* Your musical inspirations?

Here are my five primary influences (deeply studied their musical languages). Chronological order that I discovered them ----Thomas "Fats" Waller, Teddy Wilson, Professor Longhair, James Booker, and currently Henry Butler. My secondary influences (also studied their musical influences - not in chronicle order) include Dr. John (Mac Rebennack), the late Ray Charles, Vince Guarldi, Philip Aaberg, Abdullah Ibrehiam (dollar brand), Oscar Peterson, Art Tatum, and Jon Cleary. There are also many other players I have been influenced and inspired by, too many to mention - for more see

* Any CD's or songs which are meaningful to you

The CD that I have learned the most from is “Junko Partner” by James Booke.
George Winston was born in 1949. He grew up mainly in Montana, and spent his later formative years in Mississippi and Florida. The pronounced seasonal changes he experienced in Montana became the primary inspiration for the music he continues to play today.

When growing up, George listened mostly to instrumental rock and instrumental R&B (the late Floyd Cramer, The Ventures, Booker T & the MGs, King Curtis and many others), as well as many R&B artists, such as the late Ray Charles and Sam Cooke.

He began playing the organ in the summer of 1967 after graduating high school, and switched to piano in 1971, inspired by the recordings of stride pianist Fats Waller. At this time George also created his own melodic folk style, which he would become best known for and soon released his first solo piano album, for the late solo guitarist John Fahey's Takoma label, entitled, Ballads and Blues 1972.

Since 1980, George Winston has recorded eight more solo piano albums on the Windham Hill/Dancing Cat Records label: AUTUMN (1980), WINTER INTO SPRING (1982), DECEMBER (1982), SUMMER (1991), FOREST (1994), LINUS & LUCY-THE MUSIC OF VINCE GUARALDI (1996), which features compositions by the late jazz pianist, including Cast Your Fate to the Wind and pieces from the Peanuts® TV specials, PLAINS (1999), which was particularly inspired by his Eastern Montana upbringing, and in 2002, NIGHT DIVIDES THE DAY - THE MUSIC OF THE DOORS.

To mark the 20 year anniversary of AUTUMN, DECEMBER, WINTER INTO SPRING, and THE VELVETEEN RABBIT Windham Hill released Anniversary Edition enhanced CDs, which include bonus tracks and downloadable sheet music.

In 2001 George recorded and released REMEMBRANCE, a 6-track CD of piano, guitar, and harmonica solos to benefit those affected by the 9/11 tragedies.

He was also the focus of a feature length video/DVD produced for PBS, entitled GEORGE WINSTON - SEASONS IN CONCERT, which includes live concert performances and interviews.

Currently George is working on his next solo piano album entitled MONTANA - A LOVE STORY, which will be released in 2004. This album features 5 original songs, and 5 traditional songs from America, Quebec, Ireland, China, and Japan, as well as 7 pieces by composers Philip Aaberg, Mark Isham, Frank Zappa, Sam Cooke, Huddie Ledbetter (Leadbelly), Paul Anastasio, and Alby Potts.

In addition, George has also recorded solo piano and solo guitar soundtracks for four children's animated videos, including THE VELVETEEN RABBIT (1984 - solo piano with narration by Meryl Streep), THIS IS AMERICA, CHARLIE BROWN - THE BIRTH OF THE CONSTITUTION (1988- solo piano versions of primarily Vince Guaraldi's compositions), and for director George Levinson's Informed Democracy Company, SADAKO AND THE THOUSAND PAPER CRANES (1995 -solo guitar with narration by Liv Ullman), PUMPKIN CIRCLE (1997, solo piano, guitar and harmonica with narration by Danny Glover), and BREAD COMES TO LIFE (2004, solo piano, guitar, and harmonica with narration by Lily Tomlin).

In 1985, Winston began recording and producing albums of the beautiful music of the Hawaiian Slack Key guitar masters. Slack Key is the name for the finger-picking guitar tradition which began in Hawaii in the early 1800s (and predated the steel guitar by more than 60 years). His Dancing Cat label's Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Masters Series now includes 36 releases, with more to come (also see In producing the series, George has encouraged these artists to document their repertoire and record multiple albums mainly in the solo guitar format. During his solo piano concerts, George always plays a Hawaiian Slack Key guitar piece.

