Synergy Collective

Performer Info

Performers 2024/2025

Regular Performers

Yvonne McSkimming is a singer/songwriter who speaks to the heart with lyrics that have been described as innocent and intriguing. She performs a combination of new songs and selected material from her CD, Place of Standing. Yvonne is also one of the founding promoters of Synergy. Her vision and passion shine through in her both her music and her work. To contact Yvonne, email ymuzak@telus.net 

Beverley Elliott works primarily as an actress in the film and TV industry but is also an accomplished songwriter with a country/folk flair that can be heard on her CD Yellow Dress. She considers her greatest achievement to be her young daughter Sally. To contact Bev, email bevandsally@shaw.ca 

Mark James Fortin has been described as raw, powerful, and dynamic. He performs songs that speak to the heart and mind. He is also a founding promoter of Synergy and has been performing locally with Clive's Timings. To contact Mark, email markjamesfortin@shaw.ca  

Show M/C

Denalda Williams "Denny" was born and raised in Burnaby. She is a founding member of Vancouver Theatresports League and worked for Second City during Expo 86. She has done TV, which is mostly boring, except for Six Feet Under and Whose line is it Anyway. She's done lots of movies and commercials, 50th birthday parties, and funerals. Her motto is, if you pay, I'll show up. Voiceover is her favorite work because it requires no makeup. Her hair is cut by her husband Chris. The gray is courtesy of his kids, Junior and Adam. Her dog Lullabelle....is the cutest dog in the world. To contact Denny, email denalda@shaw.ca 

FEATURED PERFORMERS 2024

June 4, 2024

Canada’s ‘voice like chocolate’, Melanie Dekker, grew up in Deep Cove, BC, and has spent most of her performing career in Europe. Though locally has she’s been the support act for Bryan Adams, Diana Krall, Russell Peters, & Faith Hill. Let her songs tug on your heart and leave you smiling…She’s spent part of this Covid time recording not just one, but two new albums. While Dekker finds the pace for her songs while she's hiking in the mountains, she says she continues to be inspired by how music connects people's hearts all over the world. For more information please visit  www.melaniedekker.com

Vancouver's Reid Jamieson and CVM are a vocal powerhouse making music that matters and moves us. With an incredible voice, spirited guitar playing, and a magical way with melodies, Reid is that rare songbird whose originals are every bit as compelling as his interpretations. In years past, Reid was a regular on CBC’s Vinyl Café, has recorded with Cowboy Junkies, and performed with Mary Margaret O’Hara, members of Blue RodeoBe Good Tanyas and more.

A classic introvert/extrovert combo, Reid shines alongside his saucy wife and long-time songwriting partner Carolyn Victoria Mill, where their unique harmonies and swapping of lead vocals make for an eclectic, entertaining, and sometimes heartbreaking variety show. Together they won the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and wrote their way in to the Vancouver Folk Festival by winning 1st place in their Pickin’ a Folk Star contest. Their latest all original album ‘Me Daza’ was recorded in Ireland with producer Kieran Kennedy (Maria Doyle Kennedy) which features the posthumous vocals of Fergus O’Farrell (Interference, Once).

There is nothing traditional about the record – or this dynamic duo. Tireless promoters of voting, equality, and love, they thrive on creating intimacy, causing tears and laughter in equal measures. 2023 saw them launch an all original folk opera about Pigeons(!) and the causes of housing insecurity, premiering it at the Vancouver Fringe Fest where they took home the prestigious Social Impact Award. Following up on tributes to Leonard CohenJohn Lennon50/60s era gold, and what could be mistaken for a simple holiday record, they are currently getting ready to release the first ever tribute to Buffy Sainte-Marie. You won’t want to miss what they do next… For more information please visit www.reidjamieso.com 

  Ontario-born songwriter Meg Tennant has released two solo albums, “Driving With You” (produced by John MacArthur Ellis) and “Echoed Light” (co-produced with Toronto songwriter Mark Ripp), as well as two singles co-produced with Mark Ripp.  Her songs have been performed and recorded by Canadian folk, bluegrass and ragtime artists, and her a capella song “Bucket of Love” continues to be performed by choirs in Canada, the US, Australia and Sweden. 

Meg has performed in Ontario and BC festivals and songwriter showcases, toured with the band August (with Beverley Elliott, Linda Kidder & Rae Armour) and was in the duo Lingo Sisters with Janet Lillian Russell.  Meg’s current home is on Vancouver Island, where she is writing songs for future release, and thoroughly enjoying living in the same city as her two daughters. For more information please visit www.MegTennantMusic.com or www.MegTennant.Bandcamp.com

PREVIOUS PERFORMERS

Adam Woodall is a veteran of the urban folk scene and a highly celebrated songwriter with a CD entitled North Shore Songs From My Parents' House in 2000. Shortly thereafter he formed The Adam Woodall Band, and they have been performing together ever since. They recently released Silver Ring, a brand new independent CD. The new record sees the band moving forward musically, while still honoring their rock, folk, and pop roots. For more information please visit www.adamwoodallband.com

Andrea Menard is a powerhouse performer who crosses cultural and language boundaries by speaking from her heart. This multi-talented, Métis songstress and actress dazzles audiences on screen and stage, singing alone or accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra. Her voice, which is lyrical, raw, and reminiscent of the jazz and blues singers of the 1940s, captures the depth, humor, and wisdom of her ancestors.  

