Vocalist extraordinaire Jewel Brown, currently with The Heritage Hall Jazz Band, touring and proving what a powerful force she is. When you hear her, you’ll know why she was Louis Armstrong’s featured vocalist for seven years.
Jewel Brown is the true to life, born and bred Houston jazz artist. She was born in Houston’s Third Ward August 30, 1937. She attended Black Elementary School and then Jack Yates High School. At an early age she began singing in the choir at Rosehill Baptist Church and first perfomed at the age of nine at the Masonic Temple in the Fourth Ward. Her first professional singing job was at the age of 12 at the Manhattan Club in Galveston.
She continued singing professionally while in school, however her singing was secondary in importance to her studies. Even before she graduated, her vocals were in demand. During her senior year she was invited to accompany Lionel Hampton’s group to tour Europe. Upon graduation it was understood in Ms. Brown’s immediate family that she would pursue a singing career full time, she had decided against college because she felt it would be a burden on her parents. Until that time she sang locally with her brother’s group, performing at clubs with her mother accompanying. When she did begin singing with (all male) groups on tour however, her career was almost stifled by the concerns of an extended family member that the entertainment business was unsavory. Ms. Brown’s mother relented against the cynicism and encouraged her daughter toward her chosen goals.