Piedmont Piano Company is pleased to present

Whitney James Quintet

Photo by Marc Von Borstel

James will be presenting some classic jazz standards along with what she calls “new standards,” modern popular music that has been flipped on its head and jazz-i-fied. Join us for a truly inspiring and energetic evening of jazz with this new voice in jazz music. Bay Area based vocalist Adam Blankman will be making a special appearance!

Whitney James (vocals), Mike Olmos (trumpet), Walter Bankovitch (piano), Peter Barshay (bass), Dezson Claiborne (drums)

Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 8pm
at Piedmont Piano Company
1728 San Pablo Ave. (at 18th), Oakland, CA

$15 - To reserve tickets with your credit card, please call (510) 547-8188

Before the show at 7:15pm, Mindy Fong, owner and creator of Jade Chocolates, will serve up some yummy chocolate delights.

Vocalist Whitney James studied musical theater and opera before falling in love with jazz, and her theatrical background has served her well. James was born in Chicago but grew up in San Jose and Los Gatos, CA and attended De Anza and Foothill Colleges studying with Roger Letson and Nile Norton before relocating to Seattle to attend Cornish College of the Arts where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music and Vocal Performance.

James doesn’t just sing a tune—she creatively engages it. Every time she approaches a melody and a lyric, she finds a new way to phrase them, shape them, highlight a word or a few notes that shade the meaning and make the music richer. Her sense of time and phrasing make her a consummate musician’s singer—she knows how to work with a band, instead of asking it to merely back her. Her supple alto voice wraps itself around a song like no other. She sings with a bright clarity of tone, yet she colors her sound with earthy inflections, subtle squeezed notes, dark growls, and notes of soaring purity. Her polished musicianship helps her interpret the best of American popular music as well as challenging originals of jazz composers rarely attempted by singers. You’ll have to hear her in person, to understand why audiences and jazz critics alike are raving about her performances.

Her debut CD The Nature of Love spent 16 weeks on the National Jazz Charts and received critical acclaim from US and International Jazz Press. In 2012, Whitney was one of thirteen jazz musicians heralded as “Legends in the Making” and was featured on Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz: Rising Stars on NPR radio hosted by Jon Weber. To hear Whitney sing and read more about her, visit whitneyjames.com.

Whitney James On 'Piano Jazz: Rising Stars'


© Piedmont Piano Co., 1728 San Pablo Ave., Oakland, CA 94612, (510) 547-8188, music@piedmontpiano.com