Menard’s third album. Sparkle, a warm-hearted original holiday album, is featured in a 70-minute, television holiday special, called “Sparkle: An Evening with Andrea Menard”. The show is broadcast on APTN during the holiday season and garnered a Gemini nomination for Andrea’s outstanding performance.  Menard’s second album, Simple Steps, describes her experiences and reflections of her place in the world as a proud Métis woman. This more roots-y album, won multiple awards at the Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards, including “Female Artist of the Year”. The Velvet Devil, Menard's debut CD features original jazz songs from her hit one-woman musical stage play, “The Velvet Devil” and was made into an award-winning television movie for CBC. Menard was nominated “Best Performance in a Performing Arts Program” at the Gemini Awards. For more information please visit www.andreamenard.com

Andre Chrys is a Vancouver singer-songwriter who delivers roots rock songs that blend eclectic influences from rock, classic pop, Americana, blues, and soul. Andre Chrys began his music career in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He paid his dues in hardworking bands that toured across Canada, playing clubs and festivals. Life, love, and reality took him down a dozen different roads since then, finally drawing him to the west coast. For more information please visit www.andrechrys.com

Angie Inglis has played many Vancouver venues including The Railway Club, The Marine Club, The Sugar Refinery, The Silvertone Tavern, The Main, and Cafe Deux Soleils (to name a few), but she is most grateful for the enthusiastic response she receives as Vancouver's Skytrain Songstress. Playing in Vancouver Skytrain stations and city streets (her original music only) has proved the most rewarding aspect of her musical career. Angie's music has been featured on UBC's 101.9 FM CITR and she has performed live and charted on Co-op Radio 102.7 FM CFRO. For more information please visit www.angiinglis.com

Three vivacious life-experienced female singer/songwriters joined by one skookum male guitarist, make up AUGUST. Their three voices blend in the most pristine harmonies and their songs reflect true life experiences through a combination of pop, roots, and jazz styles. Song topics could include self-loathing, woes of stolen cars, joys of Facebook reunions, unrequited love, credit card challenges, and inspirational songs that are not gooey; all threaded with personal anecdotes and confessions. Intimate, funny, insightful, energetic and uplifting, AUGUST will involve the audience with their warm delightful approach. For more information about August, please visit www.augustmusic.net 

Blake Havardthe Vancouver singer/songwriter listens to everything but holds a special place for those three-minute wonders that transport you to a different place. As a youngster growing up in a bedroom community near Edmonton, Havard listened to the Beatles, David Bowie, and the Rolling Stones. Havard has just completed recording some new songs new which are very organic sounding and have a lot of soul. When Havard speaks of his consuming passion for rock ‘n’ roll, he uncoils a bundle of raw energy that is matched only when he is onstage fronting his own band and playing the music he loves. For more information please visit www.myspace.com/balkehavardmusic

Bob Stark's music has been described as 'Folk Pop'. His whole musical education and evolution has straddled and moved between the world of 'the folkies' and 'the rock'n'rollies'....add a little blues, a little country, a little soft jazz, and....well...to turn a phrase: it is what it ain't. For more information please visit www.bobybulgemusic.com

Cassandra Van Dyck was born and raised in North Vancouver, BC. She plays folk music, weaving soft acoustic sounds with stories about growing up in the Pacific Northwest. Cassandra started out playing open mic nights in high school and has since gone on to play many solo shows throughout the lower mainland. Over the past four years, Cassandra has collaborated on songs and performances with singer/songwriter Stephen Spender. She is hoping to release an EP within the next year. For more information please email Cassandra at cassandravandyck@gmail.com 

Cascadia Bell Choir - The bell choir is one of the highlights of Cascadia's arts program. The sweet sounds of the bells ring through the house as participants work to create ensemble pieces for festivals and concerts. Formed in 2001, the bell choir works under the direction of Lorna Fortin. Highlights of their work have been a Camphill benefit concert in San Francisco (2005) and the Animal Tales concert with the North Shore Sinfonia Orchestra (2010), as well as accompanying Cascadia's annual fairy tale performance. The fairy tale productions are performed in the movement art of eurythmy, in collaboration with the students and teachers of the Vancouver Waldorf School, and include as many as 70 participants, some of whom also perform in the bell ensemble. For more information visit www.cascadiasociety.org

Chris Ronald has been performing at intimate venues in and around Vancouver for several years and has been working at his craft for over two decades. Since Chris started songwriting at age 15, he has amassed a collection of very melodic, meaningful, and memorable folk songs. Influenced by artists such as Neil Young, Paul Simon, and James Taylor, Chris has learned how to compose songs with broad appeal while tackling issues such as the environment, social responsibility, family, and relationships. For more information about Chris please visit www.chrisronald.com

Coco Love Alcorn is a multifaceted gem reflecting back on the world as she experiences it. The Vancouver Province calls her voice - extraordinary. The Star Phoenix calls it stunning. As a songwriter and vocalist, she effortlessly embraces her diverse musical influences-jazz, pop, r&b, and folk - melding them seamlessly into her own distinctive and compelling sound. Her expansive stylistic, dynamic, and emotional range, along with her vocal prowess, have made her a sought-after performer, respected by her peers and cherished by her fans. More than anything however, it’s her love of improvising and her willingness to engage fearlessly with the audience that have made Coco Love Alcorn a singular and powerful force on the Canadian music scene for over a decade. For more information please visit www.cocolovealcorn.com

David Sinclair has toured extensively in North America, Europe, and Japan as a member of both Sarah McLachlan's and k.d. lang’s bands. As a studio guitarist, he has worked with artists including Sarah McLachlan, Amy Sky, Michael Buble, Daniel Powter, Gary Fjellgaard, Rita MacNeil, Valdy, Susan Jacks, Terry Jacks, BTO, and was guitarist and vocalist with CBS recording bands Straight Lines and Body Electric, composing several Canadian hits. His Acoustic Christmas CD was among the “top 5 all-time Christmas recordings” on the Vancouver Province 2008 list. For more information please visit www.davidsinclair.com

