Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Skip's Summer Jazz Friends

The team at IAM Studios and "Project SJF" would like to thank all the artists that submitted their work recently for the new "Skip's Jazz Friends" cross-Canada compilation.
Please continue to support this project by posting links to the blogspot on your social networks and if you know someone that is a jazz artist (any field) please let them know about this opportunity.

BE SURE TO CHECK OUT THE FIRST BLOG POST in the archive for JUNE "Skip's Jazz Friends: The Search Is On" for details on how you can be Skip's Jazz Friend and be featured on the CD if chosen by you know who!!

Here are a few NEW features for this Summer:


Trevor Dick is a popular electric and acoustic violinist. His playing evokes images of Jean Luc Ponty, Hugh Marsh, Mark O’Connor and Mark Wood (Trans-Siberian Orchestra) all melded together.  With such amazing versatility on his instruments, including the five-string electric violin, Trevor is a master at reaching any audience. He is mainly known as a solo artist, but has also played and toured with Paul Coleman (Newsboys), Robin Mark, Lynda Randal (Gaithers), Carolyn Arends, Amanda Falk and Geoff Moore.

Since 2005, Trevor has acted as a Compassion Canada artist and actively promotes the cause of child poverty at his concerts. He and his band have been featured on national television programming such as 100 Huntley Street, Living Truth, and the Wav. File. As one audience goer commented: “listening to your music last night was the most soul-provoking experience ... your concert brought tears to my eyes ... thank you so much for sharing your gift of music.” Patricia Paddey, a Canadian freelance journalist states:  “Trevor’s flying bow stirs hearts and ... when he creates his music ... the impact on his audience is profound.” His last album, entitled Yahweh, won four GMA Covenant awards in 2011 including best instrumental album of the year and best instrumental single of the year. 


Described as “a bluesy Erykah Badu with a marvelous voice that begins in the smoky lows of Norah Jones and effortlessly climbs into the powerful, confident ranges of Lisa Stansfield, Johanna performs slick soul, funk and jazz to dig your heels into and her velveteen voice and eclectic sound slides over the air carrying with it a sensual, deep groove.

Sillanpaa and her Jazz groove ensemble have played everywhere from the intimate jazz joints in their small-but-tight musical community of Calgary to the Montréal Jazz Festival’s 60,000-plus crowds.  Beyond filling venues in Canada and abroad, Sillanpaa’s sound has also drawn its fair share of accolades and award nominations, including a 2012 Western Canadian Music Award nod in the Urban music category. At the 2010 Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards, she was nominated for Best Female Vocalist and Group/Duo of the Year with Sillan & Young.



MISS ROBIN BANK$ has her roots deeply dug. Clearly comfortable with Jazz, Classic R&B and Soul, even Reggae, she's also known for her bold and brassy, classy but sassy, Texas and Chicago electric Blues style. She has 4 independently released CDs and one single to her credit and makes regular tours to Europe and the Caribbean, but recently made Toronto Canada her home. A master of tone and phrasing, ROBIN BANK$ has a vocal style, strength and clarity that has been compared to Etta James and Dinah Washington. She is a recipient of a Maple Blues Award for New Artist of the Year and was three times nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year. 

She gave a stunning performance at Massey Hall in Toronto as part of the celebrated annual Women's Blues Revue event in 2010. A true artist, ROBIN BANK$ is known in the industry as "the real deal" International Jazz & Blues Recording Artist.

Bill McBirnie has achieved something decidedly unlikely for a Canadian flutist who was raised in the small town of Port Colborne, Ontario.  Despite an uneventful musical beginning, Bill has succeeded in attaining an international standing as one of the foremost flutists in jazz today—all whilst rarely setting foot outside of what is now his native city of Toronto, Ontario.

What has made his slow but steady progress possible has been a long and diligent study of both jazz and classical techniques which Bill combined with a patient determination to make the instrument sound entirely natural and, at the same time, entirely convincing in jazz and other non-classical formats.  His continuing efforts have earned him unequivocal  critical acclaim as well as numerous awards; for example, here in Canada as Flutist of the Year (Jazz Report Awards) and Best Jazz Album (Toronto Independent Music Awards) and abroad as well as a winner in the Jazz Flute Master-class and Jazz Flute Big Band Competitions (National Flute Association) and a nomination for Best Jazz Album (Independent Music Awards in the USA).

In testimony to his singular place in the international flute community, Bill was identified and solicited personally by no less than Sir James Galway to serve as his resident Jazz Flute Specialist at Sir James' official web site―and this despite Bill’s rather limited renown and virtual seclusion in Canada.

Born in Madrid, Spain, based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada: singer, songwriter, pianist, music producer, painter, award-winning illustrator and designer, radio host/producer.  Laura was born in Madrid into a family that boasted Laura’s great grandfather as the mayor. She lived in Switzerland as a child, and her parents migrated to Calgary, Alberta, Canada, where she spent her youth. Laura’s father was an architect, engineer and a painter, and as a result, Laura grew up in a household where art, creativity and culture were valued and encouraged. Laura excelled in academics and ultimately dedicated her life to art. She graduated from the Alberta College of Art with honours and moved to Toronto, Ontario to begin a successful career in illustration, and where she launched her music career.

On October 27, 2010, Laura Fernandez released her second CD,Un Solo Beso. For producer, Laura found her musical soulmate in Montreal born, Toronto based JUNO Award winning Billy Bryans, who is recognized as one of Canada’s leading Latin and world music promoters, DJ and also the co-leader and percussionist of the internationally acclaimed Canadian band, The Parachute Club.  Billy helped ensure cohesiveness within such an eclectic album. Un Solo Beso features some of Toronto’s most vibrant and highly acclaimed musicians including  Hilario Duran,Roberto Linares BrownLuis Mario OchoaNoah Zacharin,Glenda Del Monte Escalante,  Alberto Alberto,  Elmer Ferrer,Luiz DenizRoberto Riveron , Joaquin HidalgoChendy León,Jalidan Ruiz, and Alexis Baro.

Laura Fernandez video links

Jason Raso has a funk heart and a jazz head. They are hard wired together by the 4 strings of his bass guitar, and an innate ability to craft music that will turn you into a bobble head. It’ll make you feel like you’re the coolest cat on the block. For over 20 years Raso has pursued the groove to such excellence that Exclaim Magazine declares, “Jason Raso’s bass is a full-on orchestra of ground vibrating pleasure.”

Jason Raso has just released album number 6, The Red Arrow, a debut with Summit Records. His creative energy has expanded to include another layer of composition that explores his jazz sensibilities. If that weren’t enough, he doubles on electric guitar, as well as the acoustic double bass, demonstrating his skill as a musician and love for jazz guitar. In an interview with !Earshot, Jason says, “I still want a groove, and hope that those two sides continue to blend.”

Above all Jason Raso continues to grow as a musician and composer. His talent and originality are expressed by ongoing mastery of his instruments, and an appetite for musical knowledge. 

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