Joyce Cooling Biography

New Jersey, USA. Born and raised in a musical family, Cooling tried playing keyboards and percussion before deciding on the guitar. After moving to California, her musical understanding expanded and although largely self-taught as a guitarist, she was eager to pick up other skills, drawing notably from West African percussionist C.K. Ladzekpo and keyboard player Jay Wagner, a noted performer on San Francisco’s Brazilian music scene. Based in San Francisco, and developing a lasting partnership with Wagner, Cooling worked with visiting jazz artists, including Stan Getz and Airto Moreira, and also toured venues in the Pacific basin. She made her recording debut in 1989 with the independently released Cameo. Her 1997 set, Playing It Cool, made a great impact with lovers of smooth jazz, enjoying number 1 status on both the Radio & Records NAC and Gavin charts. A single from the album was an R&R NAC number 1, and the guitarist herself achieved personal acclaim and awards. Thus launched as a national name, Cooling toured extensively, attracting large audiences wherever she played. Her 1999 follow-up proved that she was not a one-hit-wonder when it too garnered awards and extensive airplay. A highly melodic player, as is evident from her success in the smooth jazz marketplace, Cooling also has a funkier side that should serve her well in the wider jazz world should she venture there. Certainly, her eclecticism, especially apparent from the touches of Brazilian music that decorate her playing, will stand her in good stead.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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