Friday, March 4, 2011

LA Premiere Of "Jazz Messages: The Sheila Jordan Story" w/ Ellen Johnson @ Vitello's

One of the remaining legends of jazz vocals shares her life in performances of music & words!
Legendary jazz vocalist Sheila Jordan will be appearing for two nights and two different shows at Vitello's Jazz and Supper Club in Studio City, CA.

The two evenings of music include the LA première of "Jazz Messages: The Sheila Jordan Story" on Friday, March 11th. The unique performance of Jazz Messages is based on Jordan's upcoming biography with author, Ellen Johnson, another superb vocalist on her own right, who will be reading excerpts from the forthcoming book while Ms. Jordan shares her personal stories through her music.

Then on Saturday evening, March 12th, Ms. Jordan performs a concert of her best known music that has made her one of the icons of jazz. She will be accompanied both evenings by a phenomenal trio of some of the most respected jazz musicians in the world including, pianist Alan Pasqua (currently touring with Allan Holdsworth), drummer Peter Erskine (former Weather Report member) and bassist Darek Oles.

March 11th show begins at 8 PM and March 12th has two shows at 8 PM and 10 PM with tickets ranging from $25 to $35. Vitello's is located at 4349 Tujunga Ave, Studio City.
For more information or to purchase tickets go to, or call 818-769-0905.

Sheila was called "one of the most distinctive voices in jazz," according to National Public Radio (NPR) and The New York Times raved, "her ballad performances are simply beyond the emotional and expressive capabilities of most other vocalists." Sheila has performed and recorded with many of the most prominent musicians in jazz including, Charles Mingus, Steve Kuhn, Bobby McFerrin, Mark Murphy (with whom she recorded the stunning "One for Junior" CD released in 1993 by the Muse label), Jon Hendricks, Kurt Elling, Harvie Swartz and countless others. At 82 years of age she continues to travel the globe spreading her message of love for the music of jazz. Jordan's singing began in Detroit during the 1940's where she was inspired by bebop genius Charlie Parker who became her "musical guru" and close friend. Ms. Jordan is best known for her innovative bass and voice recordings and for the 1962 Blue Note recording "Portrait of Sheila."All Music Guide says that vocalist Sheila Jordan is "one of the most consistently creative of all jazz singers." The New York Times raves, "Her ballad performances are simply beyond the emotional and expressive capabilities of most other vocalists." Jordan's singing began in Detroit during the 1940's where she was initially inspired by Charlie Parker, her "musical guru" and dear friend. She honed her skills, sitting in with Parker and other musicians when they came to town to perform in the Bluebird, the Sudan and other local clubs.

Moving to New York City in the early 50's, she sang in Greenwich Village clubs and at jam sessions with some of the city's jazz giants, including Charles Mingus and Herbie Nichols, and studied with legendary pianist Lennie Tristano. After touring with trombonist Roswell Rudd in the late '70's, Jordan became a founding member of the Steve Kuhn Quartet, where she met bassist Harvie S. (formerly known as Swartz). Soon afterward, she and Harvie formed one of the most innovative bass and voice duets traveling extensively, both nationally and internationally.

Her love for the bass continued with recordings and performances with bassist Cameron Brown and their most recent recordings, "I've Grown Accustomed to the Bass," "The Very Thought of Two," "Celebration," and "Live at the Triad." For her most recent recording, "Winter Sunshine," Christopher Loudon of JazzTimes writes, "Though it's a fool's gambit to credit any living jazz vocalist as the world's greatest, it would be imprudent not to acknowledge that the indefatigable Sheila Jordan must rank within the top two or three."

For much of the last 30 years, Jordan, like her colleague Mark Murphy, has been extremely active in teaching young students the ropes of jazz singing, and has made her living by combination of touring and teaching. Sheila initiated the jazz vocal program at New York City's City College, has been a faculty member of "Jazz in July" at the University of Massachusetts ((Amherst), visiting professor at Stanford University, taught at the New School for Social Research, Manhattan School of Music, Musica Hochschule in Graz, Austria and continues to teach workshops throughout the world.

Sheila Jordan has appeared in festivals and clubs both nationally and internationally with rave reviews from critics even at the age of 82. She has received two National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, the Lil Hardin Armstrong Jazz Heritage Award for Excellence the IAJE Humanitarian Award, New York City MAC Award and the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz for Lifetime of Service Award. Down Beat's International Critics Poll has named her the winner of "Talent Deserving Wider Recognition" honors nine times and has placed her among the top five singers in the "Established Talent" category every year since 1980. For more information about Ms Jordan go to:

No comments: