FV at the 55BAR in New York City, where she’s held a monthly residency since 2012. Truly missing performing in that space. Photo by Kyra Kverno

Sending greetings of love, safety and solidarity. I wish that you view this post through healthy eyes that are safe. Grateful to share that my family is healthy and safe as of now. Hard to describe these times but to say that they are turbulent and troubling. So many of us do not feel safe.

I am soul searching right now, looking inward and coming across difficult questions and answers. Processing all that has gone down these past 12 weeks of self-isolation. 

12 weeks y’all.

One inspiration is seeing absolute and resolute outrage that the killing of George Floyd all whose lives have been snuffed out by the police have spawned. Non-stop protests around the world.  The Pope even said George Floyd’s name. Suppressed people around the world have stood up. It’s an amazing thing to see, it’s forcing change and that occupant in the white house looks more like the anachronistic prop he really is. Like a hollowed out Andrew Jackson screaming into the wind…

If you can, please donate what you can to these organizations.  People are starving and jailed protesters need to be let out asap.  We’re still in a pandemic, we still need to stay safe. Jailed protesters are being thrown into cramped cells and easy way to spread the Coronavirus. If you want to help those protesting for racial, gender and trans equity – you may consider these places for your hard earned money to go. Thank you for considering.

The Anti-Racist Fund: https://antiracismfund.org/
Black Voters Matter: https://www.blackvotersmatterfund.org/
The Bail Project: www.bailproject.org
The Movement for Black Lives: https://m4bl.org/about-us/
Black Lives Matter Global Network: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/ms_blm_homepage_2019
Brooklyn Community Bail Fund: https://secure.givelively.org/donate/brooklyn-community-bail-fund-inc/let-my-people-go


I started a Patreon page. Oh Yes. as the the online universe opens up for shows, workshops and you name it – I found myself doing a few performances that were fun, some were even fulfilling.  Yet, as a concert in person seems further and further into the future, I’m going to develop my solo performance voice for starters through my brand spanking new Patreon page.  There will be more and when the time is right – I’ll do a proper launch. Still, check it out, look around and let me know your thoughts. I look forward to developing tone of content through that channel, looking forward to seeing some of you there. 
Here is the link: https://www.patreon.com/freesongsinger

New performances & workshops

Doing my talk EXPERIMENTS IN COMMUNICATING MESSAGE for the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation at the University of British Columbia, and in collaboration with Coastal Jazz & Blues Society, Western Front.  Talk will be about 45 mins with 15 minutes for questions. I feel at this critical moment, artists may want to know how to crystallize what they need to say through their art. Using myself, the great Bob Marley and more as examples of artists clear on what they want to communicate and how that process brings clarity to their artistic output.

July 8, 2020 – 1PM EDTONLINE
Creative Improvisation Workshop through LIVE from our Livingrooms. As part of their Creative Summit & Fundraiser, I’ll give a workshop on Creative Improvisation omg July 8th at 1PM EDT online. 

July 30, 2020 7PM EDTONLINE
FIRST Monthly Concert through Patreon – Happy Birthday to me.
This year – I’ll being saying Happy Birthday, giving a social distancing show from home on the same day the annual birthday hang would have been at the 55BAR. I hope you will stop by and raise a glass with me. We can all use something to celebrate. Further details about this show in early July.

August 9, 2020 at 4:40PMONLINE
Performing a concert presented by One Breathe Rising, the concert will focus on the beauty and glory of Black Lives.

Thank you for reading. Wishing you all peace, strength, health and love. People that have been kept down too long are fed up and tired. Whatever else is wrong with this country at this time, we still have the right to protest the government that is supposed to serve us. Every American has the right to lift our voices and state our needs plain.  Human rights over property rights. Hearts and souls are hurting, some are dying. May all who read this post have what you need to keep going. Stay safe!

I’m rooting for you. I’m rooting for us all.
In solidarity,

Hey there from FV’s quarantine central headquarters 🙂

Happy quarantine greetings.

Simply the strangest of times I’ve ever experienced in my life. Home in Brooklyn with my husband and so far – we are healthy, safe and keeping sane. I lost all my booked events but my work as an educator keeps going on and my husband is still employed so far. So we’re home going through this time in surreal motion. Keeping updated on the news, enclosed in a bubble on the hot seat. Venturing outside to shop or just plain take a walk can feel like traversing a minefield. careful of every step, watching your fellow pedestrian like a predator, keen on where they’ll go next.  Unsure of how they’ll interpret safe distancing. Sad to treat people like pariahs. Then there are the numbers. Constantly rising, nameless. Knowing that each is a name that had a family, friends, passions, demons, a job…a life.

