Rising star singer/songwriter Kellylee Evans is a chameleon-like performer, whose natural charm and improvisational jazz vocal style have shined on her adventurous journey through jazz, soul, pop and hip-hop over the past decade. With a thriving career in her native Canada and a growing legion of fans globally, Ms. Evans will perform at Saratoga Performing Arts Center on Sunday, June 28, 2015, during the 38th annual Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival.
In the last decade, Ms. Evans has released two indie solo albums of original songs in Canada, earning two Juno Award nominations (winning "Best Jazz Vocal Album" for Nina, her impassioned tribute to Nina Simone). She has captivated adoring French and Canadian fan bases and performed around the world, opening for such stars as John Legend, Dianne Reeves, Derek Trucks, George Benson and Willie Nelson. Her U.S. debut I Remember When, released on Motéma Music July 22, 2014, brilliantly refreshes and puts her stamp on songs by hip-hop royalty Eminem, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dog, Kanye West and others.
A mother of three, Ms. Evans went straight from singing in the shower to performing live at the Kennedy Center, where she came in 2nd place in the 2004 Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition judged by Quincy Jones, Al Jarreau, and Flora Purim. She threw herself into her dream of singing after enduring the death of her mother and never looked back. Her unfettered determination enabled her to overcome being struck by lightning in 2013 at her home in Canada; though suffering much pain and unable to walk at first, Ms. Evans didn't cancel a single date. She chose rather to be helped on stage, where she performed exceptionally well while seated throughout her summer touring schedule.
Ms. Evans set her sights on launching her career in America when she began singing, and is poised to realize that dream with I Remember When, a signature album that showcases an emerging artist and songwriter with a truly original voice. Dynamic, hip and modern, her warm, soulful timbre recalls fellow true originals of her generation such as Amy Winehouse and Erykah Badu. The album captures her phenomenal voice, her effervescence, and the electrifying convergence of musical styles from her generation and before with an arresting combination of jazz, soul, pop and hip-hop grooves that feel simultaneously fresh and retro.