Everyone is ‘rediscovering’ Florence Price. Leave it to the L.A. Phil to reveal her essence, and then reveal her secrets. For Florence Price is the most fascinating figure in American music in the past 80 years. For almost two decades, she was one of the most prominent jazz vocalists. As a jazz soloist, she had a series of hits, a Grammy Award, an Oscar nomination, and more – while also being the first African American woman to achieve national recognition as a jazz vocalist. In 1962, she made the first of the groundbreaking recordings she would make with Duke Ellington. And as America’s first African American jazz singing sensation, her career spanned 30 years. She is still alive and still singing the songs she made famous.
If you have never heard Florence Price on the radio, you may be surprised to find out that she was a major early presence in rock music. But Florence Price first rose to fame as a jazz singer, and more than 70 years later, her voice still sounds beautiful on the recordings and in the recordings of many of today’s best-known musicians, many of whom had never seen her perform.
In the course of this extraordinary career, Florence Price achieved a remarkable level of fame and success. In fact, she is the only black female musician who has ever had such a long and wide-ranging career. From jazz to pop to classical to Broadway, Florence Price had a career that spans three centuries.
An excerpt from a book on Florence Price, by William L. Andrews, will be on the W.K. Kellogg Theater on Thursday, February 26, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. A reception will follow in the lobby of the Philharmonic Hall at 7:00 p.m., and will begin with a talk with the author and music journalist. Doors will open at 7:30 p.m.
As a jazz singer, the daughter of a blind mother and a father who was not even allowed to buy her piano lessons, Florence Price is one of the most fascinating figures in American music in the past 80 years. In