Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Vocalese is a style of jazz singing wherein lyrics are written for melodies that were originally part of an all-instrumental composition or improvisation. Where scat singing uses improvised nonsense syllables in solos, vocalese uses lyrics, either improvised or set to pre-existing instrumental solos.
Pioneers of vocalese include King Pleasure, Eddie Jefferson and Babs Gonzalez . The best-known practicioners are probably Lambert, Hendricks and Ross , which was made up of Jon Hendricks, Dave Lambert and Annie Ross. Ross's 1952 lyrics for the song "Twisted", a blues improvisation by saxophonist Wardell Gray, are considered a classic of the genre. Latter-day performers known for vocalese include Al Jarreau and Manhattan Transfer.
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