artist statement

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I am a vocalist, collaborator and thinker based in Calgary, Alberta. Over the past decade, I have become well-known for my uncommon tone and unique approach to the jazz genre. As a solo artist and a sought after back-up singer, I work in multiple genres; pop, rock, indie, and folk and have been a part of various projects including Woodpigeon, Aaron Booth, Spreepark, The Summerlad, and Hermitess. Growing up singing in church choirs, I have a deep appreciation for harmony, major chords and the unity of voices in choral settings while finding joy in melancholy as well. I continue to be a student of my practice as well, currently working with renowned tenor and vocal coach Leon Leontaridis (Canadian Tenors, Destino). I do this all through the lens of motherhood, juggling a music career with three young girls.

Jazz is the nest I am always happy to return to as my ideal medium of expression. My love is rooted in structure and the rich traditions the genre has to offer. As an artist, it is my role to explore that structure and play with those traditions through improvisation. For me, improvisation is using what you know to go where you have never been and currently, the jazz ensemble, Trio Velocity is my vehicle for this exploration. Joined by Simon Fisk on bass, Robin Tufts on drums and Sheldon Zandboer on piano, in our collective experience of improvisation, every note chosen is a reaction to the note before. One of my goals as a performer is to draw audiences deeply into this immediate experience of shared creation.

As my experience has taken me across many genres, my performances guide the audience along the path of my emotional roots with interpretations of songwriters focusing on the music of fellow Canadians such as Joni Mitchell, Daniel Lanois, Leslie Feist and John K Sampson. I value the impact of great storytelling through song and use a variety of vocal techniques to convey the narrative inherent in the song. It is my duty as an artist to record the best possible music — not simply the best known. As such, my songbook features work by both prominent and lesser-known Canadian songwriters, which I often gravitate towards as there is something distinct in our stories as a country. These songwriters convey to me who I am, as a mother, lover, singer and citizen.

My current work with Trio Velocity is focused on a style of performance that gives audiences that immediate experiences of shared creation. Songs are loosely arranged in a series of rehearsals with the intent of songs taking shape in front of an audience. The primacy of emotional expression and connection is tantamount as a performer, and this is a considerable part of our shows.