Viewing: Musician's Life - View all posts

July update 

I feel like if I just make posting here part of updating my calendar that will get me to update the ‘what’s new' a little more often.  

Gig-wise, I'm doing a pop-up with John Geggie at the Record Centre on Friday at 4PM this week.  For the rest of the month I've just got F8-Bit's monthly residency at House of Targ on July 31.  I'm back with the Prime Rib Big Band at Irene's the following week, Aug. 7.  

F8-Bit also is finishing up the final touches on a new EP to be released in the coming months.

I'm also…

Read more

January 2023 updates 

I've been struggling to figure out the best way to use this News feature - I send weekly-plus updates to all of my Patreon subscribers, and upcoming shows to my mailing list.  I think right now the best updates I can share with you are big-picture things about upcoming releases and projects.

Currently I'm involved in a lot of other people's records, I just recorded an album with Michel Delage's Music To Do The Dishes to which should be really fun and interesting when it comes out, hopefully sometime this…

Read more

Fall update 

Nothing much new to report, other than the upcoming return to vocal jazz open mic night, at Festival Japan, once a month starting this coming Sunday afternoon at 1:30PM.  

I also just got back from a trip to New York to see great music, shows and eat great food.  It was a long-needed trip away from home, our first since January 2020 and I'm glad to be back inspired and ready to play music and make some great patreon posts for all of you.

Don't forget you can join me live for free, Mondays at 1PM for a…

Read more

Summer Update 

I had a great time playing at the Kemptville Street Piano Festival yesterday, be sure to check out all of their cool events happening all summer long.  

I'm realizing my remaining summer plans are fairly fixed at this point - I have a few camps I'm involved with (uOttawa's summer piano academy, Jazzworks at CAMMAC and YTK's Shooting Stars Opera program) and during the off weeks I have one show of my own music, July 29th at Montgomery Scotch Lounge with a 5-piece band.  I also have three recording projects…

Read more

New album and March review 

You can stream my new album "Cherished Possessions" starting tomorrow, April 8 2022 on your music platform of choice.

I had great group classes in March talking about Monk, Chet Baker, Bud Powell, Bach, and Erroll Garner.

I also posted weekly videos explaining more about each track on the album in a way I couldn't do in a concert setting.

To catch up on this content check out my patreon page -

I also played gigs with Martine Courage at Queen St Fare, F8-Bit at Minotaure, and…

Read more

Jazz Festival Shows announced 


I recently made a post over on my Patreon page letting everyone know about my upcoming shows with the Ottawa Jazz Festival, which is in large part local talent this year, which is very exciting to me. 

The post is public for all to see and will give you an idea of what Patreon is like have a look:
There are a few other posts I recently made public so you can get more of an idea of what my posts look like.

I also have added all of the shows to my online events

Read more

Show Thursday June 10 and Group Class Reminder 

Just a reminder that tonight (Thursday June 10) at 7:30PM I will be hosting a live show/presentation on my Zoom with drummer Jennie Seaborn.  Similar to the previous duo concert with Scott Latham I will eventually post a recording here for my patrons afterwards.  Here is the link to the event on facebook or you can go to my zoom room directly. 

This Saturday for my 11AM group class I'm going to talk about Ran Blake's ear training for basic harmony and look at one or two of the most…

Read more

New Patreon Page 

I'm excited to announce that I will be making all of my previous online classes and handouts available on my new Patreon page:

For as little as $5/mo you can access a wide array of handouts, exclusive videos, as well as downloadable versions of my albums.  My live classes will always be open to the public on a pay-what-you-can basis, but I encourage those interested in supporting me further to have a look at my Patreon site. 

Become a Patron!

One big benefit of this is that I will have a weekly commitment…

Read more

Announcing Group Classes 

As of January 2021 I have started a weekly group class for my teaching studio, every Saturday morning at 11AM over Zoom.  

You can come join in by simply joining my Zoom room at 11AM this coming Saturday.

Students who study with me privately will have access to recordings of the older classes, but I am hoping to share some of my handouts online for everyone to see as well.  

In the trial class on January 16, we briefly talked about Bb blues in jazz, especially in Monk's music.  Here is a handout I made of…

Read more

Wall LPs (Summer 2020) 

On the wall in my teaching studio there are three IKEA LP frames that fit vinyl records that can be easily swapped in and out.  Because I can only listen to vinyl in the basement, it's a nice daily reminder of some of the music I've picked up physical copies of, usually from the Record Centre on Wellington.  I try to change the records out once a school term and put the three albums on a Spotify playlist so I can let those albums percolate a bit through repeated listens.  

