Denise King

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Denise King

Denise King sings jazz standards with touches of the blues, soul and even gospel in a voice steeped in a sophisticated, swinging, sometimes soulful, satin style much like one of her idols, Sarah Vaughan. Denise King has sung in clubs and concert halls in Philadelphia, New York, Paris, Italy, Turkey, Brazil, UK, Africa, Germany, Austria and Japan during the past 20 years. Her career began late and she has proclaimed herself a torch bearer. During her career she has performed with many renown Jazz musicians such as Archie Shepp, Chris McBride, Massimo Farao, Tony Match, Peter Giron, Chris Culpo Lex Humphries, Sid Simmons, Arthur Harper, Sam Dockery, Wayne Dockery, Jerry Weldon, Cecil McBee, Curtis Lundy, Steve WIlliams to name a few. She has recorded six CD’s which continue to delight her many fans. In 2009 with Cristal Records No Tricks was released and very well received. In 2011 she was nominated Best Jazz Vocals in France by Academie Du jazz. Her second release with Cristal Records Give Me The High sign was released in 2012 to great reviews. She is currently on tour throughout Europe.

Denise King was born and raised in West Philadelphia and is the third of five children. She was always an artistic person, focusing at a very young age on visual arts, fashion design and dance. Born with a passion for anything artistic, she danced and sang in high school.  At thirteen she was introduced to Jazz by an uncle, Herbert Tatum, who had an extensive collection of Jazz LP’s and a cousin Cynthia who had a love of Nina Simone. Her “studies” involved hours of listening to the Jazz greats, both vocalists and instrumentalists. Denise borrowed phrasing styles from Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Nat “King” Cole and Frank Sinatra. She gained an appreciation for lyrics from Lil Jimmy Scott, Nancy Wilson, Carmen McCrae and Nina Simone. Listening as intensely to Jazz as she did R&B or music of her era she had no idea that her listening sessions were preparing her for a career in music.

She was “discovered” by a friend who heard her singing outside of her home and introduced her to the world of Jazz performance. The early gigs were difficult in that she was painfully stage shy. But with the help of Sam Reed, sax man and leader of the legendary Uptown Theater Orchestra she overcame her stage fright. Her early performance experiences involved sharing the stage with many legends, Butch Ballard, Arthur Harper, Sam Dougherty, Cecil Payne, Jymie Merritt, Bootsie Barnes, Lex Humphries and many, many more.10

A singer, who cares about the song, Ms King said: “I’m a sucker for the lyrics and not interested in vocal gymnastics. I want to hear the story the writer has to tell.” And for this, those who share King”s love of Gershwin and Porter, can only be thankful. She sings pop and jazz standards with touches of the blues, soul and even gospel in a voice steeped in a sophisticated, swinging, sometimes soulful, satin style much like one of her idol, Sarah Vaughan.

www.denisekingsings.com

 

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