"I was going on gigs with my father at 12. We were doing different things,
R&B, jazz, whatever he would want me to learn, that's what I would sing."
LaVerne grew up in Shreveport, Louisiana, and developed her love for jazz while performing
on stage with her father, jazz saxophonist Scott Butler. After becoming a vocalist
with the jazz band at the University of New Orleans, LaVerne went to Bourbon Street.
There, she became a regular in her own right on the New Orleans jazz scene. But
it was Jon Hendricks of the jazz vocal group Lambert, Hendricks and Ross who encouraged
her to "think like an instrument" and move to New York. She has since
worked with such music masters as Ellis Marsalis, Henry Butler (no relation), Edward
Frank, Alvin Batiste, Earl Turbinton, and the late James Black.
And though this performance is a studio recording, LaVerne want you to listen as
if you were just two tables from the stage.