Salena JonesView In iTunes
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Born in Newport News, VA, in 1944, Salena Jones (real name: Joan Elizabeth Shaw) would — over the course of a 60-plus-year career — become one of the leading vocalists of swing music, performing in a number of countries in Europe and Asia and recording a number of albums. Jones got her first break at the famed Apollo Theater in New York, winning a talent contest that resulted in a record deal. She spent the early part of her career touring and performing with such leading lights as Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, and Duke Ellington. Her first forays overseas, to Spain and the U.K., were in the mid-'60s and were to begin a life spent mostly outside the rather fickle confines of the United States. In 1978, she made her first appearance in Japan and performed there on an annual basis. By the first decade of the 21st century, she had performed on most continents, recorded more than 40 albums, and sang at the 2006 Shanghai International Jazz Festival.