Yannick Rieu

Composer and saxophonist

Yannick Rieu was the 18th recipient of the Oscar Peterson Award, originally created during the 10th edition of Montreal International JazzFest, to celebrate the quality of his art and his outstanding contribution to the development of Canadian jazz. Internationally recognized as one of the most talented saxophonists (by the American bible of jazz Down Beat, among others), Yannick Rieu has played throughout the world and collects praise and awards, both for his recordings and his performances on stage. He received three Félix from ADISQ organization for best jazz album of the year category for “What Is the Colour of Love”, “Little Zab”, and “I Is Memory”. As a group leader, he remains firmly dedicated to the recognition of young artists engaged in his projects. As an artist, he wants to educate the public to poetry and the sovereign freedom of creation as instruments of philosophy.

Adrian Vedady

Composer and bassist

For ten years already, Adrian Vedady is a strong force of our creative music community. Montreal bassist known for his sense of swing and his lyrical solos, he is a privileged collaborator of saxophonist Yannick Rieu and pianist François Bourassa. He also played alongside guitarist Jake Langley, trumpeter Tiger Okoshi and saxophonists Ravi Coltrane and David Binney. The year 2009 marks the launch of his first CD “In Three Acts” on Elephant Records label. Ten original compositions are interpreted by three different sets. In the forthcoming months, Adrian will go on tour with François Bourassa in Mexico, will record with Jeanne Rochette and François Bourassa, will perform at the Quebec Jazzfest with Yannick Rieu and Frank Lozano quartets, and will work with New York-based pianist Marc Copland. Twice, in 2005 and 2009, he received a fellowship in development, research and creation from the Quebec Arts & Letters Council. He will soon focus on writing compositions for his second album.

John Fraboni

Drummer

A native of NorthBay Ontario, John Fraboni began his musical career at age 17. He now resides in Montreal where he is active as a professional musician. Previously, he has lived and worked several years in New Orleans, New York and Toronto. Jazz drummer, John Fraboni has played and recorded with a great number of internationally acclaimed jazz and pop musicians from Canada, United States, Cuba, Brazil and Europe. These include Ellis Marsalis, Jason Marsalis, Mark Turner, Adrian Vedady, Daniel Thouin, Steve and Greg Amirault, Yannick Rieu, Nicholas Payton, Kenny Wheeler, ChuchoValdes, Pat Labarbera, Don Thompson, Geoff Lapp, Terry Lukisky, Steve Wallace, Lorne Lofsky and Ron Seguin. Mr Fraboni holds a Bachelor’s degree in music from McGill University and a master’s degree in music from the Manhattan School of Music. He is also recipient of many awards for the Performing Arts: Arts Council of Canada, Ontario Arts Council, Quebec Arts & Letters Council, Banff’s Arts Centre, McGill University, Manhattan School of Music, International House New York and Canadian Academy of the Recording Arts and Sciences (Juno Award).

Rémi – Jean Leblanc

Bassist and composer

Arrived in Montreal at the age of 18 years, Rémi-Jean Leblanc has already multiple career achievements. His first collaborations with Montreal artists date back to the time of his Bachelor’s degree at the University de Montreal, where he was a student of famous bassist Michel Donato for three years. Upon completion of his academic studies, he accompanied renowned artists from the local scene, playing both electric and double bass, thus allowing to continue his musical learning and increase its national recognition. In recent years, he had the opportunity to participate in tours in Asia, Europe and North America with different formations. His reputation as well as his great versatility allowed him to accompany musicians of international reputation of passage in Montreal, such as David Binney, Seamus Blake, Greg Osby, Geoff Keezer, Ignacio Berroa and Terri Lyne Carrington.

Currently, he participates in several projects of creative music sets in Montreal, with Yannick Rieu, Steve Amirault, Rémi Bolduc, Joel Miller, as well as in commercial productions including those of Nikki Yanofsky and Ginette Reno. Finally, he acts as composer and leader of his own Rémi-Jean Leblanc Ensemble, for which he produced an album of original compositions in 2009.

Samuel Joly

Drummer and producer

Samuel Joly started playing drums at a very young age. He started playing professionally at 14 years old while also becoming proficient on guitar and bass.

At 16 years old, he  bought a studio and recorded a multitude of compositions for local artists.

Samuel moved to Montreal to go to Université de Montreal (BA in Jazz Performance) at age 18. He has played drums with many well-known Québec artists such as Ginette Reno, Garou, Gregory Charles, France D’amour, Marie-Ève Janvier, Jean-François Breau among many others.

On the jazz scene, Samuel plays with Steve Amirault, Jean-Pierre Zanella, Oliver Jones, Yannick Rieu and Carol Welsman, just to name a few.

