B i o g r a p h y
Jazz vocalist and recording artist Vivian Lee is truly a child of the world having grown up in a military family, then pursuing a twenty year military career herself. She specializes in the standards – Gershwin, Ellington, Berlin, Mercer, Jobim, and the like, with a little Brubeck, Gillespie and Monk thrown in. Her main venues have been the cabaret/supper clubs and nightclubs such as 7-Mile House in San Francisco, Mondavi Center, Tsakopoulos Galleria,and Three Stages Theater in Folsom and Sacramento Jazz Cooperative She was also a mainstay at the Sacramento Music Festival.
Ms Lee has played with such notable musicians as bassists Bill Douglass and Buca Necak, drummers Ed Thigpen and Eddie Marshall, pianists Joe Gilman and Emmett Cohen, trumpeters Al Molina and Dave Bengdekeit, and alto saxophonist Jeff Clayton. She has assembled a top notch ensemble of players from the area. Her current band consists of Joe Gilman or Brenden Lowe on piano, Buca Necak on bass and Jeff Minnieweather on drums. Together with her unique style, phrasing and magical stage presence, they have been captivating audiences from Lake Tahoe to the Bay area. Known for her story-telling and banter with the audience she will pull you into the world that she creates on stage.
As a recording artist she has released five CDs - her 2000 debut CD, “Scarlett”, 2002 release, “Where is Love”, and 2004“Have You Met Miss Lee?” From Miss Lee To You in March 2013 now her fifth and current release 2018 - Let's Talk About Love, which is now on a major radio and press release campaign playing in 230 markets around the world and spent 9 weeks on the top 100 on the jazz week charts, reaching #61, with continuous play around the world for 21 weeks. Let's Talk About Love was listed in the top ten jazz CDs for 2018 at WCOM Chapel Hill by DJ Larry Thomas and as one of the top ten International Jazz vocalists for station CJUM in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada by DJ Ray Alexander.
The 2007 SAMMIE (Sacramento area music awards) award winning Miss Lee is also an active promoter of jazz in the Sacramento area with her twice yearly series - Jazz at the Buddhist Church, an album themed series presenting some of the most iconic jazz albums performed by the areas top musicians in a concert setting.
Ms Lee has three times (2005, 2006, 2007) been voted one of Sacramento’s top jazz groups and top local entertainer by subscribers in Sacramento Magazine’s annual “Best Of Sacramento issue and is the 2009 Sacramento Magazine editor’s pick as “Best Jazz Diva”. In 2014 the Black Music Association of America Sacramento Chapter inducted Ms Lee into the Hall of Fame as a Music Icon and also selected her as Jazz Vocalist of the Year for 2014.