Ellen Radka Toneff (25 June 1952 – 21 October 1982) was a Norwegian jazz singer, daughter of the Bulgarian folk singer, pilot and radio technician Toni Toneff, she was born in Oslo and grew up in Lambertseter and Kolbotn. She is still considered one of Norway's greatest jazz singers.
Radka Toneff live 1982 in Bergen.
|Birth name||Ellen Radka Toneff|
|Born||25 June 1952|
|Died||21 October 1982 (aged 30)|
Toneff holds a very special position in the Norwegian jazz history. With her moderate, but intense expression and her discerning musicianship, she made a deep impression on many people. Her highly personal and original qualities, where she combined influences from her father's musical heritage in Bulgaria with a range of influences from, among others, jazz and rock, led her to become a beacon for singers both in Norway and internationally.
She studied music at Oslo Musikkonservatorium (1971–75), combined with playing in the jazz rock band «Unis». She also had her own Radka Toneff Quintet (1975–80), with changing lineup. including musicians like Arild Andersen, Jon Balke, Jon Eberson and Jon Christensen, among others. From 1979 she cooperated with Steve Dobrogosz. In 1980 she participated in the Norwegian national final of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Parken by Ole Paus.
Toneff was awarded the Spellemannsprisen 1977 in the category best vocal for the album Winter Poem, and she posthumously received the Norwegian Jazz Association's Buddypris in 1982. The Radka Toneff Memorial Award is based on a fund created with royalties from the albums Fairytales and Live in Hamburg.
Toneff had roots in Bulgaria, she grew up on Lambertseter and Kolbotn in Oslo, and left deep traces in Norwegian jazz. In a poll of Norwegian musicians conducted by the newspaper Morgenbladet in November 2011, her 1982 album Fairytales was voted the best Norwegian album of all time. Toneff was found dead in the woods of Bygdøy outside Oslo on 21 October 1982. She had committed suicide with an overdose of sleeping pills.
- 1977: Winter Poem (Zarepta Records) – with the Radka Toneff Quintet
- 1979: It Don't Come Easy (Zarepta Records) – with the Radka Toneff Quintet
- 1982: Fairytales (Odin Records) – with Steve Dobrogosz
- 1992: Live in Hamburg (Odin Records) – with Steve Dobrogosz, Arild Andersen, and Alex Riel (recorded in 1981)
- 2003: Some Time Ago - A Collection Of Her Finest Moments (EmArcy Records)
- 2008: Set It Free - Et Portrett Av Radka Toneff (KRF Records)
- 2008: Butterfly (Curling Legs)
- Johansen, Per Kristian (30 July 2003). "Radka Toneff 1952-1982". Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2008-09-08.
- Halvorsen, Tore. "Radka Toneff". Norsk Biografisk Leksikon (in Norwegian). Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 2012-11-14.
- Johansen, Carl Kristian (1 September 2008). "Ny biografi om Radka Toneff i butikkene i dag". Ballade (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2008-09-08.
- "Radka Toneff Biography" (in Norwegian). JazzBasen.no Norwegian Jazz Archives (1994). Retrieved 2008-09-08.
- Breen, Marta (2008). Radka Toneff. Hennes korte liv og store stemme. Oslo: Kagge Forlag. ISBN 978-82-489-0755-8.
- Breen, Marta (2008-08-27). "Norsk jazz' store ikon" (in Norwegian). Dagbladet. Retrieved 2013-10-14.
- Breen, Marta (2008-08-31). "Distansert blikk: Nyansert portrett, mangler en klo" (in Norwegian). Dagbladet. Retrieved 2013-10-14.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Radka Toneff.|
- Radka Toneff Biography by Johs Bergh on Store Norske Leksikon
- Radka Toneff Moon's a Harsh Mistress on YouTube
| Recipient of the Buddyprisen
Terje Bjørklund, Knut Kristiansen & Espen Rud
Knut Riisnæs & Jon Christensen
| Recipient of the Jazz Spellemannprisen
Egil Kapstad Trio