20-odd years ago I asked to start piano lessons after a Radio Shack saleswoman demonstrated a casio keyboard for me in a shopping mall. A few years later my school band director decided I should play the clarinet and NOT drums like I had asked (I guess you can’t have a school band made up entirely of drummers). And so it was thanks to this somewhat odd turn of events (and a very supportive, artistic family) that my musical journey began.
Early inspiration came from recordings by Duke Ellington, Lester Young, Oscar Peterson and Artie Shaw as well as from Ray Charles, John Coltrane, The Beatles, Muddy Waters, Led Zeppelin and Michael Jackson. Although I stopped taking piano lessons to study clarinet, I always enjoyed sitting at the piano and coming up with my own songs. I didn’t know what I was doing of course, but it didn’t matter. In fact, part of the fun was that there were no rules, just discovery.
Since that time I’ve had the amazingly good fortune to study with many inspiring jazz and classical musicians at institutions such as Interlochen Arts Academy, University of North Texas, Western Michigan University (B.Mus Performance), and at McGill University (M.Mus Composition). As a professional musician I’ve worked in many different situations, both artistic and commercial, around the world. I enjoy the challenges of both and I especially enjoy the opportunity to travel, something which inspires my own music a great deal.
While I’ve always been attracted to jazz music for it’s unique mix of creativity, soul, romance, intellect, and groove; in recent years I’ve been exploring other areas of music as well; learning to sing, and writing lyrics for some of my songs. The result has been a variety of creative original music projects ranging from more traditional jazz groups, to New Orleans inspired funk bands, to electronica and hip hop inspired recordings.
Currently based in my home town of Vancouver, B.C., I’m happy to report the musical discovery continues…