Most recently, he was hired by Mario Lefebvre (Celine Dion, Rock Voisine, Veronic Dicair, Garou, Bruno Pelletier, Natasha St-Pier, etc.) to produce Marilou’s record (www.mariloumusic.com). The album 60 Thoughts A Minute was released the 24th of april 2012

Jean-Sébastien Williams

Guitarist

Jean-Sébastien Williams, born in Montreal, has played professionally on local and international scenes for more than 12 years. After completing a degree with distinction from Concordia University, the guitarist received a grant in composition from the Quebec Arts & Letters Council. Since then, he has received several awards including a Factor grant and a Young Volunteers fellowship. As accompanist, he performed at “Musique D’ici et D’ailleurs” (Guinea, Africa), Festival Nuits D’Afrique, Francofolies, Festi Blues Mont-Tremblant and North-by-North East.

Jean-Sébastien has also performed at the Montreal International Jazzfest Festival, the Opal Coast Festival, (Boulognes sur Mer, France), Beijing Nine Gates Festival (Beijing, China), Roma Jazz Festival (Rome, Italy), Jazz Festival in Vienna (Lyons, France) and several other international festivals. As a teacher, he works at Concordia University and is member of the jury for the Montreal guitar Grand prix. Jean-Sébastien has collaborated with several international jazz artists including Ravi Coltrane, David Binney, Yannick Rieu and Térez Montcalm. Jean-Sébastien can be heard on 20 albums.

François Bourassa

Composer and pianist

François Bourassa significantly expanded his musical palette over the last 30 years. As a pianist, composer and group leader, he is surely recognized as a leading force of Canadian contemporary jazz on the international scene. Considered a Model musician regarding the constancy and the evolution of his art, he launches many challenges to himself and his colleagues, as to a growing circle of listeners.
Over the past years, Bourassa has experienced more audacious playing alongside saxophonist Jean Derome and drummer Pierre Tanguay; in 2005, he obtained a six-month residence bursary in New York; as a composer, he is increasingly sought, and his most recent command is a concerto for vibraphone and marimba. But beyond these great achievements, one constant remains: the jazz Quartet. On his latest recording, Idiosyncrasie, there are elements of mystery, fantasy and passion that offer new angles and sound spaces, enriched by a telepathic complicity between members.

Kevin Warren

Drummer, composer and arranger

Born and raised in Mission B.C, Kevin is a drummer, composer and arranger based in Montreal.  He began drumming at nine years old. After graduating from the Langley Fine Arts School in Fort Langley B.C., he moved to Montreal to pursue a B.Mus in Jazz Performance from McGill University where he studied with Christine Jensen, Jan Jarczyk, Andre White, Fraser Hollins, Dave Laing and Chris McCann. He performed with the McGill Jazz Orchestra 1 for 2 years, under the direction of Prof. Gordon Foote.  Kevin has toured internationally throughout Europe and North America. He currently keeps a busy schedule in Montreal as a sideman for many jazz groups including Alexandre Côté Quintet, François Jalbert Quartet and the Jean-Nicolas Trottier Big Band, as well as pop/rock group The Franklin Electric. He toured extensively from 2008 to 2011 with Cuban pianist Rafael Zaldivar.  This trio was honoured CBC Radio Canada’s “Artiste Révélation 2010-2011” in the jazz category. In 2011 he won the Prix du Festival at the Montreal International Jazz festival, as a member of the Alexandre Côté Quintet.  He was a sideman with country/rock group Ladies of the Canyon, which was nominated for the “Rising Star” award at the 2011 CCMA Awards.  He currently accompanies Montreal trumpeter/composer Jacques Kuba Séguin, named CBC Radio Canada’s “Artiste Revelation 2012-2013” for jazz, and has found the time to compose and arrange for his own “East West Project” which will release it’s debut album in 2013.

Sylvain Provost

Guitarist and composer

Winner of the Yamaha Award at the Montreal International Jazzfest with the Quartz group in 1983, guitarist Sylvain Provost has earned a high recognition on national and international music scenes. Over the years, he has participated to many shows and recordings with such leading artists as Gerry Boulet, Paul Brochu, Michel Donato, Oliver Jones, Sylvain Lelièvre, Terez Montcalm, Yannick Rieu, Jean-Pierre Zanella, Coco Zhao and the La La Human Steps dance troup (World tour). Sylvain is a close collaborator of singer Karen Young, playing on her jazz and religious music albums. His second album in duo with bassist Norman Lachapelle, “Ni Un Ni Deux (2000)” won the “Félix” Award for the 2001 best jazz album (ADISQ). “Désirs démodés”, his Trio album released in 2009 with bassist Guy Boisvert, is a work of great maturity which finally reveals to the public the astonishing complementarity of his influences, from George Benson to John Coltrane. Here lies Sylvain Provost’s peculiar sound: he can play rock, groove and makes you dancing, or his mad and strident playing invites you to fantastic reverie.