Last week was especially hard.  Losing strong musical voices, forces with so much left to say was unbearable. Then a family member contracted the virus and was hospitalized for six days.  Covid-19 hit home and I was more afraid for their life than I dared to admit.  Gratefully, they have recovered now and back home.

We are fortunate.  I have not had to get on a subway for 4 weeks.  We have what we need to survive.  Balancing gratitude and fear.

I share this with you because I feel it’s important to be honest about what this feels real in this time, in acknowledgement that what we’re living through is a unique experience, bearing no precedent in my lifetime.  Or anyone else I know. Still important to share how hard it is, even when there is MUCH to be grateful for. We were not prepared for this moment, we could not know how we’d feel.  Much to sort out, on top of making sure you can survive.

I also want you to know of something fun + awesome coming UP!
On THURS APR 16, 2020, I’ll perform a solo concert online in a double bill with Caroline Davis. How cool is that?
INPUT/OUTPUT Magazine presents: Dinner and A Show!
Hosted by Magdalena Abrego
With guest performances by Caroline Davis and FV
I/O Magazine presents delicious recipes and live music in this new Instagram Live event series.

KALE ME MAYBE Schedule of events
5:30-6:00 p.m. Cooking Kale Nachos w/ Magdalena Abrego (Recipe TBA)
6:00-6:30 p.m. Caroline Davis performs
6:30-7:00 p.m. Fay Victor performs

*Donations will be collected for the performers via Venmo: @magdalenaaa or PayPal : maa.abrego@gmail.com — 100% of the revenue goes directly to the performers!
INPUT/OUTPUT is a platform dedicated to supporting women and non-binary individuals working in avant-garde, improvised, and experimental music communities in the United States.


Just a quick note that to share that if anyone is interested in online lessons for vocal technique & performance, composition or improvisation – please get in touch! I’ve been teaching online at the New School, developing new skills to teach online more effectively. So get in touch if you’re interested and we’ll take it from there. Looking forward to hearing from you and maybe working together online. Would be so nice.

I’m sending out well wishes to you all – wishing safety and health for your loved ones.  Hang in there and keep in touch! Not sure how long we’ll be in this space, but I will post and reach out regularly to see how everyone is doing. We will move past this, despite the horrific response from the current administration. In the meantime, let’s stay inside so we can all live to meet on the other side of this moment.


FV at home and having a good time! Photo: Kyra Kverno

Dear Friends and Music lovers everywhere,

No matter who you are, these are tough and trying times. As a New Yorker based in Brooklyn, I’m effectively living in a city under ‘voluntary lockdown’. Empty streets and safe distances are the norm now. We all expect it rules of engagement to get more stringent until we flatten the curve, as they say. I’m concerned for friends and family around the world and for the past week, as the cascading sounds of ‘CANCEL’ and ‘Social Distance’ have reverberated throughout out the communities I’m part of, I too have been laying low. Going out when necessary and just hunkering down. I slightly mourn my lost freedom yet I’d prefer that to getting infected myself or what concerns me most of all – giving it to someone that may not survive it. I take consolation that so far, so good – my husband and I and our housemates are OK. Grateful to live in a house at this moment, little need to worry about who may or may not be coming here. With some space, isolation is easier to bear as well.

It feels like a time to go inside, think about what’s important. Who’s important? Who do we need to keep in contact with? Who and what do we value? How many records, books or movies can I finally catch up on because of the luxury of time – for a little while. What courses can I take? How can I go even deeper into my vocal, musical, compositional practice? What can I do to help others at this time? Here are some links below to helpful places to start if you’re an artist that’s lost work, need funds and more. I lost a bunch of work (as you can see from my GIGS page) but I should be OK if the shedding is short-lived. I do worry about my peers.

If you can though, and if this time is survivable for you – try to find solace in the quiet spaces and discover or revisit passions, desires and all the things that bring you joy. Provided I and those I’m close to stay healthy, that’s one of my goals at this time.



