“Karla tends to take the stage by storm
doesn't let go till it's all over.”
Steve Kullowatz, Jazz Society of Oregon
“… a powerful singer at ease in any setting.”
Ross Gentile, “Standards in Jazz,”
"Karla Harris engages the audience and makes us
happy to be sharing the evening with her."
Welcome to vocalist Karla Harris’ home on the Web!
Thanks for stopping by.
News, Updates, and Performances...
Some great events in April!
April 15, I'm fortunate to be guesting with the Joe Gransden Big Band, a best-of-Atlanta favorite that brings down every house! The band (who will be at the Blue Note In NYC July 8!) performs regularly at the legendary Cafe 290 in Atlanta, www.cafe290atlanta.com, and that's where I'll be. Music starts at 8:30 p.m.. Excited to be performing original big band arrangements written just for me by the great Ted Howe and Wes Funderburke, from No Moon at All by Mann to Yesterday by McCartney, and more. And I'll enjoy listening to this great band when not on the stand. Please join me for this special evening.
April 26-27 I'll be at the venerable Churchill Grounds jazz club in Atlanta's mid-town. This jazz listening room is an ATL institution, and I'm there with the Chris Burroughs trio, including Tyrone Jackson on piano and Chris Riggenbach on bass both nights. Grammy-winning saxophonist Mace Hibbard will join us Friday night. Shows at 9:30 and 11 p.m. Come out and be a part of the late-night crowd with us!
Hope to see you soon!
All Good Wishes,
My good friend Mark Simon is fighting liver disease and needs Help. Please visit this link to find out how you could assist -- and please pass it along. Thank you!
Jazz Pianist Needs Liver Transplant
Visit the calendar link above to see all the details on scheduled performances and more. Please drop an email at the Contact Link above if you'd like to be on Karla's mailing list.
As always, thank you for your warm support of live music, wherever it's made.
Music is what feelings sound like.
* * * * * * * *
"My Own Little Corner" ... a place for the love of words
(New entry posted Feb. 3, 2013)
That which seems most feeble and bewildered in you is the strongest and most determined.
Is it not your breath that has erected and hardened the structure of your bones?
And is it not a dream which none of you remember having dreamt, that builded your city and fashioned all there is in it?
Could you but see the tides of that breath you would cease to see all else,
And if you could hear the whispering of the dream you would hear no other sound.
Gather out of
and splinters of hail,
One handful of
not for sale.
- by Langston Hughes
I would always choose to be the person running
rather than the mob chasing
I would prefer to be the person laughed at
rather than the teenagers laughing
I always admired the men and women who sat down
for their rights
And held in disdain the men and women who spat
Everyone deserves Sanctuary a place to go where you are
Art offers Sanctuary to everyone willing
to open their hearts as well as their eyes
-by Nikki Giovanni
Patience is wider
than one once envisioned,
with ribbons of rivers
and distant ranges
undertaken and finished
in their native dress.
Who would have guessed it possible
that waiting is sustainable—
a place with its own harvests.
the diamonds of patience
couldn't be distinguished
from the genuine
-by Kay Ryan
Past News of Note:
FRI., FEB. 22, we'll have an evening at Wilf's Union Station, where I'll be accompanied by the wonderful Mike Horsfall trio. I'm already preparing the favorites and requests, and I look forward to seeing many friends, old and new, there!
The following night, SAT., FEB. 23, I'll be returning to the microphone with the Bobby Torres Ensemble, an 11-piece latin jazz band I love making music with. Acclaimed latin percussionist Bobby toured for years with Joe Cocker and Tom Jones, and if you've never seen his group, I hope to see you there Feb. 23 at Jimmy Mak's Jazz Club for a high-energy evening.
I'm so happy to be a part of the Portland Jazz Festival this year as a musician and a listener. ....
MARCH 1 AND 2, I'll be at The Velvet Note in NW Atlanta to open for NYC-based jazz vocalist KATE MCGARRY, a 2009 Grammy Nominee and a terrifically talented, creative singer I've admired for years. She's been featured on Marion McPartland's Piano Jazz and Jazz Set with Dee Dee Bridgewater and has been named a DownBeat mag Rising Star jazz vocalist the past four years. You will love her music. Very honored to be opening for Kate's EARLY SET each night at the Note and hope you'll be there!
Websites, times, other info on these events can be found on my calendar link.
The Dec. 1 shows at the Velvet Note in Atlanta were memorable! Both shows sold out in advance and the crowd was fabulous, as was the band I was with, a trio of Atlanta's finest, including endlessly inventive pianist Kevin Bales; first-call bassist Craig Shaw; one of the busiest drummers in Atlanta, Justin Varnes; and wonderful Kenyon Carter on saxophone. Many thanks to all who were there, sharing in the energy!
What wonderful nights at the Heathman, Arrivederci's, Jimmy Mak's and Tony Starlight's this past month with my Portland friends! To each of you who were there, THANK YOU for your presence and good wishes and precious mementos you have given me to remember it all by. I have been overwhelmed and am very grateful.
From the bottom of this singer's heart flows a melody of gratitude. Thank you for this wonderful experience. You are special, and I will miss you.
In the News... A nice Christmas gift arrived in the form of a December Musician of the Month feature for Karla in Clubscene, the jazz magazine of Oregon published by the Jazz Society of Oregon. Thanks to writer Rita Rega and editor Lynn Daroch for the feature!
