PAST PERFORMERS

2016

SHEA D DUO

 

Peter Shea and Juliet Dunn are the Shea (pronounced 'Shay') D Duo. Together their sound is a cocktail of jazz, pop and soul enriched by various percussive instruments. Their love for music shines through in every performance.

 

Peter Shea graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in jazz performance and composition and has been performing as a drummer, pianist and vocalist for over 20 years. He has played many prestigious jazz festivals, Montreal, Toronto etc., as well as playing for musical theatre productions such as The Jersey Boys, Tony and Tina's Wedding and more. He has been performing with his soul mate and musical partner, Juliet Dunn, for 9 years.

 

Juliet Dunn is both an actress and singer and came to the Niagara Peninsula to perform and sing at the Shaw Festival Theatre. Her background ranges from popular music to jazz and she obtained most of her vocal training in Paris, France where she resided for 13 years. Her self-named Juliet Dunn Quintet has performed at many jazz festivals in Canada and was the winner of the Niagara Music Awards, 2009 Jazz Group of the Year. In 2011 her and Shea’s band:  Le Trio Parisien feat Juliet Dunn brought home the same award.  Juliet hosted her own radio show:  ‘Sunrise’ on Canada’s premier jazz station, Jazz FM91 from 2011 - 2014 and is currently focussing the majority of her time on the jazz festival she co-created with Peter:  The TD Niagara Jazz Festival.  The festival is now going into its 3rd year.

 

The Shea D Duo have been performing together since 2007 in the Niagara Region, at numerous venues and festivals, as well as all over the globe. Previous contracts include Brazil, Hong Kong, Morocco Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, French Polynesia and the Caribbean.

 

Dunn and Shea also run a popular jazz series in their home town of St. Catharines called the Twilight Jazz Series.  They started the series back in 2011 with the goal of bringing together jazz musicians in the Niagara community as well as hoping to enhance the current ‘jazz scene’ in the region. The Twilight Jazz Series has become a ‘hang’ and ‘date night’ for many and a great spot to hear phenomenal jazz music. It runs from Oct - July and then makes room for the TD Niagara Jazz Festival.  Dunn and Shea are true believers of the art of jazz and believe that the Niagara Region has a plethora of fine musicians to offer. 

 

Peter and Juliet also donate their time regularly to Hospice Niagara with afternoon performances, and at other local organizations and charities such as Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Gillian's Place, the Terry Fox Foundation, Heart Niagara and many more. They are happy to give back to such a wonderful community and are proud to call Niagara their home.

THE GALEN WESTON BAND

 

Guitarist and composer Galen Weston unleashes a lifetime of music on his ambitious debut album, Plugged In. After laying down his guitar for more than a decade, Weston breathes life into 10 original tracks and two covers with fine craftsmanship and intense focus, while showcasing an unwavering dedication to tonal quality and nuance. Fueled by jazz and rock guitarists such as Pat Metheny, Mike Stern, Wes Montgomery, Mark Knopfler, Eric Johnson and Steve Vai, the record showcases his formidable guitar talents in the company of some of finest cross-genre musicians in Canada. It was produced in Weston’s own Rose Room Recording Studio by Jim Zolis.

 

“Plugged In represents a two-year journey of writing and recording across a vast musical territory, says Weston. ”It’s a sonic and personal exploration with my Yellow Stratocaster, ES-335 and other instruments. The album is the culmination of many hours spent taming the howling of vintage Big Muffs, cleaning tape heads on old echo machines, and tweaking the tone knobs on classic Marshall and Fender amps in the simple yet enduring search of great tones.”

DAVID SANBORN

 

David Sanborn has released 24 albums, won six Grammy Awards, and has had eight Gold albums and one Platinum album. Having inspired countless other musicians, Dave has worked in many genres which typically blend instrumental pop, R&B and lately, more and more traditional jazz. He released his first solo album Taking Off in 1975, but has been playing the saxophone since before he was in high school when he was inspired by the great Chicago blues artists near his hometown of St. Louis.

 

Having contracted polio at the age of three, Dave was introduced to the saxophone as part of his treatment therapy. By the age of 14, he was able to play with legends such as Albert King and Little Milton. Dave went on to study music at Northwestern University before transferring to the University of Iowa where he played and studied with the great saxophonist JR Monterose.

 

Later traveling to California on the advice of a friend, he joined the Butterfield Blues Band and played Woodstock with Paul Butterfield. Following that, Dave toured with Stevie Wonder and recorded for Wonder’s Talking Book album, played with The Rolling Stones, and toured with David Bowie with whom he recorded the famous solo heard on “Young Americans”. At the same time, Dave was touring and recording with the great Gil Evans, dividing his time between the two. After moving to New York City and studying with George Coleman, Dave started his solo career where he later collaborated with such artists as Paul Simon and James Taylor.

 

Dave’s solo release of Taking Off in 1975—still considered a classic—further solidified his career. His 1979 release of Hideaway became a popular hit and further propelled Dave’s ascent with the single, “Seduction” being featured in the movie, American Gigolo. Veteran bassist and composer Marcus Miller joined Dave on the 1981 album, Voyeur. The single, “All I Need Is You” won Dave his first Grammy Award for Best R&B Instrumental Performance. In 1983, Dave released the hit album Backstreet that included Luther Vandross as a featured guest vocalist. Later albums have included guest artists such as Jack DeJohnette, Bill Frisell, Charlie Hayden, Wallace Roney, Kenny Barron, Christian McBride, and Eric Clapton.

 

Moving onto television, Dave hosted the show, Night Music from 1988 to 1990. Produced by Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels, the show featured films of jazz legends like Thelonious Monk, Dave Brubeck and Billie Holiday, as well as banter and memorable music jams by a remarkable list of musicians including Sonny Rollins, Miles Davis, Joe Sample, Pharoah Sanders, and many others. Additionally, Dave has regularly hosted the "After New Year's Eve" TV special on ABC. During the 1980s and 1990s, Dave hosted a syndicated radio program, The Jazz Show with David Sanborn. Dave has also recorded many shows' theme songs as well as several other songs for The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder.

 

In his three-and-a-half decade career, Dave has released 24 albums, won six Grammy Awards, and has had eight Gold albums and one Platinum album. He continues to be one of the most highly active musicians of his genre, with 2010 tour dates exceeding 150. Considered as a whole, Dave is an artist who pushes the limits and continues to make music that challenges the mind and goes Straight to The Heart.

THE SHUFFLE DEMONS

 

The Shuffle Demons first broke onto the Canadian music scene with an electrifying musical fusion that drew in equal measure from Sun Ra, Charles Mingus, Run DMC and the Beastie Boys. The band was one of the first indie acts to break out on MuchMusic. This band was genre bending, highly visually entertaining, funny, and best of all, could really PLAY. All their eye catching, crowd pleasing stunts were backed up by incredibly solid musicianship and real ground-breaking playing.

Over the course of their illustrious career The Shuffle Demons have released eight CDs, two hit videos, won several music awards, done numerous tv and radio appearances and toured nationally and internationally including 25 cross Canada tours, 5 US tours, 16 European tours, as well as tours of Mexico, Brazil, India, China, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Aruba and Cuba playing on big festival stages, theatres and clubs.