Morgan Moore

Bassist

Morgan is currently touring with Sophie Milman, Ranee Lee, Ben Charest – Les Triplettes de Bellevilles, and Thus Owls. He’s been on dozens of tours and recordings with the likes of; Oliver Jones, Yannick Rieu, Terez Montcalm, Nikki Yanofsky, Rob Lutes, Planet Smashers, etc.  He was awarded a Juno in 2010 for his work on Ranee Lee’s “Lives Upstairs”.  Being one of the of the first call bassists in Montreal has been a great opportunity to play with international stars as well (Mark Murphy, Uri Caine,  Patrick Watson, Jim Black, Tim Hagans, Nate Smith, Guido Basso, Sheila Jordan, Phil Dwyer, Jimmy Cobb, Luce Dufault, Laurence Jalbert, Jorane, Marie-Jo Therio, etc).  He is also actively involved with the following award winning artists and groups; Florence K, James Gelfand, Dawn Tyler Watson, Kaba Horo, Ben Charest, Angela Galuppo, Marianne Trudel, Sam Blais, Rob Lutes, Chet and Jim Doxas, amongst others.

Louis-Vincent Hamel

Louis-Vincent Hamel, drummer

Louis-Vincent Hamel, from Quebec City, started playing drums at age 5. After a few years of private lessons, he went to the Conservatoire de musique de Québec to study classical percussions.He then started his bachelor degree at Université Laval, moved to Montreal and finished it at McGill University, where he studied with teachers Chris McCann, Michel Lambert and Jim Doxas. Louis-Vincent has played with jazz musicians Rémi Bolduc, Rafael Zaldivar, and many others.

Daniel Thouin

Piano, synthesizer, organ, accordion

Daniel Thouin was 7 when he first sat behind the family organ. Ten years later, he was studying classical piano. Soon, he started flirting with the jazz scene. Then, he took an interest in electronica and pop music, collaborating with the likes of Mara Tremblay, Yann Perreau and Gilles Vigneault. In 2002, Thouin assembled the Large Ensemble, an all-star local group mixing jazz and rock. Informed by Miles Davis’ late sixties experiments, Thouin and friends (Yannick Rieu, Olivier Langevin…) used the band to flex their improvisational muscles.He was musical director for a number of event for the montreal jazz festival. That led him to perform with such jazz luminaries as Allen Toussaint, Joe Lovano and Kurt Rosenwinkel. He is presently touring with Benoit Charest playing the score to the Oscar nominated film “Les Triplettes de Belleville”.

Guy Boisvert

Double bass and electric bass

Guy was born into a musical family, and stands as a pillar of the Francois Bourassa Quartet since its inception in 1982. He appears on all the recordings including   (Live-Juno 2001 – Best Jazz Album; Indefinite Time-Félix 2004 – Best Jazz Album + 4 Opus Prizes).

Guy Boisvert has toured alot with the quartet to prestigious festivals, such as North Sea in Holland. They performed in France, Belgium, Italy and Spain, as well as in the United-States and throughout Canada. He also recorded with artists such as Terez Montcalm, Steve Hill, and Yannick Rieu with whom he worked on 2 projects . Guy Boisvert has also appeared on the soundtracks for the feature film Jack Paradise, and Omerta.

Since 1990, he has taught at Drummondville CEGEP and at McGill University. A passionate player, he recently acquired a bass from the gentleman who re-built Scot Lafaro’s bass.

Greg Ritchie

Drummer

Canadian drummer Greg Ritchie currently resides in Montreal, Quebec where he attended McGill University. He lived in New York City from 2003-2014 where he performed with David Binney, Mark Turner, Donny McCaslin, Seamus Blake, Geoffrey Keezer, David Liebman, Gilad Hekselman, Adam Rogers and more. He has performed at such notable venues as The Blue Note NYC, Smalls, Montreal Jazz Festival, North Sea Jazz Festival and has toured internationally as a sideman for various jazz, folk and rock groups. Greg  continues to be active in Montreal as both a sideman and leader of his own solo project.

Xie Jia

Pianist and composer (China)

Xia, Jia: jazz pianist and composer, based in Beijing, as well as keyboard player of Cui Jian, who is known as the Godfather of China’s rock music.

Xia, Jia started his long period training in classical music, studied at the Central Conservatory of music, majored in conducting, but in 1999 he went to the United States to study jazz music, and completed a bachelor’s degree at the Eastman School of Muisc in Rochester New York, there he studied jazz piano with Harold Danko.

Xia, Jia leads his own trio has performed at Cape Town Jazz Festival 2012 in South Africa, also has performed at Kanazawa Jazz Street 2010 in Japan. In 2011, Xia, Jia has performed a duo concert with Italian jazz pianist Danilo Rea in Roma, Italy. In China, Xia, Jia and his group has performed at many festivals, also has collaborated with some jazz famous musicians, such as Antonio Hart, Ryan Kisor, Yannick Rieu.

As a pianist Xia, Jia has a strong classical background, in 2013 he performed Gershwin’s piano concerto with several China’s finest symphony orchestras such as the Symphony of National Ballet, GuangZhou Symphony Orchestra.