Smile is the debut release from 2020 Sarah Vaughn International Jazz Vocal Competition winner, Tawanda.
Acclaimed jazz label Resonance Records is proud to present the first album from one of the most promising young jazz singers to emerge in years, Tawanda Suessbrich-Joaquim…known simply as Tawanda. The 26-year-old Los Angeles-based vocalist sings in a cloudless alto with a crystalline shimmer, effortless but unfussy jazz feeling, immaculate musicianship, and a maturity that few of her contemporaries possess.
Backed by a stellar band featuring Josh Nelson (piano), Tamir Handelman (piano), Kevin Axt (bass), Anthony Wilson (guitar), Gary Meek (saxophone), and others, Smile features a fresh and adventurous mix of standards and includes an 8-page booklet with essays by esteemed author James Gavin and producer George Klabin.
In June of 2021, Tawanda tied for first place with Gabrielle Cavassa in the 9th Annual Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition, held in Newark, New Jersey. Her performance, judged by a panel that included singers Carmen Lundy and Vanessa Rubin plus bassist Christian McBride, was even more impressive given that Tawanda had performed her first full show just a year before.