Read the article online at
JSO December 2011 Musician of the Month
December: Karla will be performing in two special holiday concerts with the Big Horn Brass Band (www.bighornbrass.org). Thirteen brass instruments and two percussionists make for one incredible sound to ring in the holidays with spirit. Please see the calendar link above for details on these concerts, happening Dec. 11 and Dec. 17.
November: The Wine, Woman & Song show at Willamette Valley Vineyards Nov. 19.
Karla's special show that pairs music and wine enjoyed two sold-out nights in Newport last July and now makes its winery debut at Oregon's premier vintner, Willamette Valley Vineyards, known for its award-winning wines. Evening features a wine, music and food pairing and is a fun, unique experience for all wine lovers AND the wine curious!
October: Pick up a copy of the October Positively Entertainment newspaper or check it out online -- Karla is featured on the cover.
August, I'm happy to be guest vocalist with Oregon Jazz Hall of Fame group Tall Jazz at the annual Jazz & Oysters Festival in Oysterville, Washington. Looking forward to joining this well-loved, highly esteemed group at this event. More details can be found on the August calendar.
July: Wine, Woman & Song show sells out two nights at Ch'Boogie Jazz Club in Newport, OR.
Oct., Many thanks to jazz vocalist and new radio host Rebecca Kilgore and radio host Val Adell for playing from the Karla Harris-Tom Kennedy CD, "Twice As Nice," on their shows on KMHD, 89.1. Val hosts The Bridge on Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Rebecca's new show, The Singer's Voice, showcases jazz vocalists from all eras every Saturday, 1-3 p.m. Great hosts, great shows to enjoy ... I have such respect for Rebecca's talent and achievements as a singer -- am so appreciative of her airplay!
Aug. 8, The Bite of Oregon Festival, Portland, with Mike Horsfall, Todd Strait, Dave Captein
July 17, Cathedral Park Jazz Festival in Portland with the Bobby Torres Latin Jazz ensemble and special guest, Grammy-Winning percussionist Luis Conte
May 28, SRO for Harris, Horsfall, Strait, Captein at Arrivederci's Wine Bar
May 8, Silverton Wine and Jazz Festival with Bobby Torres Ensemble
April 9, interview and live performance on Lynn Darroch's radio show celebrating Betty Carter
Feb. 13, concert with Bobby Torres Ensemble featuring Grammy-winning percussionist Luis Conte
We've brushed up the site and have added a new page ... see the "SHOWS" link above.
Plus, a new mp3 on the "LISTEN" link. So many people commented that they loved this song from Karla's recent live performance on KMHD ... We've posted it. Thank you for letting us know you liked what you heard. Go to the Listen page and click on "You Better Go Now."
June 6: Karla at the new "'Round Midnight" series created by David Ornette Cherry. Performing with the Bobby Torres Ensemble, 11:30 p.m. - 1:30 a.m. at the Curious Comedy Theatre in Portland. For the night owl in you ... www.roundmidnightpdx.xom
May 30: Tune into KMHD 89.1 for Homegrown Live with host Mary Burlingame at 2 p.m., Pacific Daylight Time. Karla is the featured performer and will be making music with the JumpTown Quartet, including bassist Tim Gilson, guitarist Eli Reisman, pianist Mark Simon and drummer Larry Bard, for the full hour.
"Wine, Woman and Song," debuting May 19 at Tony Starlight's Supper Club and Lounge. ..... Karla, with the help of Tony's supreme Chef and Sommelier Tom J. Fields, has created a unique wine-food-music 'tasting' with songs specifically chosen to enhance the flavor of each wine variety you'll taste. This show is based on research done by major vintners Karla read about after wondering if music could be paired with wine in the same way food is -- to bring out the full "flavors" in each.
Karla is accompanied this night by the JumpTown Quartet, featuring musicians as fine as the wine -- guitarist Eli Reisman, pianist Mark Simon, bassist Tim Gilson and drummer Randy Rollofson, who are going to play everything from Monk to Mozart to test these theories.
Saturday, April 25 -- SIREN NATION'S annual BILLIE HOLIDAY TRIBUTE, at the new Mississippi Studios. Karla joins a fine group of singers, each presenting three of their favorite songs from Lady Day. sirennationcom. Check out the calendar for more info to come.
What a special July, and more in August and September...
We had an excellent time performing at the 28th annual Cathedral Park Jazz Festival in Portland July 20. It was great to share the stage with my Twice As Nice recording partner and extraordinary bassist Tom Kennedy, plus outstanding drummer Todd Strait and the endlessly inventive pianist Randy Porter who played their hearts out for our show. Thanks to everyone who let us know they enjoyed the Music at the park or via the KMHD 89.1 simulcast, and to all who purchased Twice As Nice CDs. Hats off and thanks also to event director Joe Beeler and all of the organizers and volunteers. It was a great day!
Tom Kennedy and I are taking the show to the East Coast over Labor Day Weekend. We'll be opening the Nantucket Island Arts Festival, joined by great musicians out of NYC. Looking forward to meeting everyone there!
SEPTEMBER 6 -- I'll be on the beautiful Portland South Waterfront with the Bobby Torres ensemble at the Portland RiverFest. Latin jazz at its best and a great family event. Please check the calendar link above for details.
SEPTEMBER 7 -- I'm traveling to the coast for the Newport Jazz Festival. I'll be singing some tunes at the festival's Finale event -- the local All-Star Jam Performance, 1-2 p.m. This group features players from Newport joined by headliners who are in for town to perform at the festival. Looking forward to being a part of the party!