Primary Instrument: Vocalist
Roberta Gambarini was born in Torino, Italy, into a family where jazz was much loved and appreciated. She began listening to this music as a child and started taking clarinet lessons when she was twelve years old. By the time she was 17, she had begun singing and performing in jazz clubs around Northern Italy. At the age of 18, she decided to move to Milan to pursue a career as a jazz singer.
Soon after her move to Milan, still in her teens, Roberta took third place in a national jazz radio competition on TV, leading to performance opportunities at jazz festivals throughout Italy. She has performed in Jazz broadcasts on the Italian radio and TV channels and recorded since 1986 both under her own name and as a guest vocalist. In 1997, she worked with French Hammond organ player Emmanuel Bex, touring jazz clubs throughout Italy.
In 1998 she moved to the United States with a scholarship from the New England Conservatory in Boston. Two weeks later, Roberta stunned many in the jazz world by receiving third place honors in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocal Competition.
Since then, she has performed with Michael Brecker, Ron Carter, Herbie Hancock, Slide Hampton, Roy Hargrove, Jimmy Heath, Hank Jones, Christian McBride, Russell Malone, Toots Thielemans, and many others. Roberta has performed at The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Town Hall and Walt Disney Concert Hall, and international jazz festivals such as Barbados, London, Monterey, North Sea, Toronto, and Umbria.
A dynamic performer with virtuosic vocal chops, Roberta draws rave reviews and enthusiastic fan support wherever she performs. She has done so with no hype and, to the astonishment of many, no domestic releases -- until June 6, 2006, when KOCH International Jazz released Roberta's North American debut, Roberta Gambarini: Easy to Love.
Roberta shows off her instrumental approach and warm timbre, impeccable timing and intonation, incredible technique and scatting and improvisation skills on a set of 12 excellent jazz standards and classic songs from The Great American Songbook. The album also includes two bonus tracks and features special guest James Moody on a scintillating scat duel.
Easy To Love was nominated for a 2006 Grammy for Best Vocal Jazz Performance.
This CD [You Are There ~~ Roberta Gambarini & Hank Jones - 2008] promises to be one of the better vocal releases of 2008. --Suzanne Lorge, All About Jazz.
You Are There ~~ Roberta Gambarini & Hank Jones
Recording Label: Roberta's MySpace page says Groovin' High/Universal... AAJ review article says DECCA Music Group...
Release Date: February 12, 2008
Personnel: Roberta Gambarini, vocals; Hank Jones, piano
Tracks: You Are There; I'll Be Tired Of You; People Time; When Lights Are Low; Deep Purple; Reminiscing; Suppertime; Just Squeeze Me; Something To Live For; Stardust; Lush Life; You're Getting To Be A Habit With Me; Come Sunday; How Are Things In Glocca Morra?
Roberta Gambarini: Easy To Love ~
Recording Label: KOCH International Jazz
Release Date: June 6, 2006
Personnel: Roberta Gambarini, vocals; James Moody, tenor saxophone and guest vocals; Tamir Hendelman, piano; Gerald Clayton, piano; John Clayton, bass; Chuck Berghofer, bass; Willie Jones III, drums; Joe La Barbera, drums.
Tracks: Easy to Love; Only Trust Your Heart; Lover Man; On the Sunny Side of the Street; Porgy, I's Your Woman Now/I Loves You Porgy; Centerpiece; Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out to Dry; No More Blues; Smoke Gets In Your Eyes/All the Things You Are; Too Late Now; Multi-Colored Blue; Monk's Prayer/Looking Back.
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