Audrey Shakir was born into a musical family in Cleveland, Ohio – her mother was a great pianist, organist and vocal coach, and her father, whose idol was Billy Eckstine, loved to sing. She began her professional career as a pianist in a group that played the tunes of Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan and others. Eventually, Audrey started leaning towards Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea, all the while adding singing to her playing talents, with the vocal influences of Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Joe Williams and Jon Hendricks.
After moving to New York, she was introduced to Barry Harris, which led to numerous gigs with him. While playing the New York scene, she became a regular performer at The Village Gate and had numerous dates at Town Hall, the Apollo Theater and Tavern on the Green among many others.
She has toured with Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra, including sold-out performances in New York at the Rose Theatre in Jazz At Lincoln Center, and played to sold-out audiences at the Center’s famed sister nightspot, Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola.
Audrey relocated to Atlanta in the late 1980’s, where she established herself as the city’s most prominent jazz vocalist. She has performed at several Atlanta Jazz Festivals among her sold out appearances at every jazz club in Georgia’s capital city. She recently was the headline performer at the 35th Annual Savannah Jazz Festival, enthralling over 12,00 fans under the stars, backed by the 17-pc Savannah Jazz Orchestra in Savannah’s Forsyth Park. Described as the finest scat singer since the great Ella Fitzgerald, she’s been featured in many articles about the Atlanta arts scene and is in high demand to entertain throughout the U.S..
Over the years, Audrey has performed and toured throughout the United States and internationally with such jazz luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Johnny O’Neal, Pharaoh Sanders, Kenny Burrell, Tommy Turrentine, Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra, Johnny Knapp, Ted Howe, Joe Gransden, and many other notable musicians.
Her CD, “If You Could See Me Now” from Hot Shoe Records, allowed her to put her own unique vocal signature on a diverse selection of standards and jazz classics. She is currently developing a new album for Hot Shoe, adapting her jazz influences to contemporary tunes. Truly a world-class performer, Audrey Shakir continues to entertain audiences with her remarkable talents wherever she appears.