Singer/composer/lyricist/arranger Susan Tobocman has been making a name for herself among audiences and musicians alike on the New York jazz scene for a number of years. Whether leading her own gigs in venues such as Zinc Bar (where she was the original artist-in-residence), Highline Ballroom, The Metropolitan Room, Shine, St. Peter's Church, Smalls, Birdland, Smoke, The Kitchen, or Cleopatra's Needle -- or the guest of luminaries the likes of Barry Harris, Al Foster, or the late Doc Cheatham (to name a few), Susan is equally comfortable working as a leader or sideman.
Susan’s extensive repertoire of standards from the familiar to the obscure is distinctly enhanced by her inventive arrangements, in addition to her original compositions. Among her influences, the Detroit-born singer cites Shirley Horn, Carmen McRae, Joao Gilberto, Dena DeRose, and Andy Bey. Not only is Tobocman the first-prize recipient of the prestigious National Scholastic Writing Award For Poetry, she has also received ASCAP composer grants for the past fifteen consecutive years. Susan collaborates as both composer and lyricist with some of New York’s finest jazz musicians, such as pianist David Hazeltine, trumpeter Jim Rotondi, and trombonist Steve Davis, as well as a host of others. Susan is signed with renowned jazz publisher/Grammy-winner Don Sickler and is an active member of his writing stable; she has written for two-time Grammy-nominee Denise Donatelli, Allan Harris, and Rodgers Grant among others.
Susan’s professional experience includes: numerous European tours as featured artist; two Off-Broadway musicals; an array of national television and radio jingles; touring as keyboardist and vocalist with Tom Tom Club (Talking Heads sans David Byrne); and, appearing on ‘Late Night with David Letterman.’ In addition to session work for the MCA and Atlantic record labels -- plus singing background vocals for Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Wailers, Richie Havens, and Garland Jeffries -- Susan is currently featured on four European jazz CDs, as well as her own CDs entitled ‘Watercolor Dream’ on Mike Longo’s Consolidated Artists label (CAP 932), and the recently released 'Live In Detroit With The Cliff Monear Trio.'