Nnenna Freelon and John Brown Trio to perform at TFAC

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, November 30, 2016

When legendary performer Aretha Franklin says “Be sure to check out Nnenna Freelon,” jazz and R&B enthusiasts would do well to take notice!

Nnenna Freelon is a world-renowned singer, composer, producer and arranger, and has garnered six Grammy nominations and a respected place among today’s outstanding jazz performers. You can see Freelon in an intimate holiday performance on Saturday, Dec. 10, at 8 p.m. at Tryon Fine Arts Center.

Freelon has earned a well-deserved reputation as a compelling and captivating live performer. In 2014, Freelon starred in the critically acclaimed show “Georgia on My Mind: Celebrating the Music of Ray Charles” at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. Nnenna is no stranger to the music of the master singer. She toured with Ray Charles, as well as many other great jazz artists including Ellis Marsalis, Al Jarreau, George Benson, and others.

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Born and raised in Cambridge, Mass., Freelon received her undergraduate degree from Simmons College in Boston. Her parents and singing in the church gave the singer her first exposure to the arts, especially to the art of jazz. Her father played Count Basie recordings and her mother’s active involvement in their church led Freelon to an appreciation of all music.

Ultimately she pursued a career in jazz in which she has excelled. All the while, Freelon has cherished and held dear her two most important lifetime roles: wife and mother. Her husband, Phil Freelon, is an award-winning architect based in North Carolina. As the mother of three, Freelon has led by example: follow your dreams, dedicate yourself, and work hard in all you do.

On Saturday, Dec. 10, Freelon brings this warm spirit to her TFAC debut. Freelon will be joined by longtime friend and musical colleague, bassist-extraordinaire John Brown and his trio. They put the swing in the season, and Brown, both Duke University educator and performer, surrounds Freelon with the yuletide spirit.

Tickets are available through the Tryon Fine Arts Center Box Office at tryonarts.org or by calling 828-859-8322. TFAC is participating in the Tryon Downtown Development Associations’ passport program, offering a discount to holiday passport holders.

Nnenna Freelon and John Brown Trio are presented by Tryon Daily Bulletin, Tryon Estates, and the North Carolina Arts Council. The 2016-2017 Main Stage Season is presented by Parsec Financial.

– article submitted by Michelle Fleming