Mark Adam

Drummer/percussionist Mark Adam has made a versatile career across Canada and around the world as one of Canada's strongest young creative musical voices and has leant his support to a diverse array of the best musicians this country has to offer. Receiving his Bachelor of Music with distinction in Percussion Performance in Calgary and a Master's Degree from the University of Toronto, Mr. Adam has played with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Symphony Nova Scotia, been an ensemble member and guest soloist in the New Works Calgary Ensemble, principal percussionist of the Banff Center for the Arts Orchestra under Krysztof Penderecki and a frequent performer on CBC. His jazz credits include work with Mike Murley, Hugh Fraser and Andrew Downing as well as tours with The Dave Restivo Quintet, Carol Welsman and Tom Daniels. As a modern dance composer and accompanist, Mark is revered as one of the country's best, regularly working with Peggy Baker at the National Ballet and Christopher House at the Company of Toronto Dance Theater. Music travels have taken Mr. Adam to Japan, Poland, Finland, Germany, Australia and the United States as well as across Canada.

As a frequent participant at the Banff Center for the Arts, Mark has been involved in three of the Summer Jazz Programs, been percussionist in residence and a performer in various chamber music programs and composition workshops. His love of contemporary music and artistic collaborations make his involvement in new, ground-breaking projects almost inevitable. His current interests span the great sea of musical styles, from work with artists/groups like Hot Toddy, Isaac and Blewitt and Mary Jane Lamond to various Classical and Jazz settings. Recent recording credits include Dave Gunning, Debbie Adshade, Dave Restivo and Country music star, George Canyon. He has been presenting a series of solo percussion concerts and workshops across the Maritimes at high schools and universities showcasing Mark's compositions as well as works of other Canadian composers. He is involved with various rock and pop projects in Toronto, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia and with his own live project called The Barriomatic Trust. Based in Canning, Nova Scotia, Mark shares his life with his best friend and wife Trina, their son Oliver and baby daughter, Avi Mae. He currently teaches at Acadia University while performing and recording.

Kevin Brow  

After living in New York, Copenhagen and Toronto, Canadian drummer/composer Kevin Brow now resides in Copenhagen where he is kept busy with his band “Koptor”, his Trio featuring pianist Jakob Anderskov and performing as a sideman, composing, touring and teaching. Koptor will be performing in Europe 2008/09 in connection with their debut cd, released on the record label Fresh Sound New Talent/fsnt 314. Kevin holds a Bachelors degree in Jazz Performance from the University of Toronto. He received the  Avedis Zildjian Percussion Scholarship in 2002 and has twice received a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts to complete a self-directed study residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts (March 2005)  and to further his professional studies in drumming and composition in New York City with Dan Weiss and John Hollenbeck (May 2006). He was also awarded a scholarship to attend the prestigious Banff International Jazz Workshop headed by Kenny Werner in 2000 and 2002. In September 2006, after receiving a grant from the Canada council for the arts Kevin moved to New York for six months to study drumming, composition and counterpoint with; Dan Weiss, John Hollenbeck and Mike Mcginnes. While there Kevin recorded his debut album for Koptor. The album was recorded with three of the most sought after young players in the New York scene: Jacob Sacks-piano, Eivind Opsvik-bass and Rob Mosher–sax/english horn at systems two studio in Brooklyn New York. Kevin has been called “One of the most creative and musical drummers of his generation in Canada” by Canadian saxophonist Mike Murley. He has toured and played in Jazz festivals throughout Europe with Pete Robbins and Koptor, has toured in U.S.A and extensively in Canada with Goo and Dan Goldman including a prestigious gig opening for the Herbie Hancock all-star quartet featuring Wayne Shorter, Brian Blade and Dave Holland at the Ottawa international jazz festival 2003 with Canadian saxophonist Bob  Brough. Kevin made the move to Copenhagen to pursue further musical prospects. While there he began composing more extensively leading his own bands. After living for only a short period in Copenhagen Kevin performed with many top Danish jazz musicians such as, Thomas Frank, Jakob Anderskov, Jakob Dinesen, Mikkel Ploug, Rasmus Ehlers, Jonas Westergaard, Jeppe Skovbakke and also established his band Koptor which performed at both the 06 and 07 Copenhagen jazz festivals.

