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Jay Clayton

Jay Clayton

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About the Yardbird Suite

The Yardbird Suite has been Edmonton's jazz venue since 1957.  It is the performance venue of the Edmonton Jazz Society, and is  an intimate,…

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From New York and Edmonton


Jay Clayton – vocals
Andrew Glover – piano
Josh McHan – bass
Jamie Cooper – drums

Doors at 7:00 p.m.; Show at 8:00 p.m.
Tickets - $24.00 for EJS members; $28.00 for non-members/guests, plus applicable fees.


Jay Clayton is an internationally acclaimed vocalist, composer, and educator, whose work boldly spans the terrain between jazz and new music. Clayton’s pioneering vocal explorations placed her at the forefront of the free jazz movement and loft scene in the 1970s, where she counted among the first singers to incorporate poetry and electronics into her improvisations.

With more than forty recordings to her credit, Clayton has appeared alongside such formidable artists as Muhal Richard Abrams, Stanley Cowell, Lee Konitz, Steve Reich and Fred Hersch, as well as fellow vocalists Jeanne Lee, Norma Winstone, Urszula Dudziak, Bobby McFerrin and Sheila Jordan.

Taking her cue from the great saxophonist Eric Dolphy, who recognized the importance of playing with many different musicians, Clayton loves performing in a wide variety of settings. The dialogue created with her band mates provides an awesome source of inspiration.

Clayton’s need for experimentation has never kept her from singing the standards she grew up with and has always adored. Recent recordings on Sunnyside include familiar material giving her the opportunity to scat on occasion. She can extend original melody lines, the biggest reason for her becoming as important a jazz singer as any in modern times.

Jay Clayton is still probably the most adventurous singer in jazz, a specialist in wordless improvisation who is also an expert in distending and finding new meanings in the melodies and lyrics of classic popular song.

For her first visit to the Yardbird Suite since 2009, Jay Clayton will be accompanied by pianist Andrew Glover, bassist Josh McHan and drummer Jamie Cooper.

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