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When Sunny Gets Blue
by Shirley Bunnie Foy
Shirley Bunnie Foy (1936 to 2016) was an American 'jazz' singer and musician. Shirley Bunnie Foy was born in Harlem, New York, USA, on October 13th 1936. At the age of 17, she started her career touring the Atlantic coast and Canada with an 'R&B' group called 'The Dell-Tones', an ensemble formed by Della Griffin, Gloria Lynne, Sonny Til, Slide Hampton and other notable vocalists and musicians. She settled in Paris in 1959, and after an engagement at La Calvados (a 'jazz' club near the Champs-Élysées), she toured with pianist Pierre Franzino (her future husband) in France, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and North Africa. In 1960, she participated at the first Jazz Festival of Antibes/Juan-les-Pins. In 1965, Foy performed in New York with Archie Shepp, and in the following years collaborated with trumpeter Charlie Shavers, bassist Arvell Shaw, drummer Papa Jo Jones and saxophonist Curtis Porter on compositions and arrangements for 16 voices. In 1975, she featured on the famous Archie Shepp album "A Sea of Faces", playing maracas and other percussion as well as singing. During her career, she worked in the US with other notable 'jazz' musicians such as saxophonist Johnny Griffin, drummer Art Blakey, pianist Randy Weston, organist Lou Bennett, vibraphonist Milton Jackson and in Italy with guitarists Franco Cerri and Bruno De Filippi, bassists Pino Presti and Stefano Cerri, pianists Enrico Intra, Sonny Taylor and Renato Sellani, drummers Gil Cuppini and Tullio De Piscopo, clarinetist Tony Scott and many more. From the 1990s, Foy lived in Nice, France, continuing her 'jazz' career there and working with musicians such as saxophonist Sébastien Chaumont, pianists Ronnie Rae and Jean-Sébastien Simonoviez, trumpeter François Chassagnite, drummers Laurent Sarrien and Yoann Serra, and bassists Bibi Rovère, Fabrice Bistoni and Dodo Goya. Her final album, "Shirley Bunnie Foy (60th Anniversary)", produced by Presti with Claudio Citarella, consisted of 17 songs performed by her from 1954 to 2009, featuring many renowned musicians. Shirley Bunnie Foy died from a heart attack in Nice on November 24th 2016, aged 80. [ Translated from: ]
Posted: 14th December 2016
Hundreds of very talented musicians pass away each year, some without much recognition at all. On "Rest In Peace", I aim to give them a fitting 'send-off', with a decent Tribute. I hope you will join me in marking their passing.....
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