Artist Feature: Cynthia Downing Simmons: Lady Sings the Jazz
LookyLU had an opportunity to sit down with famed Tulsa-based Jazz artist and musician, Cynthia Downing Simmons. This multifaceted artist let us into 5 minutes of what it’s like to be just Cyn.
Ollie: what feelings do jazz evoke, like what emotions?
Cynthia: Emotions and feelings that jazz evokes: happiness, sassiness, sexiness, power, sensuality.
Ollie: Now that you sing all the time, is jazz still as important as it was when you first became interested?
Cynthia: yes! Probably more so because I am to perfect my craft. There’s always so much more to learn.
Cynthia: What is your absolute favorite song? I have lots of favorites depends on the mood I’m in and the genre I’m listening to.
Ollie: What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about music since becoming the ultra diva performer that you are?
Cynthia: Not to think of myself as an ultra diva performer. Just be me: on stage, in person, No matter what I do
Ollie: Oh But you are? Not diva bad, diva good!
Cynthia: I don’t think of myself as a diva. I’m a performer and I’m good. But there are so many people who are better. I always do MY best. Always be myself.
Ollie: You wear many faces, one of them being a graduate school educated professional powerhouse?
Cynthia: I’m just Cynthia…Yes I do. I’m an HR professional, a mother, a daughter, a friend, I have a master’s degree and an HR certification and I’m a girlfriend in addition to being a jazz singer.
Ollie: You’re not busy at all.
Cynthia: But I’m still just Cyn who likes to sing, read books, and crochet when she can. Oh and cook! Can’t forget that. LOL.
Ollie: Crochet? It’s hard to imagine all of the sensuality that you possess on stage can be reduced to crocheting.
Cynthia: I’m crazy busy (Laughing)
Ollie: Do you think you can draw a connection between food and singing, as in your relationship with both?
Cynthia: Sure, I often do both at the same time. By the way, the sensuality isn’t reduced when I crochet (Laughing). That made me laugh (laughing).
Ollie: Hahahahah! That made me laugh because I pictured you on stage in that stunning red dress sitting in a rocking chair crocheting with a mike in your hand.
Cynthia: Just make sure I’m showing plenty of leg!
Ollie: In my daydream of you and yarn?
Cynthia: Yes! In that damn rocking chair.
Ollie: Lots of leg…lots of red…lots of creaking.
Cynthia: Umm no creaking (Laughing)
Follow Cynthia’s blog: http://cynsingsjazz.wordpress.com
Article used with permission from Looky Lu Magazine