One summer during a river trip down the Deschutes in Oregon, in between layers of personal and geological histories, my friend Kay and I uncovered our mutual desire to sing. In one of those parallel "a-ha!" moments, we made a pact to make our dreams real.
After two years of jazz vocal lessons and learning as many songs as we could reliably remember, we ventured onto the Seattle jazz scene. We finagled gigs in neighborhood restaurants; braved open mic nights at Tula's, the New Orleans Creole Restaurant, Egan's Ballard Jamhouse, and Martin's.
Kay developed a velvet voice that won her coveted gigs with legends like Hadley Caliman, while I stumbled through every form of performer's humiliation. Determined to overcome my failings, I doggedly pushed forward. I learned songs on the piano rather than by ear; practiced late at night after playing gladiator by day. I leveraged my communications background and shamelessly promoted myself, amassing a loyal following.
In 2007, a local vocalist convinced me and another singer to book ourselves at The Triple Door, a top venue in town. Figuring the three of us could sell enough tickets to pay the band, we booked a photo shoot, slapped together some promotional material, and settled on a name: COCOA MARTINI.
To our astonishment, our debut show sold out. COCOA MARTINI landed shows in other premium clubs, including Jazz Alley, The Triple Door, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle Jazz Vespers, and Vashon Allied Arts. Our unconventional vocal harmonies and first-call musicians made COCOA MARTINI an invigorating experience, and in 2009 we earned Earshot Jazz Society's Golden Ear Award for Northwest Vocalist of the Year.
Currently, I am on hiatus from music while I publish my book. I look forward to integrating word and song as my voices converge, and invite you to check back for performing dates.Also I hope you will add your name to my fan list on the Contact page.