REBECCA PARRIS, First Lady of Boston Jazz has performed with the Buddy Rich, Dizzy Gillespie and Woody Herman bands. Georgia Mancio is presenting a rare visit by the singer to London next week. Georgia writes:
In a world of impermeability, of transience, disconnection, apathy, ennui, speed, expectation and disappointment it takes something truly singular to make you fully stop and surrender.
I fell for Rebecca Parris the first time I heard her at the Pizza Express Jazz Club nearly 20 years ago and she (along with Belgian vocal maestro David Linx) was the first artist I invited for my international voice festival - ReVoice! in 2010. Listening to her again then (and her triumphant ReVoice! return in my last edition in 2014) older and more experienced myself, the expressive depth of her artistry floored me.
A jazz singer lauded by the triumvirate royalty Sarah Vaughan, Shirley Horn and Carmen McRae along with her impressive credit list (Dizzy Gillespie, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman, Terry Gibbs, David "Fathead" Newman, Red Mitchell, Gary Burton and Jerry Bergonzi) tell you all you need to know really.
Her lustrous tone is a thing of beauty; her groove and swing rooted and playful as any master percussionist; her improvisation authentic and personal. But for me it’s her lyrical interpretation, her dramatic range always shot through with such sincerity and nuance.
I remember watching her set in 2010 with Ian Shaw, turning to each other with tears in our eyes, so moved were we both by her storytelling. Veteran star of stage, screen and TV, Peter Vaughan, similarly captivated described her as “a truly great actress.”
I’m very proud to present this stunning vocalist again next week with some of my favourite musicians - pianist James Pearson , bassist Mark Hodgson and drummer Dave Ohm.
Truly great art and real life-enhancing performance - gifts for life not just for Xmas.
"a masterclass in the art of jazz singing....wit, wisdom, a wide range of vocal skills...flexibility, warmth and perfect timing" - The Evening Standard 5*****
“I hear a little Carmen McRae when I listen to Rebecca and a little Sarah Vaughan. I think she’s on that level. Her phrasing is what is most extraordinary. She never sings a song the same way twice in a row.” - WGBH Radio
LJN 2014 INTERVIEW
REBECCA PARRIS WEBSITE