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Jazz Around The Island (Oct. 15-22)

October 15, 2009

The Big Bossa - Oct16 Poster The Big Bossa, an eight piece ensemble featuring the music of Antonio Carlos (Tom) Jobim, performs Friday night (Oct. 16) at Hermann’s Jazz Club in Victoria (8pm/$10).

James McRae, the group’s music director, notes that although Jobim had a huge influence on jazz beginning in the late 1950’s when Joao Gilberto first performed his work (followed by the likes of Stan Getz,Frank Sinatra, and Ella Fitzgerald among others), contemporary audiences aren’t necessarily aware of just how interesting and challenging his music is.

McRae says that the songs seem simple but are actually very difficult to play, in part because of their harmonic and rhythmic complexity. As well, most audiences know tunes like The Girl from Ipanema (made famous by Getz, Joao Gilberto and vocalist Astrid Gilberto in a 1960’s recording), but aren’t necessarily aware of other even more interesting works like The Waters of March.

The Big Bossa hopes to shed more light on the depth and scope of Jobim’s work by performing some of these lesser known tunes, along with more familiar compositions.

Performing with McRae (drums) are Dan Craven(sax), Phil Hamelin(trumpet and piano), Darren Nilsson(trombone), Andrew Osborne  (vocals),  Nicolas Sheasgreen (bass), Brad Shipley (guitar), and Gillian Stone (vocals).  More info here.

Much-heralded Toronto jazz vocalist Cara Matthew appears Sunday night at Hermann’s (8pm $15) with Atilia Fias (piano) and Richard Brisco (drums). Matthew sings contemporary tunes by the likes of Elton John, Bob Dylan, and Joni Mitchell, fusing pop classics with jazz and blues, creating her own unique interpretations.

Her debut album Make You Feel My Love was released in August.  She’s currently on tour across the country promoting the album. More info here.

The Island Big Band is scheduled to perform Monday night (Oct. 19) at Hermann’s with saxophonist Noah Becker slated for a show on Wednesday night Oct. 21).  The Tom Vickery Trio and the Esquimalt High Jazz Band perform on Thursday (Oct. 22).  For more details check the  Hermann’s website here.

Tonight at the Elk’s Hall Jazz Club in Courtenay, you can catch the Dan Craven Octet (7:30 – 10 pm) and Sunday night Jazztet appears at The Griffin Pub in Comox (5-9 pm).

– Rick Gibbs

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