Dee Dee Bridgewater

Dee Dee Bridgewater (born May 27, 1950) is an American soul and jazz singer from Memphis.

Bridgewater was born Denise Eileen Garrett on May 27, 1950, in Memphis, Tenn., the daughter of jazz trumpeter and teacher Matthew Garrett. She was raised in Flint, Mich. At age 16, she gigged the local clubs with her first band, an R&B/rock trio. In 1969, she enrolled at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and toured the Soviet Union with the school’s jazz band.

In 1970, she met and married jazz trumpeter Cecil Bridgewater. They moved to New York City, where Cecil joined Horace Silver’s backing band. Soon thereafter, she became the lead vocalist in the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra.

In 1972, Bridgewater sang on albums by Frank Foster (The Loud Minority) and Buddy Terry (Lean On Him), both released on Mainstream Records. That December, she dueted with singer Andy Bey on the numbers “Children of Forever,” “Unexpected Days,” and “Sea Journey” from the album Children of Forever, the debut solo release by Return to Forever bassist Stanley Clarke.

During 1973, she proliferated with credits on albums by Roy Ayers (Coffy and Virgo Red), Norman Connors (Love From the Sun and Dark of Light), and Rahsaan Roland Kirk (Prepare Thyself to Deal With a Miracle). The following year, she sang on albums by Charles Sullivan (Genesis), Carlos Garnett (Black Love), Cecil McBee (Mutima), and Roy Brooks and the Artistic Truth (Black Survival – “The Sahel Concert” at Town Hall).

Bridgewater debuted as a solo recording artist with the album Afro Blue, released on the Japanese Trio Records label in 1974.


  • Afro Blue (1974)
  • Dee Dee Bridgewater (1976)
  • Just Family (1977)
  • Bad for Me (1979)
  • Dee Dee Bridgewater (1980)
  • Victim of Love (1989)


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *