Jazz on the Wing

Jennifer Scott

All in the family

The Jennifer Scott Quintet will bring an electric jazz program to the Yukon this weekend In one sense, Jennifer Scott’s newest CD, due to be released sometime in the next few months, is a fitting tribute to the Vancouver singer/pianist’s own musical upbringing. Titled Music for Bigs & Smalls, the album consists of what Scott calls …

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Tenor of his times

The Sam Taylor Trio will present an evening of jazz standards at the Yukon Arts Centre on Sunday, Jan. 26, as part of the Jazz on the Wing series. Besides Taylor, personnel will include Aaron Seeber on drums and Neal Miner on upright bass.

Larry Fuller

Swing like a beast

One person’s trash is another’s treasure. When Larry Fuller’s older brother brought home an upright piano a cousin was discarding, the “little kid” from Toledo discovered a passion that would take him to the forefront of North America’s jazz scene. “I just started playing it by ear and then I went on to have lessons and …

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Phil Dwyer

Lawyered up and ready

Without question, Phil Dwyer was the only first-year law student at the University of New Brunswick in 2014 sporting an Order of Canada pin in his lapel. Odds are strong he was also the only frosh who could claim a 30-year career as one of Canada’s most in-demand jazz musicians. Or that his other option for …

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Jodi Proznick

Music is a birthright

By her own admission, Jodi Proznick, an award-winning bassist and member of Triology, has enjoyed an “incredible performing career, and had opportunities really beyond anything I could have imagined for myself at the beginning of this journey.”

Swinging Hard

After more than two decades as a jazz guitarist, Sheryl Bailey still invokes the name of a player who first inspired her love of the genre, but who died when she was just two years old. “I got into jazz when I was about 15. I heard Wes Montgomery on the radio. I just fell …

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Fiery energy and spirit

Fate has a habit of steering flute and saxophone player Jane Bunnett in unexpected directions. If tendinitis hadn’t forced a break from her intense piano practice regime, for instance, she might not have gone to San Francisco and met Charles Mingus’s pianist, Don Pullen, who would become her mentor, friend and musical collaborator. If she …

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Amsterdam to Tucson to Yukon

Cory Weeds credits the influential jazz label, Criss Cross Jazz, for his initial introduction to long-time friend and musical collaborator, David Hazeltine. In the mid-’90s, the Vancouver sax player, impresario and Juno-winning producer had finished his studies at the University of North Texas and returned to his home roots. Before long, he was spearheading a …

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Peripheral Vision

Taking Cues

When a band calls itself Peripheral Vision, you might be excused for thinking it’s a rock group, or possibly a folk/roots, or even bluegrass ensemble. But you’d be wrong.

Jen Hodge

Big, driving quarter notes

Jen Hodge had just spent five hectic days in Asheville, North Carolina, rehearsing every day and performing late into every night as part of the massive celebration of swing music known as Lindy Focus XVI. Despite the grinding schedule, the Vancouver jazz bassist and singer considered the Christmas-week event “a really incredible experience” that allowed her …

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Tradition and values

The email said Jeremy Pelt was between engagements in Europe and China, with just a “sliver of time” of time for a phone interview from his New York City home. For the first few minutes, the answers were terse, non-committal, perhaps a bit jetlagged. Or maybe he just wasn’t into it. Asked about his earliest …

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No earbuds aboard

Have you heard the one about the farmer’s daughter, the music teacher, the composer and the jazz singer? It’s not a joke. They’re all the same person: Karin Plato. Although she has called Vancouver home since 1985, Plato grew up on a grain farm near the tiny (current population: 129) community of Alsask, Saskatchewan. That’s where …

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Tel Aviv to L.A.

Tamir Hendelman’s list of players who have inspired him as a performer and composer includes unsurprising names such Evans, Davis, Corea, Hancock and Peterson. But how many other jazz musicians could also such early influences as a grandmother continuously humming everything from Yiddish songs, to opera, to Frank Sinatra in the apartment below? Or, for …

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Finding a New Way Home

From Tomaso Albinoni to Django Reinhardt, by way of Led Zeppelin? It’s all part of guitarist Marc Atkinson’s musical journey. The 48-year-old Atkinson grew up on B.C.’s relatively remote Quadra Island, without YouTube, or even television, but with access to the major music source of the day, vinyl records. “I didn’t know that humble peasants …

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Youthful Exuberance

Memphis, Tennessee has been dubbed both the “Home of the Blues” and the “Birthplace of Rock and Roll”. But it’s no slouch in the jazz department, either. In a four-year span from 1934 to 1938, at least half a dozen future jazz luminaries were born there. That mid-’30s crop included trumpeter Booker Little, as well …

