Debbie Gifford Quartet
Debbie Gifford returns to BOP STOP with her all-star quartet featuring:
Debbie Gifford – vocals
Jonathan Hooper – piano
Bill Nichols – bass
Ricky Exton – drums
What does Opera & Jazz have in common? The answer is DEBBIE GIFFORD. Most people find this marriage of Opera & Jazz unconventional but Cleveland native Debbie Gifford has created a style unlike any singer before her – a match made in heaven. She captivates audiences around the world with her innovative vocal abilities and irresistible charm! Her performance repertoire includes Jazz Standards, Blues, Latin, Pop & Swing! Earning a Master’s Degree in Opera Performance and embracing a passion for Jazz – Debbie has united these two musical genres to create a sound that is exclusive to her alone – soulful, sophisticated, and passionate. Discography includes: “You Taught My Heart to Sing”, “So Many Songs About Love”, Double Live CD set “Open Airs, “One Day At A Time” and “Changes”. Internationally Renowned Jazz Recording Artist, Debbie Gifford , performs in the USA, Canada, Austria, Germany, France, Italy, & China.
“Gifford’s voice is both smooth and engulfing, wrapping itself around every note and mesmerizing the listener with subtle charm.” -Mike Young, 91.5 FM “Sweet Swing Jazz”
Jonathan Hooper: Growing up in Cleveland, Ohio, Jonathan studied classical piano and vocal performance before beginning to explore jazz. While majoring in graphic design at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida, Jonathan regularly performed at a piano bar and continued to develop his fluency in jazz piano technique. After graduating and returning to Ohio, he studied via webcam for two years with Dave Frank of the Dave Frank School of Jazz in New York City. Jonathan is currently a regular pianist at Valenti’s Italian Ristorante in Broadview Heights and Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse in Beachwood. In addition to restaurants and frequent private events, Jonathan can be heard performing at Northeast Ohio’s jazz venues with a variety of local big bands and ensembles, including Ricky Exton’s Octo-Jazz, Mark Russo’s Jazz Initiative, and Gabriel’s Horns.
Bill Nichols: Bill Nichols, who performs on double bass a product of the Tri-C jazz studies program in 1997. Then completing his studies at Bowling Green State University. Bill has shared the stage with notable musicians including Joe Lovano, Benny Golson, Stanley Cowell and Dan Wall.
Ricky Exton: Drummer, recording artist, composer, arranger and producer, has been active in the music community for over two decades. At an early age, Ricky’s talents emerged as one of the Cleveland Tri C All Stars. He continued his career in music at Berklee College of Music in Boston, and earned a Baccalaureate in Professional Music. His performance venues include: jazz festivals, concerts, and television appearances, private and corporate events. He has performed with many great musicians including: Lou Rawls, Wynton Marsalis, Rufus Reid, Terence Blanchard and many more.
Youtube Promo Video: https://youtu.be/u1AkJ_7Ofk8