Arlee Leonard has written some impressive originals, and her voice crackles with life. Deep and woody, she's sensual at the same time that she's playful...Arlee has many talents, and is not afraid to use them. - Jazz Improv
THE VERSATILE ARLEE LEONARD began performing at age six in coffee houses in Detroit with her parents, blues/folk icons DAVID & ROSELYN. In 1991, her multi-racial family toured Germany, France, Holland and Switzerland, and she’s sung with them, led her own groups, and been a guest vocalist for a variety of occasions and events around the world since. Ms. Leonard, raised in California, Michigan and New Orleans, studied and performed in music, theater and dance at Santa Monica High School and the University of California Santa Cruz, while earning a B.A. in Sociology, with honors.
MS. LEONARD can swing standards, wail blues, caress ballads, harmonize with a classical harpist, scat a samba, belt gospel, and get funky in a groove, bringing a joie de vivre and well-honed expertise to any stage she’s on. With her 4- octave range and strong command of the classic elements of jazz vocalizing, Arlee's multifaceted singing style is complimented by her joyfully engaging stage presence and graceful moves. She is also a gifted lyricist, songwriter, and poet.
ARLEE TRAVELS THE WORLD singing, receiving praise from critics and audiences alike for her debut CD “WILD HONEY” and her dynamic live performances. Ms. Leonard has headlined in SINGAPORE, RUSSIA, UKRAINE, BELARUS, SOUTH AFRICA, THAILAND, FRANCE, CHINA, THE PHILIPPINES, JAPAN, DUBAI, TAIWAN, SPAIN, CANADA, GUATEMALA, and across the USA. In 2011, Arlee traveled to Russia three times and Ukraine, performing in jazz clubs, concerts halls, and with a big band. In August she was a semi-finalist in the MetroSTAR competition in New York. She performed at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in May with her parents’ group Mo’Lasses, and continues a standing engagement in Stamford, CT. 2010 also began with a return to Russia, and Arlee’s first appearances in Belarus and Ukraine. She performed for the Great Women In Music Festival Oct. 2010 in NYC, and had a fall tour in California. 2009 performances included the Jazz Province Festival (Russian Tour), Standard Bank Joy of Jazz Festival (Johannesburg, SA), Satchmo Summerfest and New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (New Orleans), Women in Jazz Festival 2009 (NYC), and concerts in France with MOUSSU T ET LE JOVENTS for a project honoring the writer Claude McKay entitled “ZOU, SHAKE THAT THING!” (Marseille, France). One highlight from 2008 was a headlining performance at The French Quarter Festival (New Orleans).