Survey for Nightlife Workers, Freelancers, and Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

CoronaVirus is our Future

NYC Covid-19 Musician Support & Resources

Corona Relief Fund application

The BARN SONGS Tour, The ExPosure Series (Chicago) & The STONE are CANCELLED

Wishing everyone the best of health, sanity and safety in these very strange and turbulent times. Much love and wellness to you and yours. Until we meet again!

Spent the Holidays in the Netherlands, deep in the Dutch woods

Best wishes to you for a wonderful 2020!! May it be full of possibilities and opportunities for the life and world you want to live in. I’m excited about 2020 for so many reasons. For the first time I wrote out all I was thankful for in 2019 which I’ll share further below.

First UP, First SHOW

I am thrilled beyond measure to share that I’ll perform a DUO show with the iconic French bassist & vocalist, Joelle Leandre!
TUESDAY, January 7 2020
Zurcher Gallery
33 Bleecker Street, NY NY
8PM $20 at the door

Later in the month catch me with Maria Grand (January 8); Women in The Arts (Jan 11-afternoon): WinterJazzFest Tribute to Steve Dalachinsky (Jan 11-night); We Have Voice (Jan 17-University of Pittsburgh); SoundNoiseFUNK3 (Jan 22-24/Dartmouth/Greenfield, MA).
Details on these performances on the Upcoming Gig Section of the FV website.

Gratitude Walk through 2019

Personally 2019 was a great and transformative year for me.  I feel I came into my own as an educator, developing an ever clearer vision of how to teach vocalists AND instrumentalists how to improvise. I’ve also performed more of my own composed music than ever before, sharing compositions with ensembles from Berkeley, CA to Banff and I kept on developing Mutations for Justice, set for a grand performance later in 2020, closer to Election Day.

I am grateful for all the support I’ve received last year for my work and for the myriad opportunities to stretch and expand outward.  So many folks to thank, listing quite a few below. 

My deepest gratitude to:

*John Zorn and The Stone at the New School for giving me the first week of January 2019 to honor the great pianist/composer that would have been 100 on January 3rd 2019.  I curated 4 days of concerts attempting to show  different sides of Herbie Nichols’ flexible genius that were well attended to boot.  I want to thank all of the musicians that contributed mightily to the proceedings and the New York Times for including the concerts in their weekly jazz listings.

*Martine Syms, Ellen Alderman and The Graham Foundation for the Fine Arts (Chicago, IL) for inviting to partake in a day of events closing out the 5 month exhibit of Martine Syms. I performed in Syms’ piece Incense, Sweaters & Ice which premiered at MOMA in 2017. The day at the Graham Foundation centered around a workshop on confidence building, performance in DUO with the esteemed Chicago drummer/impresario Mike Reed + with Q&A over process, message and improvisation. 

*Brice Rosenbloom & Matt Merewitz and The Winter Jazz Fest for presenting Mutations for Justice on the Festival, our 2nd WIP performance of the project.  This performance made Rolling Stones top 10 wrap of the festival, expressing what I want this project to be about -small mantras that state what’s going on.

*Matana Roberts, for including myself and trumpeter Jaimie Branch in a set to open up the season at the Issue Project Room.

*The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music for bringing me on as a faculty member!!

*Brad Linde at the Georgetown Day School in Washington DC for inviting myself, pianist Anthony Coleman and bassist Ratzo Harris to celebrate the great Herbie Nichols Centennial through masterclasses and performances with the students and a full Herbie Nichols SUNG performance as well.

FV's 2019 Banff Ensemble (Banff Center for Arts & Learning)
FV’s 2019 Banff Ensemble (Banff Center for Arts & Learning)

*Our new landlords (who we found in Feb 2019) for our new and comfortable digs!

*William Parker and Hamid Drake for the invitation to record with them as a trio.  The *ISH is LIT! I understand it will be included in a box set to be released later this year.

*Billy Martin and Creative Music Studios for asking me to take part in a stupendous fund-raising concert that included the likes of Marshall Allen, Marc Ribot, Oteil Burbridge and so much more at Brooklyn Bowl and for inviting me to be an Artistic Director!

*Steven Bernstein and Verna Gillis for inviting me to celebrate Roswell Rudd, who we all miss so much, at City Winery. It was a heart warming and beautiful event.

*Jamaaladeen Tacuma for inviting me to be a part of the closing set on the Outsiders Festival in Philadelphia, PA.  I shared the stage with the legendary reedist Gary Bartz as well and H Prizm and Charles Treece. A musical highlight!!

