Saturday, Jun 28, 2008 8:00 PM PDT
Stanford University Campbell Recital Hall, Palo Alto, CA
"Stallings' voice is supple and timeless...encompassing the whole history of music." -- San Francisco Chronicle
According to the New York Times, "perhaps the best jazz singer singing today is a woman almost everybody seems to have missed." That woman is Mary Stallings, a Bay Area native who established a name for herself as one of the finest jazz singers of the 1960s, performing with such luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Cal Tjader, Billy Eckstine, and Count Basie. After taking a hiatus from her recording career in the 1970s to raise her daughter and work as a clothes designer, Stallings stepped back into the national jazz spotlight in 1999 when the owner of the famous Village Vanguard nightclub in New York heard a recording of her singing and eventually tracked her down at her home in San Francisco. Ever since then, jazz fans have had the pleasure of rediscovering Stallings, whose voice and phrasing continued to mature and improve during her long sabbatical. In 2006 she was presented with the San Francisco Jazz Festival's Beacon Award for her contributions to jazz in the Bay Area.