Jazz vocalist Terry Blaine was born in NYC, and has been singing virtually all of her life. Embracing both pop and classical styles, it was not until after she graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Buffalo with a BA in Music that she chose to trade in her flute for a microphone. As a singer and musician, she has enjoyed a multi-faceted career that includes live performances, recordings, studio work, television and radio shows, musical composition, songwriting and production. Her unique interpretations of classic jazz standards have brought her international attention and recognition as one of the most creative contemporary female jazz singers performing hot small-band swing material from the 1930s.
Forging a fresh link in the regal chain that recalls the tradition of Billie Holiday, Bessie Smith, Ethel Waters, and others, Terry’s style of singing is a gentle, swinging reminder of who we were and where we came from, instilled with a spirit that only genuine affection can inspire. Her collaboration with classic jazz pianist Mark Shane, which began with a three-and-a-half year duo engagement at Café Society in Greenwich Village, led to the CD “Whose Honey Are You,” a Jazz Journal International Record of the Year. With support from enthusiastic fans and radio stations all around the country, a pair of sold-out, breakthrough concerts launched the duo into the larger world of concert appearances and touring.
Several concert CDs followed, “Terry Blaine in Concert,” recorded in Cleveland, and “With Thee I Swing,” recorded in Germany for the Nagel-Heyer label. An accompanying live show and CD called “Too Hot for Words,” a tribute to the Great Ladies of Swing, was a smash, taking them to packed houses around the world. The CD “Lonesome Swallow,” returned Terry and Mark to their roots as a duo, and channeled the influence of the great Ethel Waters and James P. Johnson duo recordings from the late 1920s.
The “Swingin’ the Benny Goodman Songbook” CD featured Terry, Mark and acclaimed clarinetist Allan Vache barreling through a mix of Goodman classics, with a special nod to the many great ladies who sang with Benny’s band. The live show toured nationally and internationally in ensembles of all sizes (including, trio, quartet, septet, and Big Band), appearing at festivals, performing arts centers, and on the annual JazzFest at Sea cruises. Terry and Mark’s most recent CD, “My Blue Heaven”, features the duo’s swingin’ takes on standards and classic jazz tunes from the pre-WW II era.
Terry got her Masters in Music Therapy from SUNY New Paltz, and has been Music Therapy Coordinator at Hudson Valley Hospice since July 2008, realizing her dream of combining the joy of music with compassionate care at the bedside. She continues to write, produce, perform, and arrange music for all kinds of recording projects with her husband, composer/producer Tom Desisto. Their company, Desisto Music, creates original music for TV, film, radio, commercials, books-on-tape, and children’s/ educational projects. Terry lives near Woodstock, NY.