The band continues the tradition today with a great line-up of players that includes Juno Award winner Richard Underhill -sax & vox, Perry White and Kelly Jefferson - saxes, George Koller - bass and Stich Wynston -drums. Expect the same exciting, no holds barred performances that feature wild romps in the crowd, free jazz moments, danceable funk, poetry, killer solos and more. We are a crowd pleasing, full on musical group that backs up our stage antics with some phenomenal playing by some of Canada's most talented musicians. We play a mix of funk jazz, hard bop jazz and jazz rap, wear spectacular hand painted suits and love to parade through the audience, a perfect festival, theatre or club act.

JUNE GARBER

 

From the early age of four June Garber dreamed of a life on the stage, but her parents had conflicting ideas. Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, it wasn’t until she came to Canada in 1975 that she was able to pursue her career as a singer and an actor. As an actor, June performed in theatres across Canada, and her stagecraft is still evident in her singing performances today.

 

Watching June sing, you feel as if she is singing directly to you. Her sheer joy at being on stage envelopes you, pulls you close and encircles you with her warmth! Every song that she chooses to sing connects to a base truth within – so there is never any artifice. Her voice reflects each emotional shift that the writer intended.

June has toured and performed as a singer in major centres in Canada and the United States and also in Cuba, the Caribbean, Mexico, South Africa & Australia. She has performed at jazz festivals throughout North America and with big bands in Toronto and Sarasota, Florida.

 

June’s new album This I Know weaves a tapestry of her life’s experiences so far.  Tracks reflect a range of emotions – love, joy, pain, sadness – presented in some wonderful jazz songs that are not often recorded. This I Know also includes tracks that pay musical homage to her South African roots, reflecting both its beauty and its troubled past. June’s previous albums Smile and Here’s to You were both very successful and received extensive airplay in Canada and around the world.

DAVID RESTIVO

 

David Restivo is an award-winning pianist and composer. Born in Lansing, Michigan, molded by the mountains and coasts of New England, and based primarily in Toronto, Canada since 1982, he has been a sought-after and influential figure in Canada’s jazz community since the late 1980s.

 

Well-known for his work with Rob McConnell and the Boss Brass, the Mike Murley Quintet, and legendary songwriter Marc Jordan, David has performed and recorded with such renowned artists as Dave Holland, Curtis Fuller, Mel Tormé, Kenny Wheeler, Jon Hendricks, and David Clayton-Thomas. A dedicated music educator for over 20 years, he currently serves on the music faculty at the University of Toronto. His own teachers have included Muhal Richard Abrams, Jim McNeely, and Kenny Werner.

 

Immersed in the arts from birth, a chance discovery of a Dizzy Gillespie recording at an early age led him to eventually focus on jazz and improvised music, though he derives inspiration from a wide range of musical and non-musical sources, including John Coltrane, Wayne Shorter, Joni Mitchell, Genesis, Hazrat Inayat Khan, Gustav Mahler, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Marc Chagall, and J.S. Bach.

 

“…simply one of the most exceptional jazz pianists of his generation that Canada can boast of…” (Roger Levesque, Edmonton Journal)

JOHN BIGGS

 

John officially started hosting morning radio shows in Halifax in 1985, but he will admit to you that he first caught the “bug” for morning radio while providing character voices for a morning show in St. John’s, Newfoundland, in his formative years as a radio announcer two years prior to moving back to his birth city in Nova Scotia. John was hosting the all-night show, but he’d stick around to work with the station’s morning show host until 9am! (Can you say “sleep-deprived”?)

 

Since then, John has stared with some disdain at alarm clocks in both Hamilton and London as well – at a time of day that appears to most “normal” people as the middle of the night. But, hey – SOMEbody has to get up early and wake the rooster, right?

 

John is thrilled to join the team at Easy 101, and he loved his time sitting in with Rick Malo, while Rick was performing his last few “Malo in the Morning” shows before riding off into the radio sunset and toward the golf-filled world of retirement. (Rick may regret giving John his cell phone number, though. John can be seen texting at all hours of the day.)

John’s also a voice artist, so if his voice sounds familiar, it could be that you’ve heard some of his frequent radio and television work on both regional or national commercial campaigns.

 

In his 30-plus years of media experience, John has also been an assistant brand director, a music director, a digital content manager for station websites, as well as an occasional television host and presenter. (He also brags about having worked with Cathy Wegner before.)

 

Before radio became his career path, John was a professional bassist and backing vocalist with a successful Halifax-based touring and recording act, and his musical performance experience gives him a unique perspective on life as a performer, as well as a musician's view and understanding of the challenges entertainers and artists face.

 

He enjoys interviewing “working musicians” about their lives in the music industry… although the word “interview” might be a bit misleading. They really boil down to just friendly conversations on a variety of fun topics.

 

John’s favourite topic - and his favourite people - are his twin children, Liam and Morgan, (yep, one of each) and you will no doubt get to know them through John’s eyes.

Join John Biggs for Breakfast between 5am and 10am on the Heartbeat of Southwestern Ontario, Easy 101.

MICHAEL BADAWAY

 

Michael Badaway is originally from Toronto Canada. Growing up Michael was always interested in music and the arts, and has chosen to follow his passion through a career in Radio broadcasting.  After a brief period as a reporter Michael became the Afternoon Drive Announcer at CHCD FM is currently the host of myFM in the afternoon across Ontario. Michael is actively involved with the local community; he was the host of the Terry Fox Run from 2008-2014, has rowed for the Heart and Stroke Foundation, is the MC of the local MS Walk and sits on the board of directors of the United Way.

ALEX PANGMAN

 

Proudly known as ‘Canada’s Sweetheart Of Swing’, Alex Pangman's natural vocal abilities and deep appreciation for the classic jazz era have earned her a place in our nation’s heart. She’s not old fashioned, though but a vivacious performer who retains creative control of all her work: carefully choosing her repertoire, composing original material, assembling her backing band and co-producing her recorded output on Justin Time Records. Rather than some casual throwback, Pangman delivers a unique, deliberate reinterpretation of one of North America’s most fertile, timeless eras. Her third album New, explores lesser known songs of the 1930s, taking care to present several Canadian-written gems, with a pathos and joie de vivre felt after her 2013 lung re-transplant.


As a teenager Pangman was mentored in classic jazz by Jeff Healey. She has since enjoyed musical pairings with legendary Bucky Pizzarelli, John Macleod, Denzal Sinclaire, Grammy nominated trumpeter Kevin Clark,  Ron Sexsmith,  and opened for Willie Nelson at Massey Hall. 2015 marked another trip across Canada to major jazz fests, including Montreal Jazz Festival, and a debut in Rochester NY. She also appeared on a syndicated American radio broadcast during John Pizzarelli's Koerner Hall performance, at which she was special guest.

2015

HOLLY COLE

 

Winner of the 2013 Ella Fitzgerald Award!

During her sold out 3 nights at Théâtre du Nouveau Monde at The Montreal International Jazz Festival (June 27-29, 2013), Holly Cole was presented as the 15th winner of the Ella Fitzgerald Award. This annual award is presented to “a jazz singer of significant talent who has had a major impact and influence in the international scene”. Previous winners of this prestigious award include Aretha Franklin, Tony Bennett and Sade.

