Born in Roanoke Virginia, Christina Marie Gleixner is an artist with a curious mind. It would seem simple: grow up with a passion for music, go to school and follow in the footsteps of thousands by writing and performing the music of the day. And yet that’s not the path that Christina took. Upon hearing a track from late Turkish singer Tanju Okan, Christina was so taken with the music that she decided she would sing in Turkish. The lyrics spoke of being so drunk one would forget that their love ever existed, and somehow it unlocked a strong creative space.
‘it (the music) felt very familiar to me, but I also felt that I could access a part of myself that was unfamiliar and magical, something that could be new and challenging. I wanted to be able to interpret my emotions through a new lens’
And so a vision was formed. With a love of Western folk and pop music, and a nostalgic eye on the musical history of Turkey, Christina Marie set out on a singular mission. Something only she could see, brought to fruition through hard work and collaboration. Christina began learning the language and writing the lyrics as poetry, building the songs around the words. The result is the self-titled album from Yeni Nostalji: a beautiful and sublime blend of cultures and sounds. One could call this world music, but that label would not support the full vision. This is best experienced by simply listening. Christina’s vocals are as thoughtful as the project itself – like deep water on a dark night, and the band fills in behind her in careful precision, complete with polished decoration of sound.
Bandleader Christina Marie cites her songwriting influences as “Leonard Cohen, Morrissey, and Dolly Parton” but is heavily influenced by the vintage soundscape of Turkish and European pop radio from the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s. The band features Moldovan-born guitarist and composer Vlad Cuiujuclu, guitarist and arranger Gary Kalar, and Turkish rhythm section Ayça Kartari (bass) and Emre Kartari (drums). Yeni Nostalji’s sound is often described as a mashup of 60’s French pop, Bossa Nova, and modern indie pop ballads.
Christina Marie Gleixner: vocals
Vlad Cuiujuclu: electric & acoustic guitar
Evrim Doğu: electric & acoustic guitar, vocals
Gary Kalar: electric guitar
Marlysse Simmons: piano, keyboard
Rei Alvarez: drums, maracas, vocals
Lance Koehler: drums
Andrew Randazzo: bass
Ellen Riccio: violin
Treesa Gold: violin
Kim Ryan: viola
Schuyler Slack: cello
Taylor Barnett: trumpet
Bob Miller: trumpet
Reggie Chapman: bass trombone, euphonium, tuba
Mary Boodell: flute
Brandon Simmons: flute
Shawn Welk: oboe
Executive Producer: Lance Koehler
Associate Producer: Christina Marie Gleixner
Engineered, mixed and mastered by Lance Koehler at Minimum Wage Recording in Richmond, VA, USA.
Lyrics by Christina Marie Gleixner except tracks 4 and 8 by Evrim Doğu.
Arranged by Gary Kalar and Marlysse Simmons.
Album artwork by Christina Marie Gleixner (design) and Linda Moses (photography).