A converted piano player and vocal coach, Jeri Southern became one of the most underrated jazz vocal interpreters of the 1950s despite a voice regarded as subpar. Transforming a potential failing into her prime strength, Southern was devastatingly effective at delivering songs charting the downhill romantic life of world-weary everywoman characters. After recording for Decca, Roulette and Capitol during the 1950s though, she abruptly retired after growing tired of the music industry.
Born in rural Nebraska (August 5, 1926), Jeri Southern played piano by ear at the age of three and began formal lessons three years later. She studied classical piano and voice at a school in Omaha, but after an introduction to jazz at a local nightclub, Southern quickly changed her focus. After graduation, she moved to Chicago and began making appearances at clubs during the late '40s, occasionally...Read more