Jazz legend Jimmy Scott is rolling through town this week, with two shows at Yoshi's in the Fillmore. Scott, the favorite singer of artists ranging from Billie Holiday to Nancy Wilson, is renowned for his high, pure contralto singing voice. Legendary in his time, he gained new fans after appearing on the final episode of David Lynch's Twin Peaks (adding an extra hint of creepiness to the show's famously spooky Black Lodge). He's since recorded a track with Lou Reed, performed with David Byrne, Michael Stipe, and Antony & the Johnsons, and appeared at President Clinton's inauguration. He'll be performing with his band, the Jazz Expressions.
Scott's medical history is also fascinating: his high voice is the result of a genetic condition called Kallmann's syndrome, which prevents sufferers from reaching puberty by blocking the production of testosterone. Scott was stunted at the height of 4'11" until age 37, when he began receiving testosterone supplements; subsequently, he went through puberty and grew eight inches, reaching his current height of 5'7". His small stature and high voice caused Lionel Hampton to nickname him "Little Jimmy Scott," a moniker that's stuck to this day, despite his subsequent growth.
Jimmy Scott and the Jazz Expressions will appear Tuesday, February 23, and Wednesday, February 24, at Yoshi's, 1330 Fillmore St., Fillmore. Both shows are at 8 pm, and tickets are available for $18 at Yoshi's website.