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Posted: October 18, 2017

Juno-nominated jazz singer returns to Studio 64

By Mike Redfern

Melody Diachun, Montreal born, JUNO-nominated jazz vocalist, will return to the stage at Studio 64 in Kimberley on October 28 for the second in this fall’s Live at Studio 64 jazz-blues concert series.

Melody Diachun

She won’t be coming alone. For this performance she will be backed by her husband Doug Stephenson on guitar, Mark Spileman on bass, Steve Parish on drums, and Clinton Swanson on saxophone. Studio 64 audiences have enjoyed the musicianship of Stephenson and Spileman before. Both accompanied Melody when she last performed to a sellout crowd at Studio 64 in 2014 and Doug Stephenson has appeared here with several other vocalists.

Diachun has now got five CDs behind her, from the beautiful ‘Lullaby of the Leaves’ in 2002 to ‘When Beauty Reigns’ in 2008. Trained at McGill University where she obtained a Bachelor of Music degree ‘with distinction’, she later studied in New York with jazz vocalist Sheila Jordan. She now teaches voice, ensemble and songwriting at Selkirk College in Nelson.

Two other members of the quintet are also on the music faculty at Selkirk College. Mark Spileman teaches bass, ensemble, computer music, harmony, and the history of jazz. Steven Parrish teaches drums, recording techniques, and ensembles. Spileman has played professionally in the USA with the Florida-based jazz group ‘The Circle’, opening for such stars as Hall & Oates, Rod Stewart, and George Benson. He is the arranger for the 10-piece R & B group ‘What It Is’. Parrish, who has a BMus from Berkley, introduced a course in computer applications in music to Canada. He plays e-drums and has played, engineered, and/or arranged for a number of well-known musicians including Ian Hunter and Joe Bouchard and has played jazz with the likes of Anthony Braxton, who describes Parish’s drumming as ‘sensitive, man.’

Clinton Swanson has his own quartet and trio in Nelson and has performed nationally and internationally for 29 years. Doug Stephenson needs little introduction to Kimberley audiences, having backed a number of artists, including Laura Landsberg, with his funky guitar work at Studio 64.

Tickets in advance for the October 28 Live at Studio 64 concert are $22 for Kimberley Arts Council members, $24 for non-members, or $26 at the door. They are available from Centre 64 (250-4217-4919 or [email protected]) or online at eastkootenay.snapd.com.


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