The Gold Coast Jazz Society presents the Allan Harris Quintet in a celebration of the music of the late jazz composer and arranger, Billy Strayhorn. Strayhorn was renowned for his collaboration with jazz legend, Duke Ellington and Ellington’s band. One of the most famous of Strayhorn’s song “Take the A Train” became the band’s theme song and his association with the Ellington Band lasted nearly three decades.
Allan Harris is a world-class singer, guitarist and songwriter. He is unquestionably one of the most versatile talents in contemporary jazz and blues music. Perhaps best known for his interpretations of jazz standards, Allan’s smooth vocals and guitar-styling easily cross genres, from jazz to rock to blues. “Harris is a velvet-voiced jazz singer, with a savvy manner and music in his veins,” said Variety. Very few vocalists in the industry have his charismatic combination of soulful yet elegant phrasing, exciting musicianship, and dynamic stage presence.
Tony Bennett has called Allan “my favorite singer” and Stephen Holden of the New York Times raves about “the protean talent that is Allan Harris.” Allan has cultivated a global following, playing for packed audiences and receiving outstanding reviews throughout the United States, Europe, Russia and the Far East. A three-time winner of the New York Nightlife Award for “Outstanding Jazz Vocalist,” Allan is regularly featured at the world’s great music festivals. The Miami Herald wrote that Harris’ voice and demeanor “project the warmth of Tony Bennett, the bite and rhythmic sense of Sinatra, and the sly elegance of Nat ‘King’ Cole.” Harris has paid tribute to Nat ‘King’ Cole at the Kennedy Center where he recorded, Long Live the King (Love Productions Records, 2007). Harris currently tours around the world.