Lauren Hooker helps to continue the tradition of great jazz singing. Awarded Honorable Mention as one of AllAboutJazz-New York's selected Best CDs in ’07 for her debut CD: “Right Where I Belong”, critics from across the nation and abroad have compared her sound to that of Dianne Reeves, Nancy Wilson, Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington, but with a style uniquely her own. Known throughout the NY metropolitan area as a vocalist, instrumentalist, composer, lyricist, educator, producer and storyteller, she performs regularly as a pianist/vocalist, as well as a stand up vocalist with some of the best musicians in the business. As Christopher Loudon from JAZZ TIMES says... undeniably impressive… certainly imaginative… can hold her own against pretty much any singer-songwriter in the business… ability to add lyrics to instrumental classics… is flat-out masterful… and George Harris, All About Jazz LA states… Here’s a vocalist that is going to knock you off your chair... hits a double off the wall. Her voice-rich, confident and assured - pitch perfect… her timing, sense of swing - absolutely impeccable, can take a lyric and mold it like clay… Of her next CD release due to come out on Miles High Records this fall, Rufus Reid writes in his liner notes: Lauren Hooker’s voice possesses a myriad of colors that successfully embrace this ambitious and eclectic program. Her voice is mature, rich, robust, and full of emotion that only experience can bring… a close-up view of Lauren’s broad musical scope and fine musicianship… a superb recording. Lauren has been featured in many venues in New York City including Enzo’s Jazz Room at the Jolly Madison Hotel, Smoke Jazz and Supper Club, The International Women in Jazz Festival, as well as in New Jersey at the Puffin Cultural Forum, Barron Art Center, Trumpets and The Summer Jazz Café Series at The Two Rivers Theater. She has performed and/or recorded with some of the best in the business including Mal Waldron, Rufus Reid, Allen Farnham, Vic Juris, Bucky Pizzarelli and Reggie Workman to name a few and has appeared on numerous radio and television stations, most recently in all five boroughs on BCAT filmed live at the "Brooklyn Sings, Brooklyn Swings Series". A former music teacher at the acclaimed Bank Street School in NYC, Lauren is dedicated to the education of young and old alike, conducting jazz vocal workshops, teacher training symposiums, group music classes as well as private piano lessons in her home studio in Teaneck. She also performs in schools, libraries, museums and festivals via her Arts in Education Company: Musical Legends – teaching cultures through the arts and arts through the cultures.
Lauren Hooker's jazz repertoire highlights her near three octave range and features original compositions as well as instrumental standards set to her own lyrics and arrangements, putting her in the company of some of the most talented musicians in the business.
"I was born into music ... hearing my dad jam with his fellow jazz musicians in the basement ... starting piano lessons at age four ... meeting Bill Evans at the Vanguard whom my father recorded with in college ... being exposed to and singing most of the major oratorios by age fifteen...shaking hands with Duke Ellington and Dave Brubeck whose sacred works my dad's chorus, the New Jersey Schola Cantorum, performed...reaching for Sarah Vaughan's range, Ella's scat, Miles Davis' tone and Coltrane's intention. I was not only encouraged, but expected to be a musician, and a well-rounded one at that ... one who could compose, play, sing, arrange and educate."
PERFORMED AND/OR RECORDED WITH:
John Bianculli, Ted Brancatto, Belden Bullock, Rahn Burton, Michael Cochrane, Roy Cumming, Loren Daniels, Glenn Davis, Santi Debriano, Dena DeRose, Bob Devos, John DiMartino, Leon Dorsey, Vince Ector, Allen Farnham, Mac Goldsberry, John Hart, Freddie Hendrix, Calvin Hill, Tim Horner, Chip Jackson, Vic Juris, Andy McCloud, Cecil McBee, Maryanne McSweeney, Paul Meyers, Allison Miller, Bill Moring, Steve Nelson, Tomoko Ohno, Rufus Reid, Mike Richmond, Jim Ridl, Scott Robinson, Bob Rodrigues, Warren Smith, Frederick Waites, Mal Waldron, Bobby Watson and Reggie Workman
BCAT filmed live at the "Brooklyn Sings, Brooklyn Swings Series".
“Broadway to Business”, Warner Brothers, RCN, NYC.
"The Enquiring Naturalist", Q.P.T.V., Queens, NY.
"For Arts Sake", C.T.N. Cable Television, East Brunswick, NJ.
"Life of the Music", Public Access TV, Channel 34, White Plains, NY.
“Neighborhood Journal”, Cablevision, NJ.
VOICE OVER CREDITS:
"The Beautiful", Marlies Yearby, Director, BRIC Studios, Brooklyn NY.
"Gemstone Geenies", Peter Pan Records, Hillside Sound Studios, Englewood, NJ.
"Professional Women in New Jersey"(Promotional Film) Tru Color Labs, Paramus, NJ.
"NASA", (Educational Program) Fox Studios, Rutherford, NJ.
Fairleigh Dickinson University, Bachelor of Arts: Music Education, (K-12).
Bank Street College, Masters course work.
Manhattan School of Music, Masters course work in conducting.
Bloomingdale House of Music, Orff Teacher Training.
Rutgers University: Jazz Theory with Kenny Barron
Paul Gallagher: Private Voice.
H B Studios, "Advanced Singing": George Axiltree.
Keith MacDonald: Piano (Jazz/Classical).
Manhattan School of Music: Jazz Workshop with Sheila Jordan.
Soprano, New Jersey Schola Cantorum, Louis Hooker - conductor.
Alto, Tenor, Ars Musica Chorale, Italo Marchini - conductor.
New York School for Commercial Music: Voice over workshop.
Omega Institute, Bobbie McFerrin: "Jazz Vocals", David Darling: "Improvisation", Ubaka Hill: “Drum Song” - African Drumming.
Artist Teacher Institute: Ron McBee, Music; Candance Hunkley-Kamate, Dance.
Scholarship Recipient, Arts Horizons, William Paterson University.