Deanna Knight - Deeply rooted in the Vancouver gypsy - jazz scene for over 20 yrs as the sultry and dynamic chanteuse of The Hot Club of Mars, Knight’s musical partnership with world-renowned luthier and guitarist Michael Dunn stretches well beyond swing. An interesting journey including singing telegrams, musical theatre, and choral tours to psychedelic rock, sacred ceremonies, and poetry events. Deanna has recently been drawn back to her “soul song” with a return to songwriting and performing her life-affirming, earth-loving, musical art which highlights a healthy dose of both folk and jazz. 2017 saw a move to BC's Sunshine Coast to host a busy B&B where she quickly established herself as an Arts and Cultural leader. Deanna and her family now host some of Canada's finest local and touring artists in the comfort of their beautiful garden stage. With her passion for melody and lyric, she has the rare ability to dive deep into your heart and mind …not only leaving you with chills but also thoughts of love, blessings, hope, and healing. For more information please visit -www.deannaknight.ca

In 1988 Deborah Holland was literally (yes, correct usage of that word) plucked from obscurity to be the lead singer and songwriter for a new band Stewart Copeland (drummer god of The Police) and Stanley Clarke (jazz bass god) were forming. Two weeks after auditioning for the band in a pink thrift-store dress and cowboy boots (Deborah was on her way to a gig with a duo called Twang with Richard Goldman) she found herself singing to a whole lot of people in Brazil (the numbers seem to get bigger each other but suffice it to say it was an exponentially larger crowd than the late set at Madame Wong’s on a Wednesday night), The band, Animal Logic, recorded 2 “critically-acclaimed” (whatever that means, usually that it good some good reviews but didn’t sell that well) ) albums, ANIMAL LOGIC (3 dalmatians on the cover, often referred to as Animal Logic 1) and ANIMAL LOGIC (3 polar bears on the cover, often referred to as Animal Logic 2). Highlights of her stint with AL were performances on the David Letterman show the night the Berlin Wall came down (aired around 3 am so hardly anyone saw it) and The Tonight Show with Johnny! The highlight of that highlight was Johnny tapped his pencil while the band played. The Tonight Show was also delayed because it was the night Magic Johnson announced he had AIDS. Go figure.

In 2007 Deborah got sick of flying 3000 miles, renting a car, driving to gigs, back to the hotel, etc. by herself so she and Cindy Bullens and Wendy Waldman formed a “folk super-group” (yup that’s what it was called) The Refugees recorded 2 amazing albums, UNBOUND and THREE which truly were critically-acclaimed in the folk world. The 3 of them would fly 3000 miles, rent a car, drive to the gig, back to the hotel etc., but with a lot more gear. Deborah began playing bass and accordion in the band and can now add bass playing and accordion playing to her list of accomplishments. The Refugees turned out to be Deborah’s lifeboat to sanity, laughter, wonderful harmonies, co-writing, and piss-in-your-pants stage “bits.” The Refugees are currently on touring hiatus but will be recording soon and if anyone offers them enough money they will get on a plane, fly 3000 miles, etc. For more information visit www.deborahholland.net

Derek Stevens is an upcoming Vancouver singer/songwriter who is passionate and dedicated to honing his craft. Derek engages his audience with strong lyrics and stage presence. For more information about Derek contact drockthamic@yahoo.ca 

Canada’s own Don Alder is one of the best acoustic guitarists in the world, and one of Canada's premiere harp guitarists. His unique style and energetic performances have been called intense, passionate, and awe-inspiring – as is his lifelong friendship with Canada’s Man In Motion Rick Hansen. Don’s unique style of playing incorporates fingerpicking with simultaneous percussion on the soundboard to create a wall of sound…a unique weave of deeply textured melody and story. Lyrical and compelling, his original songs are notes of style of playing incorporates fingerpicking with simultaneous percussion on the soundboard to create a wall of sound…a unique weave of deeply textured melody and story. Lyrical and compelling, his original songs are notes of exploration – some passionate and haunting, some hard-driven, others light and teasing. In 2007 Don became the first Canadian to win the 2007 International Fingerstyle Championships. For more information please visit www.donalder.com

Hailing from North Vancouver, Doug Martin “The Cheese Man” is new to the singer, songwriter scene.  As a long-time "Just Singing Round Showcase" patron, Doug was inspired by its multi-talented performers, to not only learn guitar but sing and write his own songs!  Having a country/bluesy/rock edge, his topics portray both, life experience and insightful observations into the human condition. Doug is thrilled to have the opportunity to play his songs in support of JSR and the Synergy Collective Society. For more information please visit -www.dougmartin@shaw.ca

Ella Mae Fortin is a North Vancouver-born and raised singer-songwriter. She has been writing since age 11 composes her songs using ukulele, guitar, or piano. Ella has performed on local stages on the JSR stage in 2020, at the West Vancouver Harmony Arts Festival in 2021, weekly on outdoor stages in the summer of 2022 for Studio in the City 14, and recently as a guest at local live music venues. Two of Ella's songs have been included in two award-winning BC short films, one of which Ella jointly won a Leo Award for best music score in a short film. Ella's wish is to get into a studio soon to record her first album. She is inspired and influenced by the work of Joni Mitchell, Madison Cunningham and Bon Ever. For more information please visit - www.facebook.com/public/Ella-Fortin

FIONN is comprised of identical twin sisters Alanna and Brianne Finn-Morris from White Rock BC. This dynamic duo began performing professionally at the age of 13 and now averages 100 performances a year. They have entered and won several talent competitions and most recently received Honorable Mention in the prestigious Unsigned Only International Music Competition out of Nashville. There have been countless interviews and live performances on CBC radio and their recent Cannery Concert in Steveston BC was aired several times throughout the summer on Shaw TV. For more information please visit www.fionnband.com

