Patricia Silver has combined her passion for music and performance, her sharp entrepreneurial skills, her commitment to community service, and her dedication to her family into a successful career and busy, but happy, lifestyle. She is considered a pioneer and a leader in the music industry. She founded the Sphere Entertainment Agency, is the author of two best-selling children’s books and is one of the founders of Canada's biggest a cappella festival, SING! Toronto Vocal Arts Festival, which is about to celebrate it's 10th year beginning this Thursday, May 27, 2021.
Toronto Indie artist Mike Celia was my very first conversation, and very first recording. Mike, an accomplished guitarist, vocalist and songwriter, was gracious enough to inaugurate the series. At that time I didn’t even have a name for it. The recording is extremely rough around the edges so bear with me on this one.....and my apologies to Mike.
A secret guitarist for 10 years, Mike has been performing live for 15 years. He tours with Tanika Charles and Digging Roots and I was fortunate enough to capture him on stage with Shakura S'Aida at Mariposa. If you do nothing else, list to the music!
Eddie Bullen is a pianist, composer, arranger and producer. His deep love and passion for music is apparent every time you see him perform, and he loves nothing better than sharing that passion with his audiences. If there is a piano or keyboard anywhere within 500 paces, Eddie will find it and gravitate towards it like magnet.
Since his move to Toronto from Grenada in 1980, Eddie has never stopped. His lengthy career has yielded an abundance of awards, including a Juno. From his first album, 'Nocturnal Affair' in 1996 to his most recent ‘Kaleidoscope', released in January 2020, Eddie gives his audience a taste of contemporary jazz, flavoured with Caribbean rhythms and a little bit of spice. He is also one of the kindest people I know.
Hamilton, Ontario is the home of gritty, knuckle-baring, driving rock and roll. It is also home of the band April. Don’t let the name fool you. These four guys are full on rock with a punk, in-your-face edge to their music. They are determined to entertain and get you moving. Founded by bassist/songwriter Eric Meloche, April is PJ Reynolds (drums), Evan Bowker (vocals) and guitarist/songwriter/producer Stacy Stray.
The band’s name is in remembrance of one of Eric’s sons who’s birth month was April.
Part of Toronto’s vibrant local Indie scene, Drop Top Alibi (DTA) was formed in June of 2016 by Brandon Gregory and Dylan Wykes. In very short order DTA found themselves recording their debut single “Holding the Gun,” at Metalworks Studios with Gilby Clarke (formerly of Guns n’ Roses) producing. They released their self-titled EP in 2017 and later that year supported Gilby during his Canadian fall tour. In the summer of 2019, the band were named 97.7 CHTZ FM’s Rock Search winners, earning them their radio debut with their single Burn. Tour dates were booked for 2020.....then COVID hit!
As the late, great Long John Baldry once said, "Cheryl Lescom has one of the best and biggest voices in Canada." A vocal powerhouse, with a voice that has been described as “soulful road weary, yet sweet and sophisticated”. A matter-of-fact, straight shooter, Cheryl Lescom pulls no punches. She can be all rough and tumble on the outside but her heart as is big as her voice……and it’s huge. In her 45 plus year career, Cheryl has performed with the some of the best blues artists in Canada. Check out her new album "Well Played".
Born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, bassist Steve Pelletier has remained a "Hamiltonian". He currently performs with Colin James but his career has seen him perform and record with an eclectic and wide range of musical groups including The Julian Taylor Band, Matt Andersen, Jeff Healey, Sass Jordan, Long John Baldry, Sue Foley, Crystal Shawanda, the Shuffle Demons and so many more.
In the Summer of 2020, Steve launched his YouTube series called “The Basement Sessions”, a collection of various musicians Steve has worked with in the past. The Basement Sessions are all recorded live off the floor in his home studio.
Singer/songwriter/performer Sarah Smith is known as one of the hardest working musicians in the business. Prior to 2020, Sarah performed over 300 shows per year traveling across Canada, Europe and the U.K. Sarah lives and breathes music....it is her calling. A deeply caring and warm person, Sarah’s depth of passion, her incredible personal magnetism and a voice that oozes emotion. She is one of the very few artists that can have an audience fall in love with her within the first three bars of a song. She is at her finest on stage.
A no-nonsense hard rock combo from Sydney, Australia, The Lazys formed in 2006, earning a solid reputation both for the quality of their music and their strong work ethic, contradictory to their name. In 2015 they made their first appearance in Toronto with a string of shows during Canadian Music Week. The adventure to Canada proved to be a game-changer for the band. They ended up working with a igh-profile booking agent and signed a North American management deal. Leon is currently putting the paperwork together to make Canada his forever home, referring to himself as Austradian.
Singer/songwriter Samantha Martin is a petit powerhouse. Never underestimate the exploding force of her bluesy, soulful, new Orleans smoky bar voice. Samantha released her first EP in 2004. Fast forward to 2014 and Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar were born of a need to put together a performance for Folk Alliance Canada that didn’t include bass and drums. The combination of three vocalists and a guitar was created and has expanded from the original quartet to the current 12-piece ensemble. They've earned two Juno nominations and thirteen Maple Blues nominations, including vocalist of the year for Samantha. The most recent album, The Reckless One, was released November 20th last year, smack in the middle of the pandemic. Perfect timing....it’s been nominated for a Juno award for Blues Album of the Year.