I’m very excited to announce some new performances I’ll be a part of during the ECMW. First off, I’ll be playing two shows with the multi-talente Joshua Van Tassel in Halifax and Riverport. The shows will feature music from his upcoming album Dream Date (trust me, you want to have this album!), and his self-titled release Joshua Van Tassel which is nominated for ‘Electronic Recording of the Year.’ You can also catch Josh playing drums during the week with East Coast heavyweight David Myles
Secondly, I’ll be sharing the stage with Joel Miller, one of Canada’s finest saxophonists on the JazzEast Stage. Joel’s latest album Swim is up for ‘Jazz Recording of the Year’ and is very much worth checking out! The JazzEast showcase night is looking to be a great night of music in Halifax.
For now, that’s all the news but I will keep you posted with more ECMW updates!
This past week Portage earned a nomination for ‘Jazz Recording of the Year’ for the 2013 East Coast Music Awards. This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the ECMA’s, and will take place in Halifax from March 6-10. The Coastal Quartet will be performing a showcase on Friday, March 8th at the Company House at 10pm. Stay tuned for more exciting ECMA news as things progress over the next few weeks.
Here is a link to the full list of nominees: 2013 ECMA Nominees
Yesterday, I had a email interview with Peter Hum from the Ottawa Citizen about the Coastal Quartet’s upcoming tour this week. (We’ll be in Ottawa, Kingston, and Toronto – dates are listed in the ‘gigs’ section of the site.) Peter had five questions for me about my musical upbringing, schools, and what the Coastal Quartet is striving for.
He also included some nice video links to performances with the quartet, as well as playing with Terence Blanchard at Humber College, and the International Masters Quartet at the University of Louisville.
Here is the full interview: Ottawa Citizen Interview
The Music Nova Scotia Awards nominations were released this week and Portage was selected for ‘Jazz Recording of the Year’. It was a bit of a surprise, but a very nice one at that! A big thank you to everyone at MNS, and to everyone involved in the making of the album. Winners will be announced on November 11, during Nova Scotia Music Week festivities in Liverpool.
Here is a link to the full list of the nominations:
I received a nice welcome home surprise this past week with Portage being the first album to be featured in Peter Hum’s Young and Fine series, a semi-annual run of reviews of music by jazz musicians under 30 in the Ottawa Citizen.
Peter had some very nice things to say about the album and musicians, and declared the album to be “a quintessentially Canadian, modern mainstream jazz disc —stressing lyricism, tweaks on traditional forms and grooves, and the personalities of its players — and it’s quite a good one at that.” I’d like to thank Peter for the review and for supporting Canadian Jazz!
For the full review, please click here: Ottawa Citizen Review – Portage.
Portage was recently selected to be reviewed on the well-known jazz website All About Jazz.com. It was featured on April 8th and received a great review, being named “a very strong album” and also being selected for their “Download of the Day” feature, available in the near future.
To read the full review, please go to: Portage Album Review | All About Jazz.com
I was recently the special guest on Louisville’s The Sunday Sessions with host Diego Palma on Crescent Hill Radio. Diego and I met up for a quick interview, which turned into an hour-long feature for the show discussing my album Portage, life in Louisville and some plans for the future. Diego is a local guitarist, band-leader and member of the Louisville Jazz Society, which is helping keep a strong jazz community here in the city. I’d like to thank Diego for having me on the show and highlighting my music! Hope you enjoy the interview!
It was a real pleasure working with designer Simon Farla on the artwork and visual concept of Portage. I first met Simon back in 2008 when I was on a cross Canada tour with his wife, singer-songwriter Coco Love Alcorn. We became good friends and when it came time to put out my first album, I really wanted Simon to be involved with the visual side of things.
After a few Skype conversations, Simon produced some beautiful artwork using hand-drawn India Ink illustrations and computerized colouring to create exactly what I had in mind (and more!). He came up with the idea for the Origami Canoe available in each album and shared in the out-doorsy vision I initially had for the artwork. It was a blast working with Simon in creating the visual side of the music and I hope you enjoy this inside look at the progression of the illustrations and artwork for Portage!
Here’s a link to Simon’s artwork for the album: Portage Artwork | Simon Farla.
Canoes for (L-R): Top,Bottom,Slide / Portage / The Great Karoo.
The Nova Scotia jazz-drummer and composer brings his Coast Quartet and debut release Portage home.
by Allison Saunders
Coffee and limited sleep fuel Will Fisher’s master’s in jazz/debut-album balancing act. It’s hard to imagine chipping away at a degree on top of making an album, sending press releases, having Skype meetings and then touring said album, but he’s pulling it off. After a just handful of performances and practices, Portage was recorded this summer in Toronto, with the help of Fisher’s brag-worthy band of Jon Challoner, Mikko Hilden and Mike Downes (plus guest appearances from Nancy Walker and Matt Giffin). Bringing his rich contemporary jazz home means not just playing gigs, but teaching clinics to the future Fishers out there. “I was fortunate enough to work with great musicians in Nova Scotia, and I remember how influential and inspiring it was,” says Fisher, who grew up just outside of Truro. “It can really open up your eyes and ears, and propel you to go deeper into music. I just wanted to give that back to the community.”
If you find yourself scrambling to find local, live jazz music – help is on the way. This month, Horton High School is welcoming Will Fisher Coastal Quartet to play. Fisher, a highly-acclaimed musician who specializes in wooing his audience with seductive, jazzy drum beats will be knocking the socks off the high school venue on the 21st of this month for their debut CD release tour.
Now if you’re thinking cigar toking, martini-shaking swing, you’re getting the wrong idea. Fisher’s jive does not necessarily win listeners over with striking sounds and bass lines alone, but it’s the cool tempo that plays throughout his released MySpace tracks that’s truly worth noting. His debut album Portage stands far from any standard elevator jazz music you may have heard before.
printed in The Athenaeum | written by: Aislinn Robinson, Arts Editor
link to full article