Obituaries

Ethel Ennis, Baltimore's 'First Lady of Jazz,' dies at 86

Ethel Ennis, Baltimore's 'First Lady of Jazz,' dies at 86

Ethel Ennis, Baltimore’s “First Lady of Jazz” who during her seven-decade career performed with such musical luminaries as Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, the Miles Davis-John Coltrane Sextet and Wynton Marsalis, and thrilled audiences at the Newport and Monterey jazz festivals, died Sunday from complications of a stroke at her Greater Mondawmin home.

She was 86.

Frank Sinatra once described Ms. Ennis as “my kind of singer.”

“She was not just a wonderful singer Ethel could do what the really great singers do and that is inhabiting a song and making it her own in a very special way,” said Andy Bienstock, a jazz scholar, WYPR vice president,...

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