Hanka Gregušová is one of the most striking singing sensations of Slovak music scene. She started singing pop and rock music when she was only 15 years old. But it was never her ambition to become a pop singer. She has been much more attracted to the world of soul & jazz music and the first taste of it she got during her stay in U.S.A. When she returned back to Slovakia she started to perform with excellent jazz musicians like Gabriel Jonáš, Ľubo Šrámek, etc. During this period she has done countless concerts in various music clubs that helped her to develop her vocal skills as well as shaped her musical directions. Now she put all that experience into her debut album Reflections of my soul.
Hanka’s strongest weapon is the beautiful color of her voice – deep soulful alto with velvet edge. The closest to her heart are soul and jazz inspired ballads which allow he nice voice to flourish hinging the best of it, through sensual, charming and in places almost erotic expression. One can hear in Hanka’s voice not only the wide spectrum of emotions but also excellent voice technique, exact phrasing with perfect finish (which is not as easy as one may think, especially with Slovak texts).
Hanka’s musical feeling and taste has influenced the choice of songs on this album – part is made of cover versions from excellent songwriters (Joe Sample, Stevie Wonder and others) and the rest songs are original compositions from Matúš Jakabčic, Erik Rothenstein and Klaudius Kováč. It’s very difficult to choose a favorite from this very balanced selection. What’s more important is that all songs with the expression and feeling allows Hanka’s vocal to shine in its most natural form and at the same time offer enough space to the musicians to significantly participate on the final result. Saxophonist and producer of this album – Radovan Tariška engaged an “elite” rhythm section containing Ondrej Krajňák (piano), Tomáš Baroš (double bass), Marian Ševčík (drums). One must also emphasize the guest appearance of Hungarian vocal “magician” Gábor Winand on this album in 2 duets which are real gems off.
I don’t know to what extend is this album a true reflection of Hanka’s soul, but more important is that I know that this compilation presents Hanka as a dominant singing personality with magical voice, powerful emotions and excellent taste for music, which reveals her inner beauty within.