Primary Instrument: Vocal
Leslie, a native of East Orange, New Jersey, has toured as a featured jazz vocalist with the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra, with members of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, with Musique Sur La Mer Chamber Orchestra in concert in London, as well as performances with Jazz Tap Ensemble in New York and Los Angeles. She began her career with a move to Los Angeles to perform as a singer/dancer at Disneyland. That lead to performances at Disneyworld in Orlando FL and Opryland in Nashville TN. Back in California, Leslie was featured along with Jack Sheldon on the Tom Kubis Big Band recording “At Last” and expanded her career into acting roles in films and television.
Following the critical success of her previous recordings, in 2012 Leslie released Midnight Sun her third CD on the SURF COVE JAZZ label. Her first recording “Of Two Minds” (Surf Cove Jazz 2008) features Leslie with the Gerard Hagen Trio and several of Los Angeles' finest jazz musicians including Gary Foster, Ron Stout and Larry Koonse. Having received considerable airplay on national jazz radio programs, and charting at #28 on the national jazz radio report CMJ, “Of Two Minds” was released in Japan on SSJ Inc. where it received 5 stars in Swing Journal magazine. In 2010 she released a follow up recording “Keeper Of The Flame” (Surf Cove Jazz) which features Brazilian Jazz music. It debuted at #15 on the CMJ national radio report and has been programmed on Sirius XM radio. Of Two Minds and Keeper Of The Flame have received international radio airplay and have been featured on several syndicated radio shows including Jazz With Bob Parlocha and Jazz After Hours. In addition Leslie is featured on a track on From California With Love (SSJ Records) a recording featuring number of California based jazz artists that was released in Japan as a vehicle to raise funds for Japanese Earthquake/Tsunami relief efforts. A recent trip to perform in New York City provided her with an opportunity to record tracks for a yet to be released piano/vocal duo recording.
Performance venues (partial list) include, London (Royal College of Music) New York, (Joyce Theatre, Lehman College) Los Angeles, (Smothers Theatre, L.A. County Art Museum) Irvine, CA (Barclay Theatre) Glendora, CA (Haugh Performing Arts Center) Napa, CA (Napa Valley Opera House) and Santa Fe, (Jazz At The Center).
CASHBOX MAGAZINE: Leslie Lewis has a hot one on her hands with Keeper Of The Flame. A bona fide sure thing for jazz radio success, the album is packed with tracks destined for cooler iPods nationwide. 5 Stars.
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