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Gimme That Tessitura

Full disclosure: Steve Maddock and I have a few things in common. We’re both PKs (preacher’s kids) who grew up in southern Ontario adding our piping, angelic treble voices to the choirs in our fathers’ churches. Point of departure: I struggled through the guy-hood change of voice as a scholarship student of an Ursuline nun, …

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Banging on the sofa

Willie Jones III isn’t shy about crediting his late father, a renowned pianist from Los Angeles, with sparking his interest in jazz. “Even before I started school, he would take me to rehearsal with him and I would watch while he rehearsed. For some reason, I would always sit next to where the drums were, …

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A Matter of Taste

Musical talent is over-rated, and taste is under-rated. At least, that’s how Canadian-born sax player Grant Stewart sees things. “I know many, many, many players who can play anything they hear, and that’s kind of what you’re told is the ideal to shoot for,” he says. “But if you don’t develop the things that you’re …

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Crossing Borders

Alex Goodman doesn’t really cross borders so much as straddle them. Although the Toronto-raised guitarist and composer has made his home in New York City for the past three-and-a-half years, he seems to keep one foot planted in the musical soil of his homeland. “I think of Toronto as a very vibrant music scene. The …

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A Champian for Dinah

“You know how kids like to pretend and tell stories? My story was that I was Dinah Washington.” { legendary jazz singer who died in 1963}

Inside Rhythm

Forget the metronome, and don’t even bother trying to play like someone else, no matter how much you admire them. “When I was young, I figured that out real quick, because it was uncomfortable; it didn’t work,” says legendary drummer Louis Hayes. “You’re influenced by all sorts of things, and you can do certain things …

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A Drinky Thingy

According to Tim Tamashiro, there’s “thinky” jazz and then there’s “drinky” jazz . “I’ve always had a bit of a problem with the serious nature of jazz, so I wanted to come up with some sort of a name to put it into a bit of a context for the greater population,” he explains. Oh, …

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No Tuning Required

He may be a classically-trained pianist, but Chris Donnelly doesn’t get bent out of shape if his instrument is less than brilliantly tuned. “There’s nothing inherently bad about an untuned piano. It just sounds different. It has its own vibe,” he says. Donnelly is the pianist with the Toronto jazz trio Myriad3. Along with bassist …

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Coincidental Bassist

Richard Whiteman’s career as an upright bass player began virtually by coincidence. About 10 years ago, as leader of a highly regarded piano trio, he was doing a photo shoot with Juno-winning vocalist, composer, and bassist Brandi Disterheft. “I was holding Brandi’s bass while she was adjusting her hair or something, and I thought, ‘This …

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Daniel Janke Trio and Guest

One of the perks of being a composer is being able to jam with friends. On a trip last year to M ontréal, Daniel Janke got in touch with an old friend, Jean-Pierre Zanella, who is well known in the Montréal jazz scene as a saxophonist, composer and arranger. Zanella is coming to the Yukon …

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The fresh sound of jazz

Sienna Dahlen has that classical jazz sound in her voice. That is to say, it is what you think of when you think of small, smoky rooms and tight bands cooling up the place. But, just as jazz is forever evolving, Dahlen is now writing and performing a fusion of folk and pop. “I like …

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Pop goes the Hammond B-3

Besides hearing jazz played as tight as only a quartet of professionals can, the Jazz Yukon audience Sunday night will enjoy a spectacle. Have you seen the Hammond B-3 organ at The Cellar? Well, you will see it played by jazz veteran Mike LeDonne … and it will be a spectacle. “The funny thing is …

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Escaping to Bluegrass

It was bluegrass, as much as anything, that lured Radim Zenkl to slip through the Iron Curtain and become a political refugee in the United States. “At the beginning I played folk music, but as soon as I heard some country music on the records that were smuggled from the USA, I was really interested …

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A Touch of Brazil

Full disclosure: one of the most treasured albums in my vinyl collection is the 1962 Stan Getz & Charlie Byrd classic, Jazz Samba. Fuller disclosure: I’ve had a mad crush on Antônio Carlos Jobim’s “tall and tan and young and lovely” girl from Ipanema ever since Astrud Gilberto, hand-in-hand with Getz and her then-husband João …

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Many-flavoured Musical Fare

It’s not surprising that Darren Sigesmund blends the occasional food analogy into a conversation about music. The 42-year-old jazz musician is not only a trombonist, bandleader and composer. He’s also a professional chef. And he sees a clear connection between music and cuisine. “The general principles, I think, are very similar,” he says. “You have …

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