Venue Details

Jewish Community Center of San Francisco -- Kanbar Hall
3200 California St. San Francisco, CA 94118
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Linda Tillery is a veteran vocalist, percussionist, producer and cultural historian whose career has spanned 34 years. Since the 1960’s, Tillery has been regarded as one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s most versatile singers. Her powerful, shimmering alto voice has been showcased in such groups as the Loading Zone, Zasu Pitts Memorial Orchestra, the Solid Sender’s and Bobby McFerrin’s Voicestra.

A native San Franciscan, Linda has Texas soul, rooted in her mother’s stories and food, and her uncle Tom Anderson’s deft blues whistle. These Texas expatriates anchored her earliest memories in an older musical tradition when the contemporary sound pronounced it old-fashioned. The sound of artists such as Muddy Waters, Elmore James, Bill Doggett, Dinah Washington, Clyde McPhatter, Faye Adams and Ruth Brown were all a part of Linda’s early music education.

Whether as vocalist, percussionist or producer, Tillery has performed on over 100 recordings by and with such artists as the Whispers, Boz Skaggs, Turtle Island String Quartet, Huey Lewis and the News, Holly Near, Santana, Hans Theessink, Kenny Loggins, Eric Bibb, Taj Mahal, Kelly Joe Phelps, Bonnie Hayes, Keola Beamer, Bobby McFerrin, Ray Obiedo, Wilson Pickett, Odetta, Richie Havens and many others. She has contributed vocals to the Marlon Riggs films “Color Adjustment”, “Fear of Disclosure”, “No Regrets” and “Black Is, Black Ain’t”. In 1993 Tillery narrated the award-winning Pacifica Radio program " A Burst of Light", A Tribute To Audre Lorde."

In the 90’s Linda took command of an even broader repertoire, tapping into the diverse resources of African American roots music. She shares with us the historic beginnings of Black music through Work Songs, Spirituals, Play Songs, Field Hollers, Moans and Ring Shouts. To deepen her understanding of this music’s deep Southern roots, Linda has made several trips to Georgia, S. Carolina and N. Carolina where she has interviewed and sung with many local folk artists.

An articulate and provocative speaker, Linda is in demand both as vocal coach and lecturer. She has conducted workshops for St. Mary’s College (Moraga, Ca.) , the Center for Christian Studies (Toronto), The Muse Choir of Cincinnati, The Oakland Symphony Chorus, The Universal Gospel Choir of Vancouver, Mutama , Silicon Valley Gay Men’s Chorus, The Oakland Youth Chorus, Copper Wimmin’, and the MIT Concert Choir.

If you would like to learn the tradition of call and response, and the rhythms that drive this music and give it vitality, Linda will teach you how to approach learning with the ears, eyes and the heart.

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