3 years ago

Volume 25 Issue 1 - September 2019

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  • Festival
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  • Jazz
  • Toronto
  • September
Vol 1 of our 25th season is now here! And speaking of 25, that's how many films in the upcoming Toronto International Film Festival editor Paul Ennis, in our Eighth Annual TIFF TIPS, has chosen to highlight for their particular musical interest. Also inside: Rob Harris looks through the Rear View Mirror at past and present prognostications about the imminent death of classical music; Mysterious Barricades and Systemic Barriers are Lydia Perović's preoccupations in Art of Song; Andrew Timar reflects on the evolving priorities of the Polaris Prize; and elsewhere, it's chocks away as yet another season creaks or roars (depending on the beat) into motion. Welcome back.

Beat by Beat | Mainly

Beat by Beat | Mainly Clubs, Mostly Jazz! TUJF, KMJF & Guelph The Jazz Fests Continue Sun, Sept. 15 at 4:30pm Happy Birthday Cannonball Adderley with John Johnson (alto sax) COLIN STORY And we’re back. After The WholeNote’s typical aestival hiatus – and our packed-to-the-margins summer issue, which featured information on a wide assortment of excellent festivals in the Greater Toronto Area – I’m happy to be writing this column for you again, doing my best to provide a preview of some of the most interesting musical events that will be occurring around town each month. It has been exactly 12 months since I first took over this column, and the timing seems appropriate; though it has been a few years since I finished grad school, September still feels like the spiritual beginning of the upcoming year. Though we know that the month brings with it waning heat, it also heralds the promise of much to come: the return of musical friends from sweaty summer touring; the reinstatement of all of your favourite regular gigs, artistcurated concert series, and postsecondary-student nights at The Rex; scarves. It is, in short, one of the most exciting times of the year to be a jazz fan in Toronto. To begin: there are quite a few notable festivals taking place in September. To run any festival in Toronto is a difficult, labourintensive process; earlier this year, I wrote about the TD Toronto Jazz Festival’s shift to Yorkville, and the many challenges that artistic director Josh Grossman deals with on a regular basis in order to keep an established, decadesold, major-Canadian-bankinginstitution-sponsored festival ticking. The prospect of establishing a new festival – of working with local communities, of soliciting sponsor partnerships, of booking venues and talent and vendors and making sure that guests are happy and artists are hydrated and, oh my god, did no one think that we might need porta-potties?! – is a daunting undertaking indeed. But that is exactly what the Toronto Undergraduate Jazz Festival (TUJF) and the Kensington Market Jazz Festival (KMJF) have done. Christ Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge St. (north of St. Clair at Heath St.) Admission is free; donations are welcome. Featuring some of Toronto’s best jazz musicians with a brief reflection by Jazz Vespers Clergy Sun, Sept. 29 at 4:30pm Tara Davidson Trio Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School Sun, Oct. 13 at 4:30pm Tribute to Ray Brown with Dave Young (bass) 416-920-5211 The TUJF, which began in 2015 in the Distillery District, with 26 distinct undergraduate bands performing over the course of three days, has grown into a five-day affair, from September 3 to September 7. The bulk of the programming will take place on September 6 and 7 in Mel Lastman Square, with a kick-off performance by the Robi Botos Trio at Hugh’s Room on September 3, and two days on September 4 and 5 at The Frog, a pub owned by the Firkin Group, located a convenient seven-minute walk from the Square. The TUJF will