*Amy Bormet, for inviting me to join her and a killing crew of musicians at the Art Summit at the Kennedy Center where we were tasked with composing a closing song that encapsulated all that happened throughout the day.  We did good! Phew.

*Billy Martin for inviting me to be a Workshop Leader at the Annual summer retreat in the Catskills for the Creative Music Studios.

*Vijay Iyer & Tyshawn Sorey for inviting me once again to be guest faculty at The Banff Center for the Arts and Creativity for the 2nd year in a row. Teaching there has changed me as an educator in the best possible way.

*The New York Jazz Workshop for asking me for the 10th consecutive year to conduct the International  Jazz Vocal Summit.

*Headlands Center for the Arts for rewarding me with a residency to write more of Mutations for Justice.  I also thank Headlands for inviting to perform a solo excerpt of Mutations for Justice as part of their yearly fundraising event.  A special shout out to the residents I spend time with there; a very, very special shout out to the Residency Manager, Holly Blake, who was warm and welcoming throughout.  Not mention the person that knows absolutely all there is to know about that amazing space on earth.

*Pianist/composer extraordinaire Myra Melford for inviting me into her UC-Berkeley classes to share music and my performance practices with her ensembles. It was a blast to work with Lisa Mezzacappa as well in Myra’s class as well as in a couple performances.  

*Steve Dickinson at the Poetry Center of San Francisco for organizing a wonderful day of events at San Francisco State and Center for New Music, effectively launching the DUO of Myra Melford and myself that we then took to the Western Front in Vancouver, BC (Canada) and Earshot Jazz Festival in Seattle, WA.  We tested beautiful ground in the afternoon talk and performance, already clarifying the ideas that moved into the evening concert.  A very unique connection of texts, song, form and improvisation. These opportunities are priceless to feel things out and happen far too little. Wonderful to work with Steve and everyone at the Poetry Center for this happening.

*guitarist/composer Jeremiah Lockwood for presenting me twice in the Bay Area while at the Headlands at Beth Sholom Congregation. First as part of a monthly listening series where I presented my compositions with Lisa Mezzacappa & Darren Johnston and then for Kol Nidre, which was my last day as Headlands Resident.  I’ll never forget it.

*pianist/composer/educator/curator JASON MORAN for getting an amazing exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.  And he was so generous with it, including a series of performances in the sculptures throughout the 5-month run. I was honored to be one of the featured performers and that event was so incredible on many levels.  So grateful and honored to have gotten the opportunity.

*Nick Lloyd and Carl Testa at Firehouse 12 for programming SoundNoiseFUNK in the Fall Series.  We took that opportunity to record a live album, due to come out in 2020 on ESP Disk. Grateful to make more music that more of you can hear with this amazing group! Sam Newsome (soprano sax), Joe Morris (guitar) and Reggie Nicholson (drums).

*the powerful musician and educator James Newton for inviting me to be an Artist-in-Residence at UCLA this Fall. An incredible learning experience. I gave a lecture for the students on the importance of communicating messages in one’s music; I rehearsed an instrumental ensemble to perform my music for a final concert. Grateful for the opportunity to work with these great students that gave so much to the music

 **Northern Spy Records for releasing BARN SONGS on November 15 2019, my 10th album as a leader!!! If you haven’t heard it yet, do have a listen at: www.northernspyrecs.com

Outside of my New School Class, I gave more talks/lectures than ever in 2019 on subjects such as *Jazz Composers on Jazz Composers (Banff), *Experiments in Communicating Message (UCLA & The New School), *Beginning Jazz Harmony (NYU), *Creative Improvisation (Creative Music Studios, Banff + Private course) Rhythm in Real Time w Myra Melford (University of British Columbia)

I’m ending with giving special shout out to all the people that inspired me with their vision, their faith and their love. Thank you, Thank you for being YOU Nicole Mitchell, Imani Uzuri, Tyshawn Sorey, Vijay Iyer, Marika Hughes, Joe Morris and my hubby Jochem van Dijk who never ceases to amaze me. I connected more to my family in 2019 too, even meeting my half-brother in person for the first time. I ran into cousin at Banff that I hadn’t set eyes on in 30 years and my closest aunt turned 70, celebrating with a huge celebration that bought so many of us together from far and near. And ending the year with my Dutch family was special too, the first time that has happened since I moved back in New York City in 2003.

