals), Evan Oberla (electric piano, trombone) and Oliver Watkinson (electric bass) to form A Nu Experience in 2016. On Hollywood Boulevard is the Belgian born and award winning musician/composer's sixth album, and consists of seven compositions that are both fresh and engaging. Recorded live in front of a small intimate audience in attendance, each performance was captured in one take at Cobra Basement Studios in her home town of New Orleans.”

-Read the full article:  Sacha O'Grady, All About Jazz (Dec 06, 2016)

“Since recording, releasing and performing "Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon" as an ode to the work of her dearest friend, Belgian artist Serge Vandercam (1924 – 2005), and performing with Billie & The Bad Boyzzzz and the Billie Davies Trio in 2015- 2016 it slowly became time for her new album project “On Hollywood Boulevard”, for which Billie wrote the melodies and lyrics, to become a reality. After 20 years of playing, producing and releasing instrumental jazz, Billie Davies is turning a page and is bringing us a Nu Vocal and Electric Experience, “On Hollywood Boulevard”.”

-Read the full article:  Editor, Jazz'Halo (Dec 06, 2016)

“Billie Davies is a very accomplished free-jazz drummer. Born in Belgium, she now lives in New Orleans, having spent much of her life living peripatetically. The press release and liner notes of this CD are full of stories and these provide both an introduction and, I think, an explanation of her playing. Previous reviewers have made much of the self-taught nature of her drumming. While this is a feature of one of the stories in the press release, I defy any listener to distinguish her playing from someone ‘schooled’ in jazz drumming. There is a vitality and fluidity in the way that she plays the drum kit and this is what I mean by the idea that her stories explain her drumming; she speaks through the drums to the other players on this dates, asking questions of them and replying with the fusion of styles that she has built up over her travels. ​”

-Read the full article:  Chris Baber, Jazz Views (Jun 30, 2016)

“Free drummer Billie Davies calls Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon a symphony, which implies composition, larger planned structures, etc. Nothing like that is here, as the music was improvised and recorded in one session. However, this music is not just a free session of highly intuitive and sensitive players; it has a reason for being, and that reason is the intersection of the life paths of two artists working in different media -Davies, a musician and Serge Vandercam, a painter, at a specific time and place.”

-Read the full article:  Budd Kopman, All About Jazz (May 24, 2016)

“From Down Beat magazine, the monthly "bible" of jazz, blues, and roots music. May 2016 issue. Article written by Jennifer Odell. Billie Davies, a Belgium-born drummer whose career path has been as avant-gar- de as her music, had an existential crisis of sorts before she returned to drumming full- time in 2009. She’d been working in Northern California as an art dealer—one of many hats that have ranged from DJ to gypsy musician to information architecture IT specialist—when it occurred to her she wasn’t sure who she was anymore. Distraught, she picked up the phone and called Serge Vandercam (1924–2005), a Danish visual artist with whom she’d bonded, for advice. “I just go, ‘Who am I?’” Davies recalled, her voice cracking as if stuck halfway between the onset of laughter or tears. Vandercam’s reply was terse: “You’re an artist. Get on with it. Stop whining.” She took it in stride.”

-Read the full article:  Jennifer Odell, Down Beat Magazine (Mar 29, 2016)

“The first New Orleans album by Billie Davies is a tribute to Danish avant-garde artist Serge Vandercam. Billie Davies is an American female jazz drummer and composer, born in Bruges, Belgium on December 10, 1955. She is best known for her avant garde and avant-garde jazz compositions, as well as her revered improvisational drumming skills, that especially gained attention from the mid-nineties, after performing around Europe and the US. She often quotes her mother Simone Clybouw as her biggest influence both on an artistic and personal level. It was her mother that introduced her to jazz, and named her after the great Billie Holiday. She was hence raised listening to the music of Louis Armstrong, Edith Piaf, Ella Fitzgerald and Nina Simone among other artists. It was at around the age of 25 that she started the transition to becoming a professional musician, influenced by such artists as Al Foster, Billy Higgins and Peter Erskine. Her new album Hand in Hand In the Hand of the Moon...”