Most of all, her playfulness and the sheer pleasure of singing to a crowd reminds me of

Ella more than any past recipient

– André Ménard, artistic director and cofounder of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, presented the award to Holly on Friday June 28

 

PRESS & PUBLICITY

Holly Cole sets new standards with Night (The National Post)

Montreal International Jazz Festival 2013: Holly Cole, June 27, 2013 (Montreal Gazette)

Holly Cole: plein de plaisir partage (La Presse, en Français)

Festival de jazz 2013: Holly Cole de retour pour une 12e fois (Huffington Post Quebec, en Français)

Holly Cole, and Hot Lava, Cool Jazz (Seattle Times)

Listen to a live interview on WBGO (New York area’s leading jazz station)

Watch Holly Cole pe rform “Walk Away” l ive at KPLU Studio in Seattle

Watch Holly perform “I f You Go Away” live on Belle et Bum in Montreal

 

VIDEOS

“You’ve Got a Secret” Live from Steal the Night

“I Can See Clearly Now” Theatrical Video

 

ABOUT HOLLY COLE

There is an intelligence and sophistication to Holly Cole’s singing that sets her apart. She can imbue well-worn standards and eclectic songs with an uncanny combination of sensuality, innocence, originality and sheer musicality.

Cole has a long and storied international career, having sold hundreds of thousands of recordings in the U.S., Japan (1 Gold record award) and Germany. These echo her success at home, including multi-platinum sales awards, three Junos and two Gemini Awards.

Steal the Night: Live at the Glenn Gould Studio, Cole’s first DVD with bonus live CD was released in February 2012 to glowing reviews and features an assortment of hits and gems from her early trio days through to the present. This immersive DVD/CD package was the perfect prelude to Ms. Cole’s much-anticipated new studio recording (released Nov 19, 2012 by Universal Music Canada) entitled NIGHT, her first new studio recording since 2007’s self titled gem.

The quintet (bass, drums, piano, horns and Holly) has been touring extensively, performing material from NIGHT as well as a broad selection of fan favorites from her more than twenty year recording career including hits like, ‘I Can See Clearly Now’, ‘Calling You’ and ‘Make it Go Away’, etc. For more information about NIGHT, visit Holly Cole’s website www.hollycole.com

 

QUOTES

I’ve seen Holly perform many times over the last 23 years [...], Her show Friday night ranks as the best ever. The Ella Fitzgerald Award, indeed. It is deserved. Congratulations Holly!

– Ross Porter, President and CEO, JAZZ FM Toronto

 

"She consistently proves that delivering a lyric is as much a creative art as writing one."

- Rolling Stone

 

So successful was she at reaching and elevating an audience through sheer seductive vocal magic and commanding stage presence.

- Austin American-Statesman

 

Cole’s voice: smoky, though not quite sultry; as sly as it is sexy; and brimming with adventure bordering on recklessness. And it bears an alluring touch of darkness, though it’s not without a mitigating hint of optimism.

- The Wall Street Journal

 

She exudes as much fun as feeling in concert treating the people to a rare performance that was musically rewarding and refreshingly intimate.

- Calgary Herald

 

Ms. Cole invented her own niche as a chanteuse."

- The New York Times

CADENCE

 

The stage lights fall, the crowd goes quiet, and four harmonious voices rise up and fill the air. The melodies unfurl into something both familiar and fresh. What comes next may be a classic song by Joni Mitchell or Louis Prima.  It may be an old bebop standard or cheeky arrangement of a 1980s hit. But these are arrangements like you’ve never heard them before—containing all the richness of a full band, performed using just four voices.

This is Cadence, Canada’s premiere vocal group. This a cappella ensemble has been wowing audiences around the world for nearly 20 years. Whether performing at sold-out jazz clubs and concert halls, at music festivals, for educational outreach, or for corporate functions, the members of Cadence bring an infectious energy and uncanny verve to every song they sing.

The group’s four critically acclaimed studio albums, Cool Yule (2011), Speak Easy (2010), Twenty for One (2005), and Frost Free (2000) have won or been nominated for numerous awards, including three nods from the JUNO Awards and 10 from CARA, the Contemporary A Cappella Recording Awards.

Cadence’s live shows are always a hit. They feature a hypnotic blend of complex harmonies, intricate arrangements, vocal dexterity, and just plain fun. On-stage antics and audience participation are par for the course, but so too is a mesmerizing display of musical genius. What these men can do with their voices needs to be heard to be believed.

Collaborations have included Bobby McFerrin and David Clayton-Thomas, and their voices were heard in the 2010 hit film “Casino Jack” starring Kevin Spacey.

Check out this vocal phenomenon for yourself. Buy an album, take in a show, or invite Cadence to perform in your town or city.  One listen and you will agree; instruments are for surgeons!

HEATHER BAMBRICK

 

Heather Bambrick is in demand as a vocalist, voice actor, educator, and broadcaster. She has worked with a vast array of artists, including Phil Nimmons, Fred Hirsch, Guido Basso, Anne Hampton Callaway, Carol Welsman, Jackie Richards on, Ian Shaw, as well as the late Rob McConnell and Peter Appleyard.

Heather began her recording career with the Royal Jelly Orchestra and the Beehive Singers.

Her solo recordings (It’s About Time, 2003, and Those Were The Days, 2006) were both nominated for East Coast Music Awards and helped earn her a National Jazz Award for Vocalist of the Year.

 

She’s been a featured vocalist on recordings by a number of artists including the Caliban Quartet, the Breithaupt Brothers, as well as on the final recording of Jazz great Peter Appleyard.

Heather’s latest project is “Broadsway”, combining Theatre, Jazz, and Comedy with fellow artists Julie Michels and Diane Leah. They’re currently performing throughout Canada and the US in support of their debut recording Old Friends.

As a voice actor, Heather has recorded for commercials, animation series (Disney, PBS, Comedy Network, NBC), and film / television soundtracks. Since 2001, she’s been a popular broadcaster at Canada’s only all Jazz radio station, JAZZ.FM91, where she currently hosts “Jazzology” and “Breakfast Blend”. Heather has twice been awarded National Jazz Awards’ “Broadcaster of the Year”.

Heather is a graduate of the University of Toronto Faculty of Music, and has taught at both U of T and Humber College, as well as at various schools and festivals throughout Canada.

