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Heather Masse

Although trained at the New England Conservatory of Music as a jazz singer, New York singer/songwriter Heather Masse is equally versed in a variety of American song traditions, which influences her more prevalent work in folk, pop, and bluegrass. She has performed at venues all over the world. Masse, who grew up in rural Maine, is perhaps best known as a member of the charting folk group the Wailin' Jennys.

As a performer, she is a noted soloist as well as a collaborator. She has been a frequent guest on Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion, in both capacities. On these programs, she has collaborated with a variety of artists including Elvis Costello, Wynton Marsalis, Sheryl Crow, Renee Fleming, and Emmylou Harris. Masse is also celebrated for her performances with contemporary bluegrass band the Wayfaring Strangers and Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing. In 2006, she recorded an album with Joy Kills Sorrow, a contemporary string band. She also led the Brooklyn-based collective Heather & the Barbarians for the album Tell Me Tonight.

In 2008, Masse released her solo debut EP, Many Moons, a collection of jazz-inspired folk duets with pianist Jed Wilson. Her full-length album Bird Song was issued by Red House Records the following year. In early 2011, the Wailin' Jennys released Bright Morning Stars; it won Canadian Juno Award in 2013. That same year saw the release of Lock My Heart, an album of jazz standards and originals recorded in collaboration with pianist Dick Hyman that had a long run on the jazz charts.

Masse, who lives in New York's Catskills region, met jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd during a Prairie Home Companion performance. The pair discovered they were neighbors. Rudd invited her to sing on his Trombone for Lovers album issued by Sunnyside in 2014. They proved natural collaborators. In 2015, during Rudd's 80th year, they began to work on a recording project that combined standards and originals. They were aided by bassist Mark Helias and guitarist Ralf Sturn. The finished album, August Love Song, co-credited to Masse and Rudd, was released by Red House in the winter of 2016. ~ Thom Jurek
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Bird Song

1. I Don't Wanna Wake Up

2. Bird Song

3. Our World

4. Chosen

5. Over The Mountain

6. Bathtub

7. High Heeled Woman

8. Morning's Breaking The Rules

9. Orphan Girl

10. Time's A Hoax

11. Hollywood

12. Be My Sailor

13. Mittens

Comments

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fan65
Want more of her!
Report as inappropriate
Saw her with the Jennys in Paradise CA. yesterday. Awesome voice and GREAT show
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cmmoran68
Just saw her at a benefit. Great voice. A truely talented, cheerful person.
Report as inappropriate
What a voice
Report as inappropriate
Great, great voice. I've heard her on A Prairie Home Companion from time to time.
Report as inappropriate
morning_hawk
She's with The Wailin Jennys now. They are awesome too!
Report as inappropriate
belliott74
She reminds me of Gillian Welch. Dig it.
Report as inappropriate
She sounds like Kathy Matea to me.
Report as inappropriate
gailplemmons
I love her. She is on Prairie Home Companion often.
Report as inappropriate
dvdfan2k
Sounded like Priscilla Ahn to me.

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