Born: November 28, 1932 Primary Instrument: Vocalist
Baltimore native Ethel Ennis is a national treasure. Critics have hailed her as the most accomplished singer performing today. That stature was earned by her magnificent voice, her brilliant compositions, her joyful performances and her collaboration with the finest musicians.
Ethel Ennis first won national recognition for her recording Lullaby for Losers in 1955. In 1958, she was selected by Benny Goodman as the female vocalist for his all-star band. Later, she was chosen as a featured singer on the Arthur Godfrey Show. After performing at the 1964 Newport Jazz Festival with Billy Taylor, Cozy Cole, and Slam Stewart, she appeared with Duke Ellington and his Orchestra on television's Bell Telephone Hour. She followed those amazing achievements by wowing them at the Monterey Jazz Festival in duets with Joe Williams. She returned to her hometown to perform in concerts with the Count Basie Band and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. During that same period, she shared the bill with Cab Calloway at Harlem's Apollo Theater and played supper clubs and concert halls all over the country.
In the seventies, she founded the practice of singing the National Anthem a capella at Richard Nixon's 1973 presidential inauguration. She performed at the White House for Jimmy Carter as well. During the period, she became Baltimore's cultural ambassador, singing Chinese folk songs in Baltimore's sister city of Xiamen, China as well as performing in Rotterdam, Germany.
In the 1980's, Ethel opened her own music club, Ethel's Place with her husband, writer Earl Arnett. They presented the world's greatest jazz musicians and broadcast live concerts to national audiences. They sold the club in 1988, each returning full-time to their artistic pursuits.
Frank Sinatra once described her as, my kind of singer. A Downbeat reviewer once said of Ethel, her voice runs deep, exuding the personality of a sage who has lived many lives. She is the great sage of jazz and if you can find any one of her two dozen records and singles, you will have added a national treasure to your collection.
NYC, December 18, 1956
2299 | A176 | 56C106 - A Pair Of Fools - Atco 6086
2300 | A177 | 56C108 - Since You're Mine - Atlantic unissued
2301 | A178 | 56C109 - Got It In My Blood (To Love You) - Atco 6086
2302 | A179 | 56C110 - Half Way To Heaven - Atlantic unissued
Lullabies For Losers – Jubilee (1955) re-issued
Ethel Ennis Sings – Jubilee (1963)
Jubilee:5236 - Off Shore
Change Of Scenery – Capitol (1957) re-issued
Have You Forgotten – Capitol (1958) re-issued
This Is Ethel Ennis – RCA 2786 (1963) re-issued
Once Again, Ethel Ennis – RCA 2862 (1964) re-issued
My Kind Of Waltztime – RCA 2984 2984 (1964) re- issued
Eyes For You – RCA 2986 (1965)
RCA:478379 - Boy From Ipanema / When will the hurt be over?
RCA:478448 - Now I Have Everything / Matchmaker
RCA:478592 - About Love / I've Got That Feeling
RCA 478733 - We Could Learn Together / Look At Me
10 Sides of Ethel Ennis – BASF 25121(1973)
Live at the Maryland Inn – EnE (1980)
Ethel Ennis – Hildner (1994)
If Women Ruled The World – Savoy Jazz (1998)
Ennis Anyone? Ethel Ennis, Live at Montpelier! – Jazzmount (2005)
BASF:15126 – I Believe In Love / I Wonder Who My Daddy Is
SPIRAL:1234 - Call Me Young / Who Is It This Time?
SPIRAL:1237 - Sing Me A Tune / I Wonder Who My Daddy Is
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