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Suzanna Smith

Born:

A debut album by a smart jazz singer with a lithe, lissome sound is always welcome, but when the artist is also a strikingly effective songwriter, a celebration is in order. With the release of Halfway Between Heaven & Love, Oakland-based Suzanna Smith delivers one of the year’s most impressive vocal projects, an intoxicating mix of original tunes and beautifully rendered standards. Accompanied by some of the most creative figures on the Bay Area scene, Smith combines the confessional imperative of a singer/songwriter with the rhythmic acuity of a jazz chanteuse. She wrote the lyrics for nine of the album’s 13 tracks while collaborating on the music of five songs with pianist/keyboardist Michael Coleman

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Article: Album Review

Ken Husbands Trio: Keepin' It Going

Read "Keepin' It Going" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay


San Francisco Bay area guitarist Ken Husbands is a well-travelled man. He grew up in Massachusetts, lived in Paris for a few years then moved to Oakland, California, in 2005. Along the way he's gained a PhD and developed an electric guitar style that encompasses many influences from jazz, fusion and other genres yet avoids sounding ...

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Article: Album Review

Judith Pinto Coy: Here’s to Life

Read "Here’s to Life" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


There is evidence of a revival of vocalese jazz singing in the recent releases of Dorian Devin's The Procrastinator (Self Produced, 2013) and Suzanna Smith's Halfway Between Heaven & Love (Ink Pen Records, 2013). Enter Edmonton-native Judith Pinto Coy, who, while not contributing her own vocalese transcriptions, interprets those of the masters masterfully. On her debut ...

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Article: Year in Review

R.J. DeLuke's Best Releases of 2013

Read "R.J. DeLuke's Best Releases of 2013" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Always a tricky thing is the selection of “best of" lists for the year. I don't get to hear everything that comes out, so a lot of fine music is missed. Also, the selection itself is subject to whims. An album may hit you right from the get-go. Another might take time to grow on you, ...

Album

Halfway Between Heaven & Love

Label: Ink Pen Records
Released: 2013
Track listing: Ladybird/Half Nelson; Paper Boat; Summer Me, Winter Me; The Man That Broke The Dragon’s Heart; Beautiful Love; Planes and Trains; Can You Give It Up; Comet; Monk’s Make Believe; I Would Give Anything; Hooray For Love; Alone Together; Soy Califa.

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Article: Album Review

Suzanna Smith: Halfway Between Heaven & Love

Read "Halfway Between Heaven & Love" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


Oakland-based vocalist Suzanna Smith states that she is, ..." always looking for ways to play within the boundaries of a song's 'container,...' I think of songs as rooms and the longer you live in them, the more you can move about without bumping into things. I love when I reach that point with a song." She ...

News: Recording

Oakland-Based Vocalist Suzanna Smith Debuts Nov. 19 With "Halfway Between Heaven & Love"

Oakland-Based Vocalist Suzanna Smith Debuts Nov. 19 With "Halfway Between Heaven & Love"

Suzanna Smith has been a creative force on the rich Bay Area jazz vocal scene since 2005—as a performer and songwriter as well as founder/producer of San Francisco’s long-standing Savanna Jazz vocal jam session and co-founder of the nonprofit Bay Area Jazz & Arts, Inc. Her constant efforts to nurture local jazz have redounded to the ...


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