Dream BIG y’all. No reason not to.  May you soar into the light in 2020.

Selfie w my sister and husband on the last day of 2019

Happy Holidays Friends,

I write this last note to you for 2019 as we sit in the middle of impeachment hearings for the current US president, as humanity hangs on the cusp of a climate catastrophe and as strongmen and the extremely wealthy around the world blatantly assert their superiority. It easy to feel helpless, hopeless, cynical and just afraid in light of all of this. Yet, we all have a say in how we conduct our own lives, how we impact others around us.  What are we doing to contribute to the world we want to see? We may think we’re so small in light of all this but I say NO! If our voices are for the positive forces want to see, we must use them how ever we can. And keep moving…there is still much to be hopeful about. 

In the past couple years, I’ve worked in academia much more than I have ever before.  Not only as Faculty at the New School but in doing appearances at various academic institutions around the country.  Interacting with students around jazz, improvisation and composition.  What I’ve witnessed over and over again is an openness in the students I’ve encountered.  A willingness to go down unknown roads with little resistance.  I’ve had immense conversations with young people about what they want to say with their art.  What they are grappling with and how their struggle for language and understanding keeps them on the search. It’s inspired me deeply and instilled even more faith that the music and the future is in good hands.  I don’t have children myself so gathering this understanding has been given me much more insight into where to focus my own energy as an educator. 

On that front, I just wrapped the last class (and performance!) for my Vocal Performance 5 Class at the New School.  It was a wonderful semester.  Very excited for Spring 2020 and happy to share as well that I joined Creative Music Studios (CMS) as an Artistic Director. Honored to be asked by Billy Martin (of Medeski, Martin & Wood fame) and Steven Bernstein to be a voice in this esteemed organization started by Ornette Coleman, Karl Berger & Ingrid Sertso.

Out in the bigger world – folks around the world are fed up, hitting the streets, putting and pitting their bodies against teargas and rubber bullets to say NO MORE. These times are scary and fascinating the geo-political shifting feels seismic and when the dust finally settles – who knows where we’ll be but if we have solidarity in our truth at least we won’t be alone.  

I won’t get any credit for it in the ‘jazz’ press (and rarely have I) but my work is always political.  Here’s a track from my latest album – Talk Talk (part 2) – about making up one’s mind on where we stand and please consider picking up a copy for your gift-giving pleasure this holiday season

Listen & Purchase BARN SONGS at www.northernspyrecs.com
check out DownBeat Magazine’s Preview of Talk Talk :http://downbeat.com/news/detail/premiere-fay-victor-talk-talk-part-2

More on being the change you want to see. I am so so very proud to report that the We Have Voice Collective that I am deeply honored to be a part of, we that launched an Open Letter in December 2017 and then went on to arduously and carefully crafted a Code of Conduct to Promote Safe(r) Spaces in the Performing Arts has been selected by the New York Times as ONE of the definitive moments in jazz of the entire decade of the 2010’s. 

Members of the We Have Voice Collective (WHV), taken at Roulette in May of 2018 by Heather Sten
l-r, b-f; Linda May Han Oh, Imani Uzuri, Tamar Sella, Kavita Shah
Ganavy Doriswamy, FV, Nicole Mitchell, Okkyung Lee, Sara Serpa, Rajna Swamivatham

Final concert of the year!

Last show of the year is very special indeed! Playing a DUO concert with the amazing drummer/composer Gerald Cleaver.  I’ve played with Gerald over the years in collective contexts but this is a FIRST.  And it’s Free.  The Brooklyn Rail wrote a nice lil preview.  

That’s happening here:
The Clemente, Room 203
107 Suffolk Street, NY NY 10002

Bring your kids! Last 10 minutes of the concert is interactive.

Please check the GIG section for all the coming appearances for 2020 (and keep checking back!)

FIRST Show in 2020 – a dream come TRUE!

DUO with the illustrious Joëlle Léandre (double bassist, vocalist)
Fay Victor/Joelle Leandre
TUESDAY, January 7 2020
Zurcher Gallery
33 Bleecker Street, NY NY
8PM $20 at the door

Be kind to yourselves and each other. Let’s figure out ways we can communicate better with each other. Somehow. Wishing all of us the best possible outcome for life, love and unity on this planet in the coming decade. Happy New Year!

