Friday, August 17th 2012
Jazz FM Big Band | 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
The JAZZ.FM 91 Youth Big Band is for middle and secondary school students, providing an opportunity for young, talented musicians to participate in a formal audition process, and to potentially join a city-wide band. The programme helps exceptional student musicians to hone their skills while interacting with a new and diverse group in a professional setting. Led by Musical Director Jules Estrin, an educator and professional musician, they perform several times throughout the year.
Lester McLean Band | 9:00 pm - 10:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
The Lester McLean Trio plays a unique brand of acoustic soul, funk and pop muic.Their unique blend of songs from the 60s 70s 80s as well as original material higlights the stellar musicianship of the band. The band features Lester McLean on vocals, Louis Simao on acoustic bass and background vocals, and the Markham Jazz Festival's Artistic Director, Michael Occhipinti on acoustic guitar and background vocals.
For more information visit http://www.lestermclean.com
Saturday, August 18th 2012
Michael Pickett | 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm | McKay Art Centre
Michael started his illustrious career at the age of four when he sang for his grandmother who tossed him nickels and dimes while she sat at the kitchen table sipping her whiskey - laced tea. Today, this JUNO nominee performs as a solo acoustic artist who tours Canada, the US, and Europe. He performs in Blues, Folk, Jazz clubs, theatres, festivals, and is no stranger to standing ovations and encores. Pickett's CD, 'Conversation With The Blues' was described by Billboard as "transcend[ing] the urban Blues idiom".
For more information visit http://www.michaelpickett.com/
Maria Farinha | 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm | McKay Art Centre
Brazilian Jazz interpreter, singer, songwriter, and producer Maria Farinha is one of the precursors of the new Contemporary Brazilian Popular Music movement. Her latest album, Uwattibi, draws from a love story in Brazilian history: the forbidden love between a French colonizer and a Tupinamba woman in southern Brazil. Maria fuses Brazilian music and North American jazz influences in her ten original compositions. This CD will take you on a beautiful journey and is a must-have for any jazz fan.
For more information visit http://www.mariaffarinha.com/
Fern Lindzon | 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm | McKay Art Centre
Lindzon has been praised as "an engaging pianist and singer who brings an unassuming authority, an inquiring spirit and a natural grace to contemporary jazz," and as "a rare and fascinating talent," by jazz writers Mark Miller and Irwin Block. She moves freely and easily between jazz standards, Brazilian melodies, klezmer instrumentals, Yiddish arts songs and her own compositions. Fern's latest CD, 'Two Kites' was nominated for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year at the 2012 JUNO Awards.
For more information visit http://www.fernlindzon.com/
MAZ | 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm | McKay Art Centre
MAZ blends traditional music and jazz through a combination of acoustic and electric sounds with a new and modern edge. The fiddle, banjo and double bass mingle with the electric guitar and Rhodes pianos to create a daring New Trad experience. MAZ consists of Marc Maziade (composer, electric guitar, banjo, foot rythms), Pierre-Olivier Dufresne (violin, mandolin, foot rhythms), Gabriel Godbout-Castonguay (keyboards) and Benoit Coulombe (bass). They invite you on a journey through Quebec's musical memory, down to the depths of modal jazz and into trance-inducing modern melodies.
For more information visit http://www.espacemaz.ca/
Barry Elmes Quintet | 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
International performer, drummer, composer, record producer, educator and multi-award winning Barry Elmes is a mainstay of the Canadian jazz scene. His Juno nominated Quintet, features a "who's who" of the best in Canadian jazz. Barry's current projects include his new CD release "Redshift" which showcases new compositions performed by his regular quintet (featuring Mike Murley, Kevin Turcotte, Reg Schwager, Steve Wallace) plus special guests Kelly Jefferson (saxophone, flute) and Vanessa Rodrigues (Hammond organ).
For more information visit http://www.barryelmes.com/
The Heavyweights Brass Band | 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
With a fresh and fun take on the classic New Orleans style, The Heavyweights Brass Band (HBB) is one of the most promising jazz acts to emerge from Canada in years. They deliver a diverse range of styles with a punch that makes their music accessible to everyone. Their high-energy live shows and expert musicianship have delighted many audiences. The band will be touring for the first time this summer across Canada, including an opening performance for The Roots in Saskatoon!
