When Carrie Wicks steps up to sing, her shy, demure manner gives you the impression that she just came from her day job as a librarian. Then she counts her band off, closes her eyes, and proceeds to mellifluously swing her butt off, unassumingly drawing the audience in all the while. At ease and unhurried, she meanders in and out of a medium swing, taking notice of every detail, seemingly to lag a mile behind the beat to examine the intricacies of an embellished chord, only to magically appear right in time without missing a step.
Her early musical background included playing viola in Summit, New Jersey, singing harmonies during middle school in a church choir in Dorset, Vermont, and then playing cornet in jazz band in high school. But it wasn’t until the fall of 2001, while living out in the woods of Indianola, Washington, when she ferried across the Sound for her first jazz-singing workshop in Seattle, that she fell for the bright light of urban jazz. Since then Ms. Wicks has been focusing on jazz vocals and collaboratively composing songs with bassist Ken Nottingham for the Bushwick Book Club of Seattle and pianist Nick Allison; she also harmonizes with Aria Prame as Night-n-Gale and has assisted in producing eight variety shows called the Big Gig at the Triple Door with Billy Brandt. She’s gained notice for her lustrous, burnished tone; her uncanny sense of phrasing; and a delivery that’s both understated and passionate.
In 2010 her debut CD, I’ll Get Around to It, catapulted her to national acclaim, reaching to #26 in the JazzWeek charts. She followed it with Barely There in 2012, and her third album, Maybe, which released in October 2015. A Seattle resident, she has performed at Tula’s, the Triple Door, the Royal Room, the Sorrento Hotel, Vito’s, St. Clouds, Egan’s Ballard Jam House, and other area venues.
Ms. Wicks is a three-time nominee for Seattle’s Earshot Jazz Golden Ear Award “Vocalist of the Year” for 2012, 2015, and 2016.