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Karrin Allyson

One of the more impressive jazz singers to emerge in the '90s, Karrin Allyson is a great scat singer but also highly expressive on ballads. Born in Great Bend, Kansas, Allyson grew up in Omaha, Nebraska and the San Francisco Bay Area -- during which time she began taking classical piano lessons, in addition to performing as a folksinger and in an all-female rock band, Tomboy. Upon graduating from the University of Nebraska in 1987 (and receiving a degree in piano), Allyson sang regularly at a Kansas City nightclub owned by her uncle, a locale Allyson decided to settle down in and call her permanent home base. Signed to the Concord Jazz label, in 1992 Allyson issued her debut, I Didn't Know About You, which led to such accolades as being name-checked in Playboy's Annual Reader's Poll alongside such greats as Ella Fitzgerald and Shirley Horn. Subsequently, Allyson assembled a fine backing band consisting of fellow Kansas City musicians: pianist Paul Smith, guitarists Danny Embrey and Rod Fleeman, bassist Bob Bowman, and drummer Todd Strait, who have played on the majority of her recordings.

Allyson continued issuing albums at a steady pace throughout the remainder of the decade, including such titles as 1993's Sweet Home Cookin' and 1994's Azure-Té, plus a pair in 1996, Collage and Daydream. For her final release of the '90s, 1999's From Paris to Rio, Allyson decided to try something different and issued an album in which she sang lyrics in French and Portuguese, while covering a lot of ground stylistically (everything from a Jacques Brel cover to samba and bossa nova tunes). Allyson's next offering, 2001's Ballads: Remembering John Coltrane, proved to be one of the most acclaimed and successful of her entire career, as it earned a pair of Grammy nominations. For 2002's In Blue, Allyson opted to cover other artists' material (Mose Allison, Joni Mitchell, George and Ira Gershwin, Blossom Dearie, Abbey Lincoln, Oscar Brown, Jr., and Bonnie Raitt), as the singer only penned one of the album's 13 tracks, a path she also followed two years later on Wild for You, which contained her versions of songs from artists she had grown up with, like Cat Stevens, James Taylor, and Mitchell. In 2006 she released Footprints, earning herself a Grammy nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album.

Over the years, Allyson has performed at some of the top concert halls in the U.S., including an all-star tribute to Ella Fitzgerald at New York's Carnegie Hall, in addition to playing alongside both the Kansas City and Omaha symphonies. In 2008 Allyson released Imagina: Songs of Brasil, interpreting the songs of Antonio Carlos Jobim, Edú Lobo, Torquato Neto, and Pedro Caetano. She toured the recording for the next year before taking a break. In 2010 she began recording collection of jazz, pop, and Broadway standards entitled 'Round Midnight, where she cut tunes by everyone from Duke Ellington and Stephen Sondheim to Paul Simon and Bill Evans. The album marked the first time in her recording career that she played all the keyboards on the set. It was issued in 2011 by Concord Jazz. ~ Scott Yanow & Greg Prato
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Many A New Day: Karrin Allyson Sings Rodgers & Hammerstein (Deluxe)