Michael Downes   

Bassist, composer, author and educator Mike Downes has earned a reputation as one of Canada's finest jazz artists.In addition to leading his own group, Mike has performed with virtually all of Canada's top jazz musicians, including Oliver Jones, Diana Krall, PJ Perry, Renee Rosnes, Don Thompson, Kirk MacDonald, Terry Clarke, Guido Basso and Pat LaBarbera. He is regularly in demand to perform and record with visiting jazz artists such as Michael Brecker, John Abercrombie, Peter Erskine, Kenny Wheeler, John Taylor, Chris Potter, Paquito D'Rivera, Dave Liebman, Curtis Fuller, Gary Bartz, Phil Woods and many others.
His bass playing has delighted audiences worldwide. Mike  has performed  in  England,  France, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Hungary, Poland, Iceland, Japan, Brazil, Mexico, the United States and throughout Canada.
His numerous recordings include Juno nominations for Ranee Lee's Dark Divas and Maple Groove, Lorne Lofsky's Bill Please and Molly Johnson's Another Day. His work with singer Molly Johnson has earned him critical acclaim as a composer and bassist.  He has been called "…one of Canada's immensely talented young giants" (Jazz Report), "…as strong a player as he is a composer" (Calgary Herald), "…wonderfully resourceful… a huge tone and a prodigious technique" (Winnipeg Free Press), and that "…his time playing is delightfully inventive and his intonation is absolutely impeccable…his lines are clear, hip, and agile." (Jazz Player).

Adrean Farrugia 

Jazz Pianist/Composer Adrean Farrugia is one of Canada’s most distinct voices on the piano. Fusing such diverse influences as Keith Jarrett, Paul Bley, Herbie Hancock, Phineas Newborn Jr., Hank Jones, Geri Allen, and Brad Mehldau he has forged a personal sound which generates dynamic sensitivity, hard-driving swing, and a powerful creative statement.
In 1992 Adrean enrolled in the Mohawk College Applied music program studying with Mark Eisenman, Dave McMurdo, Mike Malone, Christopher Hunt, and Brian Dickinson. In 1996 Adrean continued his Education at the University of Toronto Jazz Performance program studying with Gary Williamson, Kevin Turcotte, and Phil Nimmons. Also in 1996, Adrean attended the Banff Centre for the Arts’ Summer Jazz Workshop where he studied and performed with Don Thompson, Hugh Fraser, Kenny Wheeler, Pat Labarbera, and Norma Winstone. Adrean has also received private instruction from Cedar Walton, Geoff Keezer, Benny Green, Joanne Brackeen, and British pianist John Taylor. Adrean is currently pianist for such diverse projects as the Matt Dusk Band, The Bob Brough Quartet (featuring Artie Roth and Terry Clarke),  Ravi Naimpally’s  ‘Tasa’, The Ernesto Cervini Quartet (featuring saxophonist Mike Murley), the Brandi Disterheft Quartet, and the Darcy Hepner Big Band.
Adrean has performed in every major city in Canada and the United States . He has been on cross Canada tours with The Jefferson-Grant Quintet and the Juno award winning Richard Underhill Quintet. He has also performed in New York City, Chicago, Philidelphia, Louisville, Washington D.C. and Dallas Texas with the Matt Dusk Band.
Adrean has also performed at clubs in Paris, France as a member of the Chris Jennings Trio, in Montreaux Switzerland with the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band, and in Tokyo Japan at the world famous Blue Note Jazz Club where legendary pianist Hank Jones was in attendance and said “He can really play!”
Adrean’s debut recording as a leader Adrean Farrugia v1.0: Live at the Senator was released in the summer of 2006 on Barry Romberg’s ROMHOG RECORDS label.  It features compositions by Adrean Farrugia, Wayne Shorter and Joni Mitchell. This  album has been played numerous times on Toronto’s JazzFM and the CBC and has led to appearances on JazzFM’s ‘Joe Sealy’s Duets’ as well as a feature article in Performance Magazine by jazz journalist Geoff Chapman. Adrean won a Juno award for best traditional jazz recording in 2008 as a participant on Brandi Disterheft’s indie release “Debut”.
Adrean is currently on the faculty of York University and Mohawk College of Arts and Technology where he teaches jazz piano and improvisation. He has also done workshops/clinics at the University of Toronto, The University of Western Ontario, and The Banff Centre for the arts. In 2008, Adrean has forged a new project entitled RICOCHET  featuring as well as himself on piano, three of Canadian jazz’s most creative and distinct artists; Kevin Turcotte on trumpet, Andrew Downing on bass and drummer Anthony Michelli. The band will release a recording in 2008 which also features vocalist Sophia Perlman, trombonist William Carn and renowned Indian tabla master Ravi Naimpally.

