miss me? check out these jazz and vocal blogs

It’s been four months since I officially went on a blogging hiatus. Even though I haven’t left the internet completely I have dramatically cut down on the number of posts I’m making and I have limited myself to only posting stuff related to my career as a vocalist (ie. new releases, upcoming performance, etc.)

Some of you were very sad to see me take a blogging break so I thought I would check in to share a quick jazz and vocal blog round up. So if you miss seeing my posts in your reader, add these fabulous people:

What are some of your favourite jazz/music/vocal blogs out there? Please let me know so I can add them to my own reader!

 

new soundcloud releases! so many new releases!

I went a little bit bananas this weekend with soundcloud! Over the weekend I was combing through my unreleased demos and live tracks and I found seven songs that I’m so excited to share with you. You can click play on the playlist above and listen to them all. Here are a few details about each tune to read as you’re listening:

1. Watching: This version of watching was recorded in studio at the Banff Centre in May 2012. I wrote Watching just before arriving at Banff so this was my first opportunity to really workshop it. The horn soli was written by Niall Bakkestad-Legare and it still blows me away every time I hear it, especially Rachel Therrien blowing her face off at the end.

2. Drinking Coffee: This song was actually written completely during Jazz and Creative Music Workshop at the Banff Centre. This live version was performed at “the club” at the Banff Centre and it was one of the last club performances of the program. The way the voices and the guitar blend together make me melt, and the energy from Andrew Velez for his eight-bar trumpet is incredible.

3. Little Prince: I recorded this with Chad Linsley last Monday! I wrote a whole post about it.

4. Softly, As In A Morning Sunrise: René Gely and I recorded this for a grant demo. I love René Gely’s layered arrangements.

5. Ain’t Misbehavin’: This was recorded live at the Here We Go Again CD release in December 2012. There’s so much nice stuff from this release that I might release a little digital live album. Thoughts? Would you like to listen to that?

6. September In The Rain: This is another collaboration between myself and René Gely. This was recorded as an entry for the Sarah Vaughan Vocal Competition.

7. Mushaboom / My Little Suede Shoes: Lucas Haneman and I were invited to be “resident jazz musicians” on CBC’s In Town And Out for their Christmas Eve special and this was our final song. That’s me on shaker!

I don’t know why it has taken me so long to share these little scattered bits of music that have been waiting patiently on my hard drive for years, but I’m glad I did. I plan on recording and sharing more soundcloud singles like these so you can follow me on soundcloud or you can periodically check this page I made for them. Of course, I’ll always blog about new releases.

What jazz standards or other songs would you like to hear recorded in the future? Let me know in the comments.

new release: little prince

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Yesterday I had the great pleasure of recording with Chad Linsley, a fabulous pianist who loves vocal jazz as much as I do! We recorded Little Prince with music by Frederick Loewe and Lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner. It’s the final song from the 1974 film adaptation of the book The Little Prince. I discovered this song and many others from the film while browsing through a film and theatre music book the other day. I watched the film for the first time on Sunday and even though I knew the plot from the book I found the addition of the music extremely touching, especially the song Chad and I recorded.

I hope our version of Little Prince moves you in the same way. Enjoy!

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summer special: 20% off voice lessons before june 1st

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Hello singers! If you’re thinking about signing up for voice lessons now that exams are over and the warmer months are here then you are in luck because I am offering 20% off packages of five lessons to new students until June 1st.

Here’s what some of my students have to say about their lessons with me:

Renée Yoxon’s enthusiasm for music shows clearly through her teaching. She takes a lot of care to instill good habits, both in singing and in how I practice, so I can grow as a musician. I always look forward to my lessons and would highly recommend Renée to anyone who enjoys singing.

Adam K, age 28

Since I’ve been taking lesson from Renée I’ve found myself excited about everything I’ve been learning. It’s as if I’m finding a completely different singer within myself. I’m so happy that I don’t have to just memorize a piece and get tested on it anymore, Renée actually helps me comprehend all the different elements of what I’m singing.

Judette B, age 15

Renée Yoxon is an excellent voice teacher who is willing to cater her lessons to the particular needs of each student. As an untrained singer who has been singing for years, my needs have been a little scattered but Renée has helped me to understand fundamentals regarding how the voice works and how that fits into a greater understanding of music. She is happy to participate in the student’s development and to allow the student to explore his or her own creative path. She makes herself available and is eager to satisfy her various students. She is a pleasure to work with and a reliable resource.

David S, age 39

Lessons are taught on Sundays in Ottawa for $50/hour and Tuesdays through Saturdays in Montreal and on Skype for $40/hour. Les cours sont aussi disponibles en français. For more information visit my teaching page or contact me. Happy singing!

mixtape: first dance ideas by play i do

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Last weekend Craig and I attended a wedding show called Love, Handmade with our wedding music service, Play I Do. Play I Do is an alternative wedding music service specializing in jazz and classical music for ceremonies and receptions. We’ve been serving Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, and the surrounding regions since 2012!

For the Love, Handmade swag bags we put together a mixtape of first dance ideas for the couples out there that have been desperately searching for that special song. Whether you’re getting hitched or not, this mix will make you swoon. Enjoy!

