STL Jazz Singer Eve Seltzer Releases Debut Album

By Cara Wegener
In Culture

After leaving New York in 2014, jazz singer Eve Seltzer settled back into her hometown here in St. Louis. Seltzer has been performing since age 8 when she joined the St. Louis-based choir, the Young Singers of Missouri—performing with the St. Louis Symphony and the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. Now back in STL, Seltzer is set to release her debut album.

CD Cover

Seltzer’s style, drawn from the American jazz tradition, is influenced by swing and improvisation. Her vocal influences include Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Anita O’day, Annie Ross, Joe Williams and Johnny Hartman, though Seltzer notes, “that list might change if you ask me tomorrow.” Mentioning a solo on her upcoming album that was based on Miles Davis’ recording of “Budo” on “Round About Midnight,” Seltzer explains, “I spend a lot of time listening to horn players and transcribing solos.”

The album is titled “Eve Seltzer and Terminal Swing Live at ShapeShifter Lab”—ShapeShifter being a favorite venue of Seltzer’s during her time in New York. The album was recorded in New York the week before the her and her husband’s move back to STL.

“I planned this recording as a love letter goodbye to NYC before relocating here, and most of the tracks are from a concert at ShapeShifter Lab,” says Seltzer. Other parts of the album were recorded at Second Story Sound in New York, where Seltzer also worked as an engineer for five years.

This album marks her first time as a band leader—though she sang on the Franglais album, “Un Grand Bonheur.” The album features 12 songs, all jazz standards.

“I was fortunate enough to have an amazing combo, with Jonathan Lefcoski (who toured and recorded with Jason Marsalis) on piano, Jazz at Lincoln Center drummer Alvin Atkinson, and James Robbins on bass, who is one of the go-to bassists in New York,” Seltzer says of her backing band featured on the album. “The band was so good, the album was recorded in four days!” Seltzer says.

Since the move back to St. Louis, Seltzer has been playing around town with a number of accomplished musicians such as Arthur Tuney, Curt Landes, Adam Maness, Kane Hiser, Drew Weiss, and Bernard Long. Recently, Seltzer performed a cabaret paying tribute to the history of jazz in STL.

“So many great musicians have gotten their start here, from Scott Joplin to Clark Terry, to my Bat Mitzvah band—Peter Martin, Jeremy Davenport, and Chris Thomas. St. Louis is an incubator for jazz talent, and continues to develop top-notch artists,” says Seltzer.

Having a finished product, and a solid support system in the jazz community of St. Louis, Seltzer has big plans for the future. “I would like to take my cabaret into schools to educate children and teens about the rich musical heritage here, and I would like to tour the country and the world with musicians as excellent as the ones I had the privilege of recording with,” she says.

“Eve Seltzer and Terminal Swing Live at ShapeShifter Lab” will release Saturday, March 12 at the Tavern of Fine Arts from 8-10pm. Seltzer will be accompanied by Arthur Toney on piano, Kane Hiser on bass, and Dre Weiss on drum. It is an album that is sophisticated, yet danceable.

If you’re a jazz-lover looking for a an evening of great music, check out the show this Saturday!

Keep up with Eve Seltzer here, or visit her YouTube channel for more music!

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