North Carolina is a long way from Greensboro. It’s an even longer
way from San Francisco. It’s a long way from a home that was broken,
but had the lovingest Grandmother that a little girl could ever
have. It’s a long way from the Church choir, and a long way from
being that shy little girl in the high school glee club.
was a long time ago. . . and it was just yesterday.
Gerri Harris styles a song, she’s styling an experience, a remembrance,
a love affair - perhaps a disappointment - but most of all, a spiritual
San Francisco Bay Area is her home. She’s lived here most of her
adult life. She was mentored by world renowned pianist Merrill Hoover,
of the Merrill Hoover Trio and studied vocally with Barbara’s Streisand’s
vocal coach - the one and only Ms. Judy Davis.
got her start classically enough by sitting in on gigs at the New
Orleans Room of the Fairmont Hotel as well as other spots in the
immediate area. It was called ‘paying your dues’ in those days because
Disco was the rage and Jazz Vocalists were not in demand. But classic
Jazz was classic for a reason. Disco came and went. But Jazz will
always be jazz.
has worked with Pianist Jane Hastay for nearly two years at “The
Lobby” in Rockridge, and then at “His Lordship’s” at the Berkeley
Marina with the Muziki Roberson trio. She worked with Herb Gibson
and Quartet at Sunday Afternoon cocktail shows at Jimmie’s Nightclub
for over a year.
has performed at Hilton Towers, Hyatt Hotels, Claremont, Marriott
and countless venues throughout the Bay Area. She has been privileged
to work in Theatre with International Jazz vocalist/pianist Scotty
Wright in “What is This Thing Called Jazz?” at the Dean Lesher Theatre
of Arts in Walnut Creek; and “Lady sings the Blues”, as well as
“Dukes & Divas” at the Black Repertory Theatre in Berkeley.
repertoire ranges from Billie Holliday, to Nancy Wilson, to Aretha
Franklin. Gerri sings “My Funny Valentine” and moves it to another
level. Her rendition of “Guess Who I Saw Today” is pure ear candy.
And when you hear her sing “Dr. Feelgood ……you can feel the experience.
Harris is the featured vocalist with the Mel-tones every Thursday
at Camranh Bay in San Mateo. Watch for
her other performances throughout the Bay Area.