Stekpanna is an AngloScandinavian contemporary jazz trio whose members met in Hollywood, California, in 1995.
The three members are all award winning graduates of the worldrenowned Musicians Institute in Los Angeles: guitarist Mads Kjølby Olesen (Denmark) received the Outstanding Jazz Stylist award from Yamaha. Drummer Petter Svärd (Sweden) was given the Funkmeister Award from Pearl; and bassist Steve Kershaw (UK) was the recipient of the Outstanding Vocational Honors and Outstanding Student of the Year awards from GHS Strings and Fender respectively.
In addition to an enormous number of live, studio, and videotaped performances in Los Angeles, the Stekpanna triumvirate also won, the Battle of the Bands at the Musicians Institute in 1996 the first jazz group ever to do so. The LA Weekly described that performance as 'hip, happening and deeply groovy'; when they arrived in Britain to play at the Edinburgh Festival Talk Radio UK hailed them as 'the cream of the crop' and BBC Radio Scotland were quick to invite them to play live on The Usual Suspects programme; Jazz UK magazine endorsed these plaudits in a review of their debut CD Standin'Tall: 'a different musical path with impressive results... well who could argue with that?'
As individuals their musical pedigrees are impeccable, encompassing live national radio, TV, film, and touring in the UK, Europe, Scandinavia and the USA; collectively they combine Danish openmindedness and Viking anarchism with quirky English humour to create music that is subtle, swinging, unpredictable, and exquisitely melodic: Jazzwise magazine commented favourably on the 'attractive simplicity' of their original compositions, and their 'imaginative treatments' of the standards in their repertoire; David Freeman of Jazz FM has given the CD a good deal of airplay, regarding it as 'one of the very best albums of 1997: great writing, great playing, great listening'. The band is now firmly established in the UK: as Time Out put it, 'this guitarled fusion trio has springboarded onto the British scene following the positive critical reaction to the group's debut album Standin' Tall. Furthermore, Stekpanna were awarded funding from Jazz Services and the Musicians Union as part of the highly sought after Jazz Touring scheme for their UK tour in May 1998. The tour finished with a live recording for BBC Scotland from the Lemon Tree in Aberdeen.