Bob McLaren  

Born in Hamilton, Ontario, this Canadian drummer has had a major influence on the Toronto music scene since his arrival. Originally a guitarist as a youth, MacLaren developed into an aggressive, polyrhythmic drummer, firmly entrenched within the jazz tradition, boasting a very identifiable style. In additition his extensive work as a studio musician, MacLaren has performed with notable jazz musicians such as Zoot Sims, George Coleman, Randy Brecker, Pat LaBarbera, Sam Noto, and Lorne Lofsky.

Stan Fomin

Born in Ukraine, Stan was classically trained in piano, music theory and composition. In 1987, he obtained a Master's degree in Music. Upon arriving in Canada, he rounded up his education by studying contemporary film scoring and production with Glenn Morley at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Shortly after he joined a Guild of Canadian Film Composers, he started working on films and TV shows as a composer. He has scored music for Alliance Atlantis, CBC, Nelvana, YTV, Barna-Alper Productions. His most recent film work is music for the movie Secret Miracle which was recently awarded a Silver Remi Award for best short drama from an adapted work at this year’s WorldFest Houston International Film Festival. Stan is currently taking a Film Scoring course at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Stan's career as a performer has taken him all over the world as a pianist and band leader. He immigrated to Canada in 1998 and has since collaborated and shared stages with the likes of Herbie Hancock, Bob James, Warren Hill, Jeff Golub, Paul Brown, Najee, Demo Cates, Sharon Lee Williams, Eddie Bullen, Liberty Silver, Chris Smith, Paul Christopher, Mark Kelso, Andrew Scott, Sasha Boychouk, Vickie Van Dyke, Rich Brown, Steve Heathcote, Loi Bartolomuchi, Frank Botos, Bob Brough, Artie Ross, Terry Clarke, Jim Vivian.
His orchestrating and arranging work includes audio arrangments for varaiety of piano play-along books published by Hal Leonard, CD Classics Go Pop for Parry Music (BMG), two musicals The Forest Song and Little Prince for Nazarov National Theatre in Moscow, as well as arrangements for independent artists in U.S., Canada and Russia.
First ReleaseIn 2005, Stan released his first CD Smooth Session, showcasing as a composer, arranger and performer. Two tracks Midnight and Flight 111 have become runaway hits on Canadian Smooth Jazz radio stations. Wave 94.7's morning man and musical director Bob Farrow writes, "Stan draws on his superb technicality and then wows you with his unabashed sense of groove. Backed up by David West on guitar, Sasha Boychouk on alto sax and clarinet and the vocal power of Dave Nichols, Smooth Session is comprised of 6 original tracks and a nod to Tchaikovsky."
-Free Music Weekend Review, November, '05. Vickie Van Dyke, 2005 broadcaster of the year (Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards) wrote, "Stan Fomin knows how to play (he's got chops and then some) but he also knows how to groove. Smooth Session is smooth indeed - a most welcome surprise from a powerful new force on the Canadian Smooth Jazz scene." -Wave Fave Review, Wave 94.7, October '05. In the spring of 2006, Flight 111 made it to number one on the Wave 94.7 Smooth Jazz Charts for 3 weeks.
Collaborations Stan is musical director for Papaduke, a band blending traditional Slavic gypsy music mixed with a touch of classic pop and a good measure of jazz led by violinist Vasyl Popadiuk. The band genre-defying fusion music first CD was released in early 2006.  For the past six years, he has been part of legendary jazzman's Bob Brough's band. Brough has been a fixture on the Toronto jazz scene for over thirty years. His smoky, relaxed tone recalls vintage Stan Getz, while his harmonic adventures bring to mind early John Coltrane.
Recently, Stan joined forces with well-known Smooth Jazz singer/sax player Demo Cates. Together they've just released the new album "Cates Fomin Project" with subtitle "Journey With Us", distributed by Universal Music Canada, powered by Sab Ravalli, president of Luccica Productions and produced by multi-platinum award winner Mark Berry, Attack Media Group.

