Typhanie Monique and Neal Alger have formed a musical partnership that is organic and based on groove. In the five years that the duo has performed together, they've developed a repertoire that reflects their love for jazz standards, the rock and pop music they grew up with, and most importantly, R&B/Soul music, the flavor of which underlies every song the duo performs. Familiar tunes are recast with fresh arrangements while obscure gems and dusted off and brought to life again. A typical set by the duo might include "Riders On The Storm" by the Doors, the jazz classic "Song For My Father", and an original composition with a hip-hop flavor titled "I Don't Care". This kind of stylistic breadth has given the duo visibility beyond the conventional jazz audience and an appeal that crosses over to listeners of other genres of music. The vibrant and creative music made by the duo of Typhanie Monique and Neal Alger is truly intrinsic; experience it on their debut release INTRINSIC.
TYPHANIE MONIQUE has established herself as a respected self-producing vocalist, songwriter and manager, immersing her talent in various genres including R&B, funk, acid-jazz, hip-hop, gospel, house and her true love, jazz. Over the past 7 years, she has fronted many successful projects; Peking Turtle, SUMO, T. Monique Quartet and lead vox for Mr. Egg Germ. A founding member of the band Peking Turtle, Monique sang lead, managed, and was the primary songwriter for the group. The release of their two albums, "Crossing" and "Airtite" brought them local as well as national success.
Although she focused her attention on Peking Turtle from 98' til '02 Typhanie continued to sing/write with various projects. With Rick Gehrenbeck of Poi Dog Pondering, she continues to co-write and record house singles under the name "Mr. Egg Germ", which have been released on Love Slap, Fourplay and their latest release Bring me Love on EsNtion Records. Typhanie was also a proud member of the staple Chicago improv jam band, SUMO. Typhanie continued to grow as a jazz artist over the years performing with her jazz group, The T. Monique Quartet. Typhanie hired Neal for a gig with the quartet, and the rest is history. Typhanie remains active recording jingles, hip-hop tracks and original soul music. She teaches Jazz Vocal classes at the highly acclaimed Old Town School of Folk Music.
NEAL ALGER has freelanced as a guitarist in the Chicagoland area for ten years. His jazz credentials include performances with Lin Halliday, Ed Thigpen, Howard Levy, and Fareed Haque. Neal's versatility has enabled him to play classic rock covers with Cast Iron Skillet, R&B/Soul with vocalist KFox (DefSoul records), and 20th-century classical music with HardArt Groop. Neal toured West Africa in 1999 as a Jazz Ambassador through a cultural exchange program sponsored by the State Department and the U.S. Government. Most notably, Neal has recorded and toured the U.S., Europe, and Canada with Blue Note recording artist Patricia Barber and is featured on her newest release LIVE: A FORTNIGHT IN FRANCE. As if his sideman activities weren't enough, Neal has released a CD under his own name featuring his original compositions titled HERE AND NOW, THERE AND BEFORE.
"Together, Typhanie Monique and Neal Alger achieve a state of flow where each musical moment seems to unfold effortlessly into the next. Monique's magnetic vocals morph from melody into improvisation and back again as Alger
keeps rhythm, harmony and humor afloat via multiple-line guitar accompaniments and solos. 'Intrinsic' challenges both artists to operate without a net and take great chances as they earnestly reconstruct jazz standards, classic rock tunes and a blues in an ultra-intimate setting."
- Ed Enright, senior contributor for Down Beat magazine
"Mondays are looking better now that singer/songwriter Typhanie Monique & Neal Alger are performing every Monday at Pop's for Champagne on the North side. Monique sings soul, jazz, R&B and has been compared to Sarah Vaughan, Oleta Adams and Chaka Khan. Alger is a veteran accompanist, most recently for Patricia Barber, and is noted for his cool understated delivery."
- Chicago Sun Times, Weekend Plus, April '03
"Equally comfortable with the pop standard as the improvisational scat, Typhanie delivers a genuine passion with every performance. And she makes it all look simple in the process." - Richard Milne, WXRT
"Oh did I mention the voice-over laden and infusing, enthusing and at times cajoling, cascading, serenading... exquisite in execution, timbre and control. A vocal tour de force. A spirited, gifted performer and superb writer". - Ben Ruth, Chicagolocalbands.com
"The music is highlighted by the spirited vocals and songs of Typhanie Monique Coller, whose exuberant style recalls a less throaty Chaka Khan."
- Dan Kenning, metromix.com
"Fans of acid jazz might like to check out this American take on the genre from Chicago's quirkily titled seven-piece Peking Turtle. Fronted by the powerful lead vocalist and songwriter Typhanie Monique Coller, this set of idiosyncratic, well-crafted songs never runs the risk of falling into mere cliche. The sudden changes of mood, surprising transitions, flashes of humor and sophisticated harmonic sense mark it out from the purely groove-led accessibility that is often associated with the acid jazz tag."
- Peter Quinn, Jazzwise
"Prowling, preening and amiable all at the same time, her sassy vocal style all but demands the listener pay attention...
- Craig Schmidt, chicagogigs.com
Alger "matches jazzman dexterity and harmonic mastery with rockist tone". - Jon Garelick, Boston Phoenix
"Liquid tone, careful diction, and an aura of cool." - John Barrett, jazzUSA.com
Alger "projects a temperate, mid-toned electric sound to augment his tone-sculpting accents and well-timed volume control manipulations. Alger economizes in lieu of instituting an array of technical gymnastics". - Glenn Astarita, Downbeat magazine
Neal is "an outstanding guitar player that never overplays and never forgets that his role is that of an accompanist". - Roman St. James, indiemonkey.com
Neal's "playing ranges from contemplative acoustic solos to searing, pointillist electric accents". - John Swenson, Stereophile magazine
Neal "produces lively improvised rounds of pleasure". - Frank Rubolino, Cadence magazine
Alger "effortlessly steals the show no matter whether he is soloing or merely comping". - Larry Hollis, Cadence magazine
"Particularly vivid presence" on Patricia Barber's 'Verse' - Don Heckman, LA Times