Tuesday, August 4, 2009


"Tammy's a great musician." -- Houston Person, Interviewed in S.F. Chronicle

Tammy Hall began playing piano at age four in Dallas, Texas. Her Mother was an aspiring classical concert pianist and her grandfather played piano at clubs on Saturday nights and at church on Sunday mornings. Tammy's earliest memories were of climbing up onto the piano bench at the tender age of two and picking out the notes and chords to songs she had heard in church or on the radio. Later she became the pianist for her Junior Choir rehearsal group and her elementary school's musical program.

It became evident that Tammy wasn't going to stop playing the piano, so both grandmothers pooled their resources together so she could receive private lessons. She then received classical training from ages 8 to 21. Her education was further rounded out by watching old film clips of Dorothy Donegan, Hazel Scott and Count Basie at her grandfather's projectionists (film) club. Tammy would sneak out to soak up this jazz unbeknownst to her grandmother, who disapproved of her listening to anything but classical music. These early experiences would form the triad of Tammy Hall's core sound: a fusion of Jazz, Gospel and Classical.

Soon, Tammy became the church organist for her godfather's church while simultaneously becoming involved in regional and national classical competitions. With several blue ribbons under her belt, she managed to win a fine arts music scholarship at the exclusive Hockaday School for Girls. Upon graduation, she received a music scholarship to Mills College in Oakland, California.

In 1987 she moved to Brussels and formed the group "Touche Différente." She performed both solo and with this group throughout Europe, playing venues including the Brussels Jazz Club, Club Machato, Der Zingel in Holland, the Ghent Music Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival, Antwerp Festival, Ostende Jazz Festival-Brugge, the Ferrari Club of Mechelen the Copacabana Club in Brussels, the Bierodrome Brussels, the Casino in Ibiza, and several Jewish festivals. Some of the players she collaborated with there include: Fabien de Griyse, Peter Cor, Gyle Waddy, Daniel Zannello, Mutzar Walley, Patrizio Battisti, and Noah Howard.

Tammy Hall returned to the San Francisco-Bay Area in 1989. She has since worked with award-winning cabaret singer Connie Champagne, chanteuse Debbie DeCoudreaux, jazz violinist Jeremy Cohen, Ruth Davies, Philip Hamilton, Etta Jones, Frankye Kelly, Veronica Klaus, Lady Mem'fis, Allison Miller, Kim Nalley, Denise Perrier, Houston Person, Liza Silva, Robert Stewart, David "Fathead" Newman, and Linda Tillery. Her arrangements have been used for live music performances, including Veronica Klaus At the Plush Room, TARC and A New Leaf Benefits and most recently, Equality California.

Ms. Hall maintains a very busy performance calendar accompanies the U.C. Santa Cruz Porter College gospel choir, and teaches privately. She is also a member of the highly acclaimed Montclair Women's Big Band, whose new CD was recently recorded at George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch. Her charity work includes performances for Help Is On The Way, Tenderloin AIDS Resource Center and Children's Hospital of Oakland's Miracle Network.

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