GENE DINOVI

 

Gene DiNovi wrote his first important song, “Have a Heart”, with the great Johnny Mercer. Percy Faith, Nancy Wilson, Doris Day and Dinah Shore have all recorded his songs. Maurice Chevalier's last TV Special features a song DiNovi wrote with his lyricist Bill Comstock, 'Tout va bien'. He has recorded innumerable CDs, both in North America and abroad, and all have been well received, including a brilliant re-issue of his "The Scandinavian Suite", indisputably a DiNovi masterwork. DiNovi's easy-going style and engaging warmth made him a great favourite with audiences on CBC radio and television and on TV Ontario where his last program The Music Room explored the music and lives of the great American songwriters. With the award-winning classical clarinetist James Campbell, he created the popular "Jazz in a Classical Key". Throughout the 1960s DiNovi was in Hollywood where, through mutual friends, he met producer Louis Eldeman (who had produced James Cagney's White Heat, among other memorable films) by whose agency DiNovi was soon involved in television production as an arranger/composer. He worked principally on the Sheldon Leonard-Danny Thomas shows, all of which were produced by Desi-Lu studios. It was at Desi-Lu that DiNovi met producer-arranger-composer Harry Ruby, who sponsored him into ASCAP, The American Society of Composers and Publishers. Gene began his musical life as a jazz pianist on 52nd Street - New York 's legendary "Swing Street" - in 1945. It was a remarkable and life-changing journey for the fifteen-year-old DiNovi from hanging around outside the clubs, listening raptly to the music of Art Tatem, Lester Young and Billie Holiday, to his being invited to sit in with them. Among the first to recognize DiNovi's musical potential was the great Dizzy Gillespie who gave the youthful pianist his Be-Bop baptism. "Come up here and play", Gillespie said to him one night - and the rest, as they say, is history. To make it a genuine baptism of fire, Charlie Parker sauntered around the corner of the bandstand - already playing - and sat in as well! It wasn't long after this fantasy-like beginning to his jazz career, that DiNovi was playing and recording with Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Buddy Rich, Chubby Jackson and Boyd Raeburn. Though self-taught in his beginning period, he went on to study music with Mario Castelnuovo Tedesco and Mario di Bonaventura as well as piano study with Jacob Gimpel.

 

DiNovi's love for and understanding of the popular song became strongly evident during the 1950s. His playing during these years attracted the attention of singers such as Peggy Lee, Tony Bennett and Lena Horne. In fact, DiNovi was in demand by just about every great singer of that era, each of them wanting his backing as a musical director. It was through these stellar performances that DiNovi came to know and work with the finest songwriters such as: Harold Arlen, Jimmy Van Husen and Harry Warren. DiNovi's interest in writing songs was kindled during this period. Two recent musical events are a tribute to the richness and variation of Gene DiNovi's musical career. In the winter of 1997, The Smithsonian Institute conducted a life-history interview with Gene for two long days. DiNovi does concerts, seminars and classes at many universities (e.g., Indiana University,

Texas A&M, and the Orford Art Centre). Mr. DiNovi has recently completed the score (with Gary Michael Dault) for Alice in the Orchestra, a musical entertainment for actors and symphony orchestra currently in production with a number of major musical organizations throughout North America. You can also visit www.aliceintheorchestra.com to see and hear the chamber orchestra version of this new work. September 25, 2005 marked the date for the symphonic world premier by the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra with DiNovi conducting. Gene DiNovi has two daughters living in Los Angeles; Denise DiNovi Taylor and Michelle DiNovi Sawelson. He has three grandsons; McNeil Christian Taylor, Nicholas Eugene Taylor and Alex Patrick Sawelson. Gene resides in Toronto, Canada with his wife Deirdre and son William Desmond DiNovi

NEIL SWAINSON

 

Neil Swainson, from Victoria BC, began working with Paul Horn in 1975, for two years. He also backed up such musicians as Barney Kessel, Herb Ellis, and Sonny Stitt. In 1977, Neil moved to Toronto. He became very active in the local jazz scene, playing with Canadian greats: Moe Koffman, Ed Bickert, Rob McConnell, Peter Appleyard, and many others. He has played with many visiting jazz artists, to name a few: James Moody, George Coleman, Jay McShann, Tommy Flanagan, Lee Konitz, Joe Farrell, Slide Hampton, and Woody Shaw. Neil travelled and recorded with Woody Shaw, and Neil’s own recording, 49th Parallel, features Woody Shaw on trumpet and Joe Henderson on saxophone. In 1986 Neil began working with George Shearing. Together, they worked worldwide with many other great artists, such as Mel Tormé, Joe Williams, Nancy Wilson, Robert Farnon, and Diana Krall. Neil has made numerous recordings with George Shearing, and with a number of other artists. Several of the recordings on which Neil plays have won Canada’s Juno Award. Neil continues to compose music and freelance extensively in the Toronto area.

OAKLAND STROKE

 

Lou Pomanti

Gemini award winner Lou Pomanti is one of Canada’s most accomplished composers, musicians, and musical directors. Lou’s original music and performances are featured on soundtracks and recordings heard all over the world.

Lou studied music at Humber College in Toronto in the Jazz Program. He was the recipient of The Duke Ellington Scholarship Award for Arranging.

In 1980 Lou received a call from David Clayton-Thomas to join the seminal jazz rock group

Blood, Sweat and Tears and toured the world. It began a decades long assocation that

culminated in 2010 with Lou producing DCT’s new CD “Soul Ballads” for Universal Records.

1983 saw the beginning of Lou’s session career as the #1 top call pianist/synthesist in Toronto.

His playing and arranging has enhanced the recordings of Michael Buble, Gordon Lightfoot

and Anne Murray; as well as Rock’s Kim Mitchell and Triumph. His record credits are a

“Who’s Who’ of the Canadian recording industry.

The mid 90s saw his emergence as a prominent TV and Film composer, which continues to this day. The list of credits is too long to include here, with shows on CBC, CTV, Global, HBO,

Showtime, HGTV, and many more.

The 90s also saw Lou’s emergence as one of the country’s top Musical Directors. Lou was the MD for the Canadian Songwriter’s Hall of Fame ( 6 times), The Gemini Awards ( 7 times ) , the Genie Awards ( 5 times ) and the Junos. Lou has written and MD’ed music for James

Taylor, Herbie Hancock, Leonard Cohen and Michael Buble to name a few. Lou received his Gemini award for arranging and conducting “Both Sides Now” for Joni Mitchell’s induction. Lou also MD’ed the CBC TV show “Hockey Night in Canada Anthem Challenge” with

megaproducer Bob Rock which found a new hockey anthem for Canada. He also conducted the orchestra for the CBC’s “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria” on live nationwide TV.

Most recently, Lou arranged the orchestra for Michael Buble’s smash hit “Haven’t Met You Yet”, which has sold over 7 million copies worldwide. He is currently at work on Michael Buble’s new CD due out later in 2013.

Lou was proud to have composed the music for the 2011 Pan Am Games Handover Ceremony in Guadalajara, an 8-minute suite for multimedia.

In 2012, the City of Toronto named a street after Lou to honour his accomplishments.

 

Tony Carlucci

Tony started his musical career immediately after his father introduced him to the trumpet at the age of 9. By the age of 11 he was playing in weekend bands and studying under Canada’s premier trumpet teacher, Dr. Don Johnson. By the age of 15 Tony was a regular in Toronto’s local music theater scene, performing in such shows as “West Side Story”, “Pajama Game”, “A little Night Music” and was also playing with Canada’s Youth Orchestra.

At the age of 22, he landed his first Musical director job for New Zealand’s top show singer, Frankie Stevens, touring Canada’s top show rooms for 6 months.

Working regularly on Canada’s CBC television station in the 80’s, Tony played with such artist as Cory Hart, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Frozen Ghost, Percy Sledge, The Drifters, Sam and Dave, The Spoons, Zappa Costa, Rita McNeil, Don Rickles, Paul Anka, Colin James, etc.

At the age of 30, Tony started his own group called Synthetic Earth and began composing music. The group was runner up in the American based Hennessy Jazz Search competition that was held in Los Angeles in 1989.

