"one second after you opened your mouth, i knew you were the real thing."
Jack lecompte - drummer
Lisa Steele was born in Long Island New York and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. She was raised in a family of musicians; her grandmother Love was a classical pianist, her Uncle David Lofton is a virtuoso jazz guitarist and her mother Ramona Wright played the cello in the Scottsdale Symphony Orchestra. While studying English literature and French at Arizona State University in the 1990’s, Lisa took an interest in singing and began jamming with local bands in the area. She often sat in with funk band Polliwog and was soon invited to sing lead in an experimental jazz collective called Scribble. One night after a gig for yet another folk band she was singing in, Paul Lamb recruited her to sing backing vocals for his newly formed funk-rock group The Glory Revival.
After a year of performing with The Glory Revival, Lisa caught the attention of jazz orchestra conductor and drummer Dave Cook, who invited her to sing with his orchestra at an upcoming show. Performing with world-class musicians was a thrilling experience for her and she found the world of jazz a perfect fit for her voice and musical ambitions. In 2000 Lisa moved to Los Angeles beginning a career in the corporate world and leaving her musical aspirations behind. In 2009 she got inspired to create music again and began singing jazz at local haunts in town.
Photographer: L. Aviva Diamond