-Read the full article:  Matt Micucci, JAZZIZ (Dec 19, 2015)

“Avant-garde music really finds its beauty in the way it rids musical expression of a number of conceptual restraints, leaving the core of the artist’s emotion to be exposed bare. Though the instrumentation remains within the established norms of the jazz quintet, the absence of piano challenges the horns to build a melodic and rhythmic rapport among themselves and with Davies’ lead drumming, rather than relying on set harmonies or chord structure.”

-Read the full article:  Noe Cugny, OffBEAT (Oct 28, 2015)

“Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon is a heartfelt homage to the artist Serge Vandercam (1924-2005) whose paintings, depicted on the inside CD cover, originally inspired this suite of collaborative improvisations. Initially the inspiration drew from a period of three days of the full moon in 1995 when the artist was influenced by the drummer's playing. For this recording in 2015, following a 20 year gestation period, the painting corresponding to each title was hanging on a wall clearly visible to the musicians. Davies herself painted the album's cover art in 1996 plus the "prelude" painting depicted inside the CD cover.”

-Read the full article:  Roger Farbey, All About Jazz (Oct 28, 2015)

“COBRA BASEMENT BILLIE DAVIES/Hand in Hand in the Hand of the Moon Nawlins fave progressive jazz drumming woman gets inspired by the paintings of a Belgian artist and records during the full moon. It doesn't say it was paid for by an arts council so even if this minimalist outing isn't your cup of tea, give her the proper props for sticking to her guns and shepherding her vision as per her integrity and calibrations.”

-Read the full article:  Chris Sprector, MIDWEST RECORD (Oct 24, 2015)

“For this project, Billie turned to friends in New Orleans: tenor saxophonist Alex Blaine who worked with Dr. John, the pianist, and with the singer Allen Toussaint, trumpeter Branden Lewis, trombonist Evan Oberla, leader of the quintet RFG that recorded the album "May your Vice be Nice" and bassist Ed Strohsahl. After a prelude of 7 minutes 26 dedicated to the drums alone, seven movements follow smoothly inspired by the paintings of Serge Vandercam Pour ce projet, Billie a fait appel à des amis de La Nouvelle-Orléans: le saxophoniste ténor Alex Blaine qui a côtoyé Dr John, comme le pianiste, et chanteur Allen Toussaint, le trompettiste Branden Lewis, le tromboniste Evan Oberla, leader du quintet RFG qui a enregistré l'album "May your Vice be Nice" et le contrebassiste Ed Strohsahl. Après un Prélude de 7 minutes 26 dédié à la seule batterie, s'enchaînent sept séquences inspirées par les toiles de Serge Vandercam”

-Read the full article:  Claude Loxhay, JAZZ'HALO (Oct 20, 2015)

“In the spring of last year she moved into the cradle of jazz, south to New Orleans, where she is surrounded by its instrumentalists. And this is of course is reflected in the new album, which she recorded with the five-member line-up in one go, basically live, on April 24 in New Orleans in one of the small studios that are practically in every street, along with her there shining tenor saxophonist Alex Blaine, trumpeter Branden Lewis, trombonist Evan Oberla and bassist Ed Strohsahl. The project, however, was born in 1995 when the Danish-Belgian painter Serge Vandercam visited Billie's house in Tiburon, California. After a sleepless night, they decided to try to inspire each other; he would paint, and she would play the drums. Billie says: It was the full moon, a nightingale sang constantly behind the house, it was a magical moment... so the work ended up lasting three days and completed eight works which 20 years later became the basis for the eight parts of the symphony...”