1. Oh, What A Beautiful Mornin’

2. Many A New Day

3. Happy Talk

4. I Cain't Say No

5. I Have Dreamed

6. Out Of My Dreams

7. Bali H'ai

8. When I Think Of Tom/Hello Young Lovers

9. We Kiss In A Shadow

10. You've Got To Be Carefully Taught

11. Something Wonderful

12. The Surrey With The Fringe On Top

13. Something Good

14. Edelweiss

15. This Nearly Was Mine

x

Track List: 'Round Midnight

1. Turn Out The Stars

2. April Come She Will

3. Goodbye

4. I'm Always Chasing Rainbows

5. Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most

6. Smile

7. Sophisticated Lady

8. There's No Such Thing As Love

9. The Shadow Of Your Smile

10. Send In The Clowns

11. 'Round Midnight

x

Track List: Footprints

1. Something Worth Waiting For (Con Alma)

2. All You Need To Say (Never Say Yes)

3. Lightning (Lazy Bird)

4. A Long Way To Go (Equinox)

5. Strollin'

6. I Found The Turnaround (The Turnaround)

7. Follow The Footprints (Footprints)

8. Life Is A Groove (Jordu)

9. A Tree And Me

10. I Can't Say (Teaneck)

11. But I Was Cool

12. Give Me A Break (Unit 7)

13. Everybody's Boppin'

x

Track List: Wild For You

1. All I Want

2. Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight

3. Wild World

4. (Goin') Wild For You Baby

5. Help Me

6. Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word

7. I Got Eyes

8. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress

9. It's Too Late

10. Mind On My Man

11. The Right Thing To Do

12. Feel Like Makin' Love

13. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face

x

Track List: In Blue

1. Moanin'

2. Everbody's Cryin' Mercy

3. Long As You're Living

4. The Meaning Of The Blues

5. My Bluebird

6. Hum Drum Blues

7. How Long Has This been Going On?

8. West Coast Blues

9. Evil Gal Blues

10. Blue Motel Room

11. Bye Bye Country Boy

12. Love Me Like A Man

13. Angel Eyes

x

Track List: Ballads: Remembering John Coltrane

1. Say It (Over And Over Again)

2. You Don't Know What Love Is

3. Too Young To Go Steady

4. All Or Nothing At All

5. I Wish I Knew

6. What's New

7. It's Easy To Remember

8. Nancy (With The Laughing Face)

9. Naima

10. Why Was I Born?

11. Everytime We Say Goodbye

x

Track List: From Paris To Rio

1. Sous Le Ciel De Paris (Under Paris Skies)

2. Samba Saravah

3. Te Amo (I Love You)

4. O Pato (The Duck)

5. Ne Me Quitte Pas (If You Go Away)

6. Plasir D' Amour (The Pleasure Of Love)

7. O Barquinho (My Little Boat)

8. Corac? O Vagabundo (My Vagabond Heart)

9. Parisian Thoroughfare

10. Des Histoires

11. Inutil Paisagem (Useless Landscape)

12. Catavento E Girasol (Windmill And Sunflower)

13. Aria (From Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5) / Belo Horizonte

14. That Day (Cinema Paradiso)

x

Track List: Collage

1. It Could Happen To You

2. Autumn Leaves

3. Robert Frost

4. All Of You

5. And So It Goes

6. Joy Spring

7. Ask Me Now

8. Cherokee

9. Here, There And Everywhere

10. Give It Up Or Let Me Go

11. Faltando Um Pedaco (Missing A Piece)

12. Live For Life

x

Track List: Azure-Te

1. Ornithology

2. Gee Baby

3. Bernie's Tune

4. Night And Day

5. Blame It On My Youth

6. Yardbird Suite

7. Good Morning Heartache

8. Stompin' At The Savoy

9. Azure-Te

10. Some Other Time

11. Samba '88

x

Track List: Sweet Home Cookin'