For more information visit http://www.heavyweightsbrassband.com/
Absolute Faith Quintet | 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm | Millennium Bandstand
Saxophonist, composer and arranger Patricia Wheeler brings her Absolute Faith Quintet to the stage, to honour the great songsmiths and lyricists of the twentieth century. Always maintaining their "faith" in the jazz tradition, Absolute Faith performs original compositions and reworked popular music with a style the Toronto Star's Geoff Chapman called, "fascinating" upon their debut. Vocalist Sherie Marshall will engage you with her mix of rhythm, melody, harmony, and poetic turn of phrase.
Marc Jordan | 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
Jordan is a Juno Award winner and the first recipient of Male Vocalist of the Year by the Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards. He has carved out an impressive career as an artist with eleven successful solo albums. He takes listeners to a place that the heart understands before the intellect can comment. He is frequently praised for the emotional and poetic quality of his lyrics and his understanding of the sweet sadness of life and its connection to music.
For more information visit http://www.marcjordan.com/
Don Byron Plays Junior Walker | 9:00 pm - 10:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
In 2005, Tenor Saxophonist, Don Byron, recorded his sixth album for Blue Note. It was dedicated to the music of soul legend, saxophonist and singer Junior Walker. Entitled 'Do The Boomerang', the CD features covers of some of Junior Walker's biggest hits, including "Shotgun", "Cleo's Mood", "I'm a Roadrunner", "What does it take (to win your Love)", as well as a version of James Brown's "There It Is". The CD garnered much acclaim from critics and audiences. Don't miss his performance with our Artistic Director, Michael Occhipinti, on guitar!
For more information visit http://www.donbyron.com/
Julia Cleveland Quintet | 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
"Great tunes, great playing, great sound" is how Jazz FM radio host, Larry Green has described Julia Cleveland and her Quintet. The Quintet has been active on the jazz scene with increasingly frequent performances in Toronto's main jazz clubs over the past couple of years. Julia is also recognized as a leading taiko Japanese drummer in Toronto. This unique drummer and composer is the Artistic Director of Isshin Daiko. Look out for her CDs.
For more information visit http://www.juliacleveland.com/
Ray Montford | 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
Montford is one of those rare guitarists who, like Jeff Beck and David Gilmour, does not consider virtuosity as a means in itself, and who knows how to make his instrument sing, wringing emotion from every note. With six albums to his credit (both acoustic and electric), Ray has built a repertoire that plays like a series of magical sonic pictures. He is currently recording a new studio album with producer Terry Brown (Rush, Max Webster), which is slated for early summer 2012 release.
For more information visit http://www.raymontford.com/
Mike Murley | 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
An engaging, lyrical saxophonist, Murley has emerged as one of Canada's finest jazz talents and one of the most versatile players on the scene today. He is currently active as a leader in various formations from duo to septet. Murley has played on 10 Juno Award winning recordings. He was also named saxophonist of the year eight times by the Jazz Report Awards/National Jazz Awards. The latest CD release from this Juno nominated musician is 'Still Rollin'.
For more information visit http://www.mikemurley.com/
Heather Bambrick | 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
Heather Bambrick is an award-winning performer who demonstrates her effortless technique, lyrical fluidity, and naturally warm audience rapport on stage. Her live shows are an entertaining combination of timeless standards, fresh, accessible original material, and just the right touch of humour. Bambrick has sung with a number of Chamber Choirs, Vocal Jazz Ensembles, dinner theatre productions, and CBC's The Vinyl Cafe. Heather was a founding member and lead soloist of the Vocal Jazz/Pop ensemble - The Beehive Singers.
For more information visit http://www.myspace.com/HeatherBambrick
Sunday, August 19th 2012
Ineke van Doorn and Marc van Vugt | 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm | McKay Art Centre
With fairy-like sounds, funky arrangements, modern music full of harrowing and twisting harmonies and sadly comforting songs, Dutch Grammy - winners Ineke van Doorn and Marc van Vugt explore improvisation and composition. Their music will reverberate in your head for a long time. Marc and Ineke have released nine CD's. Their original approach has taken them to clubs and festivals all over the world. They've performed in Canada, the U.S., France, Germany, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Austria,
Macedonia and Hungary.
For more information visit http://www.inekevandoorn.com/
Cecilia Monte | 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm | McKay Art Centre
Cecilia Monte is an Argentinean singer who deeply touches everyone's soul with her vocal delicacy, expression and sensitivity in her musical interpretation of the finest jazz and bossa-nova tunes. She has been the lead vocalist in several bands and was often responsible for vocal and instrumental arrangements. Her bands have performed in Argentina, Vancouver, Montreal, Toronto, New York, and Brazil. Cecilia is in the planning stage of her first album. Look out for her debut CD.
