This week, Ira Sternberg spoke with Diane Schuur.
Diane Schuur (nicknamed “Deedles”), long regarded as one of contemporary jazz’s leading vocalists, is appearing in Cabaret Jazz at the Smith Center through January 9.
Born in Tacoma, Washington in 1953, Schuur was blind from birth; but she was gifted with perfect pitch and initially taught herself piano by ear.
With a distinguished career that includes two Grammy awards (“Timeless” and “Diane Schuur and The Count Basie Orchestra: on GRP Records), Schuur has explored almost every corner of the 20th Century musical landscape. Her musical collaborations include those with Barry Manilow, B.B. King, Ray Charles, and Jose Feliciano, among countless others. These collaborations have resulted in numerous #1 Billboard Chart recordings, including “Pure Schuur” and “Heart to Heart” with B.B. King.
Schuur has appeared on PBS and many other television specials…as well as a very special visit to “Sesame Street.” She has been invited to perform at The White House on multiple occasions, and was one of the select musical guests invited to perform for Stevie Wonder at the Kennedy Center Honors when he received his prestigious award. Schuur continues to tour and perform extensively at major concert halls and venues around the world.
Schuur’s latest critically acclaimed recording, an homage to two of her very important mentors, Frank Sinatra and Stan Getz is “I Remember You (With Love to Stan and Frank),” released on June 10, 2014 The recording features all new arrangements by Alan Broadbent, and in addition to Mr. Broadbent on piano, it includes an All-Star Band of Ben Wolfe, Ulysses Owens Jr., Romero Lubambo, Roni Ben Hur, and Joel Frahm.