Jerry Lawson: A Cappella Legend (The Persuasions) at Yoshi's
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The last date listed for Jerry Lawson was Monday December 26, 2011 / 8:00pm.
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Jerry Lawson, soul singer extraordinaire, is a national vocal treasure. Lawson is to A Cappella music what Elvis was to rock 'n' roll: the king, with the power to break or lift your heart at will. As music writer Rip Rense put it, "By any fair measure, Lawson is really one of the best singers of the last 50 years---up there with Sam Cooke, Brook Benton, Jerry Butler & Nat King Cole."
As the former lead singer, arranger and producer of The Persuasions, Lawson’s fans and collaborators have included Frank Zappa, The Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Rod Stewart, the Grateful Dead, Liza Minnelli and four generations of vocal groups. Through it all, the Persuasions’ sound was defined by Lawson’s sweet and smoky baritone, his effortlessly organic vocal arrangements and his electrifying stage charisma. Groups such as Take 6, Rockapella, The Nylons and Boyz II Men have cited Jerry Lawson as a major influence.
Jerry started on his path to becoming a legend in Brooklyn, NY, where he and the other four original Persuasions began a 40-year career together. In 1969 Frank Zappa heard The Persuasions singing live over the phone in a New Jersey record shop, picked his jaw up off the ground and promptly flew the group to Los Angeles to record their first album A Cappella. Thus began a 22 album recording career that covered R&B, Soul, Country, Gospel & Pop but also included full album tributes to Frank Zappa, The Grateful Dead and The Beatles, and even an acclaimed children’s album.