"As the song lyric goes, 'She's got that thing, that certain thing,' which in April Varner's case is a profound command of deep scat and vocalese."
At 26, Toledo native April Varner has the kind of future many young jazz singers dream about. Since moving to New York three years ago, Varner's rapid trajectory has included performances with A-list jazz musicians and at some of the Big Apple's most famous jazz clubs.
An interview with April Varner, winner of the 2023 Ella Fitzgerald Jazz Vocal Competition.
"April is ready to take on the world. She really has a voice, and she loves jazz. With April, it’s all about the music. She wants to be challenged.”
2-time GRAMMY Nominated Vocalist, Composer, ECM Recording Artist
"Beautiful, full-bodied voice, great fluidity between the registers, and wonderful intonation."
Director of Jazz Studies, George Mason University
"April is one of the wittiest and precise vocalese artists I’ve heard come around in a long time...Her voice is already polished and ready for prime time - a joy to hear!"
BENNY BENACK III
Trumpeter & Vocalist
"April Varner is an exceptionally fine musician who possesses all of the qualities one hopes to find from a professional vocalist: a clear, gorgeous voice, perfect intonation, an ear for complex harmony, fluency in a wide range of styles, excellent sight-reading skills, and an innate artistry regarding nuance and phrasing informed by impeccable taste."
The David N. Baker Professor of Jazz, Indiana University, Jacobs School of Music
“April Varner is one of the rare ones. Beautiful tone, gorgeous intonation plus taste and expression to go with it all. Add to that all openness of mind and dedication to craft and there’s no telling what she will do. But whatever it is- I want to hear it!”
Jazz Vocalist, Teacher, 9-time GRAMMY Nominee
“April is an incredibly talented vocalist who has clearly put the work in to understand and express this music on a high level.”
Jazz and Adult Contemporary Vocalist, 2-time GRAMMY Nominee
“April is one of those 'old-soul' voices that just invites you in and leaves you feeling better for it. Though from the 'now' generation, she has a natural feel and sound for the classic songs from eras gone by. With that said, she also is happy to push into more modern jazz sensibilities. I look forward to hearing whatever she presents next!”
Jazz Vocalist & Saxophonist with GRAMMY-Award winning vocal group The New York Voices