-Read the full article:  Jan Hocek, hisVOICE (Oct 12, 2015)

“Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon is the first album drummer, composer and bandleader Billie Davies recorded since wrapping up a successful, five-year stay in Los Angeles and heading east to the more exotic environs of New Orleans. The Old World charm-meets-New World adventurism of the Crescent City suits the Belgium-born and raised Davies, and the mere change of location added a new wrinkle in her music. Davies’ brand of jazz remains the bedrock of her music: she strips the music down its foundation and builds it back up with free but purposeful movement. Further, she’s at her best when she is creating live and on the spot. For Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon, her first record of her New Orleans era, Davies brings those attributes with her and she gets a taste of Nola in return with a new band she filled with locals: Alex Blaine on tenor sax, Branden Lewis on trumpet, Evan Oberla on trombone and Ed Strohsahl on acoustic bass.”

-Read the full article:  S. Victor Aaron, SOMETHING ELSE! (Oct 09, 2015)

“Billie G. Davies: "a natural talent, a tonal painter of sounds" Born in Brugge in 1955, Billie Goegebeur discovered drums thanks to her grandfather Maurice Clybouw. First she played throughout Europe. In 1986, she moved to the US, where she played with Leroy Vinegar (the bass player who recorded with Shelly Manne, Chico Hamilton and Sonny Rollins) or with John Handy (he is well known for his record 'Live at the Monterey Festival' with Mike White on violin) and she could record several albums: 'Cobra Basemento', 'Dreams', 'All about Love', '12 Volt'. Now she has a new project: ''Hand In Hand In The Hand Of The Moon'' with her Billie Davies Ensemble. In 2013, All about Jazz said: "Billie Davies is mostly an autodidact whose natural talent, explorative spirit and multifaceted experiences have led to an innovative approach to jazz." The American critic S.V. Aaron adds: "When listening to Davies play, it's easier to think of her not as a drummer but a tonal painter".”

-Read the full article:  Claude Loxhay, Jazz'halo (Mar 29, 2015)

“BILLIE DAVIES - 12 VOLT : HIGH VOLTAGE avant-garde JAZZ by Jan Hocek December 5, 2013 She was born in Bruges, Belgium, eccentric , avant-garde jazz drummer - self-taught, relentless and explosive style of playing, jazz innovator, living in Los Angeles since 2009 only, she is this year's winner of the prestigious LA Music Awards in the category "Jazz Artist of the Year 2013" - BILLIE DAVIES! This award helped her to the greatest degree with her last (the fourth one) album "12 VOLT", which was released on their own label Cobra Basement. 

-Read the full article:  Jan Hocek, JazzPort (Dec 05, 2013)

“She was born in Bruges, Belgium, eccentric , avant-garde jazz drummer - self-taught, relentless and explosive style of playing, jazz innovator, living in Los Angeles since 2009 only, she is this year's winner of the prestigious LA Music Awards in the category "Jazz Artist of the Year 2013" - BILLIE DAVIES! This award helped her to the greatest degree with her last (the fourth one) album "12 VOLT", which was released on their own label Cobra Basement. Billie Davies came to the United States when she was 32. Before that, from the age of 19, she was playing avant-garde jazz and free improvisation throughout Europe, especially France, Spain and the Mediterranean. She learned from recordings that included drummers such as Al Foster, Billy Higgins, Billy Cobham, Peter Erskine, Billy Hart and Jack DeJohnette. In doing so she got herself sucked into the various ethnic influences, particularly Roma music. 

-Read the full article:  Jan Hocek, his VOICE (Dec 05, 2013)

“Billie Davies: 12 Volt (2013) By C. MICHAEL BAILEY, Published: November 22, 2013 Billie Davies: 12 Volt Drummer Billie Davies' previous recording, All About Love (Self Produced, 2012) was novel and compelling, a trombone trio with the drummer lead. Davies assembled original and standard works, achieving both educational and artistic endpoints. The present recording, 12 Volt, retains the trio format, substituting the guitar for the trombone and pushes the trio envelope out with a moody collection of eight originals, when considered together comprise an avant-garde suite possibly conceived by Grant Green and John Coltrane. This music is most comparable to Jimmy Giuffre's 1960s trios exploring free jazz using three independent instruments probing jazz's three-dimensional space. Davies directs a very similar interrogation of spatial sound dependence and independent of time.”

