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My View: Destined for Jazz Super Stardom – Veronica Swift

My View: Destined for Jazz Super Stardom – Veronica Swift

Just when you think you’ve heard all the great Jazz music imaginable over the years at Birdland,  the “Jazz Corner of the World” and Gianni Valenti then present someone who raises the bar another notch.  Vocalist Veronica Swift who defies gravity with her sensual voice, boundless technique, and creative melodic improvisations is a singer destined for musical super stardom.  She also happens to be 24 and is already recognized around the country as one of the top young jazz singers.  In the fall of 2015 Veronica won second place at the prestigious Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition.  In 2016 she was asked to perform a concert of her own at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center in NYC and she was a guest artist with Michael Feinstein at Jazz at Lincoln Center with the Tedd Firth Big Band with Marilyn Maye and Freda Payne.  Veronica first appearance at Jazz at Lincoln Center was at age 11 when she performed at the “Woman in Jazz” series at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola

In 2017 she started her residency at Birdland .  Veronica appears at Birdland with the Emmet Cohen Trio.

Emmet Cohen is a multifaceted American jazz pianist and composer who has emerged as one of our generation’s pivotal figures in music and the related arts.  A recognized prodigy, Cohen began Suzuki method piano instruction at age three, and his playing quickly became a mature melding of musicality, technique and concept..  Downbeat observed that his “nimble touch, measured stride and warm harmonic vocabulary indicate he’s above any convoluted technical showmanship.” 

The pairing of these two young artists in their current Birdland engagement is a sensational musical experience.  Veronica parents are renowned jazz pianist Hod O’Brien and celebrated jazz singer/educator/author Stephanie Nakasian.  At the performance we attended Veronica asked her mother Stephanie to join her for a number.    

Veronica Swift

Emmet Cohen & Veronica Swift



Stephen studied at the Manhattan School of Music. Besides being a pianist, Stephen’s business career was in the Fashion Industry. He was CEO of a textile manufacturing facility and President of an international textile machinery company. Stephen was on the Board of Directors of the “First All Children’s Theatre” which brought the Stephen Schwartz musical The Trip and Captain Louie to the Kennedy Center in Wash DC. His wife Eda, an interior space designer and classical pianist was on the Board of Barrington Stage Company and is still active at BSC. Stephen’s photographs, videos and articles appear on, and The New York Observer. He is active in the entertainment events at the Friars Club, where he is a member. Stephen is also an Honorary Board Member of The Society For The Preservation of The Great American Songbook. Stephen

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