Born: March 18 Primary Instrument: Vocalist
Diane Hubka makes her way into a select group of jazz vocalists/instrumentalists, where she rightly assumes a place of honor. (ALL ABOUT JAZZ) Whether singing with a group or accompanying herself on seven-string guitar, she gets straight to the heart of a song, playfully improvising over what New York's VILLAGE VOICE calls as eclectically entertaining a collection of material as one could wish for.
Diane's newest CD will be released on Oct 2! West Coast Strings (SSJ Records) features the singer with a far ranging program of music with eight West Coast master guitarists, plus soul-jazz veteran, Bobby Pierce guesting on Hammond B- 3. Hubka also plays guitar on three tracks. Don Heckman writes in the liner notes, On this captivating new album, Diane has assembled a West Coast jazz guitar summit, with each of the all-star groupings providing the perfect setting for her soaring vocals.
Concord recording artist and one of the world's foremost 7- string players, Howard Alden says: I think voice plus seven-string guitar is an ideal combination. It's rare to find someone who can perform with both single-handedly, but Diane does just that - beautifully! ALL MUSIC GUIDE calls Diane Hubka one of the top jazz vocalists of her generation.
The Sinatra Society of Japan invited Diane Hubka to perform and record her CD, I Like It Here/Live in Tokyo, (SSJ-USA 2009) which received a nomination for the prestigeous Jazz Disc Award by Swing Journal. Hubka dazzled the Japanese audience with her intelligent improvisations, understated emotions and energy. (EASTWIND IMPORT.) With overseas tours in Turkey & Japan and club appearances throughout the U.S., she continues winning the international acclaim that began when her first CD, Haven't We Met, was released on the Dutch Challenge/A-Records label in 1999. It featured the legendary alto sax player Lee Konitz, and garnered a Jazz Award Nomination for Best Recording Debut.
A vital member of New York City's jazz scene for two decades, the award-winning vocalist relocated to Los Angeles in 2004, where she collaborated with pianist Christian Jacob (Maynard Ferguson, Tierney Sutton,) to record Diane Hubka Goes to the Movies, (18th & Vine, USA; SSJ Records, Japan; 2007.) JAZZTIMES heralded its winning results and ALL ABOUT JAZZ declared, Hubka has created an entirely new songbook all her own. Her third CD, You Inspire Me, (VSOJAZ 2002) was a personal tribute to her love of jazz guitar, with seven of the world's top virtuoso guitarists playing on alternate cuts.
This Blue Ridge Mountain-bred artist grew up in Western Maryland in a musical family and learned violin, trombone and guitar from an early age. After college she moved to Washington, DC where she frequented local jazz clubs Blues Alley, One Step Down and Mr. Y's Soul Kitchen, absorbing the sounds of local legends Charlie Byrd and Shirley Horn, hearing national acts, as well as honing her own skills in those rooms. In 1986 she moved to New York City and was awarded a one-year jazz fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts for private study with vocalist Anne Marie Moss. She also studied piano, voice and guitar privately with premier NY jazz artists Barry Harris, Harold Danko, Connie Crothers, Sheila Jordan, Jay Clayton, Howard Alden and John Hart.
Diane Hubka has recorded and/or performed with jazz luminaries performed with jazz luminaries Bucky Pizzarelli, Harold Danko, Bruce Barth, Anthony Wilson, Joe LaBarbera, Jack Sheldon, Carl Saunders, Gene Bertoncini, John Hart, John Pisano, Frank Kimbrough, Christian Jacob, Paul Bollenback, Scott Whitfield, Jack Wilkins, Larry Koonse, Barry Zweig, Don Shelton, Robert Kyle and the Brazilian Trio Da Paz. She headlined in major jazz clubs appearing in New York's Blue Note, Birdland and Knitting Factory, the Central PA Jazz Festival, the Philadelphia Guitar Show, Washington D.C.'s Blues Alley, Soloist with the Western MD Symphony; Jazz Corner in Hilton Head, SC, and LA's Jazz Bakery, Steamers LACMA, Vitello's and Charlie O's. In March 2008 she headlined at Nardis Jazz Club in Istanbul, Turkey. In Japan she appeared at JZBrat, Tokyo TUC, Cotton Club, Satin Doll, Jazz on Top, Jazz Inn Lovely and Life Time Cafe.
Awards:NEA Jazz Fellowship
Michael G. Nastos, ALL MUSIC GUIDE A picture perfect vocalist if there ever was one.
Ed Benson, JUST JAZZ GUITAR If your toes aren't tapping here you've got a problem...
Shohei Chujo, Japan's SWING JOURNAL 5 out of 5 Stars: Arguably the biggest discovery since Gambarini.
Masamichi Okazaki, Japan's SWING JOURNAL 4 1/2 out of 5 Stars: Hubka is also a good guitarist, and we get to hear her accompany herself in Luiz Bonfa’s “Manha de Carnaval.”
Joe Lang, JERSEY JAZZ It is always a pleasure to listen to a singer who combines a pleasing voice with intelligent lyric interpretation and the kind of musicianship and musicality that Diane Hubka possesses. full review
SWING JOURNAL MAGAZINE, JAPAN I Like It Here/Live in Tokyo: Placed among the best vocal albums on the 2008 Jazz Disc Award
Dan Singer, Singer's Singers, In Tune International She reminds me here of Jackie Cain and Marlene Ver Planck. That's praise indeed.
George Harris, ALL ABOUT JAZZ, Los Angeles Hubka has created an entirely new songbook all her own ... with a voice as cool and calm as the Mediterranean Sea.
Diane Hubka West Coast Strings (SSJ Records, 2013)
Diane Hubka I Like It Here / Live In Tokyo (SSJ Records, 2009)
Diane Hubka Goes to the Movies (18th & Vine, 2007)
Diane Hubka You Inspire Me (VSOJAZ, 2001)
Diane Hubka Look No Further (A-Records, 1999)
Diane Hubka Haven't We Met? (A-Records, 1997)
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