Lorraine Feather

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Lorraine Feather
Birth nameBillie Jane Lee Lorraine Feather
Born (1948-09-10) September 10, 1948 (age 70)
Manhattan, New York, United States
Occupation(s)Singer, lyricist, songwriter
Years active1992–present
LabelsConcord Jazz, Sanctuary, Rhombus Records, Jazzed Media

Lorraine Feather (born Billie Jane Lee Lorraine Feather; September 10, 1948[1]) is an American singer, lyricist, and songwriter.

Early life[edit]

Feather was born in Manhattan, New York City, the daughter of jazz writer Leonard Feather, and his wife, Jane, a former big band singer. Feather's parents named her Billie Jane Lee Lorraine for her godmother Billie Holiday, for her mother (Jane), Jane's friend, singer Peggy Lee, and for the song "Sweet Lorraine".[2]


She began working in television as a lyricist in 1992 and has received seven Emmy nominations. Her lyrics for children include Disney’s Dinosaurs series on ABC and the MGM films Babes In Toyland and An All Dogs Christmas; Feather and composer Mark Watters wrote the themes for MGM’s TV shows All Dogs Go to Heaven and The Lionhearts; they also created the piece “Faster, Higher, Stronger” for Jessye Norman to sing in the opening ceremonies of the 1996 Olympics. Feather and composer Larry Grossman wrote the song that Julie Andrews performed in The Princess Diaries 2. Feather has also created lyrics for Disney’s feature film The Jungle Book 2 (with Australian jazz musician Paul Grabowsky), and for Pooh’s Heffalump Halloween, the PBS series Make Way for Noddy, and the Candy Land and My Little Pony films for Hasbro Toys.[citation needed]

Feather's work has been heard on numerous records, in films and on television. Her songs have been covered extensively by artists such as Phyllis Hyman, Kenny Rankin, Patti Austin, Diane Schuur and Cleo Laine. Many of her own solo CDs have featured contemporary lyrics to formerly instrumental pieces written by Duke Ellington, Fats Waller and other pre-bop composers.[3] Feather’s recordings have received glowing reviews in every major jazz magazine. Down Beat has called her work “deliciously savvy”; Jazz Times referred to her as “a lyrical Dorothy Parker” and her lyrical reinventions as “pure genius”.[citation needed]

In 2005, Feather began working as lyricist on Canum Entertainment's theatrical project The Thief, based on the Oscar-nominated Russian film and featuring the music of Russian composer Vladimir Shainskiy; The Thief debuted at LA’s El Portal Theatre in the summer of 2007. Soon after, she started work on Canum’s next musical, Pest Control, with co-lyricist Scott de Turk. She was also commissioned to write lyrics for a musical production of Tom Wolfe’s The Bonfire of the Vanities (music by New York neo-classical composer Stefania de Kenessey). American Opera Projects has presented excerpts from this work, and it was featured at the annual Derriere Guard concert in New York in October 2007, with Tom Wolfe as keynote speaker.[citation needed]

Feather has released 12 albums, three in the 1980s with the vocal trio Full Swing. The albums she has done since 2001 have received the widest radio airplay and most press. Two of these were Fats Waller and Duke Ellington projects with her added lyrics. More recently, her CDs have featured original compositions written with such jazz composers as Eddie Arkin, Shelly Berg and Russell Ferrante. Feather's 2010 release, Ages, received a Grammy nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album, as did 2012's Tales of the Unusual, nominated for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) for the tune "Out There," arranged by Shelly Berg.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Feather was married to Tony Morales, formerly a drummer for artists such as The Rippingtons, David Benoit and Rickie Lee Jones, from 1983 to 2012. They lived in Southern California, moved to the Half Moon Bay, CA in 1997, and to the San Juan Islands of Washington State in 2007. When they divorced, Feather and Morales both moved back to Los Angeles; Feather relocated to central Massachusetts in 2017.[citation needed]


Year Album Label
1979 Sweet Lorraine Concord Jazz[4]
1997 The Body Remembers Bean Bag
2001 New York City Drag Rhombus Records
2003 Cafe Society Sanctuary
2004 Such Sweet Thunder: Music of the Duke Ellington Orchestra Sanctuary
2005 Dooji Wooji Sanctuary
2008 Language Jazzed Media
2010 Ages Jazzed Media
2012 Tales of the Unusual Jazzed Media
2012 Fourteen Relarion Records
2013 Attachments [5]
2015 Flirting with Disaster Jazzed Media
2018 Math Camp Relarion Records


  1. ^ "Lorraine Feather". All About Jazz. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  2. ^ Hamlin, Jesse (August 24, 2010). "Billie Holiday's bio, 'Lady Sings the Blues,' may be full of lies, but it gets at jazz great's core". San Francisco Chronicle.
  3. ^ Holden, Stephen (February 8, 2008). "Satirical Songs of Noncommitted Lovers and Nonhuman Voices". The New York Times.
  4. ^ "Lorraine Feather". Discogs. Retrieved 20 February 2016.
  5. ^ "Attachments". Lorraine Feather. Retrieved 20 February 2016.

External links[edit]