Torch Songs

are particularly sultry ballads, so named for their slow-burning quality, and usually coming from the American pop-standard canon. In order to make them more sensuous than straight-ahead pop readings, most torch songs are performed with at least a little bit of jazz sensibility and swing. But although torch singers may use the songs as vehicles to show off their vocal range, jazz improvisation is rarely emphasized, instead spotlighting the smooth, seductive tones of the singer's voice. Torch songs can either celebrate romance or lament heartbreak, but they always create a mood related to affairs of the heart. Very few artists work exclusively in this style, but many pop-oriented jazz singers -- especially female ones -- devote some space in their repertoire to torch songs.

All Music Guide

As heard on NPR’s Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor!

Jackie Allen’s Torchsinger 101 came to national attention after her appearance on October 20, 2013 on Prarie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor.
Hear Jackie's hilarious improvised skit as she 'teaches' Garrison Keillor about Torchsinging and then sings a goregous version of My Old Flame with the band.

Jackie & Garrison