As of January 31, 2020, I will be changing to a different webhost. This means that my website will be getting an entirely different look and feel.

Please bear with me while we undergo these changes. Thank you!

JaZz News & Vocal Health Tips

Join the mailing list to receive your FREE TIPS for preserving vocal health, in addition to gig news and other tidbits.

Singing Straight-ahead, Latin and Original JaZz...

... with some of the finest musicians in the Pacific Northwest!

Visit the Videos page to see Carolena and her musicians in action!

Upcoming Public Gigs

The Bellevue Jazz and Blues Festival
May 30, 2019 @ 5:00 p.m.
w/ Bill Anschell (piano)
and Osama Afifi (bass)
Seattle Marriott Bellevue
200 110th Ave., NE
Bellevue, WA  98004

Please visit Carolena's Calendar page for additional upcoming public performances.

PLEASE NOTE:  Private events are NOT reflected on the calendar.  Please use the Contact Artist page to inquire about open dates and booking Carolena for your special event.

Tunes - with John Stowell, guitar

Offering Online Voice Lessons

Technology makes it possible for Carolena to teach students from all over the world via the platform Zoom in real time.


What is necessary is a high-speed internet connection, a webcam, an external mic (unless your computer is equipped with a good one) and Voila!  External speakers for your computer are likewise helpful.  Then you can enjoy the benefits of private voice lessons in the comfort of your own home.

Voice Studio Gift Certificates

Voice lessons make the Perfect Gift for friends and loved ones!  Purchase your Gift Certificates today and give the gift of song.

"Invest yourself in everything you do. There’s fun in being serious."
~Wynton Marsalis


An expression my friend Joe Baque uses in regard to talent, "Anyone can sing, some just do it better than others."  The right training will improve the majority of voices ... providing that the student practices.  Frequent practice is essential, as is an open mind and an adventurous spirit.

To read the entire article, please click on the title of the blog post.


Breathing well/correctly is critically important to singers. The following excerpt (which is from the book, "Wellness on a Shoestring: Seven Habits for a Healthy Life") emphasizes the importance of breathing deeply in regard to your overall health. Expand your lungs and read on ...

Hugs, Carolena


"Think about the last time you were looking forward to something really exciting. Did your breathing speed up? Could you feel your heart in your chest? Did you gasp in surprise or delight? Did the moment quite literally take your breath away?

To read the entire article, please click on the title of the blog post.

We had an absolutely gorgeous weekend in Western Washington.  Shining sun is very seductive here in the rainy Pacific Northwest. It has a tendency to sing its siren song in the hopes of luring you away from whatever else you might have planned that is important. Sunshine is such an evil temptress! :O)

For all of my students I urge you:  On gorgeous days like this, DON'T lay off of practicing. Instead, throw open the doors and the windows and keep on keepin' on! That's what I do and my neighbors always tell me that they love to hear me rehearse; so don't be shy. Or go outside and practice in the sun or near a waterfall, next to a lake or under a canopy of evergreens or stars. The landscape in Western Washington is exquisite.  Nature can inspire your creativity, so keep up your chops and let Mother Nature be your muse.

Hugs, Carolena

I occasionally hear one of two statements being exclaimed in regard to JaZz: (a) "I don't like/hate it!" and (b) "I just don't understand it!"

In the case of the first statement, about a year or so ago I began experimenting.  When someone tells me that they dislike or hate JaZz, I query, "Really?  Well, do you like 'so-and-so'?", naming a random JaZz artist, be it instrumentalist or vocalist.  Or "Do you like 'such-and-such'?", naming a specific genre like swing, for example.  The response I most often hear reflected back to me is, "Oh, I LOVE 'so-and-so' or 'such-and-such'!"  Or even, "My favorite 'this-and-that' radio station plays that/them all the time. It's/they're my favorite!" My answer to those statements is then to surprise the listener by pointing out that they have been enjoying JaZz all along but just didn't realize it. Since JaZz IS an umbrella term which encompasses multiple styles of music, you too may have been enjoying one or more aspects of it without even realizing it.

To read the entire article, please click on the title of the blog post.

Louis Armstrong described swing this way, "Ah, swing.  Well, we used to call it ragtime, then blues – then JaZz.  Now, it's swing.  White folks, y'all sho is a mess.  Swing!"

I recall a few years ago doing a gig with an accompanist who was not a JaZz cat.  I pulled out some charts and introduced him to a few tunes.  Upon reviewing the chart for a swing tune, the pianist exclaimed, "Oh, a bouncy tune!"  That was certainly an interesting manner in which to describe swing, but not necessarily inaccurate.

To read the entire article, please click on the title of the blog post.


"You have to practice improvisation, let no one kid you about it!"
~Art Tatum

In case I didn't say it loud enough, the main hallmark of JaZz is its improvisational nature.  Improvisation is instant composition.  It is musical creation that is spontaneous and in the moment.  It is an interactive conversation between the musicians and vocalist (if a vocalist is present) that expresses their unique individuality.  This improvisation may be centered in the melody or harmony being played or sung.  However, it may also be expressed through the rhythm, time signature, syncopation and/or lyrics.

Joachim Berendt contended that JaZz differs from European music in that JaZz has a "special relationship to time, defined as 'swing'."  So what is 'swing?'

More later . . .

Hugs, Carolena

That's an excellent question!  What IS JaZz

JaZz is an umbrella term which encompasses an evolving musical art form that is comprised of multiple styles.  Dixieland, swing,
bebop, cool, hard bop, modal, funk, Latin, post bop,
free JaZz, JaZz fusion, smooth JaZz, etc., are all examples of the different evolutions of the musical phenomenon that is known as "JaZz."

More later . . .

Hugs, Carolena

I've been threatening to launch my new website since last Summer and here it is ... finally! Woo-HOO!  And can you believe it, I'm actually blogging!  "I'm writing a blog," are words that I never imagined passing these lips (or fingertips, to be more accurate).  :O)

Welcome to all lovers of vocal JaZz!  And welcome to all voice students: old, new and prospective, too!  Perhaps you are a client who desires to book some high quality entertainment for your business or private event?  On the other hand, you may have music aspirations of your own, would like to take voice lessons and learn to sing?  In either event, you've come to the right place!  :O)

I still have a few tweaks to make here and there in regard to the site.  Additionally, I will be adding pages and content as I go along. However, in the meanwhile, grab a cup of joe (unless you're singing; you know caffeine is a no-no), make yourselves comfortable and take a look around.  Thank you for your interest. Come back to visit soon!

Hugs, Carolena

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