Persian sounds on Canadian shores

In September, Iranian-Canadian musician and composer Saeid Kooshki joined Tsleil-Waututh filmmaker and poet Rachelle George for an evening of music and poetry at Maplewood Flats in North Vancouver. While George recited the works of her great grandfather Chief Dan George, Kooshki brought to the performance 36 years of experience with the santoor, a traditional Persian…

Alisa Blanc: raising the musical bar

B.C.-based francophone singer-songwriter Alisa Blanc performed her brand of moody smooth guitar pop for the Surrey Fusion Festival on Sept. 28, 2020. While she is currently writing music and studying in Japan, Blanc was raised in France before moving to B.C. During that time she has made the most of B.C.’s francophone singer-songwriter opportunities, all…

Celeigh Cardinal: singer, songwriter, storyteller, artist

Drawing from rock, blues, soul and folk influences, Celeigh Cardinal’s commanding voice and detailed personal lyricism centre her varied – and often arduous – experiences in her music. Cardinal champions Indigenous musical representation by way of her own presence and by uplifting fellow Indigenous artists. The Edmonton-based singer-songwriter has been awarded the 2020 Juno for…

Nêhiyawak – Indigenous trio dismantles colonial conceptions

Amiskwaciy (Edmonton)-based trio ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐊᐧᐠ (nêhiyawak) has been nominated for Best Indigenous Artist or Group in the 2020 Juno Awards for their debut full-length album nipiy. Kris Harper, the band’s lead singer, songwriter and guitarist speaks to the influences and inspirations behind the band’s genre of Moccasin-Gaze – an Indigenous play on the British-derived, guitar-heavy, wall-of-sound genre Shoegaze –as…

Surrey Virtual Canada Day – Sade Awele brings her soulful sound

Sade Awele, Nigerian-born Vancouver-based singer-songwriter, shares her blend of neo-soul, afro-soul, alternative and contemporary R&B, all while drawing on her personal and cultural experiences and heritage. “My dad is from the Yoruba culture, and [with] Yorubas they always say that music is in our blood. So, I found that as I write songs, there are…

Joshua Feinberg – Musical migration

Joshua Feinberg, a New Yorker who started learning piano at age four, didn’t expect his musical journey would lead to the faraway land of India. However, drawn to music improvisation and composition, he found his love for sitar and Hindustani music in his teenage years and since describes himself as a musical immigrant. “Indian classical…

Music for everyone

“Between our passion for music and helping people, it just seemed like a logical step to open a school where we were open for everyone, every type of learning, every age and had essentially no barriers,” says Kris Schulz, co-owner and operator of Horizon School of Music. Schulz, who teaches electric guitar, acoustic guitar, vocals…

Music for social change at St. James Music Academy

St. James Music Academy (SJMA), located in the Downtown Eastside (DTES) of Vancouver, has been providing free music education for children in the community for more than a decade. It is a charity organization that is mostly backed by private donors and it provides children from grade one onwards after school free music education based…

LeFLOFRANCO: thinker, musician, artist

“I think, therefore I am…but, who am I?” This is the question that Ottawa musician LeFLOFRANCO, or simply, FLO, tried to answer in detail on his first full length album, Force inhérente,meaning inherent strength, released Sept. 27, 2019. It’s also the question FLO will continue to answer during his two shows on Mar. 7 and 8,…

Mapping Worlds – A blur of boundaries between reality and fantasy

Mapping Worlds showcases Inuit artist Shuvinai Ashoona’s pieces that reflect fantastical imagery linked to her roots in Kinngait (Cape Dorset). The exhibition will run from Feb. 22–May 24, at the Vancouver Art Gallery (VAG). “The show was inspired by working with Ashoona for over 15 years and is based on my research done for my…

Itamar Erez weaves music beyond borders

Recently nominated for Instrumental Solo Artist of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards 2020, Vancouver-based Israeli musician Itamar Erez is a composer and a performer with great versatility and eclectic style. A talented soloist who is highly skilled in both piano and guitar, Erez will be performing with his trio at Pyatt Hall…

A new decade – and a new Khanvict

For someone who has no formal music training and is mostly self-taught, Asad Khan, popularly known as Khanvict, has come a long way – transforming himself from an engineer, to a successful wedding DJ, and now into a music producer. To mark his new milestone as an original artist, Khan will be delivering his first…

Out of many, comes one reggae music

Mosaic Riddim, a Vancouver-based reggae band – with its band members coming from all different parts of the globe – resembles a microcosm of the world. “The motto in Jamaica is ‘out of many, one people’ – the same with music: out of many diverse cultures, comes one band, one message and one sound,” says lead…