“Donatelli makes it sound so natural to hit the dead center of each note, you can almost forget how rarely it occurs in the rest of the world. Her intonation combines accuracy with ease in a way most singers can only imagine.” … Neil Tesser, GRAMMY® winning Jazz Journalist.
Denise Donatelli is a multi GRAMMY® nominated jazz vocalist alternating between jazz and adult contemporary music.
Denise’s latest Savant recording Whistling In the Dark – The Music of Burt Bacharach (2021) marks her first concept album devoted to a single composer and her debut recording with legendary 4-time GRAMMY winning producer Larry Klein.
As a Savant Recording artist, Donatelli’s last three recordings Find a Heart (2015), Soul Shadows (2012) and When Lights are Low (2010) have collectively received four GRAMMY® nominations: three nominations for Best Jazz Vocal Album and one nomination in the Best Arrangement category. Previously, she recorded two albums, What Lies Within (2008), her first Savant Records release, and In the Company of Friends (2005) for Jazzed Media Records. She is also featured on GRAMMY® winner, Bill Cunliffe’s releases That Time of Year (2011) and Bachanalia (2017).
In addition to her GRAMMY nominations, Denise was honored as 2012 Jazz Vocalist of the Year by The Los Angeles Jazz Society, whose voting advisors included Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones and Johnny Mandel. She has also placed on Downbeat Magazine’s Critics Poll in Female Rising Star and Best Female Vocalist categories for five consecutive years.
Donatelli’s musical journey started in rural Allentown, Pennsylvania when she was only four years old with classical piano training that continued throughout her high school years. Her parents who were both musically inclined, subscribed to Columbia and Capital music clubs and gave young Denise access to a large collection of jazz albums. After a move to Atlanta, Georgia, she turned to singing jazz professionally, honing her skills with a jazz trio at the Ritz Carlton Hotel for several years. Eventually, she moved to Los Angeles where she immediately found her place in the community of well-respected musicians.
Her innate musicianship and recording successes have also translated to television where she has performed on episodes of The Simpsons and for TV promos including Frasier and Turner Classic Movies. Her on-camera work includes national and international commercials for such brands as CNN, Hyundai, Lexus, and Mercedes-Benz. `
Denise has performed nationally and internationally at leading jazz festivals, jazz venues, and universities where she also conducts jazz vocal master classes.
Denise is associated with the American Heart Association in memory of her son.