For over a decade, jazz singer Carol Kidd has managed to consistently pull in accolades, "Best Awards," and honors from an arena consisting of all-time greats such as Peggy Lee, Ella Fitzgerald, and Sarah Vaughan. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Kidd has known since she was five years old that she was a singer. While raising three children and running a hotel, she sang part-time all over Britain, performing on-stage and on television. Her full-time professional career began in 1990 when Frank Sinatra issued her an invitation to appear live with him at Ibrox Stadium, Glasgow, in front of a capacity crowd. British jazz lovers gave rave reviews and Kidd was invited to sing at London's internationally acclaimed Ronnie Scott's Club, where she was heard by Tony Bennett. The momentum of her success picked up and she was voted the Best Performer at the Edinburgh International Jazz.
In 1990 she also signed with Linn Record, and the label released her debut album, The Night We Called It a Day. The album was voted Best Jazz Recording at the U.K. Musical Retailer's Awards. After being named Best Vocalist at the Cannes International Jazz Awards, Kidd began to receive invitations to appear all over Europe, the Far East, and the United States.
Kidd's respect for the integrity of lyrics often set her apart from other jazz singers, but it was her combination of big band songs and jazz, always sung in perfect pitch, that captured fans. Linn released her sophomore album, I'm Glad We Met in 1991, and Kidd continued performing worldwide throughout the '90s. In 1998, Linn released one album for her, and the Honest label released two more, including the extra popular All My Tomorrows. Honest also came out with a compilation, The Best of Carol Kidd, Vol. 1, in 1998.
In April 1998, Kidd had the honor of presenting the prizes at The Duke of Edinburgh's Awards, held at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh. That same year she met with the Queen and Prince Philip in Windsor Castle at a Reception for the Arts, and she was also listed on The Queen's Birthday Honours List. This was followed in October 1998 by Prince Charles presenting her with the MBE (Services to Jazz) award in Buckingham Palace, and his also requesting that Kidd send him some of her CDs.
Some of the other awards bestowed on Kidd during the '90s were: Best Vocalist from Cannes International Jazz Awards; Best Performer, from Edinburgh Jazz Festival; Best Vocalist, from U.K. Jazz Awards; and Best Jazz Recording, from U.K. Music Retailers Awards.
In 2000, Linn released both the compilation Linn Box Two and the album Crazy for Gershwin, which reflected the world's love both for the endearing Gershwin songs and for Kidd. By 2001 three of her tracks had become theme songs for TV soaps in Asia where she had become a major star. In Korea, her rendition of "When I Dream" became the background music for the Korean film Shiri, and she held the number one spot week after week on the Asian Music Box charts over names like Britney Spears, Celine Dion, and Mariah Carey.
Linn released A Place in My Heart, with Kidd singing with the legendary Robert Farnon Orchestra, in May 2001. Farnon (born in 1917, Toronto, Canada) lives in Europe and has decades of big band experience composing, arranging, and conducting popular and light music. Recording together, Kidd and Farnon pulled rave reviews with 12 favorite tracks such as "Pennies From Heaven," "The Sunny Side of the Street," "I Get Along Without You Very Well," and "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered." Kidd filled the rest of 2001 with three major concerts in Singapore and one in Cambodia, plus returning once again to her homeland to do a major concert at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. ~ Eleanor Ditzel