Alicia Olatuja

DEC. 4-8

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Exclusively Sponsored by Garden View Care Centers

Praised by the New York Times as “a singer with a strong and luscious tone and an amiably regal presence on stage”, Alicia Olatuja has been astounding audiences with her exquisite vocals, artistic versatility and captivating demeanor. She first came into the national spotlight in 2013, whilst performing as the featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at President Barack Obama’s Second Inauguration. Shortly thereafter, she assembled her own jazz based ensemble and recorded her first solo album, Timeless (2014). 

Now focusing on the rich contributions of a diverse selection of female composers, Alicia is set to release her sophomore album, Intuition: From the Minds of Women in 2019 on the Resilience Music Alliance label.  The album celebrates the achievements of a long list of esteemed female composers while offering a musical perspective unique to Olatuja. She is joined by Kamau Kenyatta and Ulysses Owens Jr. as producers and the material includes songs of Brenda Russell, Sade, Tracy Chapman, Kate Bush, Angela Bofill and Linda Creed. 

Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Alicia grew up immersed in a wide range of musical styles, including gospel, soul, jazz and classical. These influences have informed her artistic journey and she later graduated with a Masters degree in Classical Voice/Opera from the Manhattan School of Music. After appearing in numerous operatic and musical theater productions she started to perform more regularly in gospel and jazz concerts and worked with such esteemed artists as Chaka Khan, BeBe Winans and Christian McBride.

In 2014, Alicia came to the attention of the acclaimed composer/arranger/pianist Billy Childs, and was brought on to be part of the touring incarnation of “Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro” alongside vocalist Becca Stevens. Her voice has also entranced the legendary Hammond B3 organist Dr. Lonnie Smith, who has invited her to join his band on multiple concerts, including the Charlie Parker Festival, the BRIC JazzFest, Montreal Jazz Festival and others.  Additionally, Alicia is one of three featured vocalists on the Jazz at Lincoln Center commissioned project Songs of Freedom, joining Theo Bleckmann and Dee Bridgwater with music director Ulysses Owens Jr. in exploring the works of Joni Mitchell, Nina Simone, and Abbey Lincoln.  The project continues to tour with Alicia and Theo Bleckmann with René Marie and Joanna Majoko alternating the third vocal chair.

Alicia’s own band has been steadily and increasingly in demand. They have performed at the Newport Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Jazz at Lincoln Center,  the Jazz Standard, Vermont Jazz Center, SFJAZZ Center, Rockport Jazz Festival, Markham Jazz Festival, Monty Alexander Jazz Fest, Montreal Jazz Festival and the Harlem Stage Gatehouse, to name a few.


""[a] singer with a strong, lustrous tone and an amiably regal presence onstage.""

"“Brooklyn gives birth to new musical star, singer Alicia Olatuja.""

""Brooklyn-based vocalist Alicia Olatuja tells stories about life and time through her music. In fact her album, Timeless, is her way of expressing how the concept of time impacts us all.""

Upcoming Shows

AUG. 16-17
Funky Butt Brass Band
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It’s impossible not to have a good time when you’re in the presence of the Funky Butt Brass Band. This musical juggernaut brings funk, soul, rhythm & blues, rock, pop, jazz, and anything else they might find under the kitchen sink together to give audiences a truly memorable experience each time they step on stage. Inspired by the brass band tradition of New Orleans, Funky Butt puts their own St. Louis stamp on everything they do…and we wouldn’t have them do it any other way!

“How did St. Louis exist so long without a true, bonafide New Orleans-style brass band? Since Funky Butt Brass Band came on the scene, it’s been impossible to miss the six-headed beast. At parades, at barbecues, at community radio festivals and especially at a certain oyster bar on Broadway, Funky Butt is a steady-gigging presence that references its Crescent City inspiration, but infuses plenty of 314-specific funkiness as well. Credit the oft-theatrical vocalizations of members Tim Halpin, Adam Hucke and Aaron Chandler for the band’s never-the-same-set-twice bravado, but recognize that “brass” is in the band name for a reason: These cats can blow.”

– The Riverfront Times

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SEP. 15
Brunch & Brass
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The Young Friends of Jazz St. Louis host the third Brunch & Brass, this year featuring the Funky Butt Brass Band with performances from JazzU students. FBBB has been voted Best Funk/Soul Band at the Riverfront Times Music Awards for four of the past five years, and their Jazz St. Louis shows have become legendary. They put their own twist on the New Orleans brass band tradition and will certainly get you out of your seat!

Adult tickets: $35. Includes admittance, brunch buffet and two drink tickets. Children 2-12 are $10; children under 2 are free. Bring your whole family!

Sponsored by: STINSON

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SEP. 18-19
Cyrille Aimee
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Improvisation is not just a technique for Cyrille Aimée, it’s a way of life. The acclaimed vocalist ventured from singing on street corners in Europe to dazzling audiences at the world’s most prestigious
jazz festivals; from sneaking out to sing in gypsy encampments in her native France to acting on Broadway; from braving the notoriously tough audiences at New York’s Apollo Theatre to being called a “rising star” York Times.

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SEP. 25-29
Joshua Redman

MISSION

Jazz St. Louis is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to lead our community in advancing the uniquely American art of jazz through live performance, education and community engagement.

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