Geoff Gibbons music has been described by reviewers as “Intimate and poetic, well-crafted songs” and “Acoustic driven soulful music with a slightly world-weary edge”. Vancouver-born, and (mostly) raised, Geoff has been in the Vancouver music scene for some time, beginning with his days as half of the acoustic duo Silverlode. The group was a West Coast Music Award winner and opened shows for Emmy-Lou Harris, David Crosby, Levon Helm and Rick Danko, and Kate and Anna McGarrigle among others. With numerous projects and performances to his credit, as a singer, songwriter, performer, and producer, Geoff has released four solo albums and has penned songs heard on Canadian radio as well as videos that received extensive airplay on CMT and Much More Music.

His songs and songwriting have also been put to good use in Film/TV (Higher Ground, Just Cause, Robson Arms) as well as working on off beat projects like the critically acclaimed animation The Mr. Dink Show (winner of the jury prize for best animation at the New York International Film Festival) Of late Geoff wrote and produced the songs and score for the Lions Gate Film “Dark Moon Rising”, and he is currently in pre-production for upcoming films Lido and Simple Justice.  He also has two new solo recording projects in the works. For more information please visit www.geoffgibbons.com

Goodbye 2 Rosie aka Neil Thompson and Stacey Collins.  Stacey has dabbled as the lead singer in several bands over the years and Neil has performed with many musicians as a part of many projects.  Currently, he is playing mandolin and bouzouki with Mark James Fortin and "Clives Timing" as well as with "The Jeff Stanfield Band". Neil Thompson and Stacey Collins met 12 years ago while performing at the Cottage Bistro and they’ve been making music together ever since.  With the exception of a few gigs around Vancouver and on Vancouver Island, Goodbye 2 Rosie feels most at home, well - in their own home!  However, the time has come for them to venture out into the world to share their folky, alt-country roots and rhythms with a wider audience. For more information about Goodbye 2 Rosie contact neiltunes@shaw.ca

Hilary Grist is Vancouver’s art-pop, torch-folk songstress, who embraces the rich details of the heart and paints sparkling vignettes with her poignant musical and visual creations, which have captured imaginations across the globe. Since the release of her most recent album, Imaginings, produced by Mike Southworth, Hilary has been charming audiences around the world. Highlights including Tokyo’s renowned Cotton Club in Japan, Busan International Rock Festival and Ulsan World Music Festival in Korea, Edge of the World Festival in Haida Gwaii, Salmon Arm Roots & Blues Festival, Pop Okanagan and CBC Radio 2′s Canada Live. Many of Hilary's soaring, cinematic songs have been featured on international TV shows like Degrassi (MuchMusic), Grimm (NBC), Being Human (NBC/Syfy), Continuum (Showcase), Arctic Air (CBC), Endgame (CTV) and Go To Gal (CHEK TV). Hilary was awarded 4th place in the highly competitive 2011 exploration – some passionate and haunting, some hard-driven, others light and teasing. For more information please visit www.hilarygrist.com

Jeff Standfield grew up on the West Coast and is a regular on the Vancouver music scene, performing a lively blend of music and stories.  Jeff has performed on TV, radio, at folk festivals and has hosted an open stage, showcasing new artists.  He has entertained audiences at many of the top local venues including the Chan Centre, and the Yale blues tavern. For more information please contact jdstandfield@gmail.com

From sharing a stage with Jackson Browne to playing to small, but appreciative coffee house audiences, John Pippus has lived a life filled with music and well-earned stories. SoundProof Magazine has declared him, "…a folk/roots gem"; The Vancouver Province says he's: "…a refined tunesmith with serious pop hooks". Earshot Magazine's Shelley Gummeson says:"He has a gift for making us believe that he's been down road and around the block, and is still kickin' it."  For more information about John please visit www.johnpippus.com

Karen Larson is a talented songwriter that digs deep for her lyrics and turns the personal into the universal, using firsthand incidents as launch pads to an emotional realm familiar to all. She has been performing around Vancouver and Victoria for ten years now with her own penned songs, her guitar and with her talented husband, Pat Covernton on keyboards and harmonies. In that time Karen has been invited to play many songwriter’s shows - Grrrls with Guitars, Afternoon of Music Festivals, Songwriters in the Round - as well as events like the Vancouver Jazz Festival, the Manitoba Stampede, various B.C. Music Festivals, the Vancouver East Cultural Centre. Her debut album 'Fire and Ice' includes some of Vancouver's finest musicians and showcases both her rich, soulful vocals and gift for moving seamlessly between rootsy country-tinged pop and smoldering jazzy blues. For more information please visit www.myspace.com/karenlarsonmusic 

Kate Reid is considered one of Canada's premiere folk and roots performer. Kate ignites a stage and draws everyone into her music through brilliant songwriting and infectious stage presence. Kate's latest release Queer Across Canada is a collection of groundbreaking tracks that traverse a wide landscape of family scenarios, sensitively addressed through a rootsy rock'n'roll verve that speaks to such contemporary realities as surrogate moms, donor dada, same-sex parents, out-of-the-closet fathers, blended families, and queer-curious siblings. For more information please visit www.katereid.com 

Konrad (with a K) is a multi-skilled musician who is based in so-called North Vancouver. Having a background in choirs and musical theatre he has recently turned his focus to songwriting. When not working to pay the bills...he is working towards writing and recording his very first album. You can find him on Instagram: @konradwithak.ca 