George has also been working on duets with the great Gu-Zheng (Chinese zither/harp) player Wei-Shan Lui (, and she is also one of his profound influences and inspirations. He will also be co-producing many new solo recordings with her.

Presently, George keeps a constant touring schedule, performing upwards of 110 solo piano concert dates per year in the US, as well as Asia and Europe. In addition to the piano concerts he also plays solo guitar concerts, solo harmonica concerts, and solo piano dances (featuring R&B, Soul, Rock, and slow dance songs). He is currently studying the playing of the great New Orleans pianists Henry Butler, the late James Booker, Doctor John, and the late Professor Longhair (for a list of recommended recordings by many artists who have influenced George Winston, visit and go to the Influences page.


Your musical inspirations?

i love anything with true spirit and soul. there are a couple artists as
of late that make me want to be better at what i do. when i hear their
stuff i realize it is possible to be amazing at this and they make me want
to strive for more from myself. artists such as ryan adams, who is by far
one of the larger influences for me in a long time. i'm really into a
canadian band called 'pilate' lately. their writing pushes the bases of
formulaic writing with soaring vocals and different verses while the
chorus still finds it's way into the song in a comforting maner. jeff
buckley, ben harper's old stuff. of course sarah mclachlan, i realize as
i get older how much i have listened to her in my youth and how her
songwriting is a guide to my own. i love old jazz, the greats, nina
simone, billy holiday, sarah vaughn all made music when there wasn't
protools or mixing boards even. they all sang and played loudly or
quietly to get the right levels and vibe, true artists. i'm inspired by
true music and art and these are some artists whose work i think
represents that.

How has music inspired you?

a good piece of music has the ability to tug at your psyche and possibly
take you somewhere. a great piece of music lands dead strong right in the
center of your heart and works it's out to every cell in your body and
bursts through your being. it makes you move, dance, laugh, cry.
i find alot of solace and joy, in music. it can make you feel sexy or turn
you on, it can bring up old memories and play a major role in new ones. i
onced moves cities because of a joni mitchell song and visited spain twice
thanks to the pixies and jane says.

music has inspired me to be human in the greatest ways and live life
fully. if i'm lucky, it will take me even further. it has held my hand
through many a journey.

Has music helped you thru a difficult or traumatic time in your life?

i've had some hard hits and difficult times for sure, and as well as
listening to certain tracks and feeling cradled in the music, also being a
musician has been an incredible gift through great struggles. i've had an
outlet for what doesn't feel so good, and releasing ills and woes has a
big hand in the healing process. my work heals myself and others is a
mantra i use.

The girl on the verge of a big breakthrough has been singing now for over 10 years and has blessed the ears of many a star already. Having sung for the likes of Sean Penn, David Duchovny, Luke Wilson, Courtney Taylor (Dandy Warhols), Michael Chavez (John Mayer), Steve Lukather (Toto), and Miguel Ferrer, she always leaves a lasting impression. Having spent the last year with months in both New York and LA, writing and gigging, it looks as though things are starting to heat up around this native Canadian.

Having just completed production on her new 3 song demo, Jody is in the market for the right record deal. Her new material is gorgeous and strong, with relatable themes and addictive sounds. Her voice is amazing and her songwriting gets better with every track. Jody is also known for her work with a Delerium type project called Balligomingo. The first single off their debut album called "Purify", co-written and sung by Jody, was remixed by the Icelandic group Gus Gus and hit the Billboard Breakout Charts at Number 3. The most recent remix of the track by Gabriel Dresden, found on the European Release of Balligomingo's 'Beneath the Surface', has a video out on regular rotation in Australia and the UK.

Jody first started singing at an open mic. She closed her eyes, opened her voice, and silenced the room. From there it was game on, she picked up a guitar and started writing her own songs. Hitting the studio over the years, and releasing 2 epÍs, it was finally time for a full length CD. Enlisting the help of talented Canadians such as Stefan Sigerson (production), Vik Levak (Engineer/Mixing), and Todd Simko (Mixing), she released 'Star' to great reviews. This 9 song disc features the tracks 'Eden' and 'Passionland'. Catchy melodic tunes, with great lyrics and vibe. 'Star' has received airplay on CJay 92 in Calgary as well as the University stations in Vancouver, Calgary, and Edmonton.

