Kurt Elling Wins The GRAMMY for Secrets Are The Best Stories, featuring Danilo Pérez

Kurt Elling receives the Best Vocal Jazz GRAMMY award for his 2020 album, Secrets Are The Best Stories!

After an incredible 14 nominations between 1995 and today, this marks Elling’s second GRAMMY win; his first in 2010 for Dedicated To You: Kurt Elling Sings The Music Of Coltrane And Hartman.

Secrets Are The Best Stories is Kurt Elling’s first album on Edition Records.

Speaking from his home in Chicago, Elling collected his award via a link-up with legendary songwriter Jimmy Jam presenting live in the virtual studio:

I’d like to thank the Recording Academy, of course. I share this GRAMMY with my collaborator; pianist and composer, my dear friend Danilo Pérez. Thank you Danilo for your mastery and your generosity…

*** screams off-camera ***

That’s my wife cheering upstairs… everybody happy! Thanks to Wayne Shorter for your continued inspiration. Thanks to the incredible band on this record; Clark Sommers, Chico Pinheiro, Miguel Zenón, Johnathan Blake, Rogério Boccato and Román Díaz. Thanks to Chris Allen, our great engineer – my dear friend over at Sear Sound in New York City.

Thanks to Dave Stapleton and everybody at Edition Records. Thanks to my cousin, Lars Elling for making the beautiful cover art for this record. To my great manager and friend, Bryan Farina for getting things happening in the world at a time that’s incredible and impossible. And thanks to my beautiful, cheering wife upstairs and my gorgeous daughter and my incredible son; Jennifer, Luiza and A.G. Elling.

Thanks to all of you, stay safe and take care of each other.

Thank you.

Leaning heavily on Pérez’s Panamanian roots, the record unfolds like no other Kurt Elling collection. Elling adds evocative new lyrics to compositions by greats like Pérez’s iconic collaborator Wayne Shorter, bass genius Jaco Pastorius, visionary composer Vince Mendoza, and pieces from Pérez’s own catalogue.

Jazz writer Peter Quinn:

For its lyrical depth, emotional sincerity, and stellar performances, Secrets Are The Best Stories must be considered one of the most compelling entries in Kurt Elling’s acclaimed discography. Elling partners here for the first time with Panamanian pianist Danilo Pérez, and the sense of a shared aesthetic sensibility is keenly felt throughout.

Many congratulations to Kurt and Danilo on this well-deserved win for a magnificent recording!