Hailed by the National Post as "a bassist to follow," bassist & composer Ashley Summers has spent her life collecting a plethora of musical experiences that reach well beyond her years. With her musical family as her earliest inspiration, she began to play double bass at the age of fifteen, and shortly after moved to Toronto to pursue a Bachelors Degree in Jazz Performance.
Equally passionate about composition and performance, Ashley's talents have brought her to stages all over the world. In 2003, she represented Canada when she was selected to be a member of the Sisters In Jazz All-Star Quintet, an International Collegiate Competition sponsored by IAJE and BET on Jazz. More recently, she has been busy touring venues throughout the US, from concert halls like the Kennedy Center for the Arts to Cleveland's Bop Stop, supporting such like-minded artists as Bobby Selvaggio and Paul Tynan and their original projects as well as her own.
Aside from keeping a busy performance schedule, Ashley is also an in-demand educator. Since 2007 she has served as director of IAJE Canada's "Jazzmobile", which places professional jazz musicians in Canadian schools to motivate, educate and inspire young musicians. She also frequently serves as an adjudicator, guest artist and clinician at festivals and universities throughout Canada and the US .
Currently, Ashley is busy writing new music in preparation for recording her debut album, and reflecting on the time she recently spent exploring the music scene in Paris, France. Aside from her own projects, she maintains a busy schedule supporting a variety of exciting artists in other genres both live and in the studio.
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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.
I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.
My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."