SMOOTH CRUISE: Rachelle Ferrell

Spirit of New York, Pier 61/Chelsea Piers

August 15th, 6:30PM
August 15th, 9:30PM

Rachelle Ferrell: I Can Explain

Rachelle Ferrell: Sister

New York’s Premier Summer Jazz Series Returns…

Join us Wednesday, August 15th for a Smooth Cruise with the always-captivating Rachelle Ferrell at 6:30pm or 9:30pm aboard the Spirit of New York.

Celebrate the Smooth Cruises’ 15th year on the Hudson, aboard The Spirit of New York, located at Pier 61, Chelsea Piers (23rd St & West Side Hwy). Experience this one-of-a-kind LIVE JAZZ concert series as you cruise down the river enjoying stellar views of the Statue of Liberty and the breathtaking Manhattan skyline.

The Smooth Cruises sell out quickly, so get your tickets today!


Rachelle Ferrell began singing at age 6 — which may have contributed to the development of her amazing six plus octave range. Her remarkable range also includes the ability to sing her highest notes in the “whistle register.” As a youngster, she also received classical training in violin and by her teen years she was playing piano at a professional level. While still a teen, she began performing professionally, accompanying herself on piano, singing both pop and jazz songs, and writing much of her material herself. Enrolled in Boston’s Berklee College of Music, she further developed her skills in singing, arrangement and songwriting.

Besides her success as a jazz singer, Rachelle is also well respected in pop, R&B, gospel, and classical music. As an accomplished pianist, she has worked with Lou Rawls, Patti LaBelle, Vanessa Williams, and George Duke.

Blue Note Records’ Bruce Lundvall heard her demo in the late ‘80s and went to catch her live. While the demo included only pop songs, this particular performance was strictly jazz. Finding Rachelle’s command of both styles compelling, Lundvall signed her to a contract calling for one pop album and one jazz. She actually recorded her jazz album first, but her label released “Somethin’ Else” in Japan and Europe, where jazz had a wider mainstream following than in the states. She then began a lengthy tour of both Europe and Japan where her popularity flourished.

Rachelle’s other 1990 album “First Instrument,” was also released in Japan 5 years prior to its US release (where it was considered her debut album). She recorded it with Tyrone Brown (bass), Eddie Green (piano) and Doug Nally (drums) plus an all-star lineup of musicians including pianists Gil Goldstein and Michel Petrucciani, keyboardist Pete Levin, trumpeter Terence Blanchard, bassists Stanley Clarke and Kenny Davis, and tenor saxophonist Wayne Shorter. Rachelle’s one-of-a-kind spin on now-standards like Rodgers & Hart’s "My Funny Valentine,” Cole Porter’s “What Is This Thing Called Love,” and Sam Cooke’s “You Send Me,” quickly captured the hearts of Japanese jazz enthusiasts and later US jazz fans.

As the versatile songstress released more albums over the last two decades and her popularity has grown further still, she has stood strong, resisting the efforts of some in the industry to force her to narrow her musical range to just jazz or pop.

Cruise with us on Wednesday, August 15th and experience Rachelle Ferrell’s stunning vocals along with gorgeous views of the NYC skyline.