-Read the full article:  C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz (Nov 22, 2013)

“The first selection on "12 VOLT" is reminiscent of Miles Davis’ electric period of the 70s. There are several themes that are stated initially, these are followed by the improvisation section which brings in ideas from the themes that were presented. The piece ends on the same thematic material that it began with. There are some nice dynamic changes in the music and Ms. Davies creates some pleasant colors with her cymbal work. Daniel Coffeng has ample chops to play a variety of styles and his technique ties the variety of ideas together. Her style is definitely of the avant garde school of jazz which seeks to go beyond the boundaries of the standard elements of music. We are taught that the elements of music: rhythm, harmony, melody and form, are the key foundational elements of music. Well what happens if you remove these elements can you still call it music? Is it possible to remove them completely? This is the debate that has been going on in the jazz community since...”

-Read the full article:  Dr. William E. Smith (W.E.S.), Dr. Will Smith's Playlist (Nov 12, 2013)

“All About Jazz Billie Davies: 12 VOLT (2013) Belgium native and Los Angeles based drummer Billie Davies continues to forge her own path in the improvised music world. Endowed with an explorative temperament and unique, yet definite swing sense, Davies pays homage to Gypsy musicians on her fourth release as a leader, 12 Volt. Just to be clear, this is not an album reinterpreting guitarist Django Reinhardt's tunes or anyone else's for that matter. It is a cohesive work of bold innovation and free flowing spontaneity in tribute to the unfettered spirit of those individuals. The title track, for instance, opens with Davies' thundering cascade of beats that fall like refreshing rain over guitarist Daniel Coffeng's earthy, slow simmering, chords. As evidenced on this uniformly intriguing disc Davies thrives in the sparse, collaborative setting of the trio. Throughout her recorded legacy, her partners have changed but her artistic imagination and her inspired ingenuity have solidified...”

-Read the full article:  HRAYR ATTARIAN, All About Jazz (Oct 29, 2013)

“Billie Davies – 12 VOLT (2013) by S. Victor Aaron The 23rd Annual L.A. Music Awards has recently nominated drummer and bandleader Davies as “Jazz Artist of the Year” for 2013, a mere four years after she set up shop in Los Angeles and made it her home. But this bohemian from Belgium has quickly made positive impressions everywhere she goes, including this reviewer when sizing up her third album all about Love a year ago. For album #4 12 Volt, Davies assembled a new trio to go along with her new songs, in which she constructed around a concept of simplicity and being closer to nature. In this case, being closer to nature meant deconstructing jazz to its base components. The liner notes for Billie Davies’ upcoming album went into the detail of what makes the jazz of this drummer stand out from the herd, but one sentence seemed to sum it up nicely: “Davies is not countering the modern jazz movement so much but rather stripping it down to its essence" ...”

-Read the full article:  S. Victor Aaron, Something Else! Reviews (Oct 02, 2013)

“BILLIE DAVIES "12 VOLT" .... "The bohemian beatnik drum stylings of Billie Davies reverb from cymbal to kick drum with the intuitive jazzy drifts of a true drumming savant. Her album, 12 Volt, is a showcase of stop and go flow that keeps the listener in some kind of a suspended reality that feels like a faucet of cold tap water jazz that’s on the fritz. If your ears are still burnin’ from that summer city sun and are in need of a splash of some snare drum love that’s sure to sooth your ears, mind, and soul, do yourself the favor and self-medicate with this avant-garde jazz album overflowing with Billie’s jive drumming spirit. Listen to this while: smoking your hand rolled cigarettes in some dusky, dimly lit lounge in the Village. Don’t forget your gin and tonic, black beret, red lipstick and snapping fingers for applause." — Stephanie Reisnour”

-Read the full article: Stephanie Reisnour, TOM TOM Magazine (Oct 01, 2013)