Kristine Loa is a nerdy, wordy, folk-loving singer-songwriter. Featuring rich Brit-lilt vocals and long, lyrical walks in a poetry park. Adores Paul Simon, Tracy Chapman, Joni Mitchell, and a well-stepped cup of tea. She has just released her newest series and artistic challenge called "First Take Songs", with a new video to watch every Friday on YouTube and Facebook. For more information please visit www.KristinaLao.com

Linda Kidder has been wowing live audiences for 40 years. Linda’s passion for her work is evident in all her endeavors and performances. As one of Vancouver’s most sought-after session singers, Linda’s recording credits include a wide range, from kd lang, Bon Jovi, Harry Manx, and Raffi, to Rita MacNeil, and Gary Fjellgaard and hundreds of jingles praising everything from Barbie to Safeway.  Linda has three CD’s of her own material, including Mum and Me featuring her professional musician Mom, on a grand piano. Her song, You and Me is featured in the Hallmark movie, I do I do I do  She has toured throughout Canada, the U.S. and Europe with KD lang’s Ingenue Tour, and with Gary Fjellgaard. As well, Linda has been nominated and won eight awards from the BCCMA, the CMA, and Junos for vocalist and bass player of the year. Recent theatre productions include, I think I’m Fallin’, songs of Joni Mitchell, Belfry Theatre, 2016 and Bittergirl, Arts Club, 2017, Spring 2019, Linda will be a presenter at Word on the Lake Writers’ Festival. For more information about Linda please visit www.lindakidder.com

Lindsay May was selected as one of the Shore 104 FM's, 2010 Sounds of Summer Songsearch Top 10 Finalists. Thank you to everyone who voted and for your support!  And, she was selected as a regional finalist in the NewSong songwriting competition! First there is her voice; with its ability to carry all the hurt and hope in the world home to a safe place in her ever-hungry heart. Second; A prolific writer; she pens songs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; inviting the muse on every possible occasion. Third; She plays guitar and mandolin with flair, and is at home performing solo or with a host of talented sidemen. Now; 2011 finds Lindsay May crafting a collection of soulful songs that represent a rebirth of her creative self. The paint is still wet on this self-portrait, so please stay tuned for an eventful new year for this talented west coast songbird. For more information please visit www.lindsaymay.com 

Lorne Warr - Lorne Warr was born and bred in Lewisporte, Newfoundland, and currently resides on Bowen Island, BC -- from one Rock to another. His intricate guitar playing and velvet baritone vocals-- coupled with his songwriting and gift of telling stories that travel from one side of Canada to the other, is what modern folk is all about. A multi-talented veteran performer he is the frontman for The Streels and performs as a solo singer-songwriter at festivals, community concert series, and a venue near you. Lorne is always known to bring his Newfoundland charm and the East Coast tradition of kicking yer heels up and having a grand time! For more information please visit www.lornewarr.com

Canada’s ‘voice like chocolate’, Melanie Dekker, grew up in Deep Cove, BC, and has spent most of her performing career in Europe. Though locally has she’s been the support act for Bryan Adams, Diana Krall, Russell Peters, & Faith Hill. Let her songs tug on your heart and leave you smiling…She’s spent part of this Covid time recording not just one, but two new albums. While Dekker finds the pace for her songs while she's hiking in the mountains, she says she continues to be inspired by how music connects people's hearts all over the world. For more information please visit  www.melaniedekker.com

Mark Spooner hales from Kingston, Ontario but now makes his home in Vancouver. He plays many instruments, bass guitar being high on the list. Mark has played in many different touring and recording bands for 35 years, both original and cover-based music. Genres include country, rock, pop, jazz, reggae, folk, and alternative.

Nathen Aswell is a gifted speaker, recording artist, coach, and podcaster based in Vancouver, BC, Canada, and he believes that his calling in this life is to encourage through his talks and his heart-centered music-making. His CDs “Little By Little” and “YES” are celebrations of life, transformation, evolution, and the oneness of humanity, delivered in a variety of popular music styles.

“… an exceptionally produced collection of songs that support a conscious life…” Rosemarie Ashley, Positive Music Association

“… The songs are all catchy and upbeat, without being preachy. And, the songs all give us a glimpse into the wonderful energy and presence of Nathen.” Sue K Riley, emPower Music and Arts

“… these songs do a mind, body, and spirit good.” Jennifer Washington, Acoustic Fuel Co-Op

Nathen honors his calling by speaking and performing internationally at Conferences, Concerts, Men’s Retreats, and Churches, presenting his music, stories, and humor with his voice and the NS Stick (an 8-stringed electronic instrument that can be plucked like a bass, strummed like a guitar, or tapped with both hands like a piano). For more information please visit www.nathenaswell.com

Madelyn Read - Though she may have spent her whole life in the city of Vancouver BC, Madelyn's heart is in the rural tales of Folk and Americana music. This duality of urban and country is ever present in her music, as she pulls inspiration from Folk/Americana groups like I'm with Her, Joni Mitchell, and First Aid Kit and blends these sounds with lyrics about growing up in an urban center. Her forthcoming album, Concrete Country (out May 2023), does just this, bringing together 10 songs that speak to the urban lover of folk. For more information, please visit hello@madelynread.com

Marq DeSouza is a Vancouver-based indie rock/acoustic musician. Currently recording new material, teasers of which this year alone have placed him on Alan Cross' Explore Music Track of the Day, as well as the Georgia Straight Playlist, & the Hevy D download series in newspapers across the country. In his various incarnations, Marq has shared bills with such artists as Sir Bob Geldof, Sarah Harmer, Drive By Truckers, Ben Kweller, Martina Sorbara, Joel Plaskett, Matthew Good, & Nickelback. Sir Bob Geldof sought Marq out backstage at their co-bill at the legendary Commodore Ballroom to tell him he was reminded of a 'young Van Morrison', and Canadian rock icon Todd Kerns has called Marq his favorite Canadian songwriter, & 'Canada's Bob Dylan.' For more information please visit www.marqdesouza.com

