Vocalist Paul Marinaro, dubbed as having “one of the most beautiful vocal instruments in the business today” by Howard Reich of the Chicago Tribune, is a modern classic. With Chicago as his home base, Paul has become one of the most in-demand and respected male vocalists and has “taken his place among the top five male jazz singers active today.” (Scott Yanow, LA Jazz Scene)
Paul demonstrates a mastery of and an infectious passion for the material he chooses, allowing him to successfully command audiences with his fresh interpretations. At home, he is currently enjoying sold-out engagements in Chicago’s world-famous venues, including Joe and Wayne Segal’s Jazz Showcase, The Green Mill, Andy’s Jazz Club, and at Winter’s Jazz Club where he is currently in residence. He has been a featured performer at The Chicago Jazz Festival in 2014 and again in 2017 for an audience of 10,000 on the stage at the massive Pritzger Pavilion, where his performance with jazz legend Sheila Jordan earned rave reviews and was named “Best of 2017” (Chicago Tribune). He has earned “Best Performance of the Year” in the Chicago Tribune in 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2018; and “Best of Chicago 2015” in NewCity Magazine.
In 2013, Paul celebrated his widely acclaimed debut album Without a Song, a carefully crafted concept album stemming from and inspired by his father’s unfulfilled dream to have been a professional singer. For this album, Paul incorporated the beginnings of his love affair with music, when at the age of five, he found his father’s homemade 78rpm acetate discs in the attic, heard him singing “That Old Black Magic”, and was mesmerized. This scratchy recording of his father’s voice was Paul’s first musical inspiration…and it was restored and used to open his debut album 66 years later. Without a Song has gone on to receive widespread acclaim and national airplay, was named among the “Best of 2013” in the Chicago Tribune and has been prominently featured on NYC DJ Jonathan Schwartz’s “The Jonathan Channel”. Now in its third pressing, the album was re-issued in late 2015 as a deluxe, limited-edition, audiophile 2 LP Vinyl set. The album and its story went on to inspire acclaimed choreographer, Ron De Jesus, who premiered his original dance suite “Without a Song: Mic Check 1, 2” in April 2014, with Paul and his quartet performing the music live. Released in October, 2015, his first live album, One Night in Chicago, has also been critically acclaimed, being called “…a shining example of male jazz vocal at the top of its game.” (Midwest Record).
Since 2016, Paul has grown in national visibility and acclaim. He has enjoyed many highly regarded debuts across the US and Canada, including regular appearances at Toronto’s Jazz Bistro, and most notably at the world-famous Birdland Jazz Club in NYC, where Paul performed to sold out and enthusiastic crowds. In Chicago, at the stunning Auditorium Theatre, Paul appeared in an all-star celebration of Cole Porter in 2016, and of Ella Fitzgerald and Lena Horne in 2017, and an upcoming Stephen Sondheim program in 2019.
Paul is also a featured vocalist with The Chicago Jazz Orchestra, appearing in many festivals and concerts, including a recreation of the live album “Sinatra at the Sands” at the historic Studebaker Theater in May 2018 for which he received rave reviews, again earning the “Best of the Year” distinction in the Chicago Tribune.
For his July 2018 birthday concert, Paul returned to Birdland Jazz Club featuring special guest Sheila Jordan. The duo immediately demonstrated an uncanny and effortless rapport with one another and have several concerts scheduled together in 2019. Paul has also been chosen to be the sole vocalist in “The Oscar Peterson Story” at Jazz at Lincoln Center in Feb 2019 and will also be actively touring throughout 2019 for various Nat King Cole Centennial concerts, including appearances in Barbados and Copenhagen.
When he is not performing live, he will be busy in the studio recording his next album.
“Marinaro’s brisk tempo, alternate melody notes, velvety timbre, taut vibrato and translucent pianissimos immediately announced that this was going to be Marinaro’s night, not Sinatra’s.” Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune, “A CJO Salute to ‘Sinatra at the Sands’ featuring Paul Marinaro’ “
“A formidable singer, bold and evocative…Marinaro has evolved into one of the most accomplished and promising jazz-swing vocalists in the country…one of the most beautiful vocal instruments in the business today.” Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune
“He swings hard …a giant baritone that manages to be both virile and gorgeous, Marinaro infuses the essence of jazz – the imaginative phrasing, the small expressive gesture, and yes, that swing – into every interpretation.” Neil Tesser; Examiner; author, music critic, Grammy Winner (liner notes)
“Right there under your nose in Chicago is a singer named Paul Marinaro who is the best I've heard in many years. His insight and command over this material is truly staggering, making him one of that select cadre of storytellers. Like Nat Cole, it’s art so close to perfection that it seems almost artless. I've heard many new singers and no one has touched me as deeply as this guy. He's got it all.” Dick LaPalm (legendary record promoter/agent whose clients have included Nat King Cole, Peggy Lee, Mel Torme, Tony Bennett, and Sarah Vaughan)
Marinaro immediately takes his place among the top five male jazz singers active today. It is true that there are few male jazz singers around but, even if there were many, Marinaro’s strong clear voice, very musical and melodic style, and attractive tone would put him near the top. Paul Marinaro stakes his claim as a major singer. Scott Yanow; LA Jazz Scene
As I listened to Without a Song by Chicago- based vocalist PAUL MARINARO, I was reminded of another singer who settled in the Windy city, Frank D’Rone. He has a similar voice, phrasing and articulation, but he is no mere imitation. This is a man who can sing…and the results are definitely pleasing. This disc documents a man who is following the dreams of both him and his father, and doing so in a very special way. Joe Lang; New Jersey Jazz Society
“(a) formidable singer, bold and evocative...an exquisite new recording...a stunning debut documenting one of the most beautiful vocal instruments in the business today...Marinaro owns one of the most plush baritones in Chicago — or just about anywhere else, and one of these days, perhaps the rest of the world will know it…a room is fortunate to have him.” Howard Reich; producer, author, and arts/jazz critic of the Chicago Tribune
…a mainstay of the Chicago music scene, entertaining with both his vocal aplomb and charming wit, Marinaro delivers on this recording with emotion and musicality to spare (and) sings with particular assurance, interpreting several selections of the Great American Songbook with an alluring tone and an incisive swing feel. The album features expert pacing and production. Marinaro aces the varied repertoire…an endearing boon of a recording. Daniel Healy; Chicago Jazz Magazine
“Marinaro weaves a spell that makes you forget about the outside world as you're held captive by his talent. (**** of 4 stars)” TimeOut Chicago
If you can sit through Paul Marinaro's ‘Without a Song’ and not be thoroughly entertained…then be patient because your autopsy results should be back shortly. …a vocalist of immense talent with that special panache of showmanship... This carefully thought out and deliciously entertaining romp sparkles with real emotion, swinging arrangements and a celebration of what a jazz singer used to be…this is far more than Marinaro doing a riff on what was but instead we find new arrangements adding depth of flavor so that Paul can take ownership of these timeless classics…with impeccable phrasing, solid timing and that intangible of connectivity to a song that brings forth an instant believability… Brent Black; Critical Jazz