Marlene VerPlanck Celebrates 20th CD with U.S. & European Tours

Vocalist Marlene VerPlanck celebrates her 20th CD, "Once There Was a Moon, " at concerts in New York and Florida throughout February. A master of the Great American Songbook, she will present music from her new CD as well as some of her favorite standards. Tour dates include:

Saturday, February 7, 2009 ~ 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. ($20-25): Holley Hall, 709 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL (941) 953-4252; featuring Ron Texeira, piano; Ron Pirtle, bass; Dennis Walton, drums

Sunday, February 8, 2009 ~ 2:00 - 4:30 p.m. ($7-10): Cocoa Beach Country Club, 500 Tom Warriner Blvd., Cocoa Beach, FL (321) 728-1342; featuring Ron Texeira, piano; Ron Pirtle, bass; Dennis Walton, drums. Presented by the Space Coast Jazz Society, the concert is a tribute to the 100th birthday of Johnny Mercer.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009 ~ 8:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. ($25.00): Iridium Jazz Club, 1650 Broadway at 51st Street, New York, NY (212) 582-2121; featuring Barry Levitt, piano; Jon Burr, bass; Ron Vincent, drums

Sunday, February 22, 2009 ~ 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. (Free): Manhasset Public Library, 30 Onderdonk Road, Manhasset (516) 627-2300

Tuesday, February 24, 2009 ~ 8:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. ($10-15): The Baha'i Center, The John Birks Gillespie Auditorium, 53 West 11th Street (between University Pl & Broadway) (212) 222-5159; featuring Tedd Firth, piano; Steve LaSpina, bass; Ron Vincent, drums

Marlene continues the celebration on a European Tour February 27 - March 29.

Throughout her career, Marlene VerPlanck has stuck to her guns, paying loving care to the great standards and new songs from our finest composers. Songwriter Hugh Martin ("Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas") expressed it well: "We know our songs are safe in the hands of Marlene VerPlanck, and she will sing them better than anyone else."

Millions of people first heard Marlene's crystal-clear voice anonymously, on radio and television, when she touted the merits of dozens of commercial products, including "Mm-mm good, mm-mm good, that's what Campbell's Soups are..." However, she got her start in the big-band business, as a very young vocalist with Charlie Spivak and Tex Beneke. During a brief stint with the last Dorsey Brothers Orchestra, she met her future husband, musician-arranger Billy VerPlanck.

In time, Marlene became one of the nation's busiest studio singers, backing up vocalists ranging from Frank Sinatra and Mel Torme to Kiss. Following appearances on Alec Wilder's historic National Public Radio series, "American Popular Songs, " in the 1970s, Marlene emerged as a leading solo performer. Appearances at Carnegie Hall, Michael's Pub and the Rainbow Room brought rave notices, and national TV shows, including "Entertainment Tonight, " "The Today Show" and CBS's "Sunday Morning, " featured profiles of the increasingly popular singer.

Today, Marlene performs across North America and Europe, featuring music from her 20 critically-acclaimed solo CDs. The albums include exciting arrangements scored by her husband, Billy VerPlanck, with accompaniment by many of America's finest musicians. In addition to her Audiophile albums, Marlene joined Mel Tormé and Julius LaRosa with the Glenn Miller Orchestra on "In a Digital Mood, " the first big-band CD to go gold. Also, at the personal request of Richard Adler, the renowned composer of "Damn Yankees" and "The Pajama Game, " Marlene recorded some of Adler's most memorable music on "You Gotta Have Heart: The Songs of Richard Adler."

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