For more information visit http://www.ceciliamonte.com/
Afroteque | 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm | McKay Art Centre
Afroteque, Music from the Sun, is an Afro-Fusion Band from Toronto led by drummer, percussionist Altaf "Bwana Moto" Vellani. Afroteque criss-crosses the rhythms and melodies of the African diaspora into a joyful listening and dancing experience. Keyboardist Paul Neufeld improvises Jazz and Blues solos over the pulsating African Grooves. Paco Luviano holds down the melodic bass lines. Chip Yarwood plays the guitar, flute and mandolin. Percussionist Rick Lazar plays African, Brazilian and Cuban Polyrhythms.
Altaf drives the band with exciting African dance beats
For more information visit http://www.vellanionline.com/
NOJO & Don Byron perform Pink Floyd's Dark Side of The Moon | 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
Guitarist Michael Occhipinti and pianist Paul Neufeld lead the 16-piece ensemble NOJO, The Neufeld-Occhipinti Jazz Orchestra, a group the Los Angeles Times describes as, "one of the most original sounding large ensembles on the current jazz scene." NOJO blends jazz styles with funk, blues, reggae,and anything else that inspires them. The band has received a JUNO award and four JUNO nominations. Their most recent recording explores, 'The Dark Side of The Moon' and features original arrangements of Pink Floyd's classic album. Renowned clarinetist Don Byron will also appear with NOJO. Get ready ... they’re like no other.
For more information visit http://www.nojomusic.com
Pete Mills with Tony Monaco | 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
A native of Toronto, saxophonist and composer Pete Mills' discography includes three solo releases. His most recent, Fresh Spin (Summit Records) features B3 organist Tony Monaco and New York based guitarist Pete McCann. The disc received enthusiastic reviews in both DownBeat (3 1/2 Stars) and JazzTimes magazines. His CD was also on the Jazz Week top 50 radio chart for eight weeks. Drummer Cedric Easton will be joining Mills, Monaco, and McCann on stage for an electrifying performance!
For more information visit http://www.petemills.com/
Chuck Jackson's Big Bad Blues Band | 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm | Millennium Bandstand
Chuck Jackson is Downchild's singer and an excellent vocalist who builds instant rapport with audiences. Jackson is also an excellent songwriter and plenty of his songs are on many of the group's recordings. Moreover, he's also a fine harmonica and harp player. This Juno nominee is the Founder and Artistic Director of the annual Tim Horton's Southside Shuffle Blues and Jazz Festival. In 2002 Jackson was given the Toronto Blues Society's prestigious Blues With a Feeling Award for his achievements during a distinguished career.
For more information visit http://www.chuckjackson.com/
Solveig Barber | 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
The Markham Jazz Festival's very own Solveig Barber, is a celebrated artist who will grace our stage with her four-piece band. Throughout the years Barber has studied opera, toured with a "soft rock" band in Ontario, toured the Far East, and even met Bob Hope in Bangkok! She has also worked in film, television, and musical theatre. Solveig was "Grizabella" in UTC's 2011 production of "Cats" at the Markham Theatre. Most recently, Barber was the Entertainment Director for the Markham Village Music Festival for the last two years.
The Scott Suttie Band | 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
Playing original music by trombonist Scott Suttie the band also features Colleen Allen on saxophone, Chris Donnelly on piano, John Maharaj on bass and Kevin Dempsey on drums. The music combines influences from rock to jazz, classical to funk as well as gospel. A veteran of the Toronto music scene, Scott has played with a wide variety of groups including the Thunder Bay Symphony and the Juno award winning Neufeld Occhipinti Jazz Orchestra (NOJO). Suttie has also backed popular artists as Bob Hope, Johnny Mathis and Regis Philbin.
Don Menza Quintet & The Buffalo Jazz Quintet | 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm | Varley Art Gallery Patio
Jazz saxophonist, Don Menza, has played with the Buddy Rich Big Band in the jazz tenor chair. They recorded the famous solo, "Channel One Suite" live at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. In the late 60's Menza settled in California and performed with the Elvin Jones Band and the Louie Bellson Orchestra. Working with Henry Mancini for 27 years had a tremendous influence on Don's composing and arranging skills. Today, Don is still on the road doing what he loves best - playing jazz.