feature performances and master classes by a variety of local and not-so-local groups, including the aforementioned Robi Botos Trio, the Pat LaBabera Quartet and Donny McCaslin. While the TUJF has emulated, to a certain degree, the large, primarily outdoor format of traditional Canadian jazz festivals, the KMJF has chosen a different approach. Taking place, as the name suggests, in Kensington Market, the KMJF does not have an expansive communal space like Mel Lastman Square to transform into festival grounds. Instead, under the guidance of the unsinkable Molly Johnson, they have opted for a more grassroots approach, working directly with pre-existing venues and other businesses throughout the Market to create a network of unique performance spaces. Last year, acts played at traditional venues, such as Poetry Jazz Café and Supermarket, at which it is possible to hear live music throughout the year; at Café Pamenar and Koi Koi Saké Bar, at which it is not typically possible to hear live music, but at which one can imagine performances taking place; at the men’s clothing store Tom’s Place, at which, presumably, no one has ever expected to hear live music. (Far from being an outlier, Tom’s Place – and eponymous Tom’s Place owner, Tom Mihalik – is a major festival sponsor. Mihalik is referred to as “the festival’s patron saint” on the KMJF website. In 2018, the clothing store provided the location for the “Yamaha Grand Piano Room,” which, considering the complications of moving a grand piano anywhere, let alone into a retail space in a busy neighbourhood in downtown Toronto, should be proof enough of Mihalik’s commitment to the festival’s artistic cause.) Performers for this year’s festival, taking place from September 13 to 15, include Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School, Jozsef Botos, Ethan Ardelli and Virginia MacDonald, to name but five of the well-over-100 established local musicians who will perform in more than 30 venues around this iconic market neighbourhood. Outside of the Greater Toronto Area, the Guelph Jazz Festival (GJF) will celebrate its 25th birthday this year, continuing to fulfil its stated mission of inviting “listeners to be inspired by and engaged with creative music,” from September 11 to 15. As this mission statement suggests, the focus of the GJF is on creative, improvised music that falls outside of either mainstream modern or neo-traditionalist jazz styles; this year’s festival will include performances by Jen Shyu, Malcolm Goldstein and Rainer Wiens, the Brodie West Quintet and Ingrid Laubrock, Tom Rainey and Hank Roberts. As in past years, the GJF will also partner with Guelph University’s International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation to convene a colloquium on improvisation and its social contexts. Some of this year’s presentations will include Jesse Stewart’s “Different Drums: Unorthodox and Unusual Percussion Instruments,” Niel Scobie and Alyssa Woods’ “Finding the Groove: A Workshop on Hip-hop Turntablism and Improvisation,” and Lee Blalock’s “Instr/Augmented Bodies: A Performative Artist Talk About Hybrid Bodies, Modes of Communication, and Modified Behaviours.” 2019 will also mark 50 | September 2019

a year of new artistic leadership for the GJF, with Scott Thomson assuming the role of artistic and general director, and Karen Ng taking on the role of assistant artistic and general director. There are also a number of excellent non-festival performances happening in September. Head to Burdock on September 12 to catch saxophonist Matt Lagan, on September 19 to hear TuneTown (Kelly Jefferson, Artie Roth, Ernesto Cervini), and on the 21st to hear Mingjia Chen and Claire Lee. At The Rex, check out the return of Monday nights with University of Toronto Jazz Program students, Humber College’s Annual Back-to-School Faculty Jam on September 19, and a full schedule of great music for the