Guelph, Toronto, Ottawa & Georgian Bay (Ontario), CANADA
What is your affiliation to the Jazz World?
Vocalist, Publicist, Educator, Freelance Writer
Tell us a little about your background...
NEWS ~ JULY 2010: The NEW JAZZ CD: "JAZZLIKE" is HERE!!! Brenda Lewis - vocals; Margaret Stowe - guitar (and production, mixing, engineering of the new CD)
WHAT THEY WRITE ABOUT BRENDA'S SINGING:
"Her rich full-bodied voice is an elastic instrument, especially in songs that speak to the heart. Whether choosing a jazz standard or a song by a contemporary songwriter, Lewis has impeccable taste." (ROBERT REID, ARTS, KITCHENER-WATERLOO RECORD)
"She softly intoned a realm of yesterday's duets with greats that are now on The Big Gig in The Sky and I was inspired." (GRANGE "LADY HAIG" RUTAN", AUTHOR: "DEATH OF A BEBOP WIFE")
A warm welcome to you! Here's a bit of BIO:
For 18 years , BRENDA LEWIS has been singing professionally - 12 of those as a jazz vocalist, performing with some of Toronto's and Canada's finest jazz musicians, including long-time music partners: guitarist MARGARET STOWE www.margaretstowe.com , guitarist and Juno Award-winning producer TONY QUARRINGTON www.tonyquarrington.com and JOHN ZADRO (pianist).
Originally from the Ottawa area, Brenda is what's known as a "natural". Previous to jazz, her background was in the folk/Americana/country blues genres - in acclaimed SW Ontario eclectic duo: "LEWIS & MOLESWORTH", along with R&B/funk/gospel/blues. She is also an adept harmony/backing vocalist and began her career singing in A CAPELLA trios (similar to "Sweet Honey in the Rock"). She still enjoys success performing in these genres - and their influences add diversity to a predominantly jazz standards repertoire.
Soulful, bluesy Etta, Ray Charles or Patsy Cline renditions spice up the setlists in any of her shows, alongside swinging classics, caliente grooves, and, lesser known torch gems - all sung in the spare yet emotive traditions of Ella, Julie London, Marlene Dietrich and Jobim. This versatile mix captivates both the jazz audience and her long-time folk/ R&B fans.
BRENDA'S CDs have received radio airplay on the CBC, the BBC and JAZZ-FM 91.1 TORONTO. In live shows, she performs from duo, trio to full band or orchestra - in concert, for "atmosphere", or, dance band. She has been featured in numerous concert series, jazz festivals, dinner and nightclubs, and corporate/private events across Ontario. Brenda is truly grateful to have maintained the support of a loyal, enduring following at her live concerts, over the years. FACEBOOK Fan Page: www.fbook.me/brendalewisjazzvocalist
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Brenda feels especially honoured to have been asked to sing in tribute concerts for two stellar Canadian artists who have greatly influenced her musically : "FESTIVAL OF FRIENDS" 2009's "MEMORIES OF JACKIE WASHINGTON" www.jackiewashington.com , and, the COLLEEN PETERSON (watch her video!): www.youtube.com/watch?v=gLppjQOkvrk&feature=related MEMORIAL CONCERT (in vocal harmony quartet with Suzie Vinnick, Katherine Wheatley & Rebecca Campbell; alongside “Quartette”) at HUGH'S ROOM, Toronto.
Prior to her first jazz CD, Brenda recorded three folk/roots CDs (with Lewis & Molesworth, and, with NONIE CRETE). As well, she has guested on many other artists' CDs as a harmony/backing vocalist, and been a feature artist on 2 compilation tribute albums (Including the "One Voice" tribute to Norm Hacking, in duo with Tony Quarrington).
BRENDA'S FAVOURITE QUOTE FROM A MUSICIAN
comes from ELLA FITZGERALD: "I steal from the horns!". She hopes that you'll think that she at least borrowed from them :-)
The "Everything “ Page: Her "Entertainment Planning" Co (No, she’s NOT an agent!)", Voice Lessons, Discography, Gig Sched at: www.brendalewis.ca
How did you hear about the Jazz Network? Please give full name of contact
Jaijai Jackson (we've been friends on myspace for ages and I finally got around to joining her network. So glad that I did!!!)
What Instrument do you play?
What is your website address? Only websites that pertain to your business and how you can be contacted.
It's good to have a good friend like you on here as well. There are a lot of pretenders who call themselves singers. You're a real singer with no gimmick, just a really good voice. Far lesser singers get a fair bit of air play on 91.1fm. But, that for discussion over some really thick and syrupy coffee.
Brenda - Thanks for the connection. Would you tell me what is your favorite song for a female vocalist in the Big Band genre? Would you like to sing in our show with some of these bands behind you? - Stephen http://www.BigBandsAlive.com
Hi Brenda, many thanks for kind comment on my vibes playing, its a great tune that really does'nt need much help from me. Be sure to contact Linley before you come, he will always give you airtime. All the best T T
Great to hear and meet you in TJN. Your lovely voice and expressive phrasing are delightful. Hope to hear you sing in Toronto soon. Thanks for your kind compliments and yes, Denis on Hammond B is amazing!
All the best,
Kathleen ( pianist/vocalist )
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."