The vocal tradition in the jazz began with the singers of blues, a style of which he was maximum exponent Ray Charles but which it had between its most remote representatives known to “Blind” Lemon Jefferson and Huddie Ledbetter, a convict of Louisiana more known like “Leadbelly”. Robert Johnson, Big Bill Broonzy and It Is House they stood out in Chicago – the world capital of the blues – in spite of its southern origins, as Muddy Waters, Little Brother Montgomery, St. Louis Jimmy Oden, Sunnyland Slim, Sonny Boy Williamson, Little Walter, Memphis Slim, Howlin’ Wolf, Lightnin’ Hopkins or John Lee Hooker, almost all out-standing guitarists. J. E. Berendt distinguishes two mainstreams between the singers of blues, the “current of the Mississippi”, rougher and dirty, and the “current of Texas”, which gave place to more sophisticated mergers, like the jazz blues and the swing blues.
From the decade of they arose you appear as Junior Wells, Buddy Guy, Albert King, Albert Collins, Otis Rush and Taj Mahal, these two last ones with a big acceptance in the world of the rock. Finally, it is necessary to point out the desire of B. B. King – one of the most out-standing artists of the genre – of achieving that them negros:
Stop being ashamed of the blues, its most original music
Between the first singers of blues who began to incline for the sounds of the jazz it is necessary to emphasize Jimmy Rushing, the first one who began to sing displacing the rhythmic accent to create this way the proper tensions of the jazz. Rushing was continued by Jimmy Witherspoon, by Big Miller and by Joe Williams, of the band of Count Basie. Big Joe Turner, stood out in the boogie-woogie, like Champion Jack Dupree and Fats Domino. Leon Thomas was finding a step further away, combining the roots of the blues with the jazz of avant-garde and the folkloric music africana.
Louis Armstrong represented a line different from that of the musicians of the blues, exemplifying the influence that the instrumentalists were exercising on the jazz vocalists. In this line there were located also Hots Lips Page, Jack Teagarden, Grady Tate, Richard Boone, George Benson, George Adams, Chet Baker or Clark Terry, while Bing Crosby, Frankie Laine, Perry Como, Matt Dennis or Mel Torme are supported in a tradition more removed from the influence of the instrumentalists and simultaneously more commercial. Nat King Cole was a big singer and jazz pianist before directing its career to more commercial sectors, and its influence has allowed to feel in figures as important as Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder, while Billy Eckstine, a musician of the circle of Dizzy Gillespie y Charlie Parker, gave beginning to the movement bebop in the voice, which took other notable representatives as Babs Gonzales, Earl Coleman, Kenneth “Hot-dog” Hagood and Joe “Bebop” Carroll, in addition to the proper Gillispie. Jackie Paris took the contributions of the singers bop to the area of the cool, while others like Oscar Brown Jr. , Johnny Hartman, Bill Henderson, Mark Murphy or Mose Allison kept on exploring new territorios.
The singer and lyricist of jazz John Hendricks.
From the ambience of the bop there arose the vocalese, the art of putting letter an alone outstanding figures recorded by musical acquaintances of jazz. Eddie Jefferson was the first artist in cultivating the skill, continued by King Pleasure and Annie Ross, but it was Jon Hendricks who took it to its summit, so much in its career alone as in the bosom of the group Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, along with Annie Ross and Dave Lambert. In the most melodic and traditional area there stood out Bob Dorough, Joe Lee Wilson, Gil Scott-Heron, Lou Rawls, Ben Sidran and Tony Middleton, in addition to successful Frank Sinatra, that it recorded with musicians like Count Basie or Tom Jobim, although a part of the criticism considers him out of the ambience of the jazz.
The musician of Brazil exercised a notable influence between the jazz musicians, and some of its most out-standing interpreters were Antonio Carlos Jobim, Joao Gilberto, Edu Lobo, Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso and Milton Nascimento. It divided the Jarreau of very heterogeneous influences to prepare a very personal style characterized by the use of the voice as an instrument and for the enormous deployment of stamps and sounds – flutes, trumpets, percussions, congas, double basses. . . -that was capable of executing with its gullet. In the tradition of the soul and of pop there stood out James Brown, Otis Redding, Elrid Cleaver, Rap Brown, Marvin Gaye and, especially, Stevie Wonder, who in albumes like Songs in the Key of Life and Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants, it composed real suites provided with a big internal coherence, who were summing up the tradition of the black music, as in due time Duke Ellington did. Wonder is not an only one singer, he is also a composer and arreglista, he touches almost all the instruments that can be heard on its discs and also it dominates the skills of musical production, being one of the first artists capable of using the study as if it was an instrument more
Singer Bobby McFerrin.
Between the singers of more recent generations it is necessary to emphasize the virtuoso Bobby McFerrin, one of the most personal and original vocalists of the contemporary scene; to Kurt Elling, who influenced by Mark Murphy, defies any categorization; Kevin Mahogany, a young singer of swing influencido for Joe Williams; and even more young Harry Connick, Jr. and Michael Buble influenced by Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra.