Vancouver-based vocalist Sarah Kennedy has been delighting audiences with her performances since 2007. Although many of her performances focus on jazz repertoire including swing standards, bossa novas and ballads she is becoming an increasingly versatile performer. Recent projects have included tributes to Joni Mitchell and Blossom Dearie performed at Frankie’s Jazz Club via the Coastal Jazz and Blues Society. She has tackled the angular melodies of local composer, Steve Smith, performed as part of the Roedde House Museum Jazz Series. Sarah is also the lead vocalist for The Colorifics, a high energy original Rockabilly/Cabaret/Pop/Disco/Swing band led by Bernard Boulanger. Her most recent undertaking has been the composition of music for the poetry of Hafiz (as translated by Daniel Ladinsky) with the collaboration of pianist, Dan Reynolds.
Although she never thought she could become a performer, Sarah’s musical development began with classical training in piano and voice when she was 4 years old. The discovery of a Dinah Washington CD in her teens led Sarah to gravitate towards jazz vocals, drawing on the influences of Sarah Vaughan, Anita O’Day and Ella Fitzgerald, to name a few. Sarah discovered her love for performing in 2007, after being tricked into an open mic night with a few Martinis.
Sarah is known for her sweet and flirtatious stage presence, a light and smooth vocal tone with a wide range. She delivers true depth of emotional expression across a diverse repertoire of music. Her debut album, “Portrait,” produced by Jennifer Scott, was released in October 2015, and has been played on CBC Hot Air as well as A-Trane radio. Sarah was recently interviewed on CBC’s Hot Air for Ella Fitzgerald’s 100th Birthday commemoration.
Some of the more notable performance venues Sarah has played in the Vancouver Lower Mainland include the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival, The Harmony Arts Festival, The Roedde House Museum, Pat’s Pub and Brewhouse, The Backstage Lounge, and Frankie’s Jazz Club. In 2014 and 2015 she traveled to Europe to explore other musical influences and performed at venues in Berlin, Paris and London.
“The future of excellent jazz vocalists is safe in the hands of Sarah Kennedy. Not just a heartfelt interpreter of song, Sarah is innovative, musical and a rising star!”
“A new vocalist to watch on the Vancouver jazz scene, Sarah Kennedy has jazz ears, a book of great tunes, and is an increasingly confident performer and band leader.”