Masonette features Shaina Rose Ireland and Dasha Duqette This Vancouver duo began in the world of classical training. Shaina has a degree in Opera from the Vancouver Academy of Music, which has provided a strong foundation for her vocal abilities, as well as writing style. Dasha has her ARCT in piano from the Royal Conservatory of Music and holds her Diploma in Performing Arts from Douglas College. Their juxtaposition of writing styles makes Masonette’s sound truly unique, palatable, and interesting. For more information please visit shaina_ireland@hotmail.com 

Canada’s ‘voice like chocolate’, Melanie Dekker, grew up in Deep Cove, BC, and has spent most of her performing career in Europe. Though locally she’s been the support act for Bryan Adams, Diana Krall, Russell Peters, & Faith Hill. Let her songs tug on your heart and leave you smiling…She’s spent part of this Covid time recording not just one, but two new albums. While Dekker finds the pace for her songs while she's hiking in the mountains, she says she continues to be inspired by how music connects people's hearts all over the world. For more information please visit  www.melaniedekker.com

Meg Tennant's love of song was awakened early. Her childhood home in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, was filled with music, and after the obligatory piano lesson foundation, she acquired her first guitar at age sixteen. The songwriting began in earnest then, and within two years she was frequenting the open mic stages in Toronto while living in a homemade houseboat on the Island. 

A subsequent move to B.C. opened a new chapter in her life, which included raising two daughters.  She continued to perform part-time at festivals and showcases and provided backing vocals for other singers’ projects. She played in the duo Lingo Sisters, opened at the Rogue Folk Club in Vancouver for well-known songwriters like Eliza Gilkyson and Tom Russell, and eventually toured BC in the band, AUGUST.  In 2001 she released “Driving With You”, her first album of originals, and in 2007, followed up with the collaborative collection, “The Sweetest Day”, with AUGUST. 

Returning to Toronto in 2010, Meg’s sweet vocals and soulful lyrics continued to charm audiences at venues like Acoustic Harvest, Winterfolk, Musideum, and the Nashville Bound songwriter showcase. Her long-awaited second solo CD, “Echoed Light”, which Meg co-produced with Toronto roots-rock songwriter Mark Ripp, was released in the Spring of 2019.  "Echoed Light" was included in Roots Music Canada's list of eleven favorite new discoveries of 2019.

After 10 years in Toronto, Meg has moved back across the country to the west-coast and is currently writing songs for her next album. For more information please visit www.megtennantmusic.com

Norman Foote, born Norman Mervyn Barrington-Foote claims his name forced him to develop a sense of humor at an early age. At age 11, Norman's parents gave him his first guitar, a finely crafted instrument from the Sears Catalogue. This set the stage for a lifelong dream. With idols including The Beatles, Hank Williams, and Elvis, it wasn't long before Norman switched to electric guitar and performed with garage bands during his high school years. Now a JUNO award winner, Norman has had the undeniable pleasure of performing with symphonies, festivals, and in concert halls throughout North America including the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Nashville Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, London Symphony, Montreal Comedy Festival "Just For Laughs", Galway Festival- Ireland, and literally countless others. For more information please visit www.normanfoote.com 

Peter G-G is a local actor and musician. He has performed in lead & supporting roles in film, TV, and theatre for over 35 years, and is currently filming a lead role in the film/play In Camera/No Exit for Realwheels Theatre. Music was Peter's first love and he is so happy to making more and more of it as time rolls on: he has released two original CDs, w/ a third in the works, and has songs in five films. He enjoys playing around Vancouver in the band ze Lollygaggers, and performing w/ his wife and kids at festivals as The SuperFun Stiltwalking Family. For more information about Peter visit www.peterg-g.com

Rae Armour began her music career quite unexpectedly during a strike at the Edmonton high school where she was teaching.  With no classes or students to teach, she accepted the invitation to audition for a local popular rock band whose leader also taught at the school.  She got the job, and so began the bar, cabaret, school graduation, wedding, Bar Mitzvah, "you-name-it-we'll-play-it", "dance band for all occasions" party scene.

Three bands and ten years later, and with her ears still ringing, Rae took a year off to travel and regroup.  Upon her return to Canada, she quit her teaching job and re-entered the music scene full-time as a single act, touring Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.  After much introspection and an inner dread of ever having to play "Feelings" again, Rae moved to Vancouver and began songwriting.   She followed through with the delivery of an independent contemporary pop release entitled "On Track", which garnered her double winner status of the Pacific Songwriters Association "Write-On" Awards in the following year.

Rae has shared venues with the famous and not-so-famous, from Jane Siberry, Keifer Sutherland, Shari Ulrich, and Long John Baldry, to the "Circle of Friends" and "The Countrymen."  She has performed internationally in Montreal, Orlando, Washington DC, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Sydney, and Paris. For more information please visit oceanpacific@raearmourmusic.com