Over the last several months the…

Read more

Newest solo album now available 

Just a quick note to let you know that the third of the five solo albums I recorded this year are now available on most music streaming services.  Physical CDs will be ready when all five are finished.

You can check out all of my recent releases on my Music page, or go directly to my latest album on Spotify by clicking here.

This latest album features almost entirely original music.  When I first conceived of this monthly set-of-piano-music project, I cast a fairly wide net, but now that it's almost time to…

Read more

End of Summer update 

Just a quick note to let everyone know that I am going forward with my five-album solo piano project.  I'm happy to announce that I have received the Canada Council Digital Originals grant to help distribute my music online.  As of this writing, physical copies of the first album are being finalized, paperwork is being filed for the second one, both of which are available on streaming services already.  The third album is in the final mastering stages, the fourth is ready for me to record and the songs for…

Read more

Updated Store and Spotify 

I have been preparing some new solo piano music but in the meantime, I updated my store to only show physical products, as I've made most of my earlier albums available on major streaming services like Spotify.  I also added a tip jar, which I'm intending on using during any online events in the coming months.  If you are listening to my music online and want to make a gesture of support, since purchasing and downloading albums is less of a thing, please feel free to do so.  Thanks!

Hugh O'Connor (1928-2020) 

I wanted to share the sad news of the passing of one of my favourite Ottawa jazz musicians, an inspiration and a mentor to me and many other local players.

Click here to see a short article on Hugh's passing.

My quotes at the end were taken from this written interview with Peter Hum:

1) When did you play with Hughie and where? How many gigs did you do with him? 

I got to play with Hugh every Sunday for at least a year at Chez Lucien around 2007/2008, right up until I moved to Boston for grad school at the…

Read more

Toots Thieleman 

This Friday I'll be playing at the Merrickville jazz festival with Norm Glaude for his tribute to Toots Thielemans - here are two of my favourite tracks that we've done in the past.

Estate - from Only Trust Your Heart 

Before I was involved in this project I had already listened to this version a bunch as my go to for this tune.


Sno' Peas - from Bill Evans' Affinity - this is just about the hardest set of changes in a simple 8 bar section AABA tune that I've played in a while.  They break up its…

Read more

Fall 2019 

I haven't written an involved post in a while, but I thought I'd mention that as I settle into the fall term, it appears I will have a full teaching studio for the 2019-20 school year.  There are some great performances I'm involved with coming up which you can check out on my Events page, and I have been tending to post more on Instagram than on other platforms because I like how I can quickly capture what I'm working on and not feel like I'm trying to create evergreen content for mass consumption.

I have…

Read more

Post Jazz Festival times 

Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this year's Ottawa Jazz Festival.  It was a very special honour for me to be part of the house trio hosting the jam sessions every night for ten straight days - the first year I went to the jazz festival (1996...) I probably went to eight of their late night jams.  It was my first exposure to the music in a club setting - real professionals playing mere feet away, the sound came from the instruments as much as any sound system.  I'm really happy to have had this chance…

Read more

Updated Events 

Hey, just a quick note to say I've updated my calendar to reflect some Jazz Festival events, most notably the 24 hour jazz ramble which takes place from 10AM Friday to 10AM Saturday next weekend.  I'll be on at noon with Mark Ferguson playing some Bill Evans music in the style of his overdubbed pianos records.  I'll also be part of Ed Lister's quintet at 9PM.  The whole event takes place at the Record Centre on Wellington.

I also had a blast playing all types of Indian music at City Hall last week for the…

Read more

Indian Music 

I've started rehearsals with Vinay Bhide for a show May 10th at noon at City Hall.  Vinay has asked Mike Essoudry and me to join him to play what we feel fits in the performance of two pieces.  One is based on the Raga Rageshri, on which I have previously written an original piece, "Pas De Deux".  In the key of C, the notes for improvising are Bb-C-E-F-A-Bb-C and the downward notes are C-Bb-A-F-E-D-C.  After a few minutes of getting it in your ears, an accidental G sounds glaringly wrong.

I've also been…

Read more

Radio Play 

My hopes of a regularly maintained thoughtful content-filled blog haven't materialized in the face of my regular practice and teaching schedule.  However, I thought this might be a great and easy way to keep track of fun news and things I'm doing as they happen, instead of constantly bombarding my e-mail list.

Most recently, I've been practicing video game theme songs for this Friday, when I'll be playing with the relatively new F8-BIT at Live on Elgin.

Alex and Michel were interviewed about the project…

Read more