Laura Ainsworth

Laura Ainsworth

Instrument: Voice / vocals | Location: Dallas

A voice and style that don't belong to this century, let alone this decade… Close your eyes, and drift into a different world.
—Kev Rowland, Gonzo Weekly Music Magazine

Updated: September 5, 2021

Born: December 4

From her home base of Dallas to Los Angeles, New York, Scotland and India, the world is falling in love with Laura Ainsworth. With her satiny, three-octave voice, her sexy sense of humor and her trademark elbow-length gloves and beaded gowns that would fill Julie London with envy, Laura ushers audiences into her own enchanting world...a cocktail that combines the elegant retro style of nightclub shows of the ‘40s and '50s with sophisticated modern musical twists. She calls it "New Vintage." It’s an intoxicating blend that has attracted some of the top jazz players in Texas to her side, including longtime partner Brian Piper, one of the most sought-after pianists/producers in the Southwest. It’s also earned her critical raves and industry honors, including a profile in Downbeat magazine; performances at Manhattan’s famed Metropolitan Room, L.A.’s Whiskey A-Go-Go and Mike Huckabee’s nationally-broadcast TV variety show on TBN; three Global Music Awards Bronze Medals; a Clousine Music Magazine “Best Jazz Album” award; and multiple nominations in the Josie Music Awards and Artists Music Guild Heritage Awards.

Big band and lounge jazz are in Laura's DNA. Her late father, Bill Ainsworth, was a renowned sax and clarinet master, vocalist and arranger who played with Freddy Martin, Tex Beneke, Ernie Felice and other top bandleaders, and at age 17, was possibly the youngest member ever of the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra. As a young girl, Laura watched enraptured as her dad accompanied such idols as Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Mel Torme and Marilyn McCoo at Dallas' famous Fairmont Hotel Venetian Room. Laura grew up worshiping the great jazz, big band and club singers such as Ella, Keely Smith, Doris Day, Julie London, Margaret Whiting and Rosemary Clooney, as well as musically-inclined comediennes such as Madeline Kahn and Mary Tyler Moore. Both music and humor became a big part of her life.

Laura's debut album, Keep It To Yourself, produced and arranged by 2012 Dallas Jazz Musician of the Year Brian Piper and featuring the Brian Piper Trio (John Adams on bass, Mike Drake on drums), spotlights Laura's amazing voice in a delightful genre- and era-skipping collection of ballads, swing tunes, standards and obscure gems from the 1920s to today.

Guest artists include the brilliant sax and clarinet player Chris McGuire, guitarist Noel Johnston and jazz violinist Milo Deering.

Guitarist Chris Derose, who has accompanied such artists as Michael Feinstein and Willie Nelson, joins Laura on a stripped-down take of the Hoagy Carmichael / Johnny Mercer classic "Skylark" that one critic dubbed “transcendent.”

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"Ainsworth’s voice is sublime as it caresses top-notch musicianship by a slew of southwest jazz players...It’s a very warm, elegant album with just enough big stage flair." — Mario Tarradell, Dallas Morning News

"Jazz vocalist Laura Ainsworth weaves past and present with stunning power...Her voice is like (a) mirror reflection into the past, conjuring black-and-white images of well-groomed gentlemen in trench coats and fedoras, smoke-enveloped bars, and glamorous women whose beauty is nearly as bright as their jewelry...Laura Ainsworth has that effect on the listener, an uncanny ability to flash portraits in the mind with a simple line...It might not be long before Dallas is not just known for its oil, Cowboys, and J.R. Ewing but a funny lady with a jewel of a voice..." — Robert Sutton, JazzCorner.com

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Tony Bennett
voice / vocals
Keely Smith
voice / vocals
Ella Fitzgerald
voice / vocals
Annette Hanshaw
voice / vocals
Lena Horne
voice / vocals
Julie London
voice / vocals
Mel Torme
voice / vocals

Links

Necessary Evil

From: Necessary Evil
By Laura Ainsworth

Love For Sale

From: Keep It To Yourself
By Laura Ainsworth

Laura Ainsworth Albums