In 1995, he has started his own music production company called Amarosa Music providing live and recorded musical/MD services for large corporate functions. He regularly performs in such places as Bangkok/Thailand and Hong Kong.

He continues to be a Band Leader with his latest project, Brass Transit –

The musical Legacy of Chicago which is now receiving international attention.

COUNTERMEASURE

 

Countermeasure is the fresh face of a cappella, known for their upbeat sound, sophisticated harmonies, and infectious energy. Led by award-winning composer/arranger Aaron Jensen, and featuring some of Canada’s top young vocal talent, Countermeasure delivers a memorable musical experience that has earned the group critical and public acclaim.

To date, the group has shared the stage with such vocal giants as The Swingle Singers, The Real Group, The Four Freshman, and The Nylons, as well as Canadian music mainstays Corey Hart, Chantal Kreviazuk, Nikki Yanofsky, and Blue Rodeo.

Countermeasure has been featured at high-profile jazz festivals, concert series, and galas, as well as on CBC, Global, Rogers and City TV Breakfast Television. Their debut album, 14 Characters, has played on syndicated radio stations across North America.

HEAVY WEIGHTS BRASS BAND

 

Whether receiving props from The Roots on Twitter, jamming with puppets on CBC Kids' Mamma Yamma, recording with the legendary Giovanni Hidalgo or being championed by influential DJ and tastemaker Gilles Peterson, The Heavyweights Brass Band pack a one-two punch of crossover appeal and respect from music's elite.

Inspired by the New Orleans brass band tradition, the Heavyweights'original stance keeps one foot firmly rooted in the rich legacy of jazz, while one-foot steps forward into the future. Like the music's originators, the Heavyweights are unafraid to incorporate influences from disparate areas of the musical spectrum, from pop hits of the day to original compositions, from R&B and funk throwbacks to the infectious rhythms of Latin America, all woven together with the thread of adventuresome sophistication.

The uppercut ascent of the Heavyweights' arc has been the result of relentless dedication. Touring across Canada and sharing the stage with such influential groups as The Roots, Trombone Shorty, Galactic and Hypnotic Brass Ensemble has helped build the group a loyal following. Now with their sophomore release Brasstronomical, the Heavyweights are offering a unique sound with emphasis on their original compositions. They delve deeper and more eclectically into each musical direction implied on their first album. Brasstronomical reveals the band's music is stronger, bolder, funkier and more mature than ever before.

The future is bright for the group, with plans in the works for 2014 to be a year of new thresholds as the group blossoms into even more of a hard-hitting powerhouse of sound.

BEVERLY AND THE FUNKY BUNCH

Jazzin Juniors Winners

 

SCS jazz band is a a new program at Simcoe Composite inspired by SCJ! This program is headed by Shawn Beal featuring young high school musicians learning the art of the jazz genre.  Members include: Joel Easey, Nolan Gibson, Sam Lightheart, Eric Pond, Brandon Vary, and Jordan Bingleman

SCS JAZZ BAND

 

SCS jazz band is a a new program at Simcoe Composite inspired by SCJ! This program is headed by Shawn Beal featuring young high school musicians learning the art of the jazz genre.  Members include: Alana Lightheart, Sam Lightheart, Eric Pond, Jordan Bingleman, Kydra Ryan, Mackenzie Thorpe, Ruth Bennett, Maridyn Bennett and Abi Peck

YOUNG LIONS TRIO

Jazzin Juniors Winners

The members are Davide Corazza, Ewen farncombe and Corey St. Pierre.

 

Davide Corazza is a drummer and keyboardist in the Toronto area. He specializes in many styles such as Jazz, rock, pop and R&B. He has both performed and studied with the likes of Kirk MacDonald, Pat Labarbera, Lorne Lofsky, Barry Romberg, Steve Mancuso, Mark Kelso, Seamus Blake, George Cables, Rich Perry and many more. He continues to play around toronto and hopes to further his compositional skills as well as drumming and keyboard playing. He has been a recipient of many awards, such as the Lou Williamson Memorial Drumset scholarship, Humber College Leadership award, as well as the AM 740 radio award. Hi Juliann, > > The name of my group is the "Young Lions trio". The members are Ewen farncombe on piano and Corey St. Pierre on bass. Corey will be sending a bio and picture to me shortly. I have a picture of him but I'm just waiting on the bio. Lastly, Ewen's bio and picture is below mine.

 

Ewen Farncombe has been playing piano for 9 years. He started playing piano at Rosedale Heights School of the Arts teaching himself, and then 1 year later began taking jazz piano lessons from Brian Rudolph. Brian turned Ewen on to Community Music, a program at Humber College for youth wanting to learn about music and jazz. There he studied with Kirk Macdonald, Lorne Lofsky, and Barry Romberg.  After his experience in the Community School, Ewen decided to attend Humber College for Music Performance where he is currently enrolled.

 Ewen has played with artists such as Mike Downs, Larnell Louis, Donny McCaslin, Heather Bambrick, George Koller, Daniel Barnes, Kirk Macdonald, Pat Labarbera, Vito Rezza, Lorne Lofsky, and Alex Dean to name a few. He has been playing around the Toronto area for 4 years at places such as Gate 403, The Rex, The Jazz Bistro, Pantages Martini Bar, Harlem Underground East, and various other private parties and events. He has won the Music Fest Canada Phil Nimmons Outstanding Jazz Performer Award, and The Rex Hotel Jazz and Blues Bar Emerging Artist Award, and the Oscar Peterson Grant for Jazz Performance.

 

Corey St. Pierre is an acoustic and electric bass player in Toronto, Ontario. Growing up in Hamilton, Ontario Corey began studying electric bass at the age of 12, and upon moving to Kelowna, British Columbia when he was 15 began studying jazz music. In 2012, Corey moved again, this time to Toronto to enroll in Humber College's Music Degree Program, where he began studying the double bass and furthering his studies in Jazz. Its here he has worked closely and studied with veteran and contemporary jazz musicians including Neil Swainson, Kirk MacDonald, Pat LaBarbera, Mike Downes, Larnell Lewis, and Jon Maharaj, among many other great performers. While still working towards completely his degree, Corey can be seen playing in various venues in Toronto with groups including his own, the Corey St. Pierre All-Stars, as well the Lilt Quartet, The Whim, and the Bassline Trio.

ADREAN FARRUGIA GENERATIONS TRIO

 

Adrean Farrugia

...Farrugia proves himself to be one of the current scene’s most imaginative pianists.

-Nic Jones, ALL ABOUT JAZZ.COM

 

Pianist Adrean Farrugia is in superb form

-Downbeat Magazine, January 2010

 

Pianist Adrean Farrugia's disc reflects an expansive musical vision and the talent and craft to combine elements from a range of influences

-Peter Hum, The Ottawa Citizen

 

"A gifted pianist. His approach is an intelligent synthesis of styles

-Harvey Pekar

 

Pianist Farrugia is a young veteran, a first-call sideman who's performed on numerous albums. His excellent CD debut as leader features a forceful, percussive style, fast-developing ideas and a wide-ranging composer's imagination.

- Geoff Chapman, Toronto Star

 

Award winning pianist and composer Adrean Farrugia is one of Canada’s most distinct voices on the piano.

