HALFTONES #11 – July 8, 2014

Welcome to issue #11 of HalfTonesThe WholeNote magazine’s e-newsletter that continues monthly through the summer! Here’s where you can find the latest local music news, contests and extra concert listings for the coming month. For additional updates on summer music in Toronto and beyond, take a look at the summer issue of the magazine.

- NOTEWORTHY -

ONTARIO’S MUSICAL SUMMER: FOLLOW THE FROG!

For many of those on the hunt for musicmaking, summer is festival season. In Ontario alone this month, dozens of festivals are offering up programs featuring artists and guest performers both returning and brand-new. For The WholeNote’s guide to music festivities in the coming weeks, all you have to do is pick up a copy (paper or “digital flipthrough”) of the summer issue and follow the green frog pin! The frog will lead you through the issue to listings and profiles of festivals in the area.

Featuring prominently in the festival listings this month is the Toronto Summer Music Festival, which runs from July 22 to August 12 right in the heart of the city and features everything from recitals to chamber music to, this year, a special appearance by the TSO at Koerner Hall. This summer’s programming is titled “The Modern Age” and highlights the astonishing breadth of compositional styles from the early 20th century, including works by Strauss, Prokofiev, Bartók and Schoenberg. Alongside the large concerts, Toronto Summer Music also runs a “SHUFFLE” series of informal, 5pm shows at Heliconian Hall—all the details for this series are in the “Listings Update” section below!

The festival brings a host of exciting performers to the stage at Koerner Hall and at UofT’s Walter Hall—you can get a sneak peek of the TSO’s first-ever Koerner Hall appearance at a chamber concert featuring members from the orchestra on August 7, and superstar guitarist Miloš Karadaglić (featured in Terry Robbins’ story for our summer issue) plays a recital on August 8. The WholeNote has tickets for both these shows to be won by lucky readers! For details, see our “Special Offers” section below. For more info on the festival, visit torontosummermusic.com.

torq image photo credit tara mcmullenIf you prefer a day trip out of the city to a trip downtown, Stratford Summer Music (July 14 to August 24) also boasts an impressive lineup of performers. The festival’s roster of artists includes Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, Jane Bunnett with her new group Maqueque, violinist Hilary Hahn with pianist Jan Lisiecki, and the TorQ percussion quartet. TorQ also leads a week-long seminar this year, and participates in a special project named “Tom Percussion Island,” where Tom Patterson Island will play host for six days to percussion-based installations, interactive works and pop-up concerts. To read up on what Stratford Summer Music has to offer, check out stratfordsummermusic.ca, and take a look at Wendalyn Bartley’s article from our summer issue!

There are, of course, many more festivals of all sorts and kinds in the coming month. Here’s just a taste of the other music festivals that join Toronto Summer Music and Stratford Summer Music in The WholeNote’s July listings:

Beaches International Jazz Festival, July 18 to July 27

Festival of the Sound, July 18 to August 10

Newmarket jazz+ Festival, August 1 to August 4

Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival, July 24 to August 7

Sun Life Financial UpTown Waterloo Jazz Festival, July 18 to July 20

For details on these and other events, take a look at our festival listings or our Green Pages Festival Directory.

MUSIC FROM SCRATCH @ THE CMC

This year, Contact Contemporary Music is teaming up with the Canadian Music Centre to host the annual “Music from Scratch”—a free week-long workshop for ages 15-21. The week includes open rehearsals with the Contact ensemble, workshops guided by composer Graham Flatt in creative listening, writing, and vocal, movement, graphic and improvisation exercises, and a final concert performance to wrap up the program. For details or to register for the workshop, contact Matthew Fava (416-961-6601 x207, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. @This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or visit contactcontemporarymusic.org.

CONGRATS!

Finally, some congratulations are in order—of the numerous musicians among this June’s 86 new appointments to the Order of Canada, two Torontonians have been honoured with this recognition and deserve mention here. Alex Pauk, perhaps best known as the mastermind behind Esprit Orchestra, and composer Victor Davies have both been appointed Members of the Order of Canada. Their citations are as follows:

Alexander Peter Pauk, C.M.

Toronto, Ontario

For his contributions to the development of contemporary Canadian orchestral music and for his promotion of Canada’s composers.”

Victor Davies, C.M.

Toronto, Ontario

For broadening the appeal of contemporary Canadian music and for supporting the legal rights of Canada’s composers.”

Congrats to both of these fine musicians on their work and their appointments!

- SPECIAL OFFERS -

CONTEST: TICKETS TO TORONTO SUMMER MUSIC

milos image from tsm websiteThe WholeNote has tickets for two of the concerts from this year’s Toronto Summer Music Festival to be won by lucky readers! On August 7, members of the TSO perform a chamber music concert at Koerner Hall, which includes a Dohnányi sextet and arrangements of works by Mahler and Strauss. August 8 at Koerner Hall, internationally-renowned guitarist Miloš Karadaglić’s recital promises to be an entertaining and impressive performance.