Photo by Kyra Kverno…at home, BK, NY

BARN SONGS – Released November 15, 2019 on Northern Spy Records
FV-voice, compositions Marika Hughes-cello, Darius Jones-alto saxophone
Photoshoot for BARN SONGS by Chris Weiss

Dear Friends,

How are you? It’s been a moment since I checked in with you all, so much to share!
That’s right friends!! I’ve released a new record on Friday November 15th called BARN SONGS on the Northern Spy Records label. It a special project of songs my husband and bassist Jochem van Dijk and I wrote when we lived in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (along with two new compositions) re-imagined with contributions and sounds of cellist Marika Hughes and alto saxophonist Darius Jones.

Cellist Marika Hughes co-owns a barn outside of West Fulton, NY and when I decided that these tunes should be recorded, the barn felt like the right place. 

Nothing like having a regular gig, especially one that gives me the freedom to program how I like and expand. Since 2015, Marika, Darius and I would perform older compositions of mine and Jochem’s (pre FVE compositions). The more we performed them, they transformed and morphed into perhaps more ‘grown-up’ versions. I am thrilled with the results of the work and connection deep in the country.  If you check out Barn Songs, you’ll hear a bit of the countryside along the way.  
Already some press!

*NYT Playlist (11/15/2019)
You can listen/purchase on BAND CAMP ,
you can purchase BARN SONGS at northernspyrecs.com

I’m just back from LA! I was invited by the great flutist, co,poser & educator James Newton for an Artist-In-Residency at UCLA.  What an honor. I gave a lecture called ‘Experiments in Communicating Message’, expanding on a talk I gave at Banff in 2018. I also had the honor of rehearsing a fantastic student ensemble to develop my compositions for a concert on the final night of the residency.  A deep learning and incredible experience.  The first time I’ve presented a full concert of my mostly instrumental compositions and the students got into the music and played so well and full of passion. An amazing opportunity to have and I’m still floating on it. 

UCLA Student Ensemble ‘selfie’ with the great James Newton!

The great Patricia Nicholson Parker – Artistic Director for Arts for Art (Vision Festival, Evolving Festivals, InGardens…), a real powerhouse arts advocate in New York City especially around Free jazz and black expression. Patricia is turning 70 on November 19th and it’s a huge party along with a fundraiser for Arts for Art. Come on through! 

The Clemente
107 Suffolk Street

That’s all until December – please check the GIG section on the website to keep up with performances as well. Looking forward to a DUO meeting with the great drummer & composer Gerald Cleaver on December 15th at 3PM, also through Arts for Art.

Just in case you didn’t know!

The renaissance artist Jason Moran invited me to participate in his wonderful exhibit STAGED at the Whitney Museum of Art.  For two days (October 18 & 19th) it was a joy to perform with Herbie Nichols SUNG as well as a pre-release CD celebration of BARN SONGS.  Beautiful audience and production team.  Amazing experience! The exhibit lauched on September 20, 2019 and runs through January 2020, with performances throughout. Learn more here!

Herbie Nichols SUNG – Photo by Paula Court for the Whitney Museum

The Whitney appearances happened just after my return to NYC having spent a month in the Marine Headlands, just north of San Francisco.  I was there to work on the compositions for Mutations for Justice, my WIP musical diary of the current administration and it’s policies. While there in that incredible environment – I worked a lot with the great pianist/composer/educator Myra Melford! I came into her classes and worked with her students to develop my compositions with them.  That was so much fun and quite an opportunity.  These classes culminated in a concert with the students performing my and bassist Lisa Mezzacappa’s compositions +  trio performances with Myra, Lisa and myself. At the end of the residency, Myra and I went on a duo tour, playing and giving a talk in Vancouver as well as a set on the Earshot Jazz Festival. More to come on that front. 

Sun setting on Headlands Center for the Arts (Marin County, CA)

Thanks for reading, it’s been a busy autumn! 

Wishing you all well, much love to you all!

Hoping this message finds you all in peace and goodwill. I’m writing from the Marine Headlands in Northern California where I’m on residency at Headlands Center for the Arts. It’s an incredible place deep in nature, yet so close to San Francisco. I’m here for a couple more weeks to work on Mutations for Justice, a large work encompassing the current administration in the White House. There will be SO much more to say about that. For now, posting to send Autumn Greetings to you all and give a heads up on what’s happening this Fall. (Check the GIG section on the FV site to get specific details!)

