Published: Mar 19, 2013 07:00 PM
Modified: Mar 15, 2013 10:27 AM
Master vocalist plays Memorial Hall
Kurt Elling, one of his generation’s premier vocalists, performs tonight at UNC’s Memorial Hall.
Fans of classic jazz singers like Ella Fitzgerald, and those who prefer the expressive abstractions of James Moody, Eric Dolphy or Chet Baker, will equally appreciate Elling’s synthesis of old and new, which can swing from urbane and hip to a level approaching spiritual.
Elling’s voice suggests personality and intellect equally hip and mature, cool and sensitive. He creates emotive interpretations of old-time standards and avant-garde vocal poems, sometimes making up his own lyrics, and plays his vocal chords with the technical mastery a horn player might execute upon a brass instrument.
His recording efforts have earned him numerous Grammy nominations, finally garnering a win in 2010. But it was live performance (beginning with regular gigs at Chicago’s Green Mill jazz club) that earned Elling notability in the jazz world, and indeed his Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album was earned for a disc recorded in concert at Lincoln Center.
Bob Parlocha, whose syndicated jazz radio show plays nightly on 90.7 WNCU, is a big fan, and can usually be counted upon to play an Elling record or two during the program.
Elling performs as part of Carolina Performing Arts’ Jazz Masters series. When:
7:30 p.m. tonight Where:
Memorial Hall, 114 Cameron Avenue, UNC campus Tickets:
$10 and up; UNC students $10. Info:
919-843-3333 Correspondent Tom Hartwell
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