rest of the month. MAINLY CLUBS, MOSTLY JAZZ QUICK PICKS !! SEP 3 TO 7: Toronto Undergraduate Jazz Festival, various venues. The best of Toronto’s undergraduate bands playing alongside established local and international artists, including saxophonists Pat LaBarbera and Donny McCaslin. !! SEP 11 TO 15 : Guelph Jazz Festival, various venues (Guelph). Canada’s most important creative/improvised music festival, complete with top Canadian and international performers and a colloquium co-presented with Guelph University. !! SEP 13 TO 15 : Kensington Market Jazz Festival, various venues. The fourth annual installment of this exciting new festival, which sees traditional and non-traditional Market venues come together to create a network of performance spaces. !! MONDAYS, 6:30PM: University of Toronto Jazz Ensembles, The Rex. Catch up-andcoming students from the U of T Jazz’s undergrad and grad programs performing in the comfortable confines of The Rex, in September and on most Mondays throughout the school year. Colin Story is a jazz guitarist, writer and teacher based in Toronto. He can be reached at, on Instagram and on Twitter. 120 Diner 120 Church St. 416-792-7725 (full schedule) Most shows - All shows: PWYC (- suggested) Alleycatz 2409 Yonge St. 416-481-6865 All shows: Call for cover charge info. Mon 8:30pm Salsa Night with DJ Romantico with free lessons. Tues 8:30pm Bachata Night with Weekly Guest DJ with free lessons. Wed 7pm Midtown Blues Jam hosted by Andrew “Voodoo” Walters. Thurs 7pm Spotlight Thursdays. Fri & Sat 9:30pm Funk, Soul, R&B Top 40 cover after 9pm. Sat 3pm-6pm Matinee Jazz. Sun 4pm Blues in The Alley w/ Big Groove. Sep 5 Johnny Cox & Magnetic Line. Sep 6 Lady Kane. Sep 7 Disco Night w/ Escapade. Sep 12 The Garden. Sep 13 URequest. Sep 14 York Jazz Ensemble (matinee), Red Velvet (eve). Sep 19 20 Flight Rockers. Sep 20 Blonde Ambition. Sep 21 URequest. Sep 26 The Neckties. Sep 27 Gyles Band. Sep 28 Lady Kane. Artword Artbar 15 Colbourne St., Hamilton. 905-543-8512 D. In the Clubs (Mostly Jazz) (full schedule) The Blue Goose Tavern 1 Blue Goose St. 416-255-2442 (full schedule) Bloom 2315 Bloor St. W. 416-767-1315 (full schedule) All shows 7pm 19+. Call for reservations. Burdock 1184 Bloor St. W. 416-546-4033 Ticket prices vary by show, but typically -; check website for individual show prices. Sep 1 9:30pm Juice Girls w/ Teleri, Dinosaur Island, Dumb Stupid Liars. Sep 2 9:30pm Palm Haze. Sep 5 6:30pm Lisa Bregneager, 9:30pm The Big Branch Festival Kick-Off Concert feat. Duo Adar & Duo Jonsson Courdroy. Sep 6 9:30pm Sarah Jane Scouten. Sep 7 2:30pm Sebastien Javier w/ BenAnthony LaVoz, 6:30pm Toronto Brass Quintet, 9:30pm Owen Davies. Sep 8 6:30pm ATLAAS. Sep 10 8pm Kveikstokk feat. Lars Marius Garshol. Sep 11 9:30pm Jon Corbin w/ Rodney. Sep 12 6:30pm Matt Lagan, 9:30pm Sarah MacDougall. Sep 14 6:30pm Angie Hilts, 9:30pm Baumber/Cohen/Roth/Obery/Melanson w/ THE HUMAN RACE. Sep 18 9:30pm Roman Clarke. Sep 19 9:30pm TuneTown. Sep 20 9:30pm Plumes w/ Daily Alice. Sep 21 6:30pm Harry Bartlett and Madeleine Ertel w/ Mingjia Chen and Claire Lee. Sep 22 6:30pm Quote The Raven. Sep 25 9:30pm Roman Clarke. Sep 26 9:30pm Peirson Ross. Sep 27 9:30pm Side Hustle. Sep 30 9:30pm DevilDuck Records Presents Youngbloods: House Panther, Cold Tea, Wrecker. Cameron House 408 Queen St. W. 416-703-0811 Castro’s Lounge 2116 Queen St. E. 416-699-8272 (full schedule) All shows: No cover/PWYC C’est What 67 Front St. E. (416) 867-9499 (full schedule) All concerts are PWYC unless otherwise noted. Sep 8 7pm The Fairest And Best. Sep 14 3pm Victor Monsivais Trio. Sep 15 6pm Too Dumb to Quit. Sep 21 3pm The Hot Five Jazzmakers. Sep 28 3pm Victor Monsivais Trio. Sep 29 6pm Too Dumb to Quit. Emmet Ray, The 924 College St. 416-792-4497 (full schedule) All shows: No cover/PWYC Grossman’s Tavern 379 Spadina Ave. 416-977-7000 (full schedule) All shows: No cover (unless otherwise