“BILLIE DAVIES - 12 VOLT Year: 2013 Style: Jazz Label: Cobra Basement Musicians: Billie Davies - drums; Daniel Coffeng - guitar; Adam Levy - bass CD Review: On the first anniversary of her last CD release: The Billie Davies Trio - All About Love (Cobra Basement: 2012), 'lifelong natural musician' drummer Billie Davies has released another unimpeachable work: BILLIE DAVIES - 12 VOLT. Whereas, All About Love featured some of the music of venerated composers, including Victor Young, Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Mongo Santamaria, 12 VOLT features exclusively original compositions of Billie Davies, revealing yet another formidable creative talent in Davies' impressive artistic arsenal; making this an important CD for Davies, since it adds the crucial tyne of 'composer/arranger' to her sterling artistic fork, augmenting fearless innovation, and superlative drumming technique. For 12 VOLT, Davies employs again the trio setting, but with a significant change in players...”

-Read the full article:  C.J. Bond, Jazz Music (Sep 29, 2013)

“Billie Davies "12 VOLT" 2013. The organic essence of improvisational music. The evocative manipulation of sound and silence into a living breathing microcosm of emotion and spontaneous creativity. Brent Black / Melodic minimalism...12 Volt is improvisational music stripped down to a bare bones approach of lyrical passion and purpose. Billie Davies is more than a drummer as she possesses compositional skills that have 12 Volt as engaging as perhaps any trio based ensemble working today. Perhaps the most amazing aspect of 12 Volt is that it is a live studio recording. Live studio recordings can be magic or they can be a train wreck. Strictly as an instrumentalist Billie Davies is one of the more lyrically based drummers in the style of a Max Roach and her work is quickly gaining attention as she was nominated as "Jazz Artist" of the year 2013 by the 23rd annual L.A. Music Awards. The other ensemble members include guitarist Daniel Coffeng and bassist Adam Levy...”

-Read the full article:  Brent Black, Critical Jazz / Bop-n-Jazz (Sep 25, 2013)

“The term slow burn has been used to describe sensuality in music for decades. Billie Davies Trio is just that, a slow burn of improvisational ideas, coupled with complex rhythms and harmonic colors. Female Drummer Billie Davies, who originally hails from Belgium is at the helm, leading her trio through a well-balanced program of standards re-arranged and originals that complement each other in the context of this recording with ease. The main theme throughout is spaciousness, it permeates the overall concept of the album. Take the opening track “Stella by Starlight” a well-known standard that has been well-documented, but when in the hands of this apt trio it becomes like a firework show that bursts with originality.”

-Read the full article:  Geannine Reid, Jazz Times (Oct 16, 2012)

“All About Love could equally have been called All About Improv as this album is all about the spontaneous moment that jazz is created. A trio of musicians set in a circle facing each other in a small recording studio and playing off each others creativity. With Billie Davies on drums, Tom Bones Ralls on trombone and Oliver Steinberg on bass, this is a trio that stretches the boundaries beyond the norm... John M. Peters. More at...”

-Read the full article:  John M. Peters, THE BORDERLAND (Oct 05, 2012)

“Jazz combos without chordal accompaniment (pianoless) are rareties these days- if they exist at all. Gerry Mulligan's 1950 quartet, with trumpeter Chet Baker, bassist Bob Whitlock, and drummer Chico Hamilton; along with The Sonny Rollins Trio 1957 "Way Out West" album, featuring Ray Brown on bass, and Shelly Manne on drums, are two of the quintessential jazz aggregations that set the standard for this grouping. The Billie Davies Trio is a pianoless ensemble that manages to overcome the challenges that are inherent in such an arrangement: maintaining stimulating textures and colors without generating chaos; keeping clear harmonic structures; and eschewing loss of place by musicians and listeners. Stripping down the date's selections to their elemental harmonic and melodic form, the trio imbues each song with renewed innovative inventions that emanate ... CJ Bond. ”

-Read the full article:  CJ Bond, JAZZMUSIC (Oct 02, 2012)