Since the late 1990s Adrean has been i n high demand as a freelance performer and teacher. Keeping a busy touring schedule, mainly as a sideman, Adrean has toured extensively across Canada and the United States as well as in venues across Europe and in Japan.

Adrean has performed/recorded with some of jazz’s greatest and most diverse artists including:

Larry Carlton, Ernie Watts, Curtis Fuller, Tom Scott, Bob Brookmeyer, Randy Brecker, Eric

Alexander, Jane Bunnett, Ron Blake, Joel Frahm, Matt Penman, Brad Goode, Kenny Wheeler,

Darcy James Argue, Don Thompson, Lorne Lofsky, Kevin Turcotte, and Pat Labarbera.

Adrean is currently pianist for such diverse projects as the Matt Dusk Band, the Brad Goode Quartet, The Ernesto Cervini Quartet (featuring saxophonist Joel Frahm), The Johnny Griffith Quintet, Kiki Misumi, Tim Shia’s ‘The Worst Pop Band Ever’, the Bob Brough Quartet, John Cheesman Orchestra, Luke Maxim, Eleanor McCain, and the Darcy Hepner Big Band. Adrean also works regularly with his wife, vocalist Sophia Perlman.

As a leader Adrean has released three albums. His second album ‘Ricochet’ was nominated for a 2011 Juno award for best contemporary jazz recording. As a composer Adrean has penned more than 30 works to date.

Adrean is currently on the faculty of Mohawk College where he teaches contemporary piano, ensembles and improvisation. He has also served on the faculties of York University and Humber College. He has also done workshops/clinics at the University of Colorado, University of Toronto, The University of Western Ontario, The Banff Centre for the arts, The Sydney and Brisbane Conservatories, and in Warsaw Poland as part of the Polish Jazz Society’s 35th annual Summer Jazz Workshop.

Adrean has been a contributing writer to piano guru Larry Fine’s publication “The Piano

Book”, the world’s foremost publication on all things piano.

Adrean was also a performer and panelist at the 63rd and 67th annual Conference on World Affairs in Boulder Colorado. Adrean is endorsed by Shigeru Kawai pianos.

 

Jillian McKenna

Jazzin Juniors Winner

 

McKenna is an upright bassist from Hamilton, Ontario. She began playing the bass in high school, at Hillfield Strathallan College, under the direction of Allan Gaumond and Clark Johnston.

There she was a member of the Senior Jazz ensemble for 4 years, and received multiple awards, including musicianship awards and the graduating HSC Music Award. Through her high school years McKenna was also a part of the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band Organization. She is currently finishing her 2nd year with the All Star Big Band, under the direction of Dr. Russ Weil. After high school McKenna pursued her musical education at Mohawk College in the Applied Music Program. It was there she was able to really begin her studies of jazz music. She studied with many great faculty members including, Pat Collins, Adrean Farrugia, Darcy Hepner and Bob Shields. Outside of school McKenna has been playing professionally with many different groups for private events, jazz festivals, and shows. In the fall McKenna is moving to New York City to continue her musical education at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.

 

Ted Warren

Ted has a solid reputation as a musical, versatile drummer. He is an active member of Canada’s jazz scene and has been recognized with Jazz Report’s Drummer of the Year award. He teaches at University Of Guelph and Mohawk College in their music programs and is a well-regarded clinician and adjudicator.

Ted fronts his own quartet, Ted’s Warren Commission, which has released two CDs, First Time Caller, and Songs For Doug. He is also member of Broadview, which he co-leads with Rich Brown and Mike Murley. They have recently released their debut recording, Two of Clubs, on Addo records. He was the drummer for the Boss Brass and can be heard on six of their recordings, including Velvet and Brass (with Mel Torme), From Lush to Lively (with Oliver Jones), Even Canadians get the Blues, and The Boss Brass Plays the Jazz Classics.

 

Ted studied music at McGill and received a certificate in Jazz Studies from St. Francis Xavier University and recently completed his B. Mus. from Thompson Rivers University. He has worked with many acclaimed performers, including Slide Hampton, Bob Newhart, Maynard Ferguson, Lew Soloff, Chuck Mangione, Jeff Healey, Norma Winstone, Sheila Jordan, Howard Johnson, Nick Brignola, Kenny Wheeler, Ron McClure, Doc Severinsen and Gerry Bergonzi. Ted’s extensive touring has taken him to Poland, South Korea, Spain, Brazil, Iceland, and Japan. He has also performed at Carnegie Hall with harpist Joanna Jordon.

In addition to his other recorded work, you can hear Ted on Mike Murley’s CDs Extra Time, and the Jazz Report’s Album of the Year recipient, Conversation Piece. You can also hear Ted on the Juno Award winning Tales from the Blue Lounge by Richard Underhill. As well as being active teaching and playing, Ted is the Artistic Director for the Grand River Jazz Society. Ted endorses Vic Firth drumsticks and Zildjian cymbals.

AVERY RAQUEL

 

A triple threat performer, Avery has acted in various film, television and animation projects for the likes of Spielberg, Dreamworks and Disney. Avery has also performed in various professional stage musicals across Canada, including Mary Poppins and Secret Garden.  Avery’s greatest passion however, is singing.

 

At 13 years old, Avery has garnered many awards including the 2014 Western Fair Rise2Fame Youth Talent Search. She has performed on many stages as a solo performer, and her greatest joy is when she’s singing jazz.  Inspired by the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and some of today’s jazz artists like Diana Krall and Nikki Yanofsky, Avery has performed in many jazz festivals and jazz clubs, such as The Metropolitan Room and the famous Bird Land Jazz Club in New York City. 

 

Promoting her upcoming debut album, along with her professional jazz trio, consisting of Joel Haynes on drums, Mike Pelletier on Bass and Rob Fekete on piano, Avery is excited to perform once again at the South Coast Jazz Festival.

JORDAN GOODRIDGE

 

Is more then a typical teenager he's an ENTERTAINER. With extensive training in singing and dancing.

He's been training to full fill his dream of being on Broadway since the age of 5.

Working with accomplished musicians such as Juliann Kuchocki, Dave Restivo, Nathan Hiltz and Scott Metcalfe to name a few.

The Stage is where Jordan shines, his ability to engage his audience is truly amazing due to his excellent dance training, competing at a competitive level with many accomplishments, the biggest being Crowned Jr. Mr dance of Western New York and finishing in the top ten in Jr. Mr. Dance of America where he also won the title of Mr. Personality from his peers at the National level.

 

LET JORDAN ENTERTAIN YOU, YOU WONT BE DISAPPOINTED

JOYCE CORBETT HUMBERT

 

Joyce Corbett Humbert moved to Norfolk County from Toronto in 2013.

 

Joyce studied congas and Cuban percussion in Toronto with various teachers including Mario Del Monte, Jr., Reimundo Sosa and Joaquin Hidalgo. She also studied with Manolo Semanat Bell, Vicente Portuondo and Gali in Santiago de Cuba.

 

Joyce is the “conguera” of Cazu Latin Band based in Kitchener-Waterloo and plays with the Latin Jazz Ensemble at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto. She is a representative for Ritmacuba, a French organization who run music, dance and percussion workshops in Santiago de Cuba.