noted). Every Sat 4:30pm The Happy Pals Dixieland Jazz Jam. Every Sun 4:30pm New Orleans Connection All Star Band; 10pm Sunday Jam with Bill Hedefine. Every Wed 10pm Action Sound Band w/ Leo Valvassori. Hirut Cafe and Restaurant 2050 Danforth Ave. 416-551-7560 Every Sunday 3pm Hirut Sundays Open Mic. First and Third Tuesday 8pm Fingerstyle Guitar Association. Sep 5 8pm Ethio-Jazz w/ Girma Woldemichael & Daniel Barnes. Sep 12 8pm Bright Lit, Big City w/ Carolyn Bennett, Emil Sher, Daniel Perry, Marcia Johnson, Nadja Lubiw-Hazard. Sep 13 8:30pm Jazz of the Americas w/ Don Naduriak and friends. Sep 20 8pm Steve Koven Trio. Sep 21 8pm Pat Connors & Scarborough Songs Poetry. Sep 27 9pm Hirut Hoot Comedy Cabaret. Home Smith Bar – See Old Mill, The Hugh’s Room 2261 Dundas St. W 416 533 5483 All shows at 8:30pm unless otherwise noted. See website for individual show prices. Sep 3 T.U. Jazz Fest Opening Night: Robi Botos Trio. Sep 5 In Cash We Trust: A Musical Tribute to Johnny Cash. Sep 6 Alfie Zappacosta. Sep 7 Friends of Fiddler’s Green. Sep 9 Sue Foley. Sep 10 9am-2pm Ravel Event, 8:30pm She’s Listening for Ovarian Cancer Research. Sep 12 Indo-Canadian Slide Project. Sep 13 Soulsville: The Music of Stax Records. Sep 14 Ron Nigrini’s Farewell Performance. Sep 15 Martha Chaves Comedy Brunch. Sep 18 Luke McMaster: Icons of Soul. Sep 19 Les Stroud. Sep 20 Diana Braithwaite and Chris Whiteley. Sep 21 Candyrat Guitar Night with Luca Stricagnoli and Gareth Pearson. Sep 22 Elizabeth Shepherd’s Montreal Project. Sep 23 Matchedash Parish. Sep 24 Tommy Youngsteen’s Nebraska. Sep 25 A Trip Down Abbey Road w/ Greg Wyard. Sep 26 Madison Violet. Sep 27 Patricia Cano + Louis Simão feat. Carlos Bernardo. Sep 28 The Jitters. Sep 30 Dr. Mike Daley Presents: The Bob Dylan Story. Jazz Bistro, The 251 Victoria St. 416-363-5299 (full schedule) Sep 5 8:30pm Colin Hunter and The Anthony Terpstra Seventet. Sep 6 8:30pm Colin Hunter w/ The Joe Sealy Quartet. Sep 7 8:30pm Colin Hunter w/ The Joe Sealy Quartet. Sep 8 7pm Tracey Gallant. Sep 11 8pm The 251 Jam w/ The David Rubel Quartet. Sep 12 8:30pm James Brown Trio. Sep 13 9pm Joaquin Nunez Hidalgo: Brown Jazz Trio. Sep 14 9pm Joaquin Nunez Hidalgo: Brown Jazz Trio. Sep 15 7pm Adi Braun: “Everyone Prefers Blondes.” Sep 18 8pm Moshe Hammer and San Murata. Sep 19 9pm Alexander Brown. Sep 20 9pm Irwin Hall. Sep 21 9pm Irwin Hall. Sep 25 8pm The 251 Jam w/ The David Rubel Quartet. Sep 26 9pm Paul Marinaro. Sep 27 9pm Paul Marinaro. Sep 28 9pm Paul Marinaro. Sep 29 7pm Andrew Beg. Jazz Room, The Located in the Huether Hotel, 59 King St. N., Waterloo. 226-476-1565 (full schedule) All shows: 8:30-11:30pm unless otherwise indicated. Attendees must be 19+. Cover charge varies (generally -$25) Sep 6 La Banda Local. Sep 7 Alexis Baro Quintet. Sep 12 8pm Carol Welsman. Sep 13 Rebecca Binnendyk. Sep 14 Alison Young. Sep 20 David Cheon Trio. Sep 21 Rémi- Jean Leblanc Quartet. Sep 27 Jill McKenna Trio. Sep 28 Gabriel Palachi Trio. Sep 29 8pm Simão/Bernardo Group. Lula Lounge 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307 (full schedule) Every Fri 7:30pm Afterwork Global Party Series free before 8pm; Every Fri 8:30pm Havana Club Fridays ; Every Sat 10:30pm Salsa Saturdays . Sep 5 7pm 14 th Annual Patsy Cline Birthday Show. Sep 12 6pm Best of R&B and Soul, Vol. 4. Sep 16 6pm Cherie Dimaline Book Launch. Sep 17 5:30pm Speaker Slam: Gratitude. Sep 19 One-Stop Jazz Safari. Sep 26 6pm Women in Percussion Festival – Opening Night. Sep 29 6pm Women in Percussion Festival: Kim So Ra & Rajna Swaminathan. Manhattans Pizza Bistro & Music Club 951 Gordon St., Guelph 519-767-2440 (full schedule) Mezzetta Restaurant 681 St. Clair Ave. W. 416-658-5687 (full schedule) Every Wed 9pm & 10:15pm Wednesday Concert Series. Sep 18 David Occhipinti & Dan Fortin. Sep 25 Julie Michels & Ted Quinlan. September 2019 | 51

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