Monday, January 09, 2012

SHEILA JORDAN 2012 NEA JAZZ MASTER At 83

At 83, Sheila Jordan will receive the National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters Award on Tuesday in New York. The $25,000 prize is America's highest honor in jazz. It also represents a acknowledgement from the musical establishment after a lifetime in the shadows, where she overcame an impoverished childhood, bigotry, addiction and the vagaries of the jazz life, while willing herself into greatness. Born and raised in Detroit, she spent years suffering verbal abuse for being a white girl in bands with black jazz musicians.

Hurray for Sheila Jordan-still singing today.






Who is your favorite female jazz singer?

15 comments:

George said...

I don't know if she's considered a jazz singer because she's crossed genres many times, but I'm a big fan of Maria Muldaur.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I haven't heard her name in a while but she has an amazing voice.

Todd Mason said...

Jordan's recording of "You Are My Sunshine" with the George Russell Sextet is unforgettable.

Well, if we restrict ourselves to the living, Annie Ross, Urszula Dudziak, and...well, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Diana Krall and others have their charm. All time would come down to a near-tie between Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, and Ella Fitgerald...with many others, including the living, coming close.

Todd Mason said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfUdAzY9HbU

If I knew it was Jordan's debut recording, I'd forgotten that.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Dudziak is new to me. Will check her out. Love Bridgewater who I have heard in person once or twice.

Richard R. said...

Chris Connor and Ella Fitzgerald.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Connor new to me too.
A lovely recording, Todd. You don't hear that kind of treatment every day.

Todd Mason said...

Russell was a genius in several directions. KIND OF BLUE wouldn't've existed without him, for obvious example.

Todd Mason said...

Connor was with us for a While (back to the Stan Kenton Orchestra days)...Dudziak emigrated from Poland ca. 1984, iirc. I met her at the first Thelonious Monk Memorial Concert in '86, where her performance, solo with a sequencer, confused the easily confused.

Cap'n Bob said...

I don't listen to jazz very often, but I was impressed by Bessie Smith.

pattinase (abbott) said...

My husband just got into jazz this year so it's not too late. And I only like the kind of jazz where I can pick up a tune. None of the more progressive sort.

Todd Mason said...

You mean the more free sort, Patti. "Progressive" is a term for the Stan Kenton orchestra, as well, albeit the Kenton like the Ellington was willing to play a bit of atonal music, while free jazz (and some bebop, hard bop and fusion) tends to leave the melody behind, when taking off from a standard. "Progressive" in jazz was widely applied to quite tuneful third stream music, and hasn't had much of useful indication (when not pejorative) since the '50s.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I guess, Todd. Just like atonal classical music, I get lost if I can;'t find the thread of a tune. A singer will always help. For instance, the later music of Miles Davis is completely beyond me.

Kent Morgan said...

Anita O'Day would be near the top. My favourite vocalist in the past few years is Nancy Lamott, the cabaret singer who died much too young.

pattinase (abbott) said...

A new name for me. I will check my library.