1. The Look of Love – Renée Yoxon & René Gely
2. There’s No Greater Love – Billie Holiday
3. I’ve Got a Crush On You – Stacey Kent
4. Love Is Here to Stay – Mark Murphy
5. Cheek To Cheek – Ella Fitzgerald
6. I See Your Face Before Me – Frank Sinatra
7. Make Someone Happy – Tony Bennett
8. It Only Happens When I Dance With You
9. They Say It’s Wonderful – John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman
10. Say It (Over And Over Again) – Kurt Elling

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renée yoxon at the artistic showcase hosted by brandon wint

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Brandon Wint hosts a monthly artistic showcase at Pressed in Ottawa. I’m honoured to have been asked to participate and will be performing a solo set alongside a collection of diverse, warm-hearted, powerful and expressive human beings. Brandon has this to say:

In March, The Artistic Showcase reached magical, transcendent heights. In April, we will stretch ourselves to embrace love, warmth, community and artistry yet again. We will embrace the magic and beauty of the human condition and celebrate it through art and unity. :). It will be the first time we’ll invite jazz, revolutionary folk music, spoken word poetry, contemporary dance and film into the warm space of Pressed (750 Gladstone ave) on the same night.

On April 22nd, The Artistic Showcase will welcome featured performances by:

RENEE YOXON (http://www.reneeyoxon.com/)

KAY’LA FRASER

TITO MEDINA (http://www.reverbnation.com/titomedina)

and special guest performances by:

SONIA AWAD (Son Jamma)

CRAIG ALLEN CONOLEY (http://partusfilms.com/)

KAY KASSIRER

As always, The Artistic Showcase will be hosted by Brandon Wint (www.brandonwint.ca)

Click here to RSVP on facebook.

The Artistic Showcase hosted by Brandon Wint
Pressed, 750 Gladstone Avenue, Ottawa, ON
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
7pm, $10

Click through for accessibility info.

winter jazz festival review/interview roundup

REVIEWS

Ottawa Winter Jazz Festival mini-reviews (of the Renée Yoxon, Grace Kelly and Sicilian Jazz Project shows) by Peter Hum:

The young, Montreal-based, Ottawa-raised singer is progressing nicely. She meshed well with two veteran Montreal accompanists, pianist Jeff Johnston and bassist Fraser Hollins, and impressed me with the spin she put on some well-chosen standards. They included Billy Strayhorn’s A Flower Is A Lovesome Thing, the standard Where Or When and the Jobim tune If You Never Come To Me.

Music, Embracing: Renée Yoxon Opens Winter Jazzfest 2014 on Strong Note by Curtis Perry:

The songs were diverse, a pick from Sweeney Todd comfortably rubbing shoulders with her original material. The arrangements made the classics come alive, and the contemporary timeless.

INTERVIEWS

 

Jazzy little number by Julie Cruikshank:

“I’ve been really putting a lot of myself into [this performance],” she says. “It’s a little bit of a departure from what I think I’m known for in Ottawa. I’ve done a lot of jazz standards and it’s still that in a way, but I’ve taken inspiration from old musical-theatre songs as sung by some contemporary jazz singers.”

Five questions for a Montreal-based Renée Yoxon by Peter Hum:

“On Friday I’ll be playing with Jeff Johnston on piano and Fraser Hollins on bass. The set we’ll be playing will be completely new to my regular listeners. It was inspired by Norma Winstone, Abbey Lincoln, Irene Kral, and Mark Murphy. It will be dramatic, dark, and introspective. It’s a mix of uncommon standards, old musical theatre numbers, new jazz originals by modern composers, and a few of my own originals.”

it’s time for a blogging hiatus

Hello again, my fabulous readers. Thank you so much to everyone who stuck around, commented on, read, and shared my posts over the last year.I have had a wonderful time blogging and it has brought me new friends and new opportunities. That is why it is with a heady heart that I announce that I will be taking an indefinitely long hiatus from blogging.

With all the changes I’ve had in my life, and especially in the wake of Creativity Self-Help Month, I have found that more and more I am craving a private life of routine where I can continue on my personal, creative, and health journeys alone without feeling accountable to anyone but myself.

Of course, I will continue to post news like upcoming performances. Eventually I will be altering my website to reflect the blogging hiatus but I will leave the archives up for future readers.

The reason the hiatus will be “indefinitely long” is that I have plans to return to school this September. That’s only seven months away and once it’s started I definitely won’t have time for blogging. I don’t have any long term plans aside from school but I want the private space to take stock of my life and decide where I should be putting my energy.

Lots of love,

Renée

upcoming performance: winter jazz festival, feb 14

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Hello fabulous readers. I know my events calendar has been a little sparse as of late but I will be explaining this in a future post so expect that very soon. On the bright side, I’m happy to announce that I have a performance coming up in Ottawa on Friday, February 14th at 5pm, at the National Arts Centre Fourth Stage as part of the Winter Jazz Festival. I’m really excited about this performance because I will be joined by Montreal’s own Jeff Johnston on piano and Fraser Hollins on bass, and I have prepared an entirely new set of material. It will be strongly influenced by Norma Winstone, Irene Kral, and Abbey Lincoln. It will be dramatic and sorrowful and introspective. In other words – a perfect valentine’s day date!

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at the Ottawa Jazz Festival website. More information here.