Jayme Kelly Curtis
Jayme Kelly Curtis writes, records and performs an earthy blend of original "folkloric jazz" from her home base in the Santa Cruz Mountains of Northern California. She has independently recorded and distributed three CDs of original songs that reflect a wide-range of musical interests. Equally at home in rock, blues, folk and jazz, Curtis's songs and powerful voice have won praise from listeners, press and radio stations, as well as worldwide airplay and placements in film and television.
Curtis's musical life heated up with the release of her debut CD, In A Rushing Stream, in 1999. She released Sugar & Sand: A Trilogy in Three Moods in 2004. Her third CD, Mid Life Chrysalis, was released in July of 2008. As a regional artist, Curtis averages 50 or more shows a year in and around the San Francisco Bay Area. She performs with a variety of Northern California musicians, including the Jayme Kelly Curtis Band, The And Friends Band, Dulcimer Girls (a folk duo), and Uke Be A Lady™, a swing trio.
Known for her commitment to music education and community, Curtis is founder of the Boulder Creek Acoustic Music Society, a former director and committed member of California Coast Music Camp, and a volunteer with Bread & Roses, the outreach program founded by Mimi Fariña.
A lifelong musician, Curtis hit the road at age 14, shunning high school to live in an artist's community and study fingerstyle guitar with Rolly Brown, a student of the legendary Reverend Gary Davis. Early in her career, Curtis earned local recognition with several rock bands, through her solo act, and as part of an acoustic duo in Southern Colorado. Her deep interest in blues and jazz lead to a five-year stint at the Iron Springs Chateau Melodrama Theatre, where she absorbed a jazz repertoire both standard and offbeat, and began perfecting her expressive vocal style.
Curtis's formal education includes a serious study of vocal performance, music theory and poetry at Colorado College, and film and television production at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. She holds a Master's degree in mass communication from the University of Denver.
"My goal as a songwriter is to create images that resonate strongly in the listener's mind where they can be freely interpreted through the lens of the listener's own experiences," says Curtis. "I try to place my personal experiences and snippets of stories into the framework of archetypal themes and mythologies. I try to use metaphor and imagery to move my subjects away from their narcissistic origins and into the universal. I draw from a wide variety of sources, including folk tales and dreams, the visual arts, theology and psychology. The key for me is not to tell, but to show. I think of my songs less as little movies than as aural paintings; some representational, others more abstract."
"What strikes me about Jayme's music is her voice quality...it is a treasure that she should continue to use for our (the listeners) enjoyment...The voice is sultry and clear, the storytelling is captivating. "Alchemy and Magic Colorado in particular are excellent. The album is well engineered and doesn't intrude on this special voice. Way to go girl...good album!"
Mark Cook, Friday FolkOff, KKUP 91.5 FM, Santa Clara, CA
PurrGirl Music Publishing
P.O. Box 278 • Felton, CA 95006
Jayme at purrgirl.com