Nominations Stan was nominated in the "keyboardist of the year" category at the 2006 and 2008 Canadian Smooth Jazz Awards

Chris Jennings  

Born: August 12, 1978

Biography Canadian bassist Chris Jennings, is a performer, composer, leader, arranger and teacher, playing a wide variety of musical genres and styles on both upright and electric basses. He leads the “CHRIS JENNINGS QUARTET,” the “JENNINGS/PERCHAUD” acoustic duo, a solo double bass project, as well as a regular sideman. He has performed in Canada, the USA and Europe with Nguyên Lê, Danny Gottlieb, Rita Marcotulli, Manu Codjia, Rick Margitza, Andy Milne, Nelson Veras, Mike Murley, Edgar Meyer, Jens Lindemann, ‘El Gusto’ Algerian Orchstra, Colonne classical orchestra of Paris, and the internationally acclaimed percussion ensemble, Nexus. Mr. Jennings completed long and short-term self-study residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts in 2000/01/02/04/07, a Bachelors (B.A.) in Jazz Performance from the University of Toronto, Canada (2000), and a Masters (M.A.) in Music from the Royal Conservatory of the Hague, Holland (2004). While currently based out of Paris France since 2002, he performs regularly alongside teaching at the Conservatory of Chelles, France. Mr. Jennings plans to continue performing and presenting his ensembles and original Canadian music internationally.
Thomas Martin custom made double bass, Custom made electric bass by Tak Hosono. Eden Traveler Amplifier, FWR upright pick-up, EBS effects, monster cables
Press Quotes Article in “Bassist Magasine” (France) Mars/Avril Edition 2007 (see myspace) Bassist Magasine, de Adrien Evangelist, mars/avril edition 2007  “… was rapidly replaced by a double bassist whose name is seen a lot since he moved to France, Canadian bassist Chris Jennings” Jazzman Magasine, de Franck Bergerot, mai 2004, Paris France.
“… and PUSH (written by Chris Jennings) has a very effective devilish lively latin influence in which the strong melodic sense and control of Chris Jennings is recognized, a double bassist whom we hear spoken of more and more in Parisien Jazz Clubs,…” Le nouveau disque …EVEIL Choisisait disque d’emoi, juin 2003, de Jêrome Plassard. Jazz Magazine, 2003 Paris, France
“ Airelle Besson with Chris Jennings have convinced the le jury.” Tremplin d’Avignon Festival du Jazz; August 5, 2002, by Phillipe Lemande. La Delphine, Avignon, France  “ ...the very promising rhythm tandem of bass Chris Jennings and drummer Mark Adam ... did themselves proud”, noting Chris' “ confident melodicism” and Mark's “loose, enterprising approach” CJSW Concert Series; April 12, 2000, by Geoff Chapman. Toronto Star, Toronto, Canada

Carol McCartney

Whether it’s a concert hall or nightclub, Carol McCartney’s impassioned and impeccable vocal style has made her a favorite among audiences and players alike. She has performed at all the major jazz clubs in Toronto and also has toured in the U.S. and Canada. Carol recently recorded a CD that will be released Live at The Courthouse, September 19, 2007: A Night In Tunisia. Arranged by John Sherwood, it includes some of Canada’s jazz greats sitting in with Carol on some classic standards. Peter Appleyard, Guido Basso, Reg Schwager, Dave Young, Terry Clarke, Bob Brough, Chase Sanborn, Geoff Young and John MacLeod all make appearances. Carol first met many of these jazz greats through Peter Appleyard whom she has worked with since the early eighties. Mr. Appleyard, an original member of the Benny Goodman Septet, played a large role in Carol’s early years as a singer and she continues to make guest appearances on Peter’s concerts and club dates, both in Canada and the U.S.. On these dates she has worked alongside many jazz legends, including Mel Lewis, Ed Bickert, Major Holly, Bucky Pizzarelli, and the late Slam Stewart. Carol is often the featured vocalist for one of Canada’s premiere big bands, The Rex Hotel Orchestra, led by trumpeter/arranger John MacLeod. Appearing frequently with this twenty-piece jazz orchestra, she performs to standing-room only audiences at The Rex Hotel, and in 2006 at the TD Canada Trust Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival. In 2007, she joined clarinet prodigy Dave Bennett and his septet on a US Tour of shows both symphonic and small group. Upcoming engagements can be found on her MySpace site, Carol can be heard on Bob Brough’s original CD Like A Spring Day, released in 2005, featured vocals on trumpeter Chase Sanborn’s critically-acclaimed CD’s Sweet & Low and Cut To The Chase; and all vocals on the JUNO-nominated recording (Canada’s Grammy’s) Taking Flight with big band Freeflight. National radio appearances include Ross Porter’s After Hours and Katie Malloch’s Jazz Beat, where she was featured with the Bob Brough Quartet.

