Nancy’s live performances are legendary. She has earned many awards and enlisted
fans from around the globe. In a market place where wispy voices and shallow
emotions abound, Ms. Kelly is a breath of fresh air…or should we say, smoky air; she
takes us back to the time when jazz – and that includes vocal jazz -- was an authentic
expression of real emotion.
Kelly’s refined stage presence, style, and the ability to quickly capture the emotions of
her audience isn’t the only thing that places Nancy in a league of her own--the lady
was “Born to Swing”, and she means business.
Nancy Kelly’s vocal style is a study in phrasing, style and swing. She’s both old
school and new. She’s experienced, yet her delivery and ideas are fresh. She can take
a song and turn it up or down, and leave you believing that it was meant to be exactly
that way. It takes great jazz chops to do that, and Kelly’s are superb.
Starting at age four in her hometown of Rochester, New York, Nancy studied piano,
clarinet, drama and dance with private instructors, and voice at the Eastman School of
Music. During her thirty-plus year career she has honed her trademark swing/bop take
no prisoner’s back-to-the-roots swinging style in front of audiences across the U.S.
and abroad--from Singapore to Switzerland, France, and Turkey to her 3 tours of
Japan. Nancy appears regularly in New York City including performances at The
Blue Note, Birdland and The Rainbow Room and Dizzy’s Jazz club, Lincoln Center.
She works frequently in Los Angeles and Miami, as well as countless jazz clubs,
festivals, and symphony orchestra engagements across the country.
Nancy was twice named “Best Female Jazz Vocalist” in the Down Beat Readers’
Poll. She has recorded four critically acclaimed CDs, Her first cd “Live Jazz”
reached #11 on the Billboard charts. “Born to Swing” and her latest cd “Well
Alright" feature guest tenor saxophonist Houston Person.
All of Miss Kelly’s accomplishments and accolades are testament to the fact that a
great jazz voice doesn't happen overnight. More than any other instrument the voice
gains its resonance and soulfulness from the life experiences of the body that
surrounds it. To paraphrase Bird--If you haven't lived it isn't going to come out of
your horn. Nancy Kelly has lived it. She is, in every respect, “The Real Deal”.