Born: January 5, 1958 Primary Instrument: Vocal
R E S U M E of Ms. Vinnie Knight International Jazz & Blues Entertainer
E-mail: email@example.com Home/Fax: 757-422-6967 Cell: 757-275-5376
You Tube: o Vinnie Knight & The Harlem Big Band http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuXtK_dz4zc&NR=1
o Vinnie Knight & The Jazz Riders http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vI3uZvTm0uk
Ms. Vinnie Knight was born in Harlem, New York, and later moved to Brooklyn. At an early age, she sang in church choirs and performed in school plays. Her father was a singer and guitarist who traveled the world.
Vinnie studied dance with La Rocque Bey Dance Theater and Henry LeTang School of Tap, as well as studied voice and music at the Juilliard School of Music and Kings Borough Community College.
The rich voice of Ms. Vinnie Knight has many interpretations of what great American jazz and blues singers sound like. Her smooth, velvety, mysteriously angelic voice has the sophistication of the great Sarah Vaughan, the earthiness of Pearl Bailey, and the seductiveness of Billie Holiday. There is no mimicking -- the sound is wonderfully natural.
Ms. Vinnie Knight started her professional career with ARTHUR PRYSOCK, a great singer who told her to listen to the greatest female jazz singers. He got her booked with the SIDNEY BEAN TRIO, whom she worked with in Bermuda three months a year for eighteen years at various venues, including the South Hampton Princess Hotel, Kitson and Company Cruises, the Bermudian Hotel, Clay House Inn, private parties, and resort golf and tennis clubs.
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During the time that she was on the New York club scene, her home base clubs were the Cajun Restaurant, Café Society, The Rainbow Room, Sweet Waters, Metropolis Club, Birdland, Windows of the World at the World Trade Center, the Hilton Hotel, Grand Hyatt Hotel, Sheraton Hotel, Omni Berkshire Hotel, Lenox Lounge, West Inn Café, Blue Note, Tattoo Supper Club, The Edison Supper Club, Red Blazer II, Northern Lights, and clubs throughout New Jersey, Connecticut, and upstate New York.
Ms. Knight recorded the songs of the great composer, DUKE ELLINGTON, and was booked in Nairobi, Kenya. She starred with Oliver Jackson and the Harlem Big Band of New York and toured Germany, Switzerland, Holland, and Istanbul in Turkey. On her return to New York, Ms. Knight was booked on the SS Norway and starred with the great trumpeter, CLARK TERRY. Well on her way, she was booked in Japan at Rapos Nightclub with an all-star Japanese orchestra.
Ms. Knight recorded, performed, and collaborated with the best musicians of the jazz world. She has garnered rave reviews singing the music of DUKE ELLINGTON and GLADYS SHELLEY. She has recorded a CD for GPRT Records entitled “Doin’ Things for Her.” The original composition by Gladys Shelley was arranged by Ms. Knight. Zena Records has produced collector’s editions of Ms. Knight singing songs from the DUKE ELLINGTON SONGBOOK, as well as the CD “Sweet & Hot” collector’s edition, “Live In Japan,” and “I’ve Gotta Be Me.”
Ms. Knight moved to Virginia Beach from her native New York in 1997. She began singing at such noted venues as Uncle Louie’s, The Jewish Mother, Bienville Grill, The Original House of Jazz, Virginia Beach Resort Hotel, Chrysler Museum of Art, Jullian’s Cat Club at Waterside, The Harbor Club, Town Point Club, Oyster Alley, Blues Alley, Officers Club, Hampton University, (A Salute to Duke Ellington concerts), The Roper Theater in Norfolk for the Walk of Fame, as well as a tribute to the late RUTH BROWN, ELLA FITZGERALD, and PEARL BAILEY.
Vinnie Knight acted in the television series “The New Detectives” and “The FBI Series,” as well as the motion picture “SUMMER’S DREAM” for New Dominion Pictures.
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Ms. Knight’s profound love for musical theater has prompted her to write and produce a musical revue of songs from the 1920s through the 1940s named “BLACK PEARLS (The Speakeasy).” It had its world premiere at The Actors Theater, where she starred and directed, and was choreographed by Ed Anderson.
“BLACK PEARLS” was again produced by special arrangement in part by Hampton University’s Crossroads Theater Company at Armstrong Hall Little Theater, Hampton, VA. Ms. Knight also wrote and directed the sequel “BLACK PEARLS AND WHITE DIAMONDS” at the Virginia Beach Central Library Auditorium.
Ms. Knight has performed on Princess Cruises for three years, touring at sea to Ocho Rios, the Panama Canal, Limon, Grand Cayman Islands, Cozumel, Nassau, Acapulco, San Francisco, Alaska, Vancouver, and Hawaii, as well as in clubs across America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.
Returning to the U.S. mainland, she was engaged by David Key and Armando Pena to entertain at Treetops Ranch for the Bluebonnet Spring Festival in Texas with her pianist Zeke Mullins.
Vinnie Knight has headlined and toured with the DAVE CLARK BLUES BAND in London, England. Upon returning, she worked local clubs, Kane Marie Gallery, Chrysler Museum of Art, Main Street Jazz Restaurant, Rob’s Class Act, The Magnolia House, Victory House, and Norfolk State University. She is the founder and president of Jazz ‘R’ Us Performing Arts Society.
Ms. Knight has worked with some of the legendary musicians in the Hampton Roads area, such as the late great pianist Pat Curtis, pianist Bob Sawyer, and soulful Tommy Newsom.
She now is the leader and founder of the JAZZ RIDERS ORCHESTRA and will be scheduling performances throughout the Hampton Roads area to showcase American Standards and music of the great American songwriters.
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Ms. Knight loves to go into the senior community and perform for the elderly who are not able to go out into public to hear this good music. She has worked with hospital audiences and nursing homes for assisted living and rehabilitation residents for twenty years.
Ms. Knight has received several awards for artistic achievement for music and voice.
Ms. Knight has DVDs and CDs of her life in music.
CDs: Sweet and Hot, Live in Japan, I’ve Gotta Be Me, Ellington’s Dream, and Doin’ Things for Her.
Ms. Knight has worked with numerous big bands and orchestras, such as The Phil Costa Orchestra, The Harlem Big Band, Paul Loverett Orchestra, Gandy Bourgess Orchestra, Mousey Alexander Orchestra, The Al Cobbs Orchestra, The Bobby Rosengarden Orchestra, Glen Zottola Orchestra, and The Dixieland Kings Orchestra.
Video and CDs include: Good Morning Bermuda with Marlene Butterfield, The Joe Franklin Show, Live in Japan, The Schomberg in Harlem Archives, The Bayou Café, Live at the Sign of the Dove, Live with Oliver Jackson and the All Stars in Germany, Jazz Bytes on Manhattan Neighborhood Networks, Live at the Mendham Golf and Tennis Club, Live in Istanbul at the Caz Bar, Live at the Wonderland, and various clips.
Awards:Afram Fest Music - Voice, Artistic Achievers 2003
Virginia Beach, VA
Willing to teach:
Intermediate to advanced students