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Montreal International Jazz Festival Honours Sade

Written by Patrick Rice on Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

Sade is the 13th recipient of the Ella Fitzgerald Award, established in 1999 for our 20th anniversary and conferred in recognition of the versatility, improvisational originality and quality of repertoire of a singer renowned on the international scene. The feminine face of the ’80s, with her subtle elegance, gently rhythmic melodies and sophisticated exoticism, Sade was an instant massive global phenomenon. Known as Helen Folasade Adu to mom, she soared to global fame on the strength of hit singles including Smooth Operator and Hang On To Your Love. Fifty million albums, numerous Grammys and 25 years later, she launches a 6th release in 2010: Soldier of Love—her most ambitious yet, according to the artist—raced up the charts and was very warmly received by Rolling Stone, Billboard and Entertainment Weekly. Making her grand return to the international stage, Sade presents her greatest hits, marrying pop, jazz and soul, as well as songs from her most recent album, released 10 years after the multiplatinum Lovers Rock.

In concert at the Bell Centre, Thursday, June 30, 7:30 p.m. (opening act: John Legend). Presented in collaboration with Live Nation and Evenko. In accepting the prize, Sade will be following previous Ella Fitzgerald prizewinners The Manhattan Transfer (2010), John Pizzarelli (2009), Aretha Franklin (2008), Harry Connick, Jr., (2007), Etta James (2006), Al Jarreau (2005) Tony Bennett (2004), Bobby McFerrin (2003), Dianne Reeves (2002), Diana Krall (2001), Dee Dee Bridgewater (2000) and Diane Schuur (1999).

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