Faye Carol

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Faye Carol
Origin Meridian, Mississippi, USA
Genres Jazz, Blues, soul,
Occupation(s) Singer,
Years active mid-1960s – present
Labels Gamble Girls, World Stage, Round,
Associated acts Billie Holiday, Billy Higgins
Website www.FayeCarol.com

Faye Carol is a Mississippi-born jazz and blues singer based in the San Francisco Bay Area where she has performed since the mid-1960s.


Faye Carol was born in Meridian, Mississippi, where she sang in a gospel choir at a school where her grandmother taught. At age 10 she moved to Pittsburg. Her early musical influences included Sam Cooke and Little Richard and rhythm & blues.[1] She cut two records as Faye Ross for West Coast labels in the mid-1960s, touring for the rest of the decade as a vocalist in the Bay Area with various R&B and funk bands.

She married blues musician Jim Gamble and toured with him for a number of years and in 1970 formed her own trio finding appreciative audiences in cabaret and jazz venues. Her reportoire was influence by jazz greats including Billie Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald. The San Francisco Examiner once wrote that “no singer in the Bay area comes close to Carol's sheer intensity; she doesn’t just sell a song...she sells her soul for that song”.[2]

Faye Carol's career has included recording with the late drummer Billy Higgins and bassist Marcus Shelby (The Flow on World Stage Records) and on-stage collaborations with Marvin Gaye, Ray Charles, Albert King, Charles Brown, Bobby Hutcherson, Ben Vereen, Steve Turre, Billy Higgins and Pharoah Sanders. She has performed at a number of major music festivals including the Monterey Blues Festival, the Monterey Jazz Festival (with her daughter, pianist Kito Gamble), San Francisco Blues Festival, the San Francisco Jazz Festival, Berkeley Jazz Festival, and the San Jose Jazz Festival. She has also toured throughout Europe and Canada.

From 2001 through 2003, Carol Faye was a vocal teacher and director of the Music in the Community program at the Black Repertory Group in Berkeley, California.[3] She has been the recipient of some prestigious awards throughout her career, including the KPFA BAJABA (Bay Area Jazz And Blues Artist) Bay Area Living Legend Award (2003), Top Star Awards as Entertainer of the Year (1994), and as Best Vocalist (1968). During the 1980s, she was a three-time winner of the Cabaret Gold Award and a recipient of the David Award as Outstanding Jazz and Blues Vocalist.[4]

Selective discography[edit]

Year Title Genre Label
1996 The Flow (with Kito Gamble Trio) Jazz World Stage; reissued on Noir (1998)
2002 The Dynamic Miss Faye Carol Jazz Gamble Girls/CD Baby
2008 Faye Sings Lady Day (Live At Yoshi's) Jazz Gamble Girls/CD Baby
2009 Carolizing Christmas Jazz Gamble Girls/CD Baby
2014 Faye Sings Lady Day 2 (Live At Yoshi's) Jazz Gamble Girls/CD Baby


External links[edit]