Born: February 28, 1954 Primary Instrument: Vocalist
Today’s jazz singers don’t limit themselves to the classic American Songbook. The singer/songwriter era ushered in by rock ’n’ roll produced a treasure trove of tunes ripe for reinvention, and Roseanna Vitro uncovers a mother lode with The Music of Randy Newman.
Working closely with veteran pianist and longtime collaborator Mark Soskin, Vitro infuses Newman’s songs with her soul-deep feel for blues and gospel. The results are revelatory, insistently raising the question of why no jazz singer has previously tackled a Randy Newman project. Vitro credits the concept to her husband, sound engineer and producer Paul Wickliffe, an idea planted by her yearning version of Newman’s “I Think It’s Going to Rain Today” on her 2006 album Live at the Kennedy Center (Challenge)....
Awards:In 1998, Roseanna Vitro was inducted into the Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame, along with comrades, Bob Dorough and John Stubblefield.
Roseanna Vitro's silky smooth mezzo voice shines in every song on The Music of Randy Newman. From her sultry low end to her belting high notes, her delivery is right on time. Even more impressive, her 'scat' vocalizing is as perfect as any instrumental solo on the album, such as the piano and violin work on “Last Night I Had a Dream.” She's a great jazz singer who brings a lot of heart to her craft.
The Delirium Blues Project
With her silken yet powerful pipes, Vitro ignites titles such as “Half Moon,“ Jon Hendrick's “ Blue” and Mose Allison's “Everybody's Cryin' Mercy” ...(with) Vitro's scorched- earth readings...(these) rise to the level of widescreen classics. Ken Micallef, Downbeat (2008)
“Live at the Kennedy Center” top Jazz Albums of 2006 Herb Wong, IAJE Journal (2007)
“Vitro is a real Jazz singer in the tradition of Ella Fitzgerald. She understands the tradition of “scat', (her scat-improvisation reminds me of Clark Terry and Leon Thomas). But she never looses sight of the sense and content of her songs. Stephen Richter, Fono Forum (2006)
“This Washington performance is full of vitality and risk, yet avoids falling into the trap of jumping through hoops. With the pianist Kenny Werner leading a thoroughbred trio, the high point is a searching version of Randy Newman's I Think It's Going to Rain Today. Vitro isn't the first jazz singer to be tempted by it, but this is the definitive version. Clive Davis, The Times of London (2006)
“Highly respected vocalist/educator Roseanna Vitro's art equates to untainted class. With jazz piano great Kenny Werner and a crack rhythm section blazing forth, Ms Vitro's impeccable diction, depth and sensitivity strikes a distinct chord here.” (Live at the Kennedy Center cd.) Glen Astarita, All About Jazz (2006)
“Vitro's voice is an extraordinarily versatile instrument. Her rendering of Randy Newman's touching I Think It's Going to Rain Today, for example, displayed a dark, honeyed sound, simmering with just enough edge to emphasize the song's enigmatic lyrics.” Don Heckman, Los Angeles Times (2007)
The Delirium Blues Project-Half Note Records 2008
Live at the Kennedy Center-Challenge.nl 2006
Tropical Postcards - Challenge Records 2004
Conviction, Thoughts of Bill Evans-Challenge 2001
Catchin' Some Rays (Music of Ray Charles) Telarc 1997
Passion Dance- Telarc - 1996
Softly-Concord Records - 1994
Reaching for the Moon-CMG Records - 1991
Listen Here - 1985 - Texas Rose Music
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Willing to teach:
Intermediate to advanced students
Phone 732-271-5979 skyline productions
Vocal Chair for the Vocal Jazz Program at New Jersey City University (1998 to present)
Wells Fargo Jazz for Teens Program in Newark, N.J.
The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (2001 to present)
Vocal Clinics/Masterclasses Para Phrasing- The Art of Improvising with lyrics Jazz and Singing - An overview of the history of vocal jazz as it relates to American History and politics. The personalities and their art. The Business of Music The world has changed significantly in the past five years. Learn how to produce your cd., promote your music and how to stay positive. Vocal Jazz Clinics In Tune And On Time: The Art of Vocal Jazz - A vocal workshop emphasizing the defining elements of jazz singing, Jazz: Yesterday And Today - A one-hour dvd overview on the history of jazz, including highlights from Ken Burns celebrated multi-part PBS series. Vocalists Are From Venus, Instrumentalists Are From Mars: Skills in Communication – A workshop detailing the keys for successful interplay among singers and bandmates. Making a Recording - Roseanna Vitro has recorded eleven critically acclaimed cd.'s. She will guide your students through: a.choosing material b. your band c. organizing rehearsals and your session d. saving money and making a great product Performances and Programs (Duos, Small Groups, Big Bands, Orchestras) Conviction: Thoughts of Bill Evans; A Program featuring Bill Evans material. Sarah, Carmen, Ella, Joe - Ms. Vitro essays and interprets the greatest works associated with legendary jazz vocalists, Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae, Ella Fitzgerald, and Joe Williams. Catchin’ Rays: The Music of Ray Charles – A spirited evening of soulful stylings, drawn from Ms. Vitro’s classic Telarc recording, with charts from Kenny Werner, featuring such classics as “One Mint Julep,” “Unchain My Heart,” “Lonely Avenue,” and more. New Jazz Standards – Ms. Vitro illuminates the great American songs and songwriters from our most recent past. Compositions by Tom Harrell, McCoy Tyner, Benny Golson, Horace Silver, and Cedar Walton. Delirium Blues – Ms. Vitro extols and examines the blues, from rustic to refined, Tower of Power to Joni Mitchell and Mose Allison. Four horns, a guitar and rhythm section a must for this show! Tropical Postcards– The music of Brazil, its rhythms, its buoyancy, melodies and lyrics of Antono Carlos Jobim, Dori Caymi, Ivan Lins, and Milton Nascimento. The Art of The Big Band – Ms Vitro joins forces with your big band, swinging through an evening of great arrangements by Kenny Werner, including “Whisper Not,” “Freedom Jazz Dance,” “In a Sentimental Mood,” and “Passion Dance,” among others. Orchestral Grandeur – A program rich in Americana, “Blue Skies,” “Old Devil Moon,” “Dreamsville,” plus the Brazilian majesty of Milton Nascimento’s “Cancao Do Sal” and Joni Mitchell’s “The Circle Game”. This program was a televised Christmas special in Slovenia in 2001.