Graduating summa c*m laude from the State University of New York (Buffalo) with a degree in classical flute and music and where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, Terry Blaine has taken a roundabout route to jazz. The 1970s saw her performing with Top 40 bands and doing studio work in and around New York City before she went off on a world tour as a backup singer for pop group Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons. Blaine reports that you haven't lived as a stage performer until you've heard 10,000 fans singing right back at you one of Valli's biggest hits, "Big Girls Don't Cry-Yi-Yi." Her move toward jazz came in the mid-'80s when she met and started working with pianist Mark Shane. They shared the stage at several top venues in the New York City area, including Café Society, a gig lasting fours years, until 1991. Her first CD, Whose Honey Are You?, followed in 1993 and was tapped as a Jazz Journal International Record of the Year. Her second CD, Terry Blaine in Concert, is a recording of her 1994 concert in Cleveland. Building on those successful undertakings, Blaine performed at jazz festivals, on jazz cruises, was featured with her group at New York's Fat Tuesdays, and worked with Shane and guitarist Frank Vignola in an Irving Berlin songbook revue. A tour to Germany resulted in another CD, With Thee I Swing. Her album paying homage to the great lady song stylists of the past, Too Hot for Words-Great Ladies of Swing, was released in 1999. Her albums pay a lot of attention to, but are in no way exclusively devoted to, the vocal styles of the great vocalists of the 1920s through the 1940s. Blaine has also appeared with Shane on two of his albums, Blue Room for KamaDisc and On Treasure Island for JukeBox Jazz.
Blaine and her husband, jazz guitar player Tom Desisto, live in Woodstock, NY, where they produce music for commercial clients as well as for children's videos and TV. Blaine continues to appear in jazz spots around the country and is the featured vocalist with cornetist/ trumpeter Ed Polcer's Jazz All-Stars. Terry Blaine has emerged as one of the premier contemporary interpreters of the Great American songbook and in doing so carries on the high vocal standards of the great songstresses of the past. ~ Dave Nathan