Having spent many years in Vancouver, Canada, getting to know the scene and other great musicians, Jody found herself sharing the stage with the likes of Art Bergman, Ron Sexsmith, Jim Cuddy, Mark Browning (OX), Damn the Diva, Chic P, Deadman, and Kevin House. She's toured extensively, playing solo shows all across Canada and the United States as well as a few shows in Europe. As one of the two vocalists chosen to front Balligomingo for their live show, she also performed coast to coast across the US opening for Gus Gus, sexy tour bus and all. With years of improv training and stage time at Loose Moose Theatre, and Second City, Jody is prepared for anything on stage. Her presence is captivating and electric, and with a voice that beds down with the shivers under your skin, she's fantastic to catch live. Having recorded with long time collaborator Vik Levak, Jody's latest recording, 'Hollywood Demo' is gaining buzz already. Her new material, the results of a songwriter maturing and tasting life, is bound to touch people and make them think, and then... keep them coming back for more


* Your musical inspirations?

we were both inspired by my parents music growing up.
led zepplin to the police to bruce springsteen, our
first REAL concert, to the pretenders and supertramp.
now we are writing music because there are so many
cool bands every day, modest mouse, the shins, the new

* Any CD's or songs which are meaningful to you?

anything bruce springsteen has put out. His music is
the soundtrack to our life.

* How has music inspired you?

It inspired us to want to write music and effect
people the way that all of the above artists effected
us. All we did growing up was listen to music. We went
to shows all through our teen years and when we
started to play music it was the most amazing feeling
to be able to sit in your room write a song and then
play it for people. It is a lovely feeling to
contribute to other peoples lives.

Two sisters, two guitars. On-stage banter about diarrhea, the ever-present possibility that friendly bickering may suddenly erupt into bloodshed, and rockin' pop songs that will blindside you as surely as a soccer Mom in an SUV yakking on her cell phone. Ladies and germs, please welcome Tegan and Sara.

All joking aside, Tegan and Sara - who finally came of legal drinking age last year - were very serious when it came to making If It Was You, the follow-up to their 2000 U.S. debut This Business of Art. "It feels like the first thing we've done that we were ready to do, whereas before it was like, 'We've got ten days to make an album!,'" says Sara. "In the past, there's been some apprehension about recording. This time it was fun."

The hard-edged yet hook-laden If It Was You is as different from This Business of Art as, well, Tegan is from Sara; the two are obviously related, yet distinct in character. "We went back to our roots: Punkier, poppier, and louder," says Tegan. It wasn't a huge stylistic leap, since the Vancouver residents, who started playing guitar at 15, cut their teeth in a high school punk band, and only became an acoustic duo after they tired of losing drummers and blowing amps.

"There's definitely more Folk section. "I wanted to be more powerful and in-your-face this time around," declares Tegan. "We held back a little last time, because that's where women are supposed to go in the music business: Just be shy, sexy, singer-songwriters. And we are all of those things, but we're also obnoxious and sarcastic, and intelligent, and, at times, downright overbearing." A volatile combination of traits, but a compelling and charismatic one, too.

The twelve tracks range from the bluegrass-tinged "Living Room," which Tegan wrote after realizing the windows of her new apartment were too close to the neighbors' for comfort, to the rollicking "Under Water," born from Sara's stab at writing a children's book, only to conclude her rhymes were a little too tortured for tots. The acoustic "And Darling (The Thing That Breaks My Heart)" was an eleventh-hour composition by Tegan, amended to the album in virtually its original demo form. And Sara insists that the hard-hitting opener, "Time Running," sounds an awful lot like Soft Cell's '80s hit "Tainted Love."

One of the big difference between the two sisters is their approach to their craft. "Tegan writes songs like a fish lays eggs," says Sara. "She comes up with three hundred of them, and some of them die, and others grow up. She's so prolific that it totally freaks me out if she doesn't tell me she wrote a new song every day, because then I think, 'She must have written a really good one, and she's holding on to it for her solo project.'" Sara, meanwhile, tends to work more methodically and meticulously. "She writes five songs a year, but they're the five that automatically get on the record, without question," says Tegan. "There's never any debate over Sara's songs."

Work on If It Was You began in March of this year, when Tegan and Sara retreated to Galliano Island, forty-five minutes away from Vancouver by ferry. Tegan's voice turns wistful at the memory: "We were isolated in a cabin, on the ocean, with just eagles and whales..." and If I Was You producers John Collins and Dave Carswell. Having previously shared their favors with such notables as the New Porngraphers, the Smugglers, and the Evaporators, John and Dave were delighted to whore themselves out once more ("when they said yes, we almost peed our pants," admits Tegan) and help Tegan and Sara turn the demos they had hashed out in their home studio and rehearsal space into finished tracks.