For a chance to win tickets to one of these two shows, just click here and answer the following question:

Both of the programs for these shows contain pieces that are arrangements. Name one of the arrangers of a work from either the “Spotlight on the TSO” concert (August 7) or Miloš Karadaglić’s recital (August 8).

(hint: Take a look on the Toronto Summer Music Festival’s website at torontosummermusic.com!)

Deadline to apply is July 20 at noon. Winners will be drawn from all correct responses.

We wish you luck!

- DISCOVERIES -

Andrew Timar takes a listen to Autorickshaw’s new album -- the world music ensemble will be featured at the Oakville Jazz Festival on August 9, and is scheduled to perform on November 15 at the Aga Khan Museum in Toronto, a stunning new facility set to open on Wynford Drive in the fall.

autorickshaw album coverThe Humours of Autorickshaw

Autorickshaw

Tala Wallah Records TW 005 (autorickshaw.ca)

By Andrew Timar

The JUNO-nominated world music ensemble Autorickshaw’s delightfully exciting fourth album is a rich record of a particular transcultural Toronto musical masala. Make no mistake; The Humours of Autorickshaw is no parochial product however. Rather its achievement resonates across other communities of musicians forging other new musical hybrids. In its ambitious aspirations—adventurous genre mixings, and in some of its lyrics touching, contentious reaches of the human condition—it will resonate with select global audiences.

Viewed as an album The Humours of Autorickshaw reflects perhaps most obviously the music of both North and South India, digested over years of study and performance by a growing group of Toronto musicians anchored by Autorickshaw co-leaders Suba Sankaran (vocals) and Ed Hanley (tabla). They composed much of the music. The album is also as much informed by both classical and vernacular Western musical instruments and idioms. There are strong jazz, rock, funk and even punk features.

READ MORE

- LISTINGS UPDATE -

Please find below additions to our July and early August listings:

Tuesday July 8

8:00: Musideum. Ed Hanley Tabla Solo. Traditional tabla solos in rhythmic cycles of 7, 10, 11 and 16 beats. Ed Hanley, tabla; Rattan Bhamrah, esraj. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W.416-599-7323. $20.

Wednesday July 9

8:00: Musideum. Namgar. Mongolian Folk World Fusion. Namgar, vocals; and others. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20.

Thursday July 10

8:00: Jazz Bistro. Joel Miller @ The Jazz Bistro. Joel Miller, saxophone. 251 Victoria St. 416-363-5299. $10; $15 on July 11 and 12. Also each night at 9:30pm and 11pm. Also July 11 and 12.

8:00: Musideum. The Uncertainty Principle Duo. Andrew Boniwell, piano; Richard Underhill, saxophone. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20; $10(st/artist).

Friday July 11

8:00: Musideum. Pleistocene Serenade. New music. Lief Mosbaugh, oboe; Carol Gimbel, viola; Raphael Roter, percussion; Philip Fournier, piano and composition. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $10.

Saturday July 12

8:00: Musideum. The Westwood Chamber Players. Brahms: Clarinet trio; Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue (arr. piano 4-hands and clarinet; Frank Horvat: new work. Michael Westwood, clarinet; Erika Nielsen, cello; Gregory Millar and Lisa Millar, Millar Piano Duo. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20.

Sunday July 13

3:00: Musideum. Huu Bac Quartet. World jazz. Huu Bac Quach, composer, dan bau, erhu, quena, guitar; Guillaume Martineau, piano; Jean-Félix Mailloux, bass; Étienne Mason, drums. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20.

Tuesday July 15

8:00: Musideum. Valeria Matzner. World Latin. Valeria Matzner, vocals; Max Senitt, drums; Scott Metcalfe, piano; Scott Kemp, bass. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20

Thursday July 17

8:00: Musideum. The Larry Bond Quartet. Original compositions by Larry Bond from the CD "Out in Front"; debut performances of recent compositions; works by Kenny Barron, Cedar Walton, Wayne Shorter. Larry Bond, piano; Bruce Redstone, saxophone; Bob Mills, bass; Richard Moore, drums. Suite 133 (main floor), 401 Richmond St. W. 416-599-7323. $20.

8:00: StageWorks Toronto. Assassins. Musical. Stephen Sondheim, music and lyrics; John Weidman, book. Lorraine Kimsa, co-director; Michael Yaneff, co-director; Luke Witt; Hugh Ritchie; Rich Burdett; Russ Underdown; Dylan Brenton; and others. George Ignatieff Theatre, 15 Devonshire Place. 416-803-5287. $25. Also Jul 18, 19, 20(mat), 23, 24, 25, 26(mat and eve) and 27(mat).