Vancouver's Reid Jamieson and CVM are a vocal powerhouse making music that matters and moves us. With an incredible voice, spirited guitar playing, and a magical way with melodies, Reid is that rare songbird whose originals are every bit as compelling as his interpretations. In years past, Reid was a regular on CBC’s Vinyl Café, has recorded with Cowboy Junkies, and performed with Mary Margaret O’Hara, members of Blue RodeoBe Good Tanyas and more. A classic introvert/extrovert combo, Reid shines alongside his saucy wife and long-time songwriting partner Carolyn Victoria Mill, where their unique harmonies and swapping of lead vocals make for an eclectic, entertaining, and sometimes heartbreaking variety show. Together they won the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and wrote their way into the Vancouver Folk Festival by winning 1st place in their Pickin’ a Folk Star contest. Their latest original album ‘Me Daza’ was recorded in Ireland with producer Kieran Kennedy (Maria Doyle Kennedy) which features the posthumous vocals of Fergus O’Farrell (Interference, Once). There is nothing traditional about the record – or this dynamic duo. Tireless promoters of voting, equality, and love, they thrive on creating intimacy, causing tears and laughter in equal measures. 2023 saw them launch an all original folk opera about Pigeons(!) and the causes of housing insecurity, premiering it at the Vancouver Fringe Fest where they took home the prestigious Social Impact Award. Following up on tributes to Leonard CohenJohn Lennon50/60s era gold, and what could be mistaken for a simple holiday record, they are currently getting ready to release the first-ever tribute to Buffy Sainte-Marie. You won’t want to miss what they do next…

Rodney DeCroo - Burnt out by seven straight years of touring and recording five albums, Rodney DeCroo walked away from his band and his label after the release of 2010’sQueen Mary Trash. The double album he left behind—urgent, brash, ragged, full of spleen—now looks like a roadmap pointing to the emotional reckoning that lay ahead.  Five years later the contrast is staggering. For his return to the studio as a singer-songwriter, DeCroo has produced something as beautiful on the surface as a dusk-painted reflecting pool, as shadowy below as his own tumultuous psyche. The gap between his inner and outer life has always been slender, but Campfires on the Moon—his debut on the new label Tonic Records - gives us DeCroo at his most intimate.

Between then and now, DeCroo devoted the years to therapy and healing as he stepped up a lifelong battle with PTSD. He also threw himself into a more immediately personal trinity of projects, yielding a spoken word album (Allegheny), book of poetry (Allegheny, BC), and a touring stage play (Stupid Boy in an Ugly Town) that expanded both his critical and popular appeal. Suitably refreshed, DeCroo was ready to follow Queen Mary Trash. With former Convictions bandmate and stage collaborator Mark Haney on double bass, and long-time friend Ida Nilsen contributing piano and vocals—DeCroo had been quietly amassing material with Nilsen in mind—DeCroo returned to Brian Barr’s Vancouver studio and produced a record that outstrips even 2008’sMockingbird Bible for its ferocious vulnerability.

The arrangements are fragile—three acoustic instruments and two voices; one glue, one honey—and so is the mood. A low, sonorous note brings Haney into the picture on perhaps the most upbeat of Campfire’s songs, the lovely, painfully honest “Stupid Boy in an Ugly Town”. If it’s one of the more openly autobiographical moments on the album, DeCroo is less explicit elsewhere. 

“Tear All Lovers Down” captivates with a strident (maybe even poppy!) piano hook, but “White Circles” draws us in with its subtler qualities, its words coming on like a transmission from the darkest hour of the wolf. The language onCampfires on the Moon is frequently cryptic, but meaning surfaces nonetheless. DeCroo is wrestling with regret, loss, aging, love, memory, death, art—always with his own ongoing recovery embedded in the background. Gradually the album takes on an emotional force all its own, through its combination of quivering intimacy and DeCroo’s greatest natural resource—his poetry. As its 10 songs draw to a close, Haney throws a little discordant shade into “Ashes after Fire”, foreshadowing the envy that grips DeCroo as he visits some old friends at the Railway Club. “They’re doing well,” he sighs, “their wellness never ends.” But there’s a deep irony at work. Breaking from a past in disarray, Campfires on the Moon strongly suggests that its author’s own wellness has well and truly begun. Campfires on the Moon is being released on Tonic Records April 28, 2015. For more information please visit www.rodneydecroo.com

Route9 is an acoustic trio based in Vancouver, Canada. Formed in 2017, our music features fiddle (Joellen), guitar (Jeff), and upright bass (Randy). A fresh perspective on country, folk, swing, and pop classics, our music is interspersed with quirky originals for good measure. All items infused with sweet three-part harmonies. Route9: more than the sum of three parts human. For more information please visit www.route9.ca

As a songwriter, Ross Douglas does not easily fit into one category. He fits into several. Caribou Eclectic - his last album, is an acclaimed and varied collection of songs, several of which have delighted JSR audiences in the past. His new album - The Art of You and I - continues this tradition, with a wide assortment of humorous, touching, and unique tunes about love, longing, murder, possession, and an unexpected meeting with The Almighty. Yikes! For more information about Ross please visit www.rossdouglas.com

Ross Fairbairn - I've grown into a full-blown acoustic singer-songwriter playing anything from Mississippi hill country blues to moving ballads about getting parking tickets and up-tempo diamond thief anthems. There's something for everyone. It's Foot Stomping Goodness. I don't think I really live the lifestyle of a blues man but hell, I grew up on a delta... it just wasn't "the" delta but I think it should still count for something. My style of playing is definitely in the Hill Country blues genre. For more information please visit www.myspace.com/rossfairbairn

Rio Samaya – Formerly Pancho and Sal have been together many years and are now touring the world with their new signature Rio Samaya. They bring original music of songs and poetry in a magical combination of Latin, Reggae, and Rhumba.  They are a musical caravan full of treasures and surprises. For more information please visit panchoandsal@gmail.com

Sandra Bouza is a Vancouver-based musician originally from Toronto, Ontario. Her widely varied musical influences are evident in the music that she writes and especially in her improvisational performances, in which her powerful vocal and creative abilities become truly apparent. Performing as a solo acoustic artist for many years, winning the first round of 2009 Guelph singer-songwriter competition, she has also been involved in collaborations in blues, rock, jazz, folk, hip hop, soul, and funk. For more information please visit www.myspace.com/sandrabouza