"John and Dave did everything," admits Sara. "That's actually them singing on the album. We sped up their voices to sound more feminine. Tegan and I just did a lot of blow and hung out with hookers in the lounge."

Well, not quite. But unlike so many superstar producers, John and Dave didn't try to put their own sonic stamp all over Tegan and Sara's rough-hewn singing style and slash-and-burn guitar technique. "They came in with absolutely no expectations, and we just rocked out," says Tegan. "They were referencing bands we'd never heard, like T. Rex and The Shins, and then bringing in the records, so we could listen to them." If It Was You was finished at the Factory and Greenhouse studios in Vancouver, and mastered in April in Los Angeles. "So it still has the charm of being recorded in a stinky basement with some lo-fi, high-cred producer, but also has that Britney Spears appeal,” Tegan concludes.

Tegan and Sara were born in Calgary, Alberta, on Sept. 19, 1980, which makes them Virgos. Since making their first splash on the Canadian national scene in 1998, when they walked away with the highest score ever in Calgary's "Garage Warz" battle-of-the-bands, the Lilith Fair vets have toured extensively, sharing bills with artists as disparate as Neil Young, Rufus Wainwright, Ryan Adams, Ben Folds, Hot Hot Heat, and the Pretenders, in addition to countless headlining gigs. (Tegan and Sara also traveled throughout Germany warming up arena crowds for Bryan Adams; ask them about his turtleneck collection).

But while Tegan and Sara promise their new live show, complete with full band, will be different from their dates as a duo, one important aspect of the gigs will remain the same. "We'll still rip each other apart," laughs Sara. "We've pretty much based our entire career on fighting in front of people. But it's working for us, as sisters, as musicians, and as people."


When I was 8 I used to sit on the stairs in our townhouse in North Vancouver and listen to my mother rehearsing with her Madrigal trio. They couldn't see me sitting there. I could always tell which voice was my mother's becauseshe sang the soprano parts. I knew her voice intimately anyway; she sang around the house all day and to my brother and I at night. This was the 70's and of course my folks had a Hi-Fi. My parents listened to their records while my brother and I ran in and out of the house on summer days. I remember hearing a lot of Jose Feliciano, Harry Belafonte, Seals & Croft, Roberta Flack and classical music by all the great composers.

When we drove around in the car I would pretend I was singing and playing
every part of my favourite songs on the radio. It was just a subconscious
fantasy of mine. This was years before I knew I would become a musician. I
sang very well at an early age and I remember telling my mother that the
kids at school were making fun of my voice because it shook when I sang. She said, "that's not shaking, Kathryn, that's vibrato! Most people have to work hard to learn that but you've got it naturally."

My original musical inspiration must stem from my mother's lovely voice and
the music I heard around me as the soundtrack to our lives. People listened
to music much more back then. We didn't watch as much television then as
people do now.

In my teens I began an acting career in film, tv and stage. At the same time
I started songwriting and singing in bands. Ten years later I left my acting
career behind to make music my full time focus. My musical inspiration now
is similar to how it began, in that I am still influenced by what I see and
hear around me, but all the fodder I get from my own life experience has
made my connection to music that much more personal. It's my biggest form of self expression.

I read recently that most people end up doing (or wish they were doing) the
thing that most interested them as children. More or less, my early
subconscious fantasy has come true, so I can vouch for that.

Good things come to those who wait and along the way as well. Kathryn Rose is an unusual mix of ambition and patience. The Toronto singer-songwriter has accomplished some incredible feats, from becoming one of the country's top session singers to touring North America fronting a symphony orchestra. She's also managed to carve out a special place as a solo artist with her sophomore album, My Little Flame, a collection of deeply personal songs infused with her wry sense of humour.

Her voice is staggering. She doesn't even use its full range or many twists and turns on My Little Flame; that she reserves for her 'day job. "Just because you can sing like Mariah Carey doesn't mean you should," says Kathryn. Here, it is a thing of beauty and emotion, with a realness that comes from composing for her own pleasure.

"Because I think I'm speaking in code in my songs, it gives me a thrill when others relate to them," Kathryn says. "I love language and I enjoy having the ability to manifest it musically."