Continuing a Seattle Jazz Legacy: Dave and Darelle Holden Perform at Calluna

2022-04-14 Hardly Raining

The Holden family carries a three-generation legacy in Seattle’s jazz scene. Although “Patriarch of Seattle Jazz” Oscar Holden has passed, the musical tradition continues through his descendants.

Those include Oscar’s son, Dave Holden Sr., and Dave’s daughter, Darelle Holden. Both toured for decades, but they had never performed together—something Darelle regretted.

That changed on April 14, 2022, when father and daughter performed together a sold-out show at Calluna restaurant.

Dave was initially bashful, and hummed along to Darelle’s tunes from his table. Near the end of the set, she invited him to the stage.

They sang several standards together, including a touching duet of, “What a Wonderful World.”“I sound like Louis Armstrong,” Dave joked at the mic. Darelle placed a tender hand on her father’s back. Diners gathered around the band to capture the occasion on their cell phones.

Darelle explained the inspiration for the show. “I’ve always wanted to [sing together], and it seemed like the right moment. He was amenable, so we decided to put it together.” Dave, whose youthful appearance belied his 85th birthday next month, said, “I’m glad it happened! Who knows what might happen after this.” He added, “It was really fun for me.”

For Darelle, the evening also reaffirmed her musical heritage. “It was awesome. I noticed so much of what’s in my roots—listening to him sing and then singing with him, and discovering that’s where that stuff comes from. That’s the prototype right there,” she reflected.

Those who missed this historic moment might have another opportunity. “Maybe we should do this again,” Dave said with a grin.

Darelle Holden and Dave Holden, Sr. sing together.
Darelle Holden and Dave Holden, Sr., sing together.

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