Lena Yellow: She’s Got Soul!

Lena Yellow will be performing at Jazz Dock in Prague

The Czech vocalist Lenka Jankovská (aka Lena Yellow) has a message, inspired and inspiring, projected through her three music groups: Yellow Sisters, Mateřská.com, and Lena Yellow.

As Lena Yellow, her musical project with Tomáš Sýkora, for songs mostly sung in English, she is most inspired by soul, pop, and jazz.

Lena Yellow explains how she was most heavily-influenced by Afro-American music early on. “In elementary school, after the Velvet Revolution in my country, I discovered Whitney Houston in magazines. I was amazed by her voice,” she says.

This inspired Lena to visit Africa in the early 2000s to attend a dance and drumming workshop. Her favorite song as a solo artist, “The Source” (or in Czech “pramen”) was inspired by this trip.

“I was in a special state of being, full of energy, love and creativity. And it came from above through me,” she says.

Jankovská couldn’t picture her life without singing. “I wanted to be a singer since childhood,” she says. Following her dreams, she became a finalist on The Voice of Czechoslovakia in 2012. But this wasn’t the end for her. It also wasn’t the beginning.

“When I was 29, I started to study jazz singing at the Conservatory. That was my dream,” she says.

In 2005, Jankovská co-founded the Yellow Sisters, an acapella group of four women who emphasize the beauty and importance of pure vocals. Influenced mostly by funk, R&B, and vocal jazz, the Yellow Sisters’ music expresses naivety, youth and free spirits.

Most recently, Lena Yellow has teamed up with Yellow Sisters bandmate Bára Vaculíková (aka Diva Baara) to form the duo Mateřská.com. While her solo outlet Lena Yellow showcases an elegant, professional woman with an empowering voice, Mateřská.com allows her to express her goofy, free-spirited side with quirky rhymes.

With their humorous rap-influenced pop songs (sung in Czech), Mateřská.com’s goal is to bring light-hearted fun and ease to the stresses of motherhood, by shining a light on what life is like during maternity leave, while reminding mothers to have fun, laugh at themselves and enjoy the crazy, beautiful ride of life. Their music creates a platform for all mothers by instilling the feel of ‘we are all in this together.’

Mateřská.com’s newest and second album, Automatka, was released in early November (2018). For this recording, the spunky and humorous duo focuses less on breastfeeding mothers and more on identity, and onto the next steps of motherhood. They juggle the strange transition from eager motherhood to questioning what the next steps in their lives are.

Throughout all of her music projects and personas, whether as Lena Yellow or Lenka Jankovská, the message is clear. “It’s important to share the love,” she says. “Fragility is the greatest power.”

Lena Yellow will be performing on Thursday, December 13th, at Jazz Dock in Prague.
And the Yellow Sisters will be performing on Sunday, December 16th, at Jazz Dock in Prague.

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