Suzanne Cloud

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Suzanne Cloud
Background information
Birth nameSuzanne Raynor Dunkle
Born (1951-09-07) September 7, 1951 (age 72)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Years active1980–present

Suzanne Cloud (born September 7, 1951) is an American jazz singer, writer, and teacher.


Born in Philadelphia, Cloud grew up in a musical family in Pennsauken Township, New Jersey. Her father played ukulele and banjo, and her mother sang. Cloud studied piano and sang in musicals while a student at Pennsauken High School.[1] After graduating from high school, she attended nursing school at Methodist Hospital in Philadelphia. She appeared in regional productions of The Pajama Game and Bell, Book, and Candle. She received a bachelor's degree from Rutgers University–Camden and a master's and doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania.

In the mid-1970s, Cloud was hired as the lead singer for the disco band Autumn. She recorded jingles for banks, retail stores, and other businesses, including "Come Fly with Me" for the Playboy Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey. In 1980 she concentrated more on jazz[2] while writing with producer and arranger Richie Rome. In 1982, she began working with pianist Eddie Green, singing jazz in hotels in Philadelphia, casinos in Atlantic City, and in neighborhood jazz clubs. Encounter Records released her debut album, I Like It, in 1986.[3]

Cloud has been the director of the Philadelphia Jazz Legacy Project, an archival initiative, and was the founding executive director of Jazz Bridge, an organization incorporated in 2005 with a friend, jazz singer Wendy Simon, to help local jazz and blues musicians in crisis.[4] She began Last Call at the Downbeat[5] for PIFA 2016 with a new composition by saxophonist Bobby Zankel and his Warriors of the Wonderful Sound jazz orchestra with the students of Grover Washington Jr. Middle School, which was performed at the Kimmel Center.

Cloud is the editor of The Real Philadelphia Book, 2nd edition with over 300 jazz and blues compositions by Philadelphia musicians.[6] She wrote a musical about Dizzy Gillespie's early years in Philadelphia for the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts in 2014.[7]

Awards and honors[edit]

  • Named a Creative Connector by the Philadelphia Leadership Council in 2012 and featured by WHYY-FM[8]
  • Received a grant in 2016 from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage to present the Philadelphia Real Book Concerts: New Music in Jazz and Blues,[9] This series of concerts helped stimulate city's jazz community and expanded the Jazz Bridge Neighborhood Concerts[10] established by Cloud in Collingswood, New Jersey in 2004.
  • Named a Philadelphia Jazz Hero, Jazz Journalists Association, 2019[11]


As leader[edit]

  • I Like It (Encounter, 1986)
  • With a Little Help from My Friends (Dreambox Media, 1996)[12]
  • Looking Back (Dreambox Media, 2001)[13]

As guest[edit]

  • Denis DiBlasio, Reflections of Childhood (Dreambox Media, 1997)[14]
  • Denis DiBlasio, Rhino (Dreambox Media, 2000)[15]
  • Jim Miller, If It's Not One Thing... (Dreambox Media, 2004)[16]


  1. ^ "Health series planned by Voorhees resident", The Philadelphia Inquirer, October 5, 1986. Accessed April 11, 2022, via "Jazz singer Suzanne Cloud of Collingswood recently released her first album, I Like It, which is also the name of the title cut.... Cloud, a former nurse, began her vocal career as the lead singer in the senior class musical at Pennsauken High School."
  2. ^ Jazz, All About. "Suzanne Cloud at All About Jazz". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-02-21.
  3. ^ "Dreambox Media: The Philadelphia Jazz Label". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-02-21.
  4. ^ "A Jazz Bridge to Musicians in Need". JazzTimes. Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  5. ^ "'Last Call at the Downbeat' shines a spotlight on a jazz legend's forgotten Philly connection". Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  6. ^ "Philly jazz greats celebrate publication of new book". Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  7. ^ "Vision Song: Our Hearts, Our Future, Our Voices". Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  8. ^ "Jazz Bridge director Suzanne Cloud steps up to support musicians in crisis : WHYY". WHYY. Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  9. ^ "Philadelphia Real Book Concerts". The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage. 2016-11-30. Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  10. ^ "Jazz Bridge Real Book Neighborhood Concerts with Chris Aschman's Electric Band". Montgomery News. Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  11. ^ "2019 Jazz Heroes". JJA Jazz Awards 2019. Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  12. ^ "Suzanne Cloud: With A Little Help From My Friends". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  13. ^ "Suzanne Cloud: Looking Back". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  14. ^ Breton, Marcela. "Denis DiBlasio: Reflections of Childhood". JazzTimes. Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  15. ^ "Rhino - Denis DiBlasio". AllMusic. Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  16. ^ Jazz, All About. "Jim Miller Time: If It's Not One Thing..." All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-05-10.

External links[edit]