Meet Anita Wardell

Article by Thomas Cunniffe,

The distance between London and New York is just over 3400 miles, and traveling that distance by air takes about 6 hours. It’s not cheap to fly across the Atlantic (although that may change in the coming months), but it is an essential trip for jazz musicians to make if they want the benefits of worldwide fame. American musicians have long known that European jazz audiences are generally more appreciative than domestic crowds, and European musicians realize that their fame can grow exponentially when heard by the right American ears.

Consider jazz in London. The UK’s capital has a thriving jazz scene, but there are many worthy English jazz musicians who are virtually unknown on this side of the Atlantic. For every Cleo Laine or Tubby Hayes that has achieved success in America, there are several worthy musicians who aren’t well-known because they haven’t toured or recorded in the US. One of those worthy musicians is vocalist Anita Wardell.

Best known as an outstanding scat singer, she is also a skilled writer and performer of vocalese, and a sensitive interpreter of standards and jazz originals. She’s collected several awards, including a recent prize for Best Jazz Vocalist from the British Jazz Awards, and her artistry has inspired accolades from fellow singers like Mark Murphy, Roseanna Vitro and Kate McGarry. Yet, up until now, Wardell’s albums have only been available as high-priced imports, and she has made limited trips to the east and west coasts of the United States…

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New CD: The Road

Released on the Specific Jazz label, August 26th 2013. It features the fantastic Robin Aspland, Jeremy Brown and Tristan Mailliot, with special guests, Adriano Adewale and Guillermo Hill.

Available on, iTunes or

Visit for CD review and Anita's 10 influential and loved CD's.

Upcoming Events

Fri, 16th Feb 2018

Brighton Performing Arts Centre
Swing The Beat That Shook the world

Sun, 18th Feb 2018

Brighton Performing Arts Centre
Swing The Beat That Shook The World

Sat, 24th Feb 2018

Doo-bop bar
Doo-Bop serves up a double bill of jazz vocals par excellence. London based Anita Wardell, recipient of the BBC’s Best of Jazz award joins up with Australia’s own celebrated Michelle Nicolle for a night of high stakes singing. Jazz standards, vocalese, swinging Bebop, beautiful ballads and more. Both Anita and Michelle are regarded as masters of their art. A night not to miss. Doors open at 6.30pm. Show starts at 7.30pm. See below to book your tickets today.