Lavay Smith: The Music of Billie Holiday

Lavay Smith: The Music of Billie Holiday


Lavay Smith
& Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers
Music of Billie Holiday

Friday, March 7, 7:00pm · 8:30pm
at SFJAZZ Center, Joe Henderson Lab

Lavay Smith
SOLD OUT! - Check for turn-back tickets on day of performance.

The Music of Billie Holiday

One of SFJAZZ’s perennial favorites and a Bay Area treasure, singer Lavay Smith presents a series of intimate concerts dedicated to some of the first ladies of jazz, Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday, Etta James, and Sarah Vaughan. For this four-night residency in the Joe Henderson Lab, Smith is joined by a six-piece version of her world-class band, the Red Hot Skillet Lickers, led by arranger and pianist Chris Siebert and featuring a rogue’s gallery of robustly swinging soloists who cut their teeth with everyone from Big Joe Turner to Ray Charles. On Friday the 7th, Lavay pays tribute to Lady Day herself, the immortal Billie Holiday. Considered the quintessential jazz singer, Holiday single-handedly changed popular music, instilling her own personal life experiences into the lyrics and elevating the art of storytelling in song. Popularizing songs like “Don’t Explain,” “God Bless The Child,” “Lover Man,” “Solitude,” “Strange Fruit” and dozens more, whatever Billie sang, audiences believed she lived it like no artist before or since.

Artist Personnel

Lavay Smith vocals
Jules Broussard alto & tenor saxophones
Danny Armstrong trombone
Chris Siebert piano
Ron Belcher bass
Howard Wiley drums

Artist Website

"Hands-down the best thing to come out of the jump/swing revival...the gal can sing her tail off. " — Seattle Times
"A singular ensemble that puts a soulful stamp on a huge swath of American music. " — Boston Globe