Goran Kajfeš - Subtropic Arkestra, trumpet

:: Grammy Award 2018 (Sweden) ::
The Reason Why vol.3 - best jazz album 2017

:: Nomination Grammy Award 2015 (Sweden) ::
The Reason Why vol.2 - category best jazz album 2014

:: Nomination Grammy Award 2014 (Sweden) ::
The Reason Why vol.1 - category best jazz album 2013

:: Nordic Music Prize 2011 ::
X/Y - best nordic album for year 2011



Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Kajfeš’ parents are Croatian. Goran started playing trumpet at the age of 10, first concentrating on classical music but later deciding to focus on jazz. He studied from 1993-95 at the Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen.

Kajfeš has made two solo albums under his own name. The first one, Home, was released on EMI/Blue Note France. The album was highly successful and was nominated for a Swedish Grammy. On the tour connected with this project he shared the same stage with such well-known players as Nils Petter Molvær, Bugge Wesseltoft, and Wibutee. Goran’s second album, Headspin, won a Swedish Grammy for Best Jazz album of 2004. He has toured with his band Goran Kajfeš’ "Headspin" in Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Mexico, Germany, France, Morocco, Spain, etc.

Kajfeš has performed and recorded with many well-known artists, including José Gonzáles, Eagle-Eye Cherry, Mando Diao, Stina Nordenstam, Robyn, Christian Kjellvander, Monica Zetterlund, The Tiny, Moneybrother, jazz musicians Lester Bowie and Jimmy Cobb, Titiyo, Blacknuss, Lisa Ekdahl, Janet Jackson, Sting, and The Soundtrack Of Our Lives.

He has also composed and performed music for film and television. This includes a movie documentary by Swedish director Kristian Petri about Orson Welles’ time in Spain titled "The Well", and the recently completed soundtrack for the Spanish movie "Hoy no se fía, mañana sí".

Goran Kajfeš composed and played music for a book by Swedish writer Fredrik Lindström. He has also been involved with a number of modern dance performances.

Presently he is working with Neneh and Eagle-Eye Cherry on the production of a tribute concert later this year celebrating the music of Don Cherry.

Kajfeš also runs the record label “Headspin Recordings”.






Press Releases

Subtropic Arkestra at Kongsberg Jazz Festival, July 6th, 2018
Downbeat Magazine- Peter Margasak - 
« ….But one of the most entertaining sets came from Swedish trumpeter Goran Kajfes, leading his Subtropic Arkestra through an eclectic repertoire of unctuous ’70s Turkish pop, Ethiopian soul and even a Tame Impala cover, all of it with a unified sound powered by a top-flight band of improvisers, who cumulatively erased any gap between pure fun and schmaltz with a mixture of passion humor, and nonchalant virtuosity "

The Reason Why vol.3 (Cristal Records/Sony Music)
Release France March 15 2019

gorankajfes thereasonwhy3 sortie recompense en

Best of 2017 Jazz News- Club Jazz à Fip (FR), selection
Gems 2017 Jazz News (FR) with its rainbow cover, The Reason Why Vol. 3 is the best medicine of the year 2017. The last part of a triptych in the shape of a travel diary, it’s a shot of colours remarkably written, imagined and produced. Sound? We think of the rockers of Tame Impala who would have made a long stay in Ethiopia, and who would invite us to a slide show. So we'll call it psychedelic-hypno-groove-melodic-jazz music and it's not the excellent cover of Caribou as a final bouquet, which will deny me. Essential B.O of winter, looped in my I-Pod. David Koperhant-Jazz News
Best jazz Album 2017 - Archaic Pop’s selection -
Best jazz Album 2017 - Treble’s selection (UK)
Best jazz Album 2017 – Uk Vibe’s selection ((UK)
Best jazz Album 2017 - Valon Kuvia-blogi’s selection (FI)
Best jazz Album nov. 17 - Bandcamp Daily’s selection (US)
Best jazz Album 2017 - Dan Bachman Musik-Konst’s selection (SE)
Best jazz international Album 2017 - Jazz Pt’s selection (PT)
Nek Plus Ultrack 2017 - Le Mellotron’s selection (FR)
Top 5 Eyal Hareuveni Jazznytt 2017 (IS/NO)
4/5 : The Guardian
4/5 : Dagen industry
4/5 : Dagens Nyheter
4/5 : Hifi +
5/6 : Gaffa
8/10 : Sonic Music
N°3 top 10 European Jazz Media chart oct.17



The Reason Why vol.2 (Headspin Recordings) 2014

TheReasonWhy Vol 2 240

• THE JAZZ JOURNAL (UK) : "Standing in front of him for the first time at the Luleå jazz festival a few years ago I can confirm it's an exhilarate experience." Brian Morton
: "further takes on an eclectic array of music that includes covers of tunes from Africa, Turkey, and Brazil, as well as early-70s prog-rock, and current indie rock (Tame Impala, Grizzly Bear) […] the instrumental band consistently serves up scintillating arrangements that present the work in dynamic, new light. It helps that Kajfeš is surrounded by some of Sweden's best players (jazz heavies like reedists Per "Ruskträsk" Johansson and Jonas Kullhammar and bassist Johan Berthling—with whom the trumpeter plays in Mats Gustafsson's Fire! Orchestra—and the multifaceted rock guitarist Reine Fiske of Dungen)" Peter Margasak


The Reason Why vol.1 (Headspin Recordings) 2013

240 - GK TheReasonWhy


"Le chef d'orchestre et compositeur Goran Kajfes a rassemblé la crème de la scène musicale contemporaine suédoise dans le projet Subtropic Arkestra, un collectif de jazz adulé par le public et la presse au cours des dernières années.", à propos de The Reason Why vol.1

The Ear (UK)
"it seems a bit early to pick an album of the year but this is a very strong contender"


"one of the more exciting, promising musicians on the scene"

HiFi + (UK)
9/10 "rich, dynamic, twisting and spinning yet totally coherent maelstrom of great sound"


"5/5 makalöst"

"ce jazz a pris une pilule qui l'a envoyé dans de nouvelles dimensions" (juin 2013)


"swish, purring, analogue keys, snappy drums and bass and stealthy, trippy horns"" (mai 2013)

Bird is the Worm (US)
"textures and colors and shading that work together seamlessly in a way that engages both heart and mind" (août 2013)


"gloriously psychedelic renditions of prog-jazz tunes" (juillet 2013)

"4/5 Kajfeš and his group have found their own particularly European version of Sun Ra´s Afro-futurism" (juin 2013)


"sparkling interpretations of the tracks that fired his imagination" (avril 2013)


"4/5 "sounding like a spacier Jaga Jazzist"


"that old rascal Goran Kajfes of cosmic otherness is back."

"5/6 mange grunner til å like Kajfes orkester"


"5/5 glødende virtuositet, og en personlig originalitet som gjør dette til en stor opplevelse"


"4/5 blandningen är häpnadsväckande. Som ordet tråkigt absoluta motsats"


"4/5 ett ambitiöst, gränslöst och medryckande album att låta sig föras bort av"