 

Joyce has performed in Toronto at the Muhtadi International Drum Festival, Lula Lounge, Hugh’s Room, Latinada, Gate 403, Trane Studio, The Gallery Studio Café and Beaches Jazz and at public and private events in Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, Brantford, Simcoe and Baden. Joyce has also played congas and percussion for dance classes.

AMABLE HERNANDEZ

 

An extraordinarily talented dancer from Pinar de Rio, Cuba, Amable studied dance at the EIA (Escuela instructora de arte) for 4 years where he also studied percussion and theatre. He was a performer in the Cabaret continental in Varadero for 2 years where he had the opportunity to be featured as principal dancer.  Amable is a master of all styles of Cuban dance, Afro-Cuban and popular – rumba, palo, gaga, orishas, casino, mambo and more. He came to Canada in 2012. He has taught and performed in and around Hamilton and  Brantford where he now lives. This year he started teaching Cuban dance in Norfolk County at Culverdene House.

LUIS A. SERRANO

 

Luis Serrano is a percussionist specialized in Afro-Cuban rhythms such as son, rumba (columbia, guaguanco and yambu), mozambique, abakua and Yoruban religious toques.  He also plays Latin Jazz.

 

Originally from Panama City, he lived in Montreal for 18 years before moving to London, Ontario where he has lived for 9 years.

 

Luis Serrano played with both "La Grand Combinación" orchestra and "Conjunto Son 3" in Montreal and was part of “Son Del Caiman” and “La Banda Internacional” in Matanzas, Cuba. More recently, he was with London-based “Latin Power” and is currently with the band K’bola in Hamilton.

ELIZABETH SHEPHERD

2015 JUNO NOMINEE

 

Over 4 critically acclaimed albums, Elizabeth Shepherd has created a body of work that has resonated with music fans around the world. After 3 JUNO nominations, Elizabeth is credited as one of the young forces pushing the boundaries of jazz; she further carves an artful, soulful and hip brand of music all her own with her upcoming release, ‘The Signal’. The Montreal-based singer/keyboardist has been praised around the world for her soulful innovations and for making “jazz” exciting and accessible to a young audience. Versed in equal parts Stevie Wonder, Salvation Army brass bands and classical sonatas, it is perhaps no surprise that Shepherd has developed such a distinct and unique voice.

 

With ‘The Signal’, Shepherd joins the ranks of an exclusive group of artists committed to uncompromising and playful exploration, unafraid of falling between the genre cracks. Highlights include her collaborations with Lionel Loueke (Herbie Hancock, Gretchen Parlato) – one of the world’s most celebrated guitarists of his generation – which are both sublime and funky. The subject matter for the songs covers topics as wide-ranging as Monsanto and motherhood, witchcraft and war. Her trademark rhythmic groove is always at the core of Shepherd’s writing, while her fluid, sensual, breathy voice is as compelling and haunting as ever.

 

There’s a maturity to Shepherd’s songwriting here, as she clearly doesn’t set out to prove anything, and in effect, does so much more. ‘The Signal’ plays as a series of 11 seamlessly woven songs, hearkening back to the golden era of the Album: a purposefully crafted audio journey that begs another visit, time and time again. Far from sitting neatly in any camp, ‘The Signal’ will outlive trends and fads and reward music-lovers with each new listen.

MICHAEL OCCHIPINTI

 

An eight-time JUNO Award nominee for Best Contemporary Jazz Album, guitarist/composer Michael Occhipinti's inventive approach to creative music of all kinds has allowed him to move between genres that include jazz, chamber music, funk, world music, and anything involving modern guitar sounds.  A sampling of his recent activities in 2014 includes performances with Bruce Cockburn, brilliant American clarinetist Don Byron, Italian singer Pilar,  electronic jazz group Junik, Turkish folk fusion group Minor Empire, Sundar Vishwanathan’s Avataar, The Cecilia String Quartet, and the orchestral Group of 21.

 

Michael Occhipinti’s Sicilian Jazz Project has been called "a masterpiece of cross-cultural fusion" and has thrilled audiences in Canada, the U.S., Italy, and Mexico for its fusion of Old World sounds and the contemporary music.  The Universe of John Lennon  is Michael Occhipinti's most recent recording, selected by the staff at Jazz FM as a Top Pick of 2012.  Typical of Michael’s willingness to challenge himself, the recording pulls off the tricky task of making some the best known songs in the world sound original and fresh.  Shine On features the stellar vocals of Elizabeth Shepherd, alongside a handful of Canada’s best vocalists,  and Michael's distinct arrangements of songs by John Lennon and the Beatles.  

2014

CHUCK JACKSON

Juno Award Winner

 

Chuck Jackson is Downchild’s singer; the sort of openhearted, friendly guy who builds an instant rapport with audiences. He came to Downchild 24 years ago after a long career with a number of top Canadian bands. An Award Winning singer, who rates Big Joe Turner, Otis Redding and Junior Wells as major influences, Jackson’s also is an excellent songwriter, and there are plenty of his songs on many of the groups recordings. He’s also a fine harmonica player, and a special highlight of the band’s performances are the harp duets with Mr. Downchild. In 2014 Downchild won a Juno Award for Blues Recording of the Year for their CD Can You Hear The Music.

Chuck is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the annual award winning Tim Hortons Southside Shuffle Blues and Jazz Festival which has become an major event on the North American festival circuit.

He is also the Artistic Director of Wasaga Beach Blues, the excellent new blues event in Wasaga Beach every September.

With Downchild he has been nominated for 4 Junos and won once in 2014. Chuck has been nominated 7 times and won the Maple Blues Award, Male Vocalist of the Year twice. In 1999 and 2007. He was also honoured in 2002 with the Toronto Blues Society’s prestigious Blues With a Feeling Award for his achievements during a distinguished career. In 2012 Chuck received the prestigious Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal and in 2013 was inducted to the Mississauga Music Walk of Fame and Mississauga Legends Row In 2014 in October Chuck will be hosting Mississippi Golf and Blues Weeks and continue performing for his fans and friends all over the world. Now in his 24th year with Downchild and 41st year in the Canadian Music Industry, Chuck says “Being able to play the music I love and entertain the wonderful people across Canada and around the world is certainly a dream come true and one I will continue to follow”

TYLER YAREMA

Juno Award Winner

 

Tyler Yarema is an award winning Piano Player, Singer, and Composer. He has played on over 50 cd’s ranging from Blues and Jazz, to Reggae and Pop. The Juno winner has been in constant demand for many Festivals, corporate functions, weddings, and theater concerts nation wide. Tyler has also held a enormously successful house gig at the world famous Reservoir Lounge in downtown Toronto. Having such an aggressive and entertaining, often with fingers a blur style of Piano Playing, and a crooners voice often compared to Chet Baker, Tyler is a “must see” performer.

JULIE MICHELS AND KEVIN BARRETT

 

“Experiencing the music of Kevin Barrett and Julie Michels live in concert is something you won’t forget. They might look like a duo but their music fills the room and commands attention.”
Jaymz Bee. JAZZ.FM91


Michels sang entrancingly with her usual partner-in-music, Barrett. They definitely have their thing down, offering wellcrafted but loosely executed gems …. tailor-made for Michels' winning sass and exuberance.
Peter Hum. Ottawa Citizen / Jazzblog.ca


"Julie Michels has soul, big-hearted soul"
Mark Miller. Globe & Mail

 

Julie Michels (voice) & Kevin Barrett (guitar) breathe new life into the music they play -- a repertoire which draws broadly from pop, jazz and latin standards, and adds a few little-known gems. The duo setting enables these top-flight improvisers to bring the spontaneity of a jazz session to their unique and engaging arrangements of your favourite songs.


