At the tender age of 20, New York vocalist Jane Monheit was the first runner-up in the 1998 Thelonious Monk Institute vocal competition, winning a $10,000 scholarship to further her musical education.
Judges couldn't exactly place her sound, which blended natural elegance with a potent yet impressively controlled presentation, and by 2000, Monheit had joined Diana Krall as one of the most highly touted female talents in jazz. That May she signed to N-Coded and released her debut, Never Never Land. Angelic and conservative, Monheit's structured set of ten popular standards illustrated her still-emerging vocal talents. Come Dream with Me arrived in 2001; it consisted of several standards as well as a few lesser-known jazz compositions. The album wasn't as widely praised as her debut, but her growth as a performer was evident. She released In the Sun in 2002, Taking a Chance on Love in 2004, the holiday-themed Season in 2005, and Surrender in 2007. The Lovers, The Dreamers and Me arrived in 2009, featuring her version of the classic Muppets ballad "The Rainbow Connection." A year later she released Home on Emarcy, and in 2013, she released her ninth studio album, the Gil Goldstein-produced Heart of the Matter. Two years later, she was the featured vocalist on pianist David Benoit's first collection of vocal songs, 2 in Love. ~ MacKenzie Wilson, Rovi