Imagine blending the best of the sounds of Julie London, Peggy Lee, Rosemary Clooney, and Norah Jones. That's how Jennifer Kirkland's voice has been described by one listener.
A graduate of the Indiana University School of Music, Jennifer has been performing professionally as a vocalist and keyboard player in a variety of settings and styles since the late 1970’s.
She began her professional career doing commercial background pop vocal recordings and voiceovers in Atlanta, Georgia. She then worked piano bars as a soloist and gigged with a jazz/pop trio in military clubs in Florida. Jennifer moved to Virginia in the 1980's and took some time away from music professionally. In the 1990's, she focused her performing as a classical recitalist in voice and organ. She also maintained a private voice studio, taught voice on the music faculties of Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Virginia, and Southern Virginia University in Buena Vista, Virginia, and did some choral conducting and vocal/choral workshops. Since 2002, Jennifer has turned her focus back to performing jazz, pop, and blues vocals. In 2004, she released her first jazz CD, "You Must Believe in Spring."
She performs frequently as a duo with talented guitarist Bert Carlson, and performs with many other small ensembles and larger combos, including big bands. Since 2003, she has performed at a variety of venues, including Blackfriars Playhouse, Carnegie Hall (West Virginia), The Greenbrier Valley Theatre, Theater at Lime Kiln, The Virginia Blues and Jazz Festival, Staunton's Jazz in the Park, The Greenbrier Resort, The Homestead, Keswick Hall, Hotel Roanoke, Wintergreen Resort, Washington and Lee University, Piedmont Virginia Community College Jazz Festival, Mountain Empire Community College, Blue Ridge Community College, First Night Harrisonburg, Court Square Theater, The Jordan House, Meriwether’s, Pompei Lounge, and many other private concerts and events. In March, 2006, she and "accompanist to the stars" Bob Alberti, renowned Hollywood and NBC TV music director, arranger, and pianist, performed in concert at The Jazz Corner, the Southeast's premier jazz club on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. She and Bert Carlson have had a successful weekly dinner and jazz event in Staunton since May 2004, first at Pompei Lounge, then at The Dining Room, and currently at Sorrel's lounge in The Stonewall Jackson Hotel in historic downtown Staunton (every Tuesday night).
Jennifer and Bert have been selected by the Virginia Commission for the Arts as among the Commonwealth's elite touring artists eligible for Commission funding to arts presenters for the 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2008-2009, 2010-2011, 2011-2012, and 2012-2013 seasons.
Jennifer and Bert released a second CD in March 2007.
"Alone Together" is now available at CDBaby.com.