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Four Brothers: Celebrating The Jazz Singers Kurt Elling, Jon Hendricks, Mark Murphy, Kevin Mahogany

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Saturday, June 15, 2002
Park West, Chicago

In jazz, the female vocalist the improvising diva has always held the center spotlight, thanks to the magnetic virtuosity of such artists as Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, and Carmen McRae. Although they spanned two generations, their careers all overlapped in the 1950s, when they occasionally even appeared on the same festival stage.

Nothing like that has ever occurred among male jazz vocalists, however until now. But in bringing together his idols Jon Hendricks and Mark Murphy, and his contemporary Kevin Mahogany, the six-time Grammy nominee Kurt Elling has conceived an all-star concert to rival the “Three Tenors" of operatic fame. Not only is this the first meeting of these four singers (three of whom have also left their mark on jazz as ultra-hip lyricists); it is believed to be the first “vocal summit" of leading jazzmen ever. And it represents the first time any such all-star gathering has taken place since 1962, when Dave Brubeck gathered several reigning vocalists (including Louis Armstrong, Carmen McRae, and yes, the aforementioned Jon Hendricks) for his landmark album “The Real Ambassadors."

In this case, it

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