1. One Note Samba

2. I Cover The Waterfront

3. Can't We Be Friends

4. Yeh! Yeh!

5. Goodbye Pork Pie Hat

6. No Moon At All

7. Sweet Home Cookin' Man

8. You Are Too Beautiful

9. Social Call

10. Dindi

11. In A Sentimental Mood

12. I Love Paris

x

Track List: I Didn't Know About You

1. Nature Boy

2. I Didn't Know What Time It Was

3. Chopin Prelude Op. 28, No. 4 / How Insensitive

4. (Pack Your) Suitcase Blues

5. I Didn't Know About You

6. Line For Lyons

7. Jesse

8. What A Little Moonlight Can Do

9. I Don't Stand A Ghost Of A Chance With You

10. 'S Wonderful

11. Save That Time

12. Guilty

13. It Might As Well Be Spring

x

Track List: Imagina: Songs Of Brazil

1. A Felicidade (Happiness)

2. Correnteza

3. So Tinha De Ser Com Voce

4. Medo De Amar (Surrender The Soul)

5. O Morro Nao Tem Vez (Favela)

6. Estrada Branca (This Happy Madness)

7. Outono (Stay)

8. Double Rainbow

9. Imagina

10. Desafinado (Slightly Out Of Tune)

11. Pra Dizer Adeus (Time To Say Goodbye)

12. Vivo Sonhando (Living On Dreams)

13. Estrada Do Sol

14. E Com Esse Quie Eu Vou

Comments

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roncklw
Karrin You are the Whiz Thanks
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carolbeelynx
I need to be re-birthed at 20 with the knowledge learned on Pandora so I could spend my head-time with this type of music. You lucky younsters.
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dave5962
Hugely superior to all the other young women who have issued jazz albums in the past thirty years.
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What a talent. We need more of such artistry.
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culmar
A girl from Kansas singing in French and Portuguese and doing such a great job of it.... AMAZINGLY GOOD!
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rogana1955
Fun to see how more beautiful she gets with each album.
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OK !!!!!!!!!!!!
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Her voice makes me happy !
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Amazing Portuguese for this American born singer...del i g h t f u l sound.
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Best of the BEST. Amazing vocals.
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Love her voice
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BIG WOW
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bahbloom2
almost as good as Ellis Regina.
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These jazz broads all sound the same. Boring
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Very elegant tune whoever performs this song their take on it is very profound very elegant another words this is grown folks music
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May I ask you to sing at our wedding? Two guys who just love you but are in so in love with each other. I know it is an impsition
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She souds amazing..soo o sweet and full in tone...I feel the keys of the piano under her rythms
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I've been in love with Karrin Allyson from the first time I heard her sing and she will never kbow.
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Tres belle voix
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rogana1955
To Good!
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razberry_1
she's legit
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soft and mellow, can't get better.
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lsmiling
I thought I was listening to Astrud when O Barquinho came on, I had to do a second take. Gorgeous voice!
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kansas city..who knew, who would suspect French?!
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Just sexy .brazillians know jazz.
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Now playing at Dean Lesher in Walnut Creek. I'll try to catch her next time. Gosto demais!
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manthagnzale z 1
Love it !
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Superb!
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nessy890828
Love jazz, can't believe I'm just now discovering her..gosh. perfect
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Nice voice. Hearing her for the first time. I detect a bit of Astrud & Bebel in her voice.
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One of the most talented modern day vocalists.
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margaritajea n l u c
a great voice une tres belle histoire merci Jean Luc
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MISS YOU MUCH, MART
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No one does I didn't know about you better than Karrin Allyson
Report as inappropriate
Wow. Beautiful.
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O man What an era!
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trecia.dejea n
Wonderful music and her voice is really nice!
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She's perfection.
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What a beautiful sound.
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Long time no see.....stil l love us. From the Fairmont, it,s Mart
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corwolfna
Fantastic! Fantastic! FANTASTIC! Makes me want to get those dance lessons I've been dreaming about....... . t h e n a partner to dance along with!hahaha That's how infectious this music is! What a beautiful voice!
Report as inappropriate
Just plain delicious sound for the Brazilian song My little Boat and in great Portuguese. What took me so long to find her?
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She scat sings with her guitarist like no one else I've ever heard..
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vinniemaine
Awesome! Nice accent!
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Wow, I am not familiar with her, but I AM impressed.
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enzoinbath
consumate professional . She does this piece on UTube. check it out
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haughty
Report as inappropriate
love her french stuff the most... love to see her perform anywhere...
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As a Kansas City native who has had the pleasure of seeing her regularly throughout the 80s and 90s, I think she is among the greatest vocalists of our time...and such a sweetheart, too!
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jmisuraca611 0 3
A voice filled with fun
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