Gloria Lynne, Dakota Staton and other female jazz vocal balladeers

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I saw Gloria Lynne sing the other night at a sold-out benefit show at the Lincoln Theatre in Washington D.C. and was impressed how strong she still sounded. I just have a best-of cd by her. I like her polished brand of jazz meets 50s m.o.r.pop meets r'n'b crooning. I've also liked a few Dakota Staton songs I've heard on the radio.

Anybody else like the above? Who else should I be listening to? Any fave reissues?

steve-k, Thursday, 19 May 2005 14:00 (fourteen years ago) link

FWIW, the mostly all African-American and over 60 audience for Gloria Lynne was very enthusiastic--screaming out requests, singing along, cheering loudly. Definately not a staid jazz nerd audience(although I have the impression that jazz nerds find Gloria Lynne to be too pop).

steve-k, Thursday, 19 May 2005 14:05 (fourteen years ago) link

Wow, Gloria Lynne still kickin'! I've got an album of hers on Crown records with one of those vibrant pastel portraits on the cover -- it's solid, too. Seems like every time I see one of her albums it's on some different cheesy exploitive label like that. Good to know she's been able to sustain a career.

The bazillion Dakota Staton albums on Capitol are pretty consistent, from what I've heard. The Late Late Show is a torchy classic, undoubtedly available on reissue.

I like a lot of these kind of nightclub singers that fall in that gray area between jazz, R&B and pop. At least part of Nancy Wilson's output certainly qualifies.

brianiac (briania), Thursday, 19 May 2005 14:13 (fourteen years ago) link

Thanks. I need to listen to more Dinah Washington as well.

steve-k, Thursday, 19 May 2005 16:20 (fourteen years ago) link

There were 1,200 people at the Gloria Lynne show. That was alot more than I expected. Some of them were there to support the benefit(a Church sponsored jazz series that has DC's finest old-school jazz players performing), but most seemed real familiar with her music.

steve-k, Thursday, 19 May 2005 16:23 (fourteen years ago) link

The little Nancy Wilson I've heard somehow crossed my line into being too schmaltzy. Maybe I haven't checked out the right material.

steve-k, Friday, 20 May 2005 13:01 (fourteen years ago) link

The greatest name in female jazz balladeers is Blossom Dearie. She's also got a pretty great voice and style. Sounds exactly like you'd expect someone named Blossom Dearie to sound like.

Bonus points for it being her real name.

Austin Still (Austin, Still), Friday, 20 May 2005 13:12 (fourteen years ago) link

Hasn't she been singing for years and years? I've read that she's like 79 and still singing I think. I will check out her catalog.

steve-k, Friday, 20 May 2005 18:34 (fourteen years ago) link

Abbey Lincoln. Shirley Horn. And recently I've been quite impressed with Rene Marie.

Daniel Peterson (polkaholic), Friday, 20 May 2005 18:50 (fourteen years ago) link

Steve K -

If you are asking after Ms. Dearie, that sounds right. I'd have to doublecheck myself, though.

Austin Still (Austin, Still), Friday, 20 May 2005 19:24 (fourteen years ago) link

eight years pass...

Anybody else...

Forgot about this:

FWIW, the mostly all African-American and over 60 audience for Gloria Lynne was very enthusiastic--screaming out requests, singing along, cheering loudly. Definately not a staid jazz nerd audience(although I have the impression that jazz nerds find Gloria Lynne to be too pop).
― steve-k, Thursday, May 19, 2005 2:05 PM (8 years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 22 October 2013 14:27 (six years ago) link

How I once described her:
Lynne's specialty is poignant, slowly enunciated ballads blending jazz phrasing, sentimental pre-rock pop, and church-rooted rhythm and blues.

curmudgeon, Tuesday, 22 October 2013 15:22 (six years ago) link

I continue to like old-school jazz vocalists better than current ones.

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 23 October 2013 15:59 (six years ago) link

The one Youtube video I watched of Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition winner Cecile McLorin Salvant did not wow me. Maybe I should give her a 2nd chance

curmudgeon, Wednesday, 23 October 2013 18:10 (six years ago) link

Read a NY Times piece hailing her, heard my local Pacifica jazz dj raving about her live, and read enthusiastic tweets. I guess I should listen to the album

curmudgeon, Monday, 28 October 2013 19:14 (six years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Listened to Salvant again. First song on new one has a real Billie Holiday feel, and she borrows from various other approaches on subsequent cuts. Not bad, although I am not as wowed as the above folks I referenced in my prior posting.

curmudgeon, Thursday, 14 November 2013 14:56 (six years ago) link

one year passes...

Randomly chose an old Shirley Horn album on Spotify the other night, and wow. I need to listen more and dig further into her catalogue. Can't believe I live in the DC area and never saw her live (well I was less into jazz vocals back then)

curmudgeon, Friday, 5 December 2014 19:59 (four years ago) link

Dunno how good the new Sheila Jordan bio is, but if it tells her story competently (the one she's excerpted in interviews and song), it's worthwhile. At 86, she sounds like she always has: upfront, intriguing, a minty fresh one who's been around and around.

dow, Friday, 5 December 2014 20:22 (four years ago) link

one year passes...

Totally on a whim I just picked up a rather dodgy looking compilation of Carmen McCrae singing the Great American Songbook. Her enunciation, and her phrasing and note choices are astounding me. I'm loving this, why are there only 2 mentions of her on ilm?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nULWYlRL328

Devastatin' Dan the Suggest Ban Man (Dan Peterson), Friday, 2 December 2016 16:13 (two years ago) link

Perhaps there are more, misspelled references?

I Walk the Ondioline (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 2 December 2016 16:15 (two years ago) link

Ah, there are two misspelled references and twenty correctly spelled references.

I Walk the Ondioline (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 2 December 2016 16:17 (two years ago) link

Gah, my bad.

Devastatin' Dan the Suggest Ban Man (Dan Peterson), Friday, 2 December 2016 16:49 (two years ago) link

I need to school myself more on MCrae

curmudgeon, Friday, 2 December 2016 18:32 (two years ago) link

two years pass...

I'm listening to a bunch of Etta Jones today, and wondering why I never had earlier. Super swingin'...

It seems she's only been mentioned once, in some listicle, on ilm.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9aJtNAve5a4

confusementalism (Dan Peterson), Wednesday, 10 July 2019 17:57 (four months ago) link

Helen Merrill is rarely mentioned but she had an amazing career and a run starting in the fifties and going almost to the ‘10s. She’s turning 89 in a few days and must be retired but anyway her Emarcy LPs and later Inner City albums are some of the best in the genre.

omar little, Wednesday, 10 July 2019 18:21 (four months ago) link

I just listened to her debut this morning, great stuff, thanks!

confusementalism (Dan Peterson), Thursday, 11 July 2019 17:38 (four months ago) link


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