The Georgia Straight Jazz Society

At the Avalanche Bar & Grill 275 8th Street, Courtenay

April 14th at 7:30 pm - Dave Stewart Quintet

Admission is $10 for society members, $12 for non-members.

In a recent interview Dave Stewart said, "A few years ago I decided to form a jazz quintet. There were some very talented jazz musicians in the central island area who shared a love for playing jazz music. This jazz quintet is the product of that aspiration. The philosophy of the group is to interpret traditional jazz standards and original compositions from a new artistic perspective while maintaining the original framework of the music. In the traditional spirit of jazz each group manner presents their unique spontaneous improvisation on the harmonic structure of the music while maintaining the integrity of the music. We all love jazz and the art of improvisation and look forward to sharing an enjoyable evening of jazz with aficionados in Courtenay."

The quintet will be playing a range of tunes for the evening, some familiar old standards including It Might As Well Be Spring, I'll Never Smile Again and Who Can I Turn To, with a new twist in their interpretation. Bass player Rob Uffen has brought a collection of standards from the Toronto area that are new to the 'western' members of the group, including How Are Things In Glocca Morra from the 1968 musical Finian's Rainbow. The group will also feature premier performance compositions by group members Chad Geekie and Dan Craven.

Dave Stewart has taught music for 35 years and received many accolades and awards as a high school band and choral teacher. He still teaches in his private studio and at summer jazz programs on central Vancouver Island. As a jazz trumpet player he's also a member of the Arrowsmith Big Band and the Georgia Straight Big Band.

Perennial favourite Dan Craven, tenor saxophone, teaches music on central Vancouver Island. A 2001 recipient of the Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence, he's also had the privilege of playing with many of Canada's top jazz musicians. In 2007 Dan joined Phil Dwyer's Sax Summit, which first launched in 2002 with the release of "Sax Summit" on CBC Records. Dan currently performs with, the Dave Stewart Quintet, the Oceanside's Arrowsmith Big Band and many successful jazz groups.

Chad Geekie, piano, is an enigma on the Canadian jazz scene. Although known and well respected among Canada's jazz elite as one of the most harmonically capable players around, he rarely performs outside of his native Vancouver Island. Chad's habit of associating with the very best players available to him has lead to national acclaim, yet he maintains the approachable demeanor of a local player. His recording credits include projects with Damian Graham, Tina Jones and Victoria guitar phenomenon Marc Atkinson. He was the piano player of choice for Phil Dwyer's annual summer jazz series at Milner Gardens.

Rob Uffen, bass, recently relocated to Qualicum Beach, after a 40-year career in the Canadian jazz scene as a double bassist, guitarist, composer and educator. He's performed and recorded throughout Canada, U.S.A., Europe and New Zealand.

Wayne Funican, drums, began playing in Winnipeg in the 1950s during the dawn of rock and roll and quickly fell in love with jazz. After years of playing in night clubs he got the opportunity to play in CBC television shows with Lenny Breau, Dave Young and Bob Erlendson. After the CBC shows dried up he opened his own recording studio, specializing in film audio production as well as album production. But it wasn't until he retired to Vancouver Island that he started to get back into music.

Food is served before and during the show. Adult accompanied teenagers are welcome (encouraged) to attend our shows. For more information about the Jazz Society's activities, browse the website or look for us on Facebook.

GSJS showcases jazz live in the Comox Valley, giving music lovers an opportunity to enjoys local, regional and internationally-known jazz musicians.

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