Award-winning jazz/soul singer/songwriter Jamila Ford has garnered attention for her sizable singing chops. Her slight frame belies her bewitchingly powerful voice. She gets your attention. Or more accurately, the Los Angeles-based singer's smooth mezzo-soprano makes you turn your head to give her a second listen. Drawing influences from jazz to R&B to pop, she can give you a history of 50 years of American popular music during one of her sets, with her sultry voice providing the linchpin.
She has performed around North America and Europe as a solo artist and as a backing vocalist. Her new EP, The Deep End, is a collection of reinterpreted standards and an original composition. Ford’s smoky, sophisticated, and self-assured vocals breathe new life into “All Blues,” “Gentle Rain,” “Sugar,” and “Wild Is the Wind.” Her original composition, “Silencio,” is a strutting Latin-jazz tinged ode to the unspoken connection between lovers.
Says Jamila: "I love music and I love to sing. Music is my genuine path in life. It is the best way for me to give of myself to this world. I sacrifice for it in a way that I would for nothing else. I feel most whole and most connected when I’m on stage singing." Jamila released her debut EP, the breezy Traces of the Day in January of 2001, and her first full-length album, the soulful and revealing Enough, in October 2010 (nominee for Independent Music Awards best Soul/R&B album, 2010). Ford’s latest EP, The Deep End, is slated for a February 2014 release.
An active member of West Coast Songwriters (WCS), Ford was awarded “Hollywood Songwriter of the Year” for her song titled “Not Exactly Perfect.” She went on to compete at the grand finals along side the year’s other regional winners at the Freight and Salvage in Berkeley, CA. She has played LA's Room 5, Pig N Whistle, The Whisky, and Genghis Cohen to enthusiastic and supportive audiences. Her songs “Ordinary People” and “If You Ever Loved Me” have been featured on podcasts in the UK and Japan. Jamila has also been featured a artist on iheartradio.com’s New! Discover & Uncover.
Ford has also lent her backing vocals to the projects of artists such as multi platinum selling jazz artist Melody Gardot (Spring/Summer 2012 Canada & European Tour), Spiritualized (Coachella Festival), TJ Doyle, Bonnie Pointer, Barry Goldberg’s Soul Riot, Fat Danny & the Hard Tymz, Lee Newman, Abraham Cloud, Nektare, Andrew Hyra, Josh Rich, Alicia Grant, Shari Puorto & the Rhythm Addicts, Artist Robinson, Larry Klein, Joe Hajek, Thomas Hornig, Dona Oxford, Kat Parsons Ilhame Paris and Jennifer Quiroz just to name a few. Ford is also a featured singer in the female fronted 'Ladies Night Band' at that regularly performs at LA's legendary Cafe Cordiale.
"Ford's phenomenal vocals recall kindred spirits Roberta Flack and Gladys Knight... at the very core of Enough is a lust for love, life, and music." – Jason Gladu, stagedoormusicreviews.com
"Enough is sultry, friendly, inviting, and ultimately very real. ...LOVE IT. Top pick."
"...groove just like you used to get in a Curtis Mayfield song... The lady can sweat pure emotion." – bluesbunny.com
"Ford takes soul to a stripped-down progression that is exceedingly insightful, and listeners will definitely want more of what Ford's expression is giving." – Christina Calloway, ThisIsRealMusic.com