This Fall is one of my busiest yet. While I’m out in the Bay Area – I’ll be performing the music I’ve composed and have been waiting to share with you all! Most of this music’s been written in the last 2-3 years and hasn’t been performed so I’m excited to make that happen while I’m here working with pianist Myra Melford (we have a bunch of appearances starting in October 2019 in the Bay Area, Vancouver & Seattle), Lisa Mezzacappa (double bass) and trumpeter Darren Johnston).

When I’m back to NYC, my first appearances are at the Whitney Museum of American Art as part of Jason Moran’s STAGED, his 5-month long exhibition at the Whitney started on September 20, 2019. Just a week later, my SoundNoiseFUNK project hits Firehouse 12 in New Haven, CT to perform and we hope create a LIVE recording for future release. A release much closer in the future is BARN SONGS, my next album out as as leader coming on November 15, 2019 on the Northern Spy Label with cellist Marika Hughes and alto saxophonist Darius Jones. Thrilled for you all to hear it! I’ll be back on the West Coast in November as well for a 4 day Artist in Residence at UCLA on the invitation of Dr. James Newton. Finally a NEW Creative Improv Course starts at the beginning of November – November 5th to be exact (spots are filling up)

Sign up to save your spot

In other news: I won’t be back at the 55BAR for a few months due to travel and dates of the major holidays coming up. Will keep you posted about mu next date there so I’ll end my performing year doing a set for Arts for Art in DUO with the great drummer/composer Gerald Cleaver on December 15, 2019.

Thanks for reading – much love and music from here,

Hello Dear Friends,

Summer greetings to you all! Getting in touch about my annual birthday HANG at the 55BAR on THURSDAY JULY 25 from 7-9PM with SoundNoiseFUNK (WooHoo!) and special guests joining the fun. This year is a slight change in me bringing in a working band that has NEVER appeared with me at the 55BAR. SoundNoiseFUNK with guitarist Joe Morris, soprano saxophonist Sam Newsome & drummer Reggie Nicholson and myself bought out Wet Robots on the ESP label in 2018 to amazing critical acclaim. 4.5 stars in DownBeat Magazine (including a HotBox appearance) and placing #4 in the Jazz Vocal Category on 2018’s NPR Jazz Critic’s Poll! Most important though is the great music we make and the deep connection we have. A joy to make music with these gentlemen plus the special guests who’ll join us on that day as well. Come on through!

FV Birthday HANG!

More news to share!
I’m hosting my next Creative Improvisation Workshop in November 2019!
>>November 5, 12, 19, Dec 3 2019//6-9PM
+ FINAL Concert for all participants
>>Friday, December 6 2019//7PM
Workshop & Concert Location
168 7th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215
(between 2nd & 3rd Avenues)
Sign-up to hold your spot//signup & payment due:
Tuesday, October 2nd, 2019

Thanks for reading, see you out there.

in a DUO with Marc Ribot at the CMS benefit on April 3rd at Brooklyn Bowl

Happy Spring!! Happy Spring?

If you’re in the same city I’m in Spring feels like an elusive dream, stopping by for a day to kiss us gently and then it’s cold, cold, cold again. It’s not great, but what can you do? I just remind my self of my years living in Amsterdam when Spring could feel the same and I muddle through.  This April we moved to a new home and my performing month started with a stellar benefit for the great, great Creative Music Studio (CMS) started by Ornette Coleman, Ingrid Sertso & Karl Berger, now co-run by musicians Steven Bernstein and Billy Martin. CMS is still going strong with workshops, performances and more (I’ll be heading up in June to teach and play myself!). So what an experience to feel all the love for this organization in the folks that came out and graced the stage including Marshall Allen, Marc RibotCyro Baptista, Ingrid Sertso, Oteil Burbridge, Peter Apfelbaum, Joe Russo to name just a few, not to mention the packed house. Since then, it’s all about unpacking the new home and getting my teaching studio together (NOW it is!) before a blizzard of amazing shows coming up next week in NYC, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.  Tell all your friends! Here’s what’s coming up deeper into April…

On the HighLine
Special Performance for the Reveal of
Simone Leigh
Brick House
On the High Line/the Spur
30th St. and 10th Ave.