Barry Romberg

After 38 years at the drums, Barry has established himself as one of Canada's most unique drumset stylists. Since leaving York University's music program (and studying drumset with Stan Perry and Pete Magadini) Barry has gone on to work with some of Canada's finest musicians, lead his own band, accompany international artists, and has been featured on sixty recordings, including ten as a leader/co-leader.

The Barry Romberg Group won the Alcan Jazz Competition (central region) in 1990; Barry won a Juno Award in 1991 for his participation in Brian Dickenson's "In Transition" as well as six Juno nominations; in 2001 with Micheal Occhipinti's Creation Dream project "Songs of Bruce Cockburn",  in 2002 with Chris Tarry's "Of Battles Unknown Mysteries", in 2003 with Nojo on "Highwire",and in 2005 with Nojo's "City Of Neighborhoods", and "Shurum Burum Jazz Circus" in 2006 and Michael Occhipinti's Creation Dream in 2008. In 2003 The MRC Trio (a group co-lead by Barry)  was nominated at The National Jazz Awards for Best Electric Group. In 2005/2006/2007/2008 Barry Romberg's Random Access was nominated for Best Electric Group at the National Jazz Awards. Barry was also nominated for drummer of the year at the NJA in 2006/2007/2008. In 2008 RALE was also nominated for Best Big Band and Barry for Producer of The Year. Barry continues to freelance on drums, compose, teach, and is always getting involved in new projects. He leads The Barry Romberg Group,  Random Access and The Random Access Large Ensemble (RALE), and is also a member of  INSIDE OUT with Lorne Lofsky and Kieran Overs, and an exciting collaboration The MRC TRIO, as well as the collective THREE SISTERS featuring Metalwood bassist Chris Tarry and guitarists Geoff Young and Daryl Jankhe.

Artie Roth 

Toronto-born jazz bassist Artie Roth has been an active composer, bandleader, performer and educator in the national and international jazz communities, since his graduation from York University in 1992 with the Oscar Peterson Scholarship. After two Canada Council sponsored study tenures in New York City (1993 and 1997), Artie returned to Toronto establishing himself as one of the busiest, full-time composer/performers in Toronto.
As a side-person, he has been recorded on over 35 CDs including Rich Underhill's 2003 JUNO award winning Tales from the blue lounge and Rockit 88's 2004 JUNO nominated Too Much Fun. Artie has toured extensively, performing in theatres, festivals and jazz venues regionally, nationally and internationally. More specifically, on a national level, this touring has included dates on the east coast (2001), Quebec (2003), and Quebec and Manitoba (2005) with jazz vocalist Melissa Stylianou, as well as cross-Canada tours with The Sean Bray Quartet (1995) and The Rez Abassi Quartet (2000). Internationally, tours in the U.S.A. have included performances with The Greg Runions Sextet featuring Kenny Wheeler (1994) and The Lynne Arriale Trio (1997).
Artie's overseas engagements have included performances with The Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band in Germany (1996) and The Steve Koven Trio in Mexico (2003) and Columbia (2005). The year 2005 proved to be exciting for Artie. As well as being nominated for a National Jazz Award in the category of bassist of the year, he had the honour of accompanying such jazz legends as Anita O'Day, Curtis Fuller and Marcus Belgrave. In addition to his active composer/band-leading and freelance career, Artie currently holds the position of Bass Instructor at York University.

Mark Zaret

Mark has been active on the Toronto jazz scene since graduating from York University’s Music Program in 1980. Among his other credits, he has been a headliner at the Downtown Toronto International Jazz Festival with his own trio.

As a sideman, Mark has accompanied all the best musicians in the city including Sam Noto, Alex Dean, Pat Labarbera, Lorne Lofsky, and many others. Mark was a significant catalyst in Bob Brough’s career in that he was instrumental in effectively encouraging and motivating Bob to assume leadership and move forward with a band that eventually became the first version of The Bob Brough Quartet, where Mark was a regular member through the recording of the initial tracks of Bob’s first published CD, A Decade Of Favorites.