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Lavay Smith


Amy Winehouse's various shortcomings make for big news these days, but thankfully, she's not the only throwback singer out there worth her weight in torch songs. Lavay Smith, San Francisco's residing queen of classic '30s and '40s jazz and blues, has been wowing plebeian crowds and fastidious jazz enthusiasts for years. With her seven-piece jump-swing band throwing down behind her, Smith maximizes her sophisticated, throaty voice's striking likeness to that of Billie Holiday, but she possesses her own bluesy tumble. With a repertoire that includes sultry crooning and boogie-woogie ballads about loving her fine daddy, Smith is a must-see.

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