One of the most celebrated vocal pop groups of the contemporary age, The Manhattan Transfer has enchanted audiences for more than 40 years with their pristine harmonies, sophisticated arrangements and jazz/doo-wop hybrid style.
Originally formed in New York City in 1969 by Tim Hauser and Gene Pistilli, the initial Manhattan Transfer lineup and sound differed greatly from the beloved version that would go on to win several Grammys and tour the world. It wasn’t until 1973 when Hauser reformed the band with three different vocalists and a more streamlined jazz/swing sound that The Manhattan Transfer truly took off. With fellow vocalists Alan Paul, Janis Siegel and Laurel Mass’ they scored their first hit, ‘Operator’ off their 1975 eponymous album on Atlantic Records. Two years later they proved their global appeal with their ‘Chanson D’Amour’ becoming a #1 hit in the UK and Australia. Singer Cheryl Bentyne replaced Mass’ the following year and the quartet then entered into their most productive and acclaimed stretch of their history. With 1979’s Extensions they received their first Grammy Award, winning Best Jazz Fusion Performance for their classic take on ‘Birdland.’ Another Grammy followed in 1981 for their now-iconic performance of ‘Route 66.’
In the 1980’s the band ventured into different styles including contemporary R&B and pop (Bodies and Souls), bossa nova and samba (Brasil) and vocalese (singing lyrical adaptations of beloved jazz solos). Vocalese, released in 1985, became their most acclaimed album, garnering 12 Grammy nominations and peaking at #2 on the Billboard jazz charts.
In recent years the foursome haven’t stopped exploring different sounds, recording a Chick Corea songbook, several Christmas albums and an orchestral record (The Symphony Sessions). They were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1998. Sadly, in 2013 the group’s founder Tim Hauser passed away. He was replaced by baritone Trist Curless, previously of the vocal group m-pact.
Tickets: $85, $75, $55, $40