Maria Muldaur

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Maria Muldaur
Maria Muldaur 1969.jpg
Muldaur in 1969
Background information
Birth name Maria Grazia Rosa Domenica D'Amato
Also known as Maria D'Amato
Born (1943-09-12) September 12, 1943 (age 70)
Greenwich Village, New York, United States
Genres Folk, blues, country
Occupations Singer
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1963–present
Labels Reprise Records

Maria Muldaur (born September 12, 1943) is an American folk-blues singer who was part of the American folk music revival in the early 1960s. She recorded the 1974 hit song "Midnight at the Oasis," and continues to record albums in the folk traditions.

Life and career[edit]

Muldaur was born Maria Grazia Rosa Domenica D'Amato in Greenwich Village, New York City, where she attended Hunter College High School.[1]

Muldaur began her career in the early 1960s as Maria D'Amato, performing with John Sebastian, David Grisman, and Stefan Grossman as a member of the Even Dozen Jug Band. She then joined Jim Kweskin & His Jug Band as a featured vocalist and occasional violinist. During this time, she was part of the Greenwich Village scene that included Bob Dylan, and some of her recollections of the period, particularly with respect to Dylan, appear in Martin Scorsese's 2005 documentary film, No Direction Home.[citation needed]

She married fellow Jug Band member Geoff Muldaur, and after the Kweskin outfit broke up the two of them produced two albums. She began her solo career when their marriage ended in 1972, but retained her married name.[2]

Her first solo album Maria Muldaur, released in 1973, contained her hit single "Midnight at the Oasis", which reached number 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1974. It also peaked at number 21 in the UK Singles Chart.[3] Later that year, she released her second album Waitress In A Donut Shop. This included a re-recording of "I'm a Woman", the Leiber and Stoller number first associated with Peggy Lee and a standout feature from her Jug Band days. The title of this album is taken from a line in another song on the album, "Sweetheart" by Ken Burgan.

Around this time, Muldaur established a relationship with the Grateful Dead. Opening for some Grateful Dead shows in the summer of 1974 with John Kahn, bassist of the Jerry Garcia Band, which would eventually earn her a seat in that group as a backing vocalist in the late 1970s. She appeared on Super Jam (1989), the live recording of the German TV series Villa Fantastica with Brian Auger on piano, Pete York on drums, Dick Morrissey on tenor saxophone, Roy Williams on trombone, Harvey Weston on bass and Zoot Money, also on vocals.[citation needed]

Muldaur performing at the 1996 Riverwalk Blues Festival

Muldaur continued to perform, tour, and record after her success in the mid-1970s, including a turn at the Teatro ZinZanni in 2001.[4][5]

Her 2005 release Sweet Lovin' Ol' Soul was nominated for both a Blues Music Award (formerly a W.C. Handy Award) and a Grammy Award in the Traditional Blues Category. In 2013, she was nominated for a Blues Music Award in the Koko Taylor Award (Traditional Blues Female)' category.[6]


Even Dozen Jug Band[edit]

Jim Kweskin & The Jug Band[edit]

  • Jug Band Music (1964) (Vanguard)
  • See Reverse Side for Title (1965, credited as Maria D'Amato) (Vanguard, VDS-79234)
  • The Best of Jim Kweskin & The Jug Band (1966, compilation, credited as Maria D'Amato) (Vanguard, VDS-79270)
  • Garden of Joy (1967) (Reprise)

Geoff & Maria Muldaur[edit]

  • Pottery Pie (1968) (Reprise, RS-6350)
  • Sweet Potatoes (1972) (Reprise)

Jerry Garcia Band[edit]


  • Maria Muldaur (1973) (Reprise)
  • Waitress In A Donut Shop (1974) (Reprise)
  • Sweet Harmony (1976) (Reprise-MS 2235)
  • Southern Winds (1978) (Warner)
  • Open Your Eyes (1979) (Warner)
  • Gospel Nights (1980) (Takoma)
  • There Is A Love (1982) (Myrrh Records)
  • Sweet And Slow (1983) (Tudor)
  • Transblucency (1986) (Uptown)
  • Live In London (1987) (Making Waves)
  • On The Sunny Side (1990) (Music For Little People)
  • Louisiana Love Call (1992) (Black Top)
  • Jazzabelle (1994) (Stony Plain)
  • Meet Me At Midnite (1994) (Black Top)
  • Fanning The Flames (1996) (Telarc)
  • Southland of the Heart (1998) (Telarc)
  • Swingin' In The Rain (1998) (Music For Little People)
  • Meet Me Where We Play The Blues (1999) (Telarc)
  • Richland Woman Blues (2001) (Stony Plain) (with Taj Mahal, Bonnie Raitt and other guest artists)
  • Animal Crackers In My Soup (2002) (Music For Little People)
  • A Woman Alone With The Blues (Remembering Peggy Lee) (2003) (Telarc)
  • Sisters And Brothers (with Eric Bibb and Rory Block) (2004) (Telarc)
  • Love Wants To Dance (2004) (Telarc)
  • Sweet Lovin' Ol' Soul (Old Highway 61 Revisited) (2005) (Stony Plain) (with Del Rey, Steve James and other guest artists)
  • Heart of Mine: Maria Muldaur Sings Love Songs of Bob Dylan (2006) (Telarc)
  • Songs For The Young At Heart (2006) (MFLP)
  • Naughty, Bawdy, And Blue (2007) (Stony Plain)
  • Yes We Can! (2008) (Telarc)
  • Maria Muldaur & Her Garden of Joy (2009) (Stony Plain)
  • Steady Love (2011) (Stony Plain)

Other contributions[edit]


"People ask me – why do you do these sexist songs? That's bullshit. That's a valid emotion that's a part of us all." NME – May 1975[8]


  1. ^ Johnston, Laurie. "Competition Intense Among Intellectually Gifted 6th Graders for Openings at Hunter College High School; Prominent Alumni Program for Seniors", The New York Times, March 21, 1977. Accessed May 11, 2010.
  2. ^ "Maria Muldaur biography". Pandora Internet Radio. Retrieved January 10, 2008. 
  3. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 382. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  4. ^ Digital Interviews (October 2000). "Maria Muldaur interview". 
  5. ^ Matthew Stafford (March 14, 2001). "Cirque du Supper". SF Weekly. 
  6. ^ "Blues Music Awards Nominees - 2013 - 34th Blues Music Awards". Retrieved 2013-03-21. 
  7. ^ Muldaur contributes "Walking The Blues." The Cash version may be found on The Legend album (Sun, 1970) and on The Essential Johnny Cash 1955-1983 (Legacy, 1992).
  8. ^ Tobler, John (1992). NME Rock 'N' Roll Years (1st ed.). London: Reed International Books Ltd. p. 276. ISBN 0-600-57602-7. CN 5585. 

External links[edit]