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A conversation with rising jazz vocalist Samara Joy

Samara Joy.jpg
Courtesy of the artist
Vocalist Samara Joy

Samara Joy visits Seattle this month, performing with the Pasquale Grasso Trio. A second show has been added to her scheduled appearance at Jazz Alley on June 27.

Before releasing her self-titled debut album in 2021, the young jazz vocalist from New York was named an Ella Fitzgerald Scholar and won the 2019 Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition.

Since graduating from SUNY Purchase's jazz studies program, Joy has entered the "bigger classroom" performing and touring.

KNKX Jazz Reporter Robin Lloyd spoke with Joy about being inspired by her family, her teachers and mentors— including the legendary jazz educator Barry Harris; learning even more on the bandstand, and her hopes for the future.

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  • Recorded while she was still in college, the young vocalist's first album was "more than just an imposing debut," according to jazz critic Kevin Whitehead. "The album Samara Joy is a public service announcement for jazz education."