“Idiosyncratic drummer Billie Davies is mostly an autodidact whose natural talent, relentless, explorative spirit and multifaceted experiences have led to an innovative approach to jazz. Her bold individualism is showcased on All About Love, a collaborative effort that has her democratically guiding an unusual, bottom-heavy ensemble with lyrical trombonist Tom Bone Ralls and versatile bassist Oliver Steinberg. Davies creates complex motives and blurs the distinction between melody and rhythm on such pieces as John Coltrane's "Naima" and the minimalistic second take of the Mongo Santamaria classic "Afro Blue Too." Her rich harmonies contrast nicely with the atonality of her own "High Noon" that flirts with the avant-garde. The tune also demonstrates the intense camaraderie that drives the intrepid and unpredictable group interplay. ”

-Read the full article:  HRAYR ATTARIAN, All About Jazz (Sep 21, 2012)

“Belgium native Billie Davies first started drumming at the age of three, and even though she dabbled in a number of other artistic endeavors, like singing and DJ’ing, her skills behind the kit were notable enough to garner the attention of Max Roach, who offered her a scholarship at the Berklee School of Music. It was at a time of her life when she was having too much fun to engage in serious studies, so she turned it down. Eventually though, Davies devoted herself full time toward drumming, picking up innumerable styles that she has mastered, including soul/funk, blues, classical, and all shades of jazz... The fruits of her collaboration with trio members Tom Bone Ralls (trombone) and Oliver Steinberg (bass) are set forth in this new CD, all about Love. 

-Read the full article:  S Victor Aaron, Something Else! Reviews (Sep 15, 2012)

“The music created by Billie Davies (drums), Oliver Steinberg (bass), and Tom Bone Ralls (trombone) on all above Love. (self-released sounds like that cool “after hours” jazz you seek and want to find at 3 or 4 in the morning when you motel smells like cigarettes and ass, you’re hungry, and you’re not tired just yet. Yet you enter a nightclub or basement at the end of town, it still smells like cigarettes and ass but you feel like you’re in familiar territory. This is love, this is jazz, this is life. This is music. The choice of songs played by Billie Davies and her trio are quite good, including versions of “Naima”, “Afro Blue”, “Stella By Starlight”, and “Jean Pierre”. Davies’ drumming is the anchor behind these, but to hear what Ralls and Steinberg do with the trombone and bass respectively… again, it feels like “after hours” jazz and you may want to listen to this with your eyes closed, wear a blindfold, or simply wait until 2 or 3am... (More)”

-Read the full article:  John Book, This is Books Music (Sep 08, 2012)

“Jazz compressed into small places, as it is in drummer Billie Davies' trombone trio, often gives the most unpredictable yet satisfying results. Piano-less trios are nothing new, but one lead by a trombonist, while still being comparable to Sonny Rollins' tenor saxophone trios of the 1950s, certainly is. Trombonist Tom Bone Ralls is careful to fill any space, avoiding the overuse of slurs and glissandos. The collection of originals and standards is largely introspective and influenced by saxophonist John Coltrane's horizontal method of improvisation. This Coltrane strain is most evident on Mongo Santamaria's "Afro Blue" and its reprise—long a staple of Coltrane's late period catharsis. Davies provides polyrhythmic propellant to bassist Oliver Steinberg, while Ralls plays the harmonic head straight. His solo progressively becomes more abstract without becoming dissonant and distant.”

-Read the full article:  C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz (Sep 02, 2012)

“After reviewing releases for well over two year know I know what I like...namely an artist that can take "old school" and flip the sound into "new cool." The Billie Davies Trio does this as well as any trio around but with literally bare bones instrumentation they run on passion, ingenuity and raw talent that ensembles twice their size spend an entire career looking for. When most people think trio they think piano, bass and drums. Here we have Billie Davies on drums, Tom Bone Ralls on trombone and Oliver Steinberg holding things together on bass. Organic, eclectic, or jazz minimalism it works! Outside of a little reverb on the trombone the recording is literally live in the studio, as raw and real as live jazz gets. ...”

-Read the full article:  Brent Black, Critical Jazz (Aug 21, 2012)