Wesla Whitfield

Decades: 1990s 2000s


1947, California, USA. Whitfield first sang at the age of four as a member of a trio with her sisters, and three years later began studying the piano and, at 14, voice, studying both classical and bel canto methods. As an adult she sang professionally both in opera, as a member of the San Francisco Opera Chorus, and in church as both chorister and soloist. She was encouraged to turn to jazz by Mike Greensill, a highly gifted pianist and arranger, whom she later married. She developed an extensive repertoire, drawing from the great standards of pop and jazz, and attracted a great deal of attention in her home base of San Francisco. Although she has declared unequivocally that she does not consider herself a jazz singer, she is frequently close to the elusive boundaries between jazz and superior cabaret work. Her eclectic tastes are borne out by her influences, which include diverse singers such as Frankie Laine, Julie Andrews, Peggy Lee, Ray Charles and Rosemary...

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