One aspect that distinguishes many jazz singers from other vocalists is the tight collaboration between the singer and their instrumentalist colleagues. Not only does the artist work in tandem with his or her band, a significant percentage of singers actually study the technique and musical "licks" applied by those players that they so revere. Singer Sheila Jordan, a major proponent of the bebop school, had situated herself in the presence of the masters -- Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, and Thelonious Monk -- becoming a master herself.
Jordan has maintained a sixty-year plus career; she is still touring -- bringing her luminous voice and intimate stage presence to aficionados around the globe.
The eagerly anticipated biography, "Jazz Child : a Portrait of Sheila Jordan," as written by Ellen Johnson, offers a tantalizing peek into Jordan's musical and personal adventures, complete with the depiction of her struggles with poverty and alcohol, exulting in her ultimate triumph over those circumstances. It is a truly American success story, with its heroine finally giving up the "day job," in her fifties, to live a life totally entrenched in her jazz.
Which leads us to the singer, Laurie Krauz's new endeavor -- Laurie Krauz's Jazz Soup (Be Careful Contents May be Hot!). In a world where there are only a handful of household names in this business, collaboration has taken on a new meaning. To help keep this art alive and accessible, a number of singers have formed a bond with each other -- a collective effort to boost their own careers along with those of their peers. In parity with this new tradition, Krauz had come up with a fresh idea, producing the above mentioned series.
Krauz is a very visable presence in the NYC jazz-cabaret scene. Having played at such legendary venues and events as JVC Jazz Festival, The Blue Note, Iridium and Birdland, the award winning artist is beloved by her faithful fans. She is always up to something interesting and innovative; one recent project being "Tapestry Rewoven" -- a jazz re-imagining of Carol King's classic record, "Tapestry."
Says Laurie, "When I was asked (by Bernie Furshpan, the "Metropolitan Room's" adventurous owner-manager) if I was interested in hosting a series, I jumped at the chance. I love sharing the stage with other artists and have always enjoyed being part of evenings like this. With each show we intend to present a fun, flavorful and eclectic variety, including some of the most exciting jazz artists around. And kicking off with this tribute to Sheila and the book is a dream come true."
Handpicked from Jordan's coterie, the event presents vocalists Jay Clayton, Carol Fredette, Tessa Souter, Kevin Fitzgerald Burke and Laurie, as well. Most happily, Sheila will be singing and signing copies of her biography.
"Laurie Krauz's Jazz Soup (Be Careful Contents May be Hot!)" Tuesday, Nov. 11, 7 pm - at the Metropolitan Room 34 W 22nd St, New York, NY 10010