Powers, Buford : Eclectic
Buford Powers grew up in the community of Oakland, California with the sound of Jazz, Blues, R&B, and Gospel around him. Listening to such local standouts as Albert King, Lou Rawls, and Charles Brown, he developed a love for a broad range of male vocal stylings to go with his fondness for instrumental jazz. He soon found, through his singing with church choirs, that he too could accomplish an evocative connection with an audience. Upon discovering straight-ahead jazz at the age of 14, he then moved on to attending major festivals and shows, which he continued to do for the next four decades. Later, in the middle '70s, Buford was the sole proprietor of a nightclub in Oakland, which weekly featured local as well as international musicians. This gave him many opportunities to develop his sound. Buford later immersed himself even more deeply into the music world, and began honing his style more seriously. This is when the voices of Johnny Hartman, Arthur Prysock, and Billy Eckstein piqued his interest. As more and more people came to hear Buford, they would compare him to these great legends. The road, it seemed, became clear; to carry the torch, and fill the void that these great baritones left behind. In the '90s, Buford sought out mentors who would help him perfect his unique sound, finding along the way Mark Murphy, Kenny Washington, and Faye Carol. During this time he also began to perform at select venues in the San Francisco Bay Area, which in turn increased his popularity. He has been described by a local jazz DJ as 'the Bay Area's most romantic singer.' Buford's local demand led to the production of his first release in 2004, entitled 'Too Good To Be True.' This debut immediately found a home on KCSM, the Bay Area's only major 24-hour jazz station, which then led to a series of interviews. This balladeer will always be recognizable because of the long-established tradition he continues. It is undeniable that this beautiful talent will continue to produce some of the finest romantic music that the ear might ever hear. A million-dollar voice, whispering of soft romance, sung to you by the velvety smooth baritone sound of Buford Powers.