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Take Five With Kristina Morales

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Meet Kristina Morales:
With an incandescent brilliance, rising star Kristina Morales' voice shines across the heart of the city of New Orleans with illuminating clarity and burns with heart-wrenching warmth. She electrifies and charms her audience with a vulnerable passion and is commended by musicians and audiences alike for her use of vocal instrumentation while still giving lyrical color with a delicate seamlessness.

Instrument(s):
Vocal.

Teachers and/or influences?
Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
1901 - 1971
trumpet
, Jill Scott
Jill Scott
Jill Scott
b.1972
vocalist
, Bobby McFerrin
Bobby McFerrin
Bobby McFerrin
b.1950
vocalist
, Nicholas Payton
Nicholas Payton
Nicholas Payton
b.1973
trumpet
}, Billie Holiday
Billie Holiday
Billie Holiday
1915 - 1959
vocalist
, Camille, Esperanza Spalding
Esperanza Spalding
Esperanza Spalding
b.1984
bass, acoustic
.

I knew I wanted to be a musician when...
...since I can remember I've been singing. I use to sing the blues in the bathtub when I was 2 years old.

Your sound and approach to music:
I approach each song differently. Sometimes it's about the feeling or the texture, sometimes it's simply about the message and story, sometimes it's completely about shaping sound and letting my voice fly alongside the other instruments. It's important to me to let each song have its moment and unique sensation.

Your teaching approach:
Encouragement and total encompassment.

Your dream band:
I'm lucky enough to work with incredibly inspiring musicians already.

Road story: Your best or worst experience:
One of my first gigs, I was already really nervous but on top of that the sound was completely messed up on stage and the whole band got off of each other by a couple bars; eeks!!

Favorite venue:
Always love to play at The Blue Nile, The Spotted Cat and Snug Harbor.

The first Jazz album I bought was:
Ella Fitzgerald, The Very Best of Ella.

What do you think is the most important thing you are contributing musically?
A different approach to what being jazz vocalist means, and a different approach to what being a jazz musician means. My generation has heard and been influenced by so much incredible music but we are also having to establish ourselves in a time where the music industry has really taken creativity and inspiration out of the process and replaced it with formula and cookie-cutter songs. We have to fight against that in this dreary economy and still find a way to impress young people, jazz fans and the music industry alike.

Did you know...
that I love to garden.

CDs you are listening to now:
Clyde Kerr Jr, This is Now!

How would you describe the state of jazz today?
like the rest of the world—trying to find its way through a broken economy and trying to keep its roots in a world that is ever-expanding; it's an exciting and complex time to be an artist.

What are some of the essential requirements to keep jazz alive and growing?
Learning the "handbook" and then throwing it away. encouraging change and growth and original music; it can't be locked up in a past decade.

What is in the near future?
Looking forward to my next album that will explore all the shades and spectrums of sound...my concept is rich, deep, jewel tones.

By Day:
Soon to be a Music Together teacher for children.

If I weren't a jazz musician, I would be a:
An actor.

Photo Credit

Courtesy of Kristina Morales
Kristina Morales
Kristina Morales
b.1986
vocalist

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