Sarah Wheeler is a queer artist and recent cancer survivor who is defined by powerhouse vocals and an indomitable positive spirit -  A blazing live performer. Wheeler’s musical heritage was handed down to her through her grandfather’s pioneering efforts as a jazz pianist in local Vancouver clubs during the 50’s and 60’s. In that period he backed jazz greats including Nat King Cole and Sammy Davis Jr.  This Vancouver-based artist is an old-fashioned believer in remembering the true power of music and has remained focused on writing and performing her own music with unforced honesty and message of positivity. For more information please visit www.sarahwheeler.com

Alberta troubadour Scott Cook toured almost incessantly across Canada, the US, Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and elsewhere from 2007 until 2020, when the pandemic made living in a van less appealing. While averaging 150 shows and a dozen summer festivals every year, he also managed to release seven albums of plainspoken, keenly observant verse along the way. His latest collection Tangle of Souls comes packaged in a cloth-bound, 240-page hardcover book of road stories and ruminations, equal parts introspection and insurrection. The album spent two weeks at #1 on Alberta's province-wide community radio network CKUA, and earned Scott his third Canadian Folk Music Award nomination, for English Songwriter of the Year. Its second single "Say Can You See" was the second most-played song of 2020 on Folk Alliance International's folk radio charts, and took top honors for the folk category in both the 2020 UK Songwriting Competition and the 2020 Great American Song Contest. In 2022 he's touring the album far and wide around North America, believing more than ever that songs can change your life, and your life can change the world. For more information please visit www.scottcook.net

A 2002 inductee into the BC Entertainment Hal of Fame, Juno award winner Shari Ulrich’s, finesse on violin, mandolin, flute, piano, sax and dulcimer was first heard in the early 70s with the Pied Pumkin. After 2 years with the "Hometown Band," Shari went on to record six solo albums of original songs as well as two with UHF (Ulrich/Henderson/Forbes) and two with the re-emergence of the Pied Pumkin. She continues to tour and record with the latter two groups, as well as with daughter Julia Graff and saxophonist Bill Runge. She also composes, produces and engineers music for television and documentaries teaches songwriting, and produces the popular Bluebird North series for the Songwriters Association of Canada. For more information please visit www.shariulrich.com 

Shelby Noble has been captivating audiences in the Canadian music scene for the past 11 years. Now at 19, her passion for singing, songwriting, and guitar has turned her into a talented triple-threat. Not only has Shelby performed at "The Merritt Mountain Music Festival” for 5 years running, she's also received "Peoples Choice" at “The Beat Music Awards”, and has been the anthem singer for the "B.C. Lions Football" and "Vancouver Canadians Baseball" teams. If you haven't heard her before, get ready for a powerful young lady with just a hint of country and a strong touch of soul. For more information about Shelby visit www.shelbynoble.com

Sugarbeach - Marlee Whalchuk and Tully Callender -  This Aussie/Canadian Duo are energetic, powerful, moving, and married to each other. Mixing sweet and soulful vocals with meaningful lyrics and driving tracks, these women have established a unique and recognizable sound that is altogether refreshing and utterly satisfying. For more information please visit www.sugarbeachmusic.com 

Steve Slade is a long-time Yukoner who has been working in the (mostly) rural community schools for almost 3 decades. He pioneered the ‘songwriting in the classroom’ here in the Yukon and the NWT’s Mackenzie Delta. Songs that he has written with students have won awards, prizes, and resulted in two CDs with involvement from 5 Yukon schools.

He has worked in schools coast to coast to coast. A song he wrote with a Grade 1 class in Langley BC was read into the national record of Parliament (Hansard) in Ottawa (2008). But, more importantly, the songs have impacted the students involved and he regularly gets young students (now young adults) coming up to him in the grocery stores, gas stations, and venues to greet him and sing a few lyrics together.

For the last decade, he has been traveling to schools with 20 ukuleles, various guitars, basses, bangers, shakers, and sundry musical instruments. Steve and the class will write a song together, and then he will teach the instruments and arrange the class and songs for a performance at their Christmas or end-of-school-year concert. The students accompany themselves in concert. It’s a blast! For more information please visit www.steveslade.com

"The Land of Deborah is an independent artist with a unique take on life, love, and the pursuit of fair trade chocolate. Her songs are a cornucopia of feel-good, infectious songs that are personal, eclectic, and downright fun. If you like Sarah McLachlan, Aimme Mann or Sara Bareilles, you will love visiting The Land!" For more information please visit www.thelandofdeborah.com

Vicky Sjohall is a songwriter and vocalist, and her latest album, Simple Pleasures is now available on iTunes.  The songs are stories of life, love, and insecurities faced in the world today, full of soaring vocals and beautiful, intricate melodies. The album is self-produced, and the track Never Alone was named in the finalists at the International Acoustic Music Awards in 2009, stating: “This is an artist to watch out for.” Vicky has toured Nashville and Scandinavia and has joined Melanie Dekker and Russell Peters onstage in Waikiki to perform for the HMCS Canadian Navy. In Vancouver, Vicky performs Fridays at Cardero’s and Wednesdays at the Cellar with the high energy 80’s tribute band, Duranarama.  Vicky continues to collaborate, record, and perform, and she is currently recording her next album. For more information, please visit www.vickysjohall.com

Willy Blizzard is a touring band from Vancouver, the acoustic trio plays original music in the folk/roots genre featuring beautiful vocal harmonies, guitars, banjo and stand-up bass. Their original music is included on the album “Celebrating the Best in BC Music”. For more information about Chris please visit www.willyblizzard.com