Freddy Cole, the legacy of his brother Nat “King” Cole, will stir up memories that will never be forgotten. Now in his 55th year of performing, this great singer and pianist has developed a huge following of his own. The instantly recognizable Cole voice and a veteran quartet, play the classics as well as new compositions and interpretations from a huge repertoire.
Lionel Frederick Cole was born on October 15, 1931, the youngest of Edward and Paulina Nancy Cole’s five children. His three elder brothers, Eddie, Ike and Nat (12 years Freddy’s senior) were all musicians. “I started playing piano at five or six,” Freddy remembers. “Music was all around me.” In the Chicago home of his youth, visitors included Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Lionel Hampton.
Cole moved to New York in 1951, where he studied at the Juillard School of Music and found himself profoundly influenced by John Lewis, Oscar Peterson and Teddy Wilson. He received a master’s degree from the New England Conservatory of Music and then spent several months on the road as a member of an Earl Bostic band that also included Johnny Coles and Benny Golson.
“Gorgeous autumnal baritone, expressive phrasing and pitch-perfect feel for jazz standards, pop tunes and love ballads…”
- People Magazine
It was back in New York that Cole successfully laid the groundwork for a career that continues to flourish to this day. He developed a vast repertoire of songs in Manhattan bistros and concurrently began to supplement his live performances with television and radio commercial jingle work.
Cole doesn’t apologize for sounding like his brother, Nat “King” Cole. There are certain unmistakable similarities. He plays piano and sings, and performs live with guitar and upright bass, just like Nat. Yet his voice is raspier, smokier, jazzier even. But he has emerged from the awesome shadow cast by his elder brother. In truth, his phrasing is far closer to that of Frank Sinatra or Billie Holiday than that of his brother and his timing swings a little more. His vocals – suave, elegant, formidable and articulate – are among the most respected in jazz.
Catch Freddy & his band in their much-anticipated return to the Rubber City – get your tickets now while you still can!
|BLU Jazz+ was named one of the "Best Jazz Venues in the World" by DownBeat Magazine (2016, 2017)*|
|Committed to the preservation of America's treasured art form of jazz, BLU Jazz+ Masterclass Foundation (BJMF) is a new program developed by the founders of BLU Jazz+ Akron that brings “front-row” jazz education performance & mentorship opportunities to student musicians and art lovers alike through an ongoing series of special events throughout the year.|