Dec 01, 2013 - Award-Winning Vocalist Angie Cockrell Headlines December 8 Jazz Depot Show
Although she’s been a shining star on the Jazz Depot’s roster of performers for several years now, singer Angie Cockrell is just as well known in gospel and contemporary-Christian music circles. In fact, Urban Tulsa Weekly recently named her Christian Artist of the Year.
And because she began her career singing in churches and related venues, she’s never suffered from the anxiety that a listening room like the Jazz Depot can bring to acts who’ve come up through the club scene and are therefore not used to having an audience’s rapt attention throughout an entire set.
“A lot of my beginnings were in a performance-style situation, mainly in churches, where all eyes were on me,” she says. “So this type of setting is not uncomfortable for me. Also, through my years of being involved with the Jazz Hall, not only singing but volunteering – I try to volunteer there quite often – I’ve gotten to know the people. I just kind of feel like it’s home, and that makes it easy.”
It was her friendship and connection with the powerhouse singer and Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame Inductee Ernestine Dillard, also known for her work in gospel and contemporary Christian music, which got Cockrell her entrée to the Jazz Depot stage.
“Ernestine and I have known one another for years, and we’ve done many shows together,” she explains. “She invited me to sing there at a show she was doing, and I came in and sang `At Last.’”
Since then, Cockrell has not only appeared in a number of large-cast concerts at the Depot; she’s also headlined her own. Along the way, she’s become known for her versions of several standards, including the abovementioned “At Last,” a major hit for blues singer Etta James in the early ‘60s.
“That’s a staple song for me; I do it almost everywhere I go,” says Cockrell. “People know me for that song, and for `Summertime,’ and Patsy Cline’s `Crazy.’ Those are some of my staple songs, so of course I’ll be doing those in the show.”
“Angie’s a great performer,” said Jason McIntosh, Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame CEO. “Like so many of us, Angie’s first experience with music was through her church, and that musical background allows her to connect with a crowd.”
She’s dubbed her upcoming concert Angie Cockrell Sings to You. In it, she’ll be accompanied by Jeff Shadley on piano, Myron Oliver on saxophone, Jordan Hehl on bass, and John Dellavedova on drums.
The show, she says, will present some numbers that are frequently requested during her appearances, both at the Jazz Depot and elsewhere.
“I tried to choose songs that were my favorites and other people’s favorites,” she notes. “At the Jazz Hall, I’ve had one man come up to me every time I’ve sung `What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life’ and tell me that it was a favorite for him and his wife. And his wife is now deceased. That song has been a favorite of mine since I was a teenager, so to get to do it there [at the Jazz Depot], and to have someone to come up and tell me that, it just means so much to me. So I’m looking forward to doing that song.”
For her Sunday playlist, she adds, “I’m mixing things up a little bit. I’m not only going to be doing jazz. I’m also going to be adding in a little country, a little soft rock, a little blues, a little gospel. Even a little Christmas.”
All of it, however, no matter what the genre, will have one thing in common.
“I sing from the heart,” she says. “When I sing gospel music, Christian music, that’s just my heart coming out. And when I sing jazz, it’s kind of the same way. I sing a lot of ballads, and jazz is so rich with history and the stories that it tells. So when I sing jazz, I get that same feeling, and I’m just enriched by that.’
Angie Cockrell Sings to You is set to begin at 5:00p.m. Sunday, December 8, at the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, located in downtown Tulsa’s Jazz Depot, 111 E. First Street. Tickets can be purchased at the depot, from www.myticketoffice.com, or by calling Bettie Downing at 918-281-8609. General admission is $15, reserved table seating $20. Seniors and Jazz Hall members are admitted for $10, and high school and junior high students for $5.
The show is a part of the Jazz Hall’s 2013-14 Winter Concert Series.
The Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame is a 501(c)(3) non-profit cultural and educational organization, with a mission to inspire creativity and improve the quality of life for all Oklahomans through the preservation, education, and performance of jazz, our uniquely American art form.
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