Nat King Cole began his musical career leading his very own piano trio, but his career took off once he established himself as vocalist. His unique smooth baritone tone and elegant phrasing led his groups to the top of the Billboard charts. In the 1940’s and 1950’s, Cole became one of the top selling vocalists in the country with such hits as “Straighten Up and Fly Right,” “The Christmas Song,” “(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons,” “Unforgettable,” and “Nature Boy.” Cole’s success can be attributed to his melding of styles and unique arrangements as he continually mixed his jazz background with popular songs. In 1956 Nat became the first African-American to host a television program. To this day, Nat King Cole is still one the most recognizable and iconic vocalists of the 20th century.
Denver’s own Robert Johnson accompanied by Victor Mestas, Mark Diamond and Dru Heller will celebrate the life and music of the legendary Nat King Cole on the occasion of the centenary of his birth.