City Winery 10th Anniversary: Honoring the great, great Roswell Rudd
Featuring Sexmob with John Medeski, Nels Cline, FV, Trombone Tribe + + +
tickets: https://citywinery.com/…/city-winery-10th-anniversary-remem…

Marika Hughes, FV, Darius Jones

Songs WE Love/FV 55 BAR Monthly Residency
FV – voice
Michael Attias – alto sax
Dezron Douglas – double bass
Reggie Nicholson – drums
55 Christopher Street
No cover, 2 drink minimum

The Outsiders Festival – Philadelphia, PA
Performance w Jamaaladeen Tacuma & Gary Bartz!!!!!
also featuring sets by New Ghost Ensemble, Retrograde, Marco Oppedisano (Guitar) and more.
Community Education Center (CEC), 3500 Lancaster Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19104

The Human Journey: Creating the Story of US
With Amy K Bormet (pianist, bandleader)
FV (voice)
Sarah Hughes (tenor saxophone)
Karine Chapdelaine (bass)
Shirazette Tinnin (drums)
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
2700 F Street, NW Washington, DC 20566

This will be an improvised performance based on the stories told during the daytime Summit.

Finally I want to share an outtake of a piece called ‘There They Are”, one of the compositions on an upcoming release with Darius Jones (alto saxophone) and Marika Hughes (cello).  I posted this video on my FB page a couple weeks back and it’s received the most attention and praise of anything I’ve ever shared.  https://youtu.be/5YVzW7WRLSQ
I think it’s special too! Not sure when the record will be released (working on it) and will keep you posted right here.

I hope all is well in your world.
Thanks for reading and see you out there!


New House!

FV first ever Stone Residency honoring the 100 birthday of pianist/composer Herbie Nichols

Dear Friends,

2019 started with a BANG! January was an intense month that at moments I wondered if I’d get through! 

January started off with my first curation of The Stone dedicated to the 100th birthday celebration of the incredible pianist/composer Herbie Nichols which to my mind was a resounding success. Wonderful houses all four nights, an amazing preview (with FV photo to boot!) in the New York Times, so much love throughout from the community including the generosity of the musicians that gave their time and the amazing folks that came out, some from as far away as DC and continued to come every night. I am so grateful to everyone’s show of support over the work of Nichols’ genius and I for one was thrilled to sit through the deep immersion into his musical world.

After this celebration, I went to Chicago for a day of events at the Graham Foundation for the Fine Arts including amazing duo set with drummer/impresario Mike Reed + a workshop on Vocal confidence.  This was all attributed to the amazing exhibit of Martine Syms, who’s work I’m happy to be a part of. Martine had a FIVE month exhibition at the Graham and these events were on of the culminating events of her run.

We Have Voice, the 14 member collective that launched a Code of Conduct for the Performing Arts were Keynote Speakers at the Chamber Music America Annual Conference 2019.

Then on to WinterJazzFest with Mutations for Justice + a wonderful set with Maria Grand!! I’m so excited about this project and much more to come on this front in the near future. What I can share is I’ve been honored to receive a Headlands Residency to finish this project.  Our performance at the WinterJazzFest made it in to Rolling Stone magazine as one of the Top 10 moments of the Winter JazzFest 2019. Wow. 

Some other amazing happening in January: joining Matana Roberts and Jaimie Breezy Branch open up the season at the Issue Project Room, being part of two panels with We Have Voice (WHV): The Jazz & Gender Panel on the Winter Jazz Fest and the one half of the Keynote Speakers at the Chamber Music America Conference. Acclaimed author & scholar Ta-nehisi Coates was the other.

Last but far from least – I officially joined the faculty of the New School in New York City, currently teaching Vocal Performance 5 in the Vocal Performance department. I’m still getting settled but already enjoying the students and the work! Check this lovely piece on Medium talking about the new faculty and I’m honored to be included…check it out here!

Check out the GIGS link to check out all the gig news for FEB and beyond! Been updating upcoming performances as they come in.

Please note there’s no 55BAR this month but back at on THURS, MAR 28 2019.
Thanks for reading friends!
Wishing you love, music, safety and peace!

Mutations for Justice! A wonderful set on the WinterJazz Fest and much more to come. l-r Michael Vatcher (drums), Luke Stewart (double bass), Jaimie Breezy Branch (trumpet), Mazz Swift (violin)