I heard a story when I was a young child. It was a spellbinding story, told in magic, beautiful language I never heard before. It came from my parents’ vinyl player. It was Cannonball Adderley, Percy Heath, Art Blakey…Milt Jackson and Wynton Kelly playing ”Things Are Getting Better”. I played the song over and over again and I think that’s when I became a musician. I just had to learn that language and tell that magic story.
– Johan Leijonhufvud
Johan Leijonhufvud is a renowned Swedish jazz guitarist living in Berlin, Germany. He was born in 1971 in the county of Gothenburg, Sweden, and grew up in Växjö, Sweden. He began to play piano at the age of nine and guitar at the age of eleven.
In 1988 Johan moved to Skåne, a city in southern Sweden to study at Skurups Folkhögskola. After two years at this school, he moved to Malmö and started his first trio in 1991. Nine years later Johan moved to the city of Berlin, Germany. Over the years Johan has released five successful albums:
1993 – Johan Leijonhufvud Trio “Speaks The Local Bebop” (Sittel Records)
1996 – J.L Quartet “Happy Farm” (Sittel Records)
2001 – J.L Trio “Eurolines” (Sittel Records)
2006 – J.L Trio “Strange Man” (Love Street Records)
2014 – Johan Leijonhufvud “Mighty Mezz, Vol 1” (Blackbird Music)
2021 – JLT – Johan Leijonhufvud Trio “Harlem Nocturne” (Heartcore Records)
Johan Leijonhufvud has toured and performed with his bands and as a sideman all over Europe and many other parts of the world. He has played in several major clubs and festivals such as Montreux Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, Nice Jazz Festival, Copenhagen Jazz Festival, Ronnie Scott ́s (London), Blue Note Milano, London Jazz Cafe, Jamboree (Barcelona), Berlin Philharmonie, Auditorium Parco Della Musica (Rome) and Pizza Express (London).
He has played and recorded with some notable artists such as Benny Bailey, Till Brönner, Mark Murphy, Svante Thuresson, Anders Bergcrantz, Esbjörn Svensson, Nils Landgren, Wolfgang Haffner, Victoria Tolstoy, Claes Jansson, David Haynes, Kjell Öhman, Berndt Rosengren, and Max Schultz.
Johan’s trio, which consists of him and two other high-profile musicians – double bassist Johnny Åman (Billy Hart, Jerry Bergonzi, Gilad Hekselman) and drummer Niclas Campagnol (Mike Stern, John Patitucci, Bob Mintzer) have already released three albums together. On September 1st, 2023 Heartcore Records is proud to present their newest album, “Nifty Fifty”. The album will be available as CD, LP, digital download and on all streaming platforms.