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Ellen in a Blue Silk Dress
Ellen's stunning dress is by Susan Peter
"Big girl" hair by Sarah Stevens
Photograph by Evelyn Lowry ©1997

Did you know that, besides award-winning songs, Ellen also writes poetry?

By day, Ellen Vanderslice is an architect and urban designer in Portland, Oregon, internationally known as an outspoken pedestrian rights activist.

After dark, primed with single malt scotch, neat, she hones her musical chops in Portland's smoky jazz clubs as a composer and occasional vocalist. Her songs range from tender ballads to uptempo swing tunes. Each tells a love story with a fresh twist -- but feels like an old friend the moment you hear it.

"I purely love the challenge of telling a story in just thirty-two bars," says Ellen. And tell them she does, heartbreaking stories of love and longing and loss. Listening, you'd never guess she's been happily married for decades and is mom to two well-adjusted young adults.

Ellen must be doing something right, because her songs have taken top prizes in the jazz category of the Portland Songwriters Association National Song Contest for 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2003, and, with co-writer Mike Horsfall, in the USA Songwriting Competition in 2002!

Ellen's engaging performances have garnered fans from around the world (OK, a handful of fans from around the world). She has performed publicly in Portland, Seattle, Baltimore, Washington D.C., Honolulu, London, and Melbourne, Australia.

Got a big event coming up? Need some swing music? Ellen can provide an ensemble of any size, featuring Portland's finest jazz players. Just e-mail, or call 503-222-1077.

This page was last updated on 12-3-03