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Vocal Focal Ep 4: Singing the jazzy blues like Nancy Wilson

Alemay shares the style and impact of jazz songstress Nancy Wilson


Published: 3 Dec 2021

Time taken : ~10mins

Vocal Focal

Episode 4: Singing the jazzy blues like Nancy Wilson

Join jazz vocalist Alemay Fernandez, accompanied by pianist Chok Kerong, as she introduces her inspirational shero Nancy Wilson’s singing style and the impact Wilson has had on the jazz and music scene.

Vocal Focal is a four-part video series produced as part of Esplanade's Voices – A Festival of Song 2021, in support of Giving Week.

About Alemay Fernandez

"AMAZING." – David Foster

"She’s a beyond highly decorated doyenne with a globally renowned gift that continues to give, gloriously." – Bandwagon Asia

"....Sultry vibes and Amazonian vocals to match her towering stature...she unleashed a passion that can only be described as breathtaking" – Storm-asia.com

Hailed by MusicTalks Sydney as "one of the best jazz singers in the world", Singaporean vocalist Alemay Fernandez is a veteran performer in the Asian jazz scene. In her illustrious 20-year career, she has performed with David Foster, Gregory Porter, Incognito, Ray Parker Jr, Nat Adderley Jr, Ernie Watts, Randy Brecker, Antonio Hart, Jay Anderson, Lewis Nash, Janis Siegel, Lauren Kinhan, The Platters' Bobby Soul and opened for Laura Fygi & Benny Golson. She is the only Asian singer to have performed with three of the top jazz orchestras in the world—Wynton Marsalis & The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, The Count Basie Orchestra and The Duke Ellington Orchestra. She has also been the entertainment of choice for visiting A-list celebrities and world leaders including Kevin Spacey, Ethan Hawke, Lea Salonga, Paloma Picasso, Serena Williams and former U.S. President, Barack Obama.

During the pandemic, Fernandez managed to clinch a virtual international appearance in an off-Broadway musical showcase The Perfect Fit.

Fernandez is known for her sultry tone, powerhouse vocals and an onstage presence that keeps the audience eating out of the palm of her hand. She has toured internationally, headlining at notable jazz venues and festivals worldwide including the legendary Birdland Jazz Club in New York, an honour only a handful of Asian jazz artists have had.

Fernandez is in constant demand at home in Singapore and has performed with all manner of Singapore orchestras and bands including the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and the Jazz Association of Singapore Orchestras, with whom she is regularly featured.

She is especially grateful to get to perform with her mentors, Cultural Medallion winners, "Mad Chinaman" Dick Lee and Singapore's "King of Swing" Jeremy Monteiro, and is a familiar face in their shows and concerts both locally and internationally.

As an educator, she has worked with vocal students of all ages around the world, conducting vocal and performance workshops. Fernandez served as Artistic Director for the Jazz at the Red Dot Workshop series (2017 – 2019) and also hosted her own jazz radio hour on Symphony 92.4FM (2017 – 2018). She is currently vocal coach for the National University of Singapore Jazz Band and has been a vocal lecturer at LASALLE College Of The Arts Singapore since 2012.

Vocal Focal

A series of fun, bite-sized videos offering insights into different singing styles, presented by Voices – A Festival of Song 2021.

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