On any given night, a few blocks west of New York City’s Times Square, one can hear the noise of swift traffic and taxi horns. Yet behind the doors of a 46th Street supper club is the deliciously unexpected sound of Glenn Miller’s In the Mood,played by a live sixteen-member swing band. And heard above the musical arrangement is the smooth voice of swing jazz singer Lynn McCune ’83, a regular performer at the city’s Swing 46 supper club.
“I remember freshman year…literally running from Glee Club/Freshman Singers practice at Abbey Chapel to play rehearsals for She Stoops to Conquer at the Lab Theatre,” says Lynn, remembering her skill for juggling performances as a theatre major at Mount Holyoke. After graduation, Lynn acted with the Mount Holyoke Summer Theatre before moving to the Washington, DC, area. It was there that she began her singing career with Doc Scantlin and His Imperial Palms Orchestra, acquiring her chops in the big-band genre during the seven years she sang with them. Her busy performance schedule included steady work as a singing telegram vocalist. Lynn’s widely reported telegram stint as Marilyn Monroe singing “Happy Birthday” to a then 100-year-old Senator Strom Thurmond is just one of many memorable moments she has experienced in her varied line of work.
Since 2007, Lynn has lived in New York City and can be heard every Wednesday night singing at Swing 46 with the Stan Rubin Orchestra. While she continues to work in the singing telegram business, it is the melodies of Artie Shaw and Benny Goodman that most inspire her. “I still adore the theatre and will continue to pursue it,” says Lynn, “but for now I seem to have found my niche as a big-band singer, and I’m loving it.”