As a baby, Julie Michels hummed in key with the radio and she hasn’t stopped since! Her ability to vocalize flows effortlessly from within, gliding through any genre from jazz to folk, bebop and blues. Julie’s “glorious holler” [Mark Miller, The Globe & Mail] has been a unique and important feature on the Toronto jazz scene for more than two decades, settling there after studying with legendary bassist Richard Davis at University of Wisconsin and spending time gigging across Europe and North America. She has performed, toured and recorded with Kevin Barrett, George Koller, Ottawa’s Chelsea Bridge, the MCCT Choir (Diane Leah, Musical Director) and her own bands, Sutra and Parley. Julie’s performances at popular jazz venues including the Top of the Senator, the Rex Hotel, Hugh's Room, Statler's Lounge, the Montreal Bistro, Trane Studio and Opal are regularly met with great responses and packed houses. Julie’s previous recordings include "Singing Naked" (1995) with bassist, George Koller and “Live at Statler’s” (2003) with Kevin Barrett.

 

Kevin Barrett marries a strong foundation in the jazz guitar tradition, a deft touch with new looping technology and a playful pop sensibility to provide the perfect foil for Julie’s voice. Kevin is a widely respected Toronto guitarist, having recorded, performed and toured with an impressive list of Canadian artists including: Molly Johnson, Shannon Butcher, Big Rude Jake, Paisley Jura, David Wall, Daniela Nardi and DK Ibomeka. He has released two CD's under his own name: Kevin Barrett Trio: "JAM" (1999) and Kevin Barrett Group: "Share the Wealth" (2002) and has performed in a wide range of jazz festivals as well as most of Toronto’s nightclubs.


Julie & Kevin are excited to be touring in support of their new recording, She Sings He Plays. The ten-song collection includes favourites by the Beatles and Paul Simon, Brazilian standards and a Julie’s compelling new composition, “Fall from Grace” (featured in a video which is included on the disc.) Building on the success of their 2003 release, Live at Statler’s, the CD is sure to be in top rotation soon. Julie and Kevin’s intimate and exciting performance style is unique -- don't miss it!

 

CONTACT:
647.223.1714
jmkb@kevinbarrettgroup.com

NATHAN HILTZ

 

Nathan Hiltz (B.Mus, M.Mus) is a Juno winning jazz guitarist who was born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Based in Toronto since 1999, he attended Humber College and The University of Toronto. He studied jazz guitar with Reg Schwager, Jim Hall, Adam Rogers and many others. Over the course of his professional career he has played on over 25 albums and toured extensively across Canada. Nathan is a mentor to many aspiring guitarists from his home teaching studio and as a part time faculty member at Humber College.

 

He is also the co-founder of the critically acclaimed Griffith Hiltz Trio. Their new album, ‘This is what you get’ was produced by Hawksley Workman and released September / 2013.  His Hammond B3 quartet project Organic has held down a residency for over 6 years at the popular nightclub/rib joint Joe Mamas in the heart of Toronto’s theater district. Their debut album, ‘Live At Joe Mamas’, was released in 2013 at The Rex Hotel. Nathan performed with Alex Dean, Bernie Senensky, Terra Hazelton, Brandi Disterheft, Melissa Lauren, Ryan Oliver, Johnny Griffith, Jill Barber and Patrick Boyle to name a few.

 

Recently Nathan has been focusing on songwriting as a new avenue of expression. He has been collaborating with jazz artists like Beverly Taft, Melissa Lauren, and Whitney Ross Barris and pop singer Craig Stickland.

ROBIN BANKS

 

A master of tone and phrasing, Robin Banks has a vocal style, strength and clarity that has been compared to Etta James and Dinah Washington. But match that with the charisma and boldness of a Tina Turner and you'll understand why Robin Banks has the world on a string!

Robin Banks has her roots deeply dug. Born in Canada a mere 50 miles from Detroit, then transplanted to Dallas, and then Jamaica, Banks is a diverse, international artist who is clearly comfortable with Jazz, Classic R&B, Soul, even Reggae. She is often lauded for her captivating live performance, her confident ability to connect and affect each member of her audience, her sincerity and certainly her authenticity. Robin Banks has established herself as a fearless, female force in International Blues circles recording and performing with the likes of Duke Robillard, Doug James and a long list of legendary Texas, West Coast and Chicago musicians. A powerful songwriter as well, Tom Hyslop of Blues Revue Magazine was quoted as saying Banks writes compositions "that lyrically echo the song craft of Cole Porter and the Gershwins". 

"Robin's got soul, class and most of all good taste!" - Duke Robillard

 

www.reverbnation.com/robinbanks

JORDANA TALSKY

 

Cited as “a new name on the vocal jazz scene whose powerful voice has been turning heads,” Jordana has actually been singing for most of her life.

 

As a child she was a member of the Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus and performed with world class ensembles including the Canadian Opera Company and Toronto Symphony. Later, she attended the renowned Claude Watson Arts Program at Earl Haig Secondary in Toronto, majoring in voice. While a student at McGill, she branched out of the classical genre, joining a funk band (Kokoro), an acapella group (Effusion) and a Gilbert & Sullivan theatre company (Savoy Society). She became a regular performer at Maggie’s Supper and Jazz Club in London, Ontario while studying law at the University of Western Ontario. 

 

Upon returning to Toronto, she worked hard to develop her own sound and immersed herself in various projects including the Young Centre for the Performing Arts’ inaugural Emerging Artists Program; Discoveries, a popular bi-annual showcase of emerging Canadian talent; and as a member of the prestigious Toronto Mendelssohn Choir. 

 

Having played the club circuit for the last three years, she now headlines shows at top jazz clubs in Toronto. The release of her debut album, Standard Deviation, earlier this year marked a leap forward in her musical career. The recording is receiving airplay across Canada and in the U.S., and features a seamless mix of pop and jazz material. Jordana succinctly describes the style of the record as "jazzy takes on pop songs and poppier takes on jazz songs. I am always attracted to new combinations, rather than strictly sticking to a genre."

 

Festival work includes the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, Barrie Jazz & Blues Festival, Port Hope All Canadian Jazz Festival, Savour Stratford Arts Festival, Jazz on the Mountain at Blue, Markham Jazz Festival among others. Jordana looks forward to expanding her horizons and continuing the challenge herself as an artist.

ROB REED

 

An accomplished pianist, ROB REED has done it all, from sold-out concert halls, to intimate piano performances and nightclubs around the world.

 

His inviting nature, unique piano style, extensive repertoire, and commanding voice have earned him the respect and admiration of fans and peers from Scandinavia to the South Pacific as well as across North America.

 

His accommodating style brings you in time and time again.

 

Rob is an international caliber performer and recording artist, with albums and radio charted singles that have been heard worldwide.

Join Rob and relax and enjoy this years South Coast Jazz Holiday Celebration

ALISON YOUNG

SOUTH COAST

CULTURAL SOCIETY

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