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Jazz 03/12/2022

Samara Joy Performs With Three Generations Of Her Family On Dreamy Gospel-Infused "O Holy Night (Ft. The Mclendon Family)"

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New York, NY (Top40 Charts) After being nominated for Best New Artist and Best Jazz Vocal Album at the upcoming 65th Annual GRAMMY Awards, the "silky-voiced rising jazz star" (New York Times) Samara Joy has unveiled her latest holiday single "O Holy Night (feat. The McLendon Family)." Music has always been a guiding light within the young Bronx native's lineage, and the new song features vocals by multiple generations of her tight-knit family. Her grandfather Elder Goldwire McLendon, 92-year-old gospel singer who led the well-known Philadelphia-based The Savettes, joins Samara on the classic holiday favorite, alongside her father Antonio McLendon, a gifted bassist and vocalist who toured with the renowned Andrae Crouch, Samara's uncle Laurone McLendon, and her cousins Tiera Lovell Rowe and Alana Alexander. The track, which was recorded by Christopher Allen and produced by Matt Pierson, also features Sullivan Fortner on Hammond B3.
"There's nothing like family. Your vibratos match. Your tones match," Samara explained to NPR Jazz Night in America about singing with her family. "We're connected in a way that nobody else is… spiritually and creatively, it's totally fulfilling."

At just 23 years old, 2x GRAMMY-nominated Samara Joy has dazzled crowds at jazz clubs, festivals, and cultural institutions across the globe, performed on NBC's Today Show with Hoda and Jenna, and earned glowing public endorsements from the likes of Regina King, LaKeith Stanfield, and many others. While she is influenced by the greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Carmen McRae, Samara takes a contemporary approach to her art and performance as evidenced by her massive TikTok following. Samara's Verve Records debut album Linger Awhile - nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album at the 65th Annual GRAMMY Awards® and included in New York Times roundup of the Best Jazz Albums of 2022 - was released September 30, 2022. The 10-song collection finds the Bronx native modernizing beloved songs with "youthful exuberance" (WRTI) and "instincts that can't be taught" (Consequence), sometimes singing original lyrics using the melodies of famous instrumental solos, a style known as vocalese. Recorded at Sear Sound in New York City by Chris Allen and produced by Matt Pierson, Linger Awhile features exemplary musicianship by Pasquale Grasso (guitar), Ben Paterson (piano), David Wong (double bass), and Kenny Washington (drums). 
Linger Awhile vinyl LPs, CDs, and merch are available today: 
Listen to Samara Joy's holiday single "Warm in December" here: 

In addition to several performances joining the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra as a special guest on their Big Band Holidays tour, Samara will be presenting "Samara Joy: A Joyful Holiday!" in four markets, where her family members will also be featured. Full tour schedule below.

Samara Joy 2022 Tour Dates
December 2 - Raleigh, NC - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 3 - York, PA - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 5 - St. Louis, MO - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 7 - Austin, TX - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 9 - Phoenix, AZ - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 10 - Wickenburg, AZ - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 14-18 - New York, NY - Big Band Holidays w/J@LC Orchestra
December 20 - Alexandria, VA - The Birchmere (Samara Joy: A Joyful Holiday!)
December 21 - Philadelphia, PA - The Ardmore (Samara Joy: A Joyful Holiday!)
December 22 - Arlington, MA - Regent Theater (Samara Joy: A Joyful Holiday!)
December 23 - Saratoga Springs, NY - Universal Preservation Hall (Samara Joy: A Joyful Holiday!)

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