Friday July 18

8:30: Hugh's Room. Duane Andrews & Craig Young @ Hugh's Room. Duane Andrews and Craig Young, guitars. 2261 Dundas St. W. 416-531-6604. $18(adv); $20(door).

Sunday July 20/Monday July 21

1:00: Kantele Players of Agricola and Musideum. Kantele Workshops and Concert. Beginner and intermediate for 5-15 string kanteles. Arja Kastinen, kantele/clinician. Agricola Lutheran Church, 25 Old York Mills Rd. 416-599-7323. $25 (single workshop); $40 (both workshops). July 20, 1-4pm: beginner workshop; July 21, 9am-12pm: intermediate workshop; July 21, 1-4pm: intermediate workshop part II; July 21, 7pm: participant concert.

Wednesday July 23

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Drew Jurecka Trio. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Drew Jurecka, violin; Mark Kieswetter, piano; Clark Johnston, bass. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Thursday July 24

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Carissa Klopoushak. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Folk-inspired program. Carissa Klopoushak, violin; Alexandru Sura, cimbalom. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Friday July 25

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Marin Nasturica. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Marin Nasturica, accordion. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Wednesday July 30

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Lui Fang. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Chinese classical, folk and contemporary works for pipa from both east and west. Lui Fang, pipa. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Thursday July 31

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Nico Dann's Rhododendron. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. A modern jazz ensemble led by drummer Nico Dann. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Friday August 1

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. Carol Gimbel and Pemi Paull. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Solo and duo works for viola, acoustic and electronic. Carol Gimbel and Pemi Paull, violas. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Wednesday August 6

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. University of Toronto Jazz Combo. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Staff and students of the jazz program at UofT. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

bicycle opera pic

Thursday August 7

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. The Bicycle Opera Project Part 1. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Small-scale contemporary opera. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

Friday August 8

5:00: Toronto Summer Music Festival. The Bicycle Opera Project Part 2. Part of the OLG SHUFFLE concert series. Small-scale contemporary opera. Heliconian Hall, 35 Hazelton Ave. 416-408-0208. PWYC.

- STRICTLY CLASSIFIED! (summer only) -

Pass the word! For only $12 (20-word max) you can have a classified ad on our website right now, without waiting for the September issue. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Click here to read the complete collection of summer classifieds.

- DATES WITH HALFTONES -

You can count on HalfTones right through the summer and into the fall! The next HalfTones publication date is Tuesday August 12 (Vol. 1 #12). After that, be sure to keep an eye out for The WholeNote’s first print issue of its 20th season on Thursday September 4, and the September issue of HalfTones on Tuesday September 16.

For all inquiries, including those members interested in submitting news items for HalfTones consideration, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. a minimum of one week prior to the appropriate publication date. Don't forget to 'Like' us on Facebook here or Follow us on Twitter here.

Finally, feel free to forward this email to anyone you think may be interested in The WholeNote HalfTones.

HalfTones is compiled and edited by Sara Constant, Social Media Editor


HALFTONES #10 – JUNE 18, 2014

Welcome to issue #10 of HalfTonesThe WholeNote magazine’s e-newsletter that continues monthly through the summer! Here’s where you can find the latest local music news, contests, extra concert listings and more. For additional updates on summer musical happenings throughout Toronto and beyond, be sure to also check out our summer issue of the magazine and our website at thewholenote.com.

- NOTEWORTHY -

TAFELMUSIK IN LEIPZIG

By William Littler

LEIPZIG--Leipzig likes to think of itself as the city of music and with Johann Sebastian Bach having been one of its citizens for the last decades of his life, the annual June Bach Festival (Bachfest) becomes a natural high point of celebration.

This year it also became a high point of celebration for Tafelmusik, when the Toronto period-instrument orchestra was honoured by an invitation to be ensemble-in-residence, performing in the June 13 opening concert in St. Thomas Church (Thomaskirche) as well as two more in the other principal church of Bach´s day, the St. Nicholas (Nikolaikirche).

Since 2014 marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Bach´s second eldest son, Tafelmusik, like many other performers in the ten-day, 100-plus event program, has embraced music by Carl Phillip Emanuel, including, in the opening concert, a Magnificat new to the players and so full of harmonic variety and melodic invention that it easily stood comparison with his father´s great D Major Magnificat, daringly programmed in the same concert.

