It became apparent that her love of music was an innate part of her being. Kelly continued to develop her talent and won many talent competitions during her school years.
Now settled in California, Kelly grew up as an "Air Force Brat" living in Europe and various states as a child, then on to Detroit in her "Days of Acquisition." During her developing years in Detroit she met people like Emmanuel Lasky who recorded, "Welfare Cheese" and Johnnie Mae Matthews who helped the Temptations in their early years. Ms Matthews wrote and recorded an R&B hit "I Have No Choice" which Kelly re-recorded. "I Have No Choice" climbed the charts in the Detroit metropolitan area.
Kelly has performed with many jazz and blues greats such as Calvin Keys, Coco Montoya, Robert Stewart, Ed Kelly, Kalil Shahid, and Buddy Montgomery. She opened for the legendary Pharaoh Saunders at the 2002 Sacramento Heritage Festival. She performed with Calvin Keys with the great Taj Mahal in the audience. "Taj and Pharaoh both complemented me on my voice and delivery", says Kelly. Her cousin, Master of the Telecaster, Albert Collins also supported Kelly, flying her to sold out concerts for first hand experience. He advised her to always be humble and hold your audience in the highest esteem.
Vocal influences such as the "Divine One" Sarah Vaughn can be heard in Kelly's voice, and she is known throughout the greater San Francisco bay area one of the best jazz and blues vocalists. Kelly has worked the small hip jazz clubs to the ritzy towers of San Francisco's finest doing a six month engagement at the Top of the Mark Hopkins Hotel with bay area's own pop recording star Ricardo Scales.
Kelly received a standing ovation from a packed house for her performance at Kimball's East in Emeryville. Kelly has performed at various jazz festivals, and a number of prestigious bashes, some of which were hosted by Mayor Willie Brown Jr. She has had several seccessful Japanese tours and just recently returned from Europe.
On May 27, 2002 "Jazz In Flight" presented Kelly who performed two sold out concerts at Yoshi's, one of the ten top jazz clubs in the US. She has gone on th perform at Yoshi's in 2003 and 2004. She has an upcoming performance her latest cd release party at Yoshi's on June 13, 2005.
Kelly has recorded two CD's "The Night Is Young", live at Kimball's West in San Francisco and "My Life, More Than It Is-Not Just The Blues" and her song writing skills are featured on both. Kelly earned Best Jazz Vocal Album, Best New Artist and Album of the Year in the 2002 Grammy Awards Entry List for her release "My Life, More Than It Is-Not Just The Blues".
Her latest release, "Live at Yoshi's, Frankye Kelly sings, Songs for my Father", is a collaboration of her favorite songs performed at her Yoshi's venues with her favorite bay area musicial artists. This cd is full of love, soul and magical music that only Kelly can make. It will be a welcome addition to your collection.
Not only is Kelly an extraordinary jazz vocalist and cabaret songstress, she has a TV program, which airs weekly throughout the San Francisco bay area called "Jazz with Frankye" which has been ongoing since 1997 where bay area jazz and blues artists are featured. Kelly also welcomes the opportunity to work with youth from local high schools and junior colleges that have entertained career options in all areas of film, television, video and motion pictures to work with her on the TV program.
Kelly also taught her own curriculum in the in the 21st Century After School Program in the Oakland Unified School District called "Children's' Jazz After School for several years. She is currently working with the City of Oakland at the Arroyo Viejo and Franklin Recreation Centers as a "Cultural Arts Specialist". She teaches jazz vocals, jazz history and how jazz relates to children culturally today.
Ms. Kelly is available to provide music for private parties,wedding ceremonies and/or the reception, and is willing to travel to the event with her musicians.
For reviews and quotes see www.google.com and www.allmusic.com -- as well as the reviews and testimonialson her website.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Song For My Father
2. Old Folks
3. Secret Love
4. ILL Wind
6. Midnight Sun
7. Satin Doll
8. Lil' Darlin'
9. Throw It Away
10. Red Sails In The Sunset
11. Next Time You See Me
12. I'll Be Seeing You