READ MORE

CANADIAN MUSIC FOR GAMELAN TURNS 30:

Evergreen Club Contemporary Gamelan Explores the Music of its First Decade

By Andrew Timar

eccg - june 15  2014  3500x1908 Where to start with Toronto’s Evergreen Club Contemporary Gamelan? Perhaps it’d be best to mention that I was there at the group’s genesis, invited by its composer/founder Jon Siddall. Over three decades later I’m

still a proud member of its roster of musicians, with 30 concert seasons, international tours, over 200 new works and 10 albums under its collective belt. While my bias here is clear, my tenure with ECCG as musician, composer, arranger and past artistic director also ought to qualify me to speak about its past and present projects with passion.

The ECCG has the distinction of being Canada’s first group playing music on an Indonesian gamelan (orchestra). Recently it has been digging into its first decade of commissions of foundational Canadian and American music for gamelan, some not heard this century.

ECCG artistic director Blair Mackay makes a case for these early works. “There are a handful of works from the 1983-1993 era that formed the basis of the ECCG sound as well as our overall approach to playing the actual instruments.” The eight-member group presents these foundational compositions in two intimate June concerts at the Arraymusic Studio, 155 Walnut Ave., Toronto. The first was staged on June 15 and the second will happen on June 22 at 8pm.

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FESTIVAL WATCH: TORONTO JAZZ

The 27th TD Toronto Jazz Festival is right around the corner—starting tomorrow, in fact—and promises a plethora of exciting shows across over 40 Toronto venues. With artists that continue to broaden the definition of “jazz programming” and are attracting international attention, this festival is something you won’t want to miss. The WholeNote has CONCERT TICKETS to some of these genre-expanding shows—Hiromi, Buika and Measha Brueggergosman—available to LUCKY readers! Take a look at our “Special Offers” section below to find out more.

FOLLOW THE FROG!

For those of you on the hunt for summer music festivals in the coming weeks, all you have to do is pick up a copy (paper or “digital flipthrough”) of The WholeNote and follow the green frog pin! The frog will lead you through the issue to listings and profiles of local music festivities. To get you started, here are a few festivals in the city that join the TD Jazz Fest in the listings during the coming weeks:

- The Artists’ Garden Cooperative presents garden concerts Wednesday evenings in July and August, featuring everything from chamber music to blues to spoken word. To get a taste of what they offer, the AGC’s annual launch party, with sample performances by this season’s musicians, is this Tuesday June 24 at 4:30pm. The event is free but RSVPs are necessary—just visit artistsgardencoop.com or phone 416-487-0705 for details.

- The Harbourfront Centre hosts a “Canada Day Extravaganza” June 27 to July 1, with a lineup that features musicians of all sorts and kinds! Among the performers are selections from other Toronto summer series, including the Ashkenaz and Tirgan festivals, musicians from Lula Lounge and The WholeNote’s own Jim Galloway and the Wee Big Band. Info on the weekend’s events can be found at http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/summer/festivals.cfm?festival_id=162.

- Finally, if you’re willing to venture outside of Toronto, be sure to look into Owen Sound’s Sweetwater Brass Festival (June 27 to June 29), Music and Beyond in Ottawa(July 5 to July 17) and the Montreal Jazz Festival (June 26 to July 6). There’s lots of music this month all across Canada!

MICHAEL KOLK

In his guitar feature “Classical Comeback” in the summer issue of the magazine, Terry Robbins describes guitarist Michael Kolk’s mid-February recital at Heliconian Hall as “as fine a display of classical guitar playing” as he has ever seen. Double good news: Kolk is back at Heliconian Hall this coming Monday June 23; and you can WIN TICKETS to the recital. See our “Special Offers” section below for details.

- SPECIAL OFFERS -

CONTEST: With the TD Toronto Jazz Fest right around the corner, the WholeNote has tickets to what are sure to be some of the most exciting concerts in the city next week:

hiromi2Tuesday June 24: HIROMI: THE TRIO PROJECT

Known for her high-energy playing and billed as “one of jazz piano’s most brazenly virtuosic players,” Japanese-born pianist Hiromi will play at this festival alongside trio members Anthony Jackson (bass) and Simon Phillips (drums). Hiromi takes the stage at Koerner Hall, Tuesday at 8pm.

Wednesday June 25: BUIKA

Afro-Spanish singer Buika has collaborated with the likes of Chucho Valdés and Pat Metheny, sung for filmmaker Pedro Almodovar and is the author of two books. Drawing inspiration from flamenco roots and jazz, Buika sings as part of the Jazz Fest at Koerner Hall, 8pm on Wednesday.

Thursday June 26: MEASHA BRUEGGERGOSMAN

Measha Brueggergosman, Canadian soprano extraordinaire, performs a selection of jazz standards for this year’s festival. Described as a “force to be reckoned with, with an innate musicianship and voluptuous voice,” Brueggergosman is sure to bring something special to the Koerner Hall stage. She performs with a group of Toronto’s finest musicians in recital on Thursday at 8pm.

Want a shot at winning a pair of tickets? Just click here, select your date availability, and answer the following question:

In which year did Toronto Downtown Jazz program the very first Toronto Jazz Fest?

For more info on the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, check out torontojazz.com.

CONTEST: Featured in The WholeNote’s summer issue, superstar guitarist Michael Kolk is back in Toronto on Monday June 23 at 8pm, with a sure-to-impress recital of Bach, Debussy, Barrios, Hétu and Gerhard at Heliconian Hall. The WholeNote has tickets to be won by lucky readers! Click here and answer this question for a chance to win:

Name one of the two other guitarists that Terry Robbins mentions alongside Michael Kolk in the summer WholeNote’s “Classical Comeback” feature.

Updates on Kolk can be found at michaelkolkguitar.com.

- DISCOVERIES -

In preparation for Tony Malaby’s upcoming performances at The Rex with Kayos Theory (June 27 and 28), reviewer Ken Waxman takes a look at a Malaby CD:

tmalabycd001Somos Agua

Tony Malaby: Tamarindo

Clean Feed CF 304 CD (cleanfeed-records.com)

By Ken Waxman

An essay on the intricacies of saxophone improvisation, New York tenor man Tony Malaby explores every nuance of reed sounds on this matchless session, backed only by the four-square pacing of William Parker’s double bass and the rhythmic flow of drummer Nasheet Waits. Reminiscent of similar trio tours-de-force by Sonny Rollins and Joe Henderson, the seven selections make up a suite whose parts flow logically and seamlessly into one another. At the same time, Malaby’s solos confirm his experimental credo by exposing as many split tones and screeches as emotive flutters and gentling tones.

READ MORE

- LISTINGS UPDATE -

Please find below additions to our June and early July listings, plus corrections from our last print issue (marked *):

Friday June 20

8:00: Music Gallery/Shiraz Ensemble. Shiraz Ensemble in Concert. Classical Persian music, with a focus on the work of Ostad Faramarz Payvar. Pedram Khavarzamini, tonbak; Araz Salek, tar; Amin Reyhani, santour; Kousha Nakhaei, kamanche. Music Gallery, 197 John St. 416-204-1080. $25 ($20 member/st).

Monday June 23

5:00: Canadian Music Centre. Lazy Afternoon CD Launch with Byron Bellows. Performances of two of Bellows' works off of his CD "Lazy Afternoon." Cecilia Quartet. 20 St. Joseph St. 416-961-6601. An RSVP by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. is required.

Thursday June 26

8:00: Ernest Balmer Studio. When the Sun Comes Out. Toronto premiere of a chamber opera by composer Leslie Uyeda and poet/librettist Rachel Rose. Teiya Kasahara as Solana; Stephanie Yelovich as Lilah; Keith Lam as Javan; Maika’i Nash, pianist. 55 Mill St. 416-537-6066. $15-$35. Also June 27.

8:30: Lee's Palace. Lemon Bucket Orkestra. 529 Bloor St. W. 416-532-1598. $20. Doors open at 8:30pm. 19-plus event.

Thursday July 3

8:00: Lula Music and Arts Centre. Yoser Rodriguez Trio & Cafe Con Pan. Jazz/Cuban/Mexican. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307. $10.

Friday July 4

7:30: Lula Music and Arts Centre. Free Friday Summer Series: Laura Fernandez. Latin jazz. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307. Free before 8pm.

10:30: Lula Music and Arts Centre. Cuba Libre Friday with Conjunto Chappotin. Salsa. Conjunto Chappotin. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307. $15.

Saturday July 5

10:30: Lula Music and Arts Centre. El Gremio. Salsa. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307. $15.

Tuesday July 8

10:30: Small World Music. Mokoomba - The New Sound of Zimbabwe. African. Mokoomba. Lula Lounge, 1585 Dundas St. W. 416-588-0307. $20(adv); $25(door).

Thursday July 24

*7:00: Summer Music in the Garden. Music from the Gardens of India. North Indian classical ragas. Bageshree Vaze, voice; Vineet Vyas, tabla. Toronto Music Garden, 475 Queens Quay W. 416-973-4000. Free.

- STRICTLY CLASSIFIED! (summer only) -

Pass the word! For only $12 (20-word max) you can have a classified ad on our website right now, without waiting for the September issue. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Here’s a taste of the new ones. Click here to read the complete collection.

“FREE SINGING WORKSHOPS WITH VOCAL COACH & AUTHOR TAMMY FREDERICK, SUN July 20 & SUN Aug 17, 1 – 2 pm. www.simplysing.ca. RSVP: 416-850-0972”

“MUSIC DIRECTOR POSITION: St. John’s United Church located in the heart of downtown Oakville, Ontario, is searching for a new Director of Music.  We are a vibrant congregation with music being integral to weekly worship where we explore and enjoy a wide range of musical genres and expressions. We are looking for an experienced and enthusiastic music director who is skilled as both an organist and choir director. In worship we enjoy a 3-manual Casavant organ, Kawai Baby Grand and a digital keyboard. The music director’s responsibilities include a well-established senior choir, growing junior choir and bell choir. Compensation for this 20 hour/week position is commensurate with credentials and experience and will follow the RCCO guidelines. We welcome applications from accompanist and conducting teams. Please forward your resume including references to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

And on the subject of classifieds, apologies to Patty Kelly whose ad as it appeared in the June/July/Aug omitted the last two lines. Ouch! Here it is in full:

“SENSIBLE VOCAL TRAINING:  DO YOU LOVE TO SING? NEVER TOOK THAT LEAP INTO FORMAL TRAINING? Now's the time for a summer of adventure and fun. Come to Pattie's Vocal Gym for "SummerSing":  a sensible and sensationally fun intensive program aimed at the newcomer . Discover and build your voice, learn how to use it, and get your adrenaline moving. Experienced singers are also welcome: take this opportunity to tone and tune up your instrument for the coming season. For sessions through July and August at special rates call Pattie now! 905-271-6896 vocalsense.ca

- DATES WITH HALFTONES - 

You can count on HalfTones right through the summer and into the fall! Upcoming HalfTones publication dates include:

Vol. 1 #11: Monday July 7 2014

Vol. 1 #12: Tuesday August 12 2014

For all inquiries, including those members interested in submitting news items for HalfTones consideration, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. a minimum of one week prior to the appropriate publication date. Don't forget to 'Like' us on Facebook here or Follow us on Twitter here.

Finally, feel free to forward this email to anyone you think may be interested in The WholeNote HalfTones.

HalfTones is compiled and edited by Sara Constant, Social Media Editor

THIS is the summer

Every late spring Frog said to anyone who would listen “THIS is the summer I will do it. THIS is the year I will make pilgrimage to the musical shrines in the holy city that lies on the other side of the mountain. My work is done; my time is my own; my soul hungers for something other than this city’s unrelenting roar.” Every year Frog said these things to anyone who would listen; but for one reason or another (every year a slightly different reason) the words remained empty, the desire remained unfulfilled, the journey across the mountain to the shrine of music remained a wish for which our Frog had not the will.

This year no one would listen; they had heard it all before. So, for that very reason, this year Frog, early one morning and without saying anything to anyone, found the little road that led to the little path that led towards and up and over the mountain, on the other side of which, Frog had read, untold musical wonders awaited.

If truth be told, the ascent was not particularly arduous. The path, as I have already said, had many twists and turns, and the steepness of a path is almost invariably inversely proportional to the number of its twists and turns. But Frog found it heavy going, nevertheless. Mainly this was because Frog was built low to the ground, so every hopeful rise ahead brought with it the illusion that the top of the mountain was close at hand, only to have the hope thwarted by each next gentle rise, each next illusion. But Frog pressed on. “THIS is the summer I will do it. This is the summer I will do it … ” Frog kept repeating, though there was no-one there to hear.

The moment arrived. No rise lay ahead. This was it. The top of the mountain. “I will stand tall on my hind legs and contemplate all the wonders of what lies ahead in the musical shrines of the holy city beyond,” Frog said, though there was no-one there to hear. And Frog did, stretching out tall and straight as anatomy allowed.

Here’s the thing: because of the curious (to some) placement of Frog’s eyes, the city Frog saw in standing tall this way was the one that lay behind, not the one that lay ahead. “Astonishing” Frog said. “Here I have followed the twists and turns of this path half the day in hope, only to find that what lies on the other side of the mountain is exactly the same as what I left behind. I might just as well head back home”

So Frog turned around and, a second time, stretched up as tall as anatomy allowed just to get a bit of an overview of the twists and turns of the journey home. And in that instant, Frog was transfixed with wonder; for the home town Frog had left that morning was utterly transformed — a place of wonder with music shimmering from all its shrines.

“I can scarcely believe my eyes” Frog said. And hopped happily home.

Follow the Frog!

As you wend your way through all the musical twists and turns of the summer, we hope that this edition of The WholeNote is a useful companion, whether you venture further afield or find musical pleasures in your own back yard.  During the 19 years we have been publishing, the extent of summer music has grown so much that no guide to it can claim to be anything more than anecdotal. Trying to sort through which listings belong where is even more than the usual monumental task for us. There are summer presenters in traditional year-round venues, year-round presenters in all kinds of seasonal and unexpected places. There are unfamiliar performers coming to town, and musicians well known to our readership venturing out “On the Road,” as our annual summer feature describes it. You could start there. Or you could start with the 45 presenters listed in our Green  Pages. However you approach it, be as patient as you can with us, as you follow the twists and turns of our logic in choosing which listings section (our regular four and special summer fifth) to place particular events in. When in doubt “Follow the Frog!” as the notes throughout the listings section advise. 

HalfTones is The WholeNote’s e-letter, designed to pick up the slack mid-month during the regular season. It takes on an even greater utility during these summer months. With our next print magazine not till the beginning of September, there will be dozens and dozens of additional listings and updates rolling in. (Along with notifications of all kinds of contests, prizes and special offers to sweeten the deal. So if you haven’t already, put yourself on the HalfTones list. Instructions on how to do so are at the foot of page 84.)

All that being said, I’ve got to go. THIS is the summer, you know, I promised myself I would make my way to Ottawa and Midland and Westben and Port Milford and Parry Sound and Stratford and Chautauqua and …

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In the Sound (Always the Producer)

Lanois FeatureAs bodies begin to fill the sea of burgundy and beige chairs in legendary Massey Hall, the excitement for tonight’s show is palpable. Daniel Lanois has the opening slot for Emmylou Harris at the end of their tour celebrating the reissue of 1995’s Wrecking Ball, for which Lanois also owns producing credit. As I watch the diverse crowd trickle in, the instrumental pre show music seeping out from surrounding speakers catches me. I think it is Lanois’ music but I can’t say for sure. That guess is put to rest as Lanois appears on stage walking with purpose and perfect timing to be seated at his pedal steel. There is a smooth transition from the speakers into a live continuation. Everyone’s focus has redirected and for the first time since I can remember, there is not one illuminated cellphone in my peripheral. This crowd is here to listen.

For the duration of the first song, Lanois hasn’t looked up once, he is in the sound, and we are all there with him. His fingers move with precision against the strings and I get lost in the story that is created by them and the sounds, reminiscent of an open vintage jewelry box. The crowd’s expectations are undoubtedly safe here; he knows what he is doing. Lanois knows music like few others and this opening set is a chance for us to be reminded that not only is he a master of shaping the sound of others but he too owns his own space as an award-winning musician and songwriter.

Read more: In the Sound (Always the Producer)

Toronto Jazz Top Ten

I was considering giving up on a career in jazz music, but on a summer night in 2005 at the Montreal Jazz Festival, when I sat in at the Hyatt Hotel and sang “Sweet Georgia Brown” in three varied tempos as a nod to Anita O’Day, I changed my mind. That night I realized how important jam sessions are as an opportunity for musicians to create music in the true spirit of jazz: without rehearsal, to an appreciative audience of jazz enthusiasts. Just got word that Novotel has sponsored the Ottawa Jazz Festival jam session and I am really hoping that in these parts and beyond, we get the official jam sessions back too! 

1909 InTheClubs

TOP TEN TORONTO JAZZ FESTIVAL TIPS:

1) Award-winning, world-renowned artist for her innovative brilliance on saxophone and flute, and jazz ambassador for her work around the world, Jane Bunnett has changed the lives of many Cuban musicians by exposing their talents to North American audiences. On her latest project, “Maqueque,” Bunnett has assembled an exciting sextet featuring the finest young female musicians in Cuba. Joining her are drummer Yissy Garcia, percussionist Dayme, Yusa on tres guitar and fretless bass, pianist Danae and Magdelys on batas and congas. Like a trusted chef in a five-star restaurant, it is inevitable that Bunnett and these young ladies will cook up a storm on opening night, June 19 at 8pm at Lula Lounge.

2) A coveted Toronto treasure, she plays all over the city and has many adoring fans, from her days in the JUNO-winning rock act Leslie Spit Treeo to her reincarnation as a singer of blues, jazz and western swing. Laura Hubert’s honesty, which delves deeply into both comedy and tragedy, is that of an actor who became a singer by accident. With a unique voice that is a bit of a surprise coming out of such a petite lady, she is capable of growling, crooning, swinging hard and moaning low. Discover Laura Hubert at the festival either on opening night, June 19 at Grossman’s at 10pm, or on June 28, 3:30pm at the Rex.

3) Here’s hoping American vocalist Dianne Reeves has a sold-out show at the festival Main Stage on Tuesday, June 24 at 8pm, and here’s hoping you’ll catch her opening act, the Brandi Disterheft Quartet. A force to be reckoned with as a bassist, composer, bandleader and recording artist, the Vancouver-born musician has released three excellent albums: her JUNO-winning Debut, slightly poppier, even catchier Second Side and the very satisfying Gratitude from last year. It’s always exciting to see where Disterheft is going next, both in the short term sense of each solo and the long term sense of her next record. She currently lives in New York City where she maintains a busy schedule as sideman when not touring. Cheers to Brandi!

4) On Sunday June 22 at 7pm, “Girls Night Out” jazz jam session host Lisa Particelli will present a group of GNOJAZZ all-stars and continue to raise money for her annual Humber College Scholarship. The award is given to a vocal jazz student who demonstrates exceptional ability and requires financial assistance with this crazy dream of singing jazz. Every Wednesday from 8pm to midnight singers of all levels are welcome to perform at this vocalist-friendly jazz jam, which can also be thought of as a jazz open mic, a truly rare and very prized opportunity not only for vocalists of all levels but really for anyone who would like to try singing with three incredible jazz musicians in a safe environment. In addition to the fundraiser, there’s a jazz festival jam session on June 25, as well as every Wednesday year-round.

5) Lovers of the clarinet, trumpet, or saxophone, go no further than KAMA on King, where Ken Peplowski, Harry Allen, Warren Vache and Houston Person, respectively, will be guesting with the Canadian Jazz Quartet on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday June 23, 24, 25 and 26 from 5 to 8pm. These days there are not many venues in this town where one can really go out and listen to this brand of instrumental, classic jazz. A rare opportunity to hear cream-of-the-crop New York players here in Hogtown, each of these concerts would be a great treat for any aspiring horn player! Tickets are $40 and are available at Ticketmaster – and a discount of 15 percent if you attend all four concerts.

6) For piano lovers, mellifluous Cuban-American Manuel Valera heads a trio at the Rex on June 20 and 21, and energetic B3 specialist Joey DeFrancesco plays the Horseshoe Tavern with his trio on July 25. Jazz Bistro features several solo piano shows of note, including Bill Mays on June 22, Gerald Clayton on June 23 and two shows per night by the Oliver Jones Trio on June 27 and June 28. Singer-pianists are a rare breed of awesome; the Bistro is expecting to sell out when London, England’s Ian Shaw performs on June 25, and the whole family can enjoy free lunchtime performances in Nathan Phillips Square led by two Canadian singer-pianists who are also exquisite songwriters: the Elizabeth Shepherd Quartet on June 23 and Laila Biali Trio on June 25; Shepherd also performs two intimate evening concerts at Musideum, 7 and 9pm on June 21.

7) String along! For guitar lovers, there are some excellent resident musicians such as the Fraser Melvin Band at Gate 403 on June 20, the Eric St. Laurent Trio at Painted Lady on June 26 and Mark Sepic at Relish on June 28; and several big tickets, including John Scofield on the Main Stage on June 26 and futurist Bill Frisell performing “Guitar in the Space Age” at the Jane Mallett Theatre on June 28. 

1909 InTheClubs28) Toronto native Beverly Taft is one of this city’s busiest jazz vocalists – she is performing four gigs at the festival: at Musideum with pianist Robi Botos on June 24 and in various ensembles at the Dominion on Queen; back to back on June 22 from 1 to 4pm with George Westerholm and the York Jazz Ensemble and 5 to 8pm with Sam Murata on violin, Tony Quarrington on guitar and special guest from Japan, pianist Yumi Nakata; and again at the Dominion on June 28 from 4 to 7pm singing bossa nova with Nathan Hiltz on guitar, Jordan O’Connor on bass and Chris Gale on tenor sax. Taft’s is a light instrument that is easy to listen to and her passion for performing this music is always evident. 

9) An exciting talent for her singing, songwriting and performance style, Maylee Todd defines genre in a sense, and though she is far from being a “jazz singer” the Toronto Jazz Festival has wisely booked her to perform at Shops on Don Mills. Comparisons to Björk and Kate Bush are likely, but here is an authentic voice of an exciting individual, not to be missed! I’m sad to miss this one myself (I’m playing at Paupers at precisely the same time!) but I will be visiting mayleetodd.com for future dates and following her on Twitter at @mayleetodd to find out where she will be next!

10) Now here’s a concept: live jazz performances at music stores! Leading up to the Jazz Festival, the 333 Yonge Street location of HMV will present three live performances at 6pm called “The HMV Underground”: the Mike Downes Trio, led by JUNO-winning bassist extraordinaire (June 16); Myriad3 (Chris Donnelly on piano, Dan Fortin on bass and Ernesto Cervini on drums, June 17); and the arresting voice of Eliana Cuevas (June 18). This is a wonderful opportunity to hear these artists up close and get an autographed copy of their recordings. What better way to get people back into the music stores?

Ori Dagan is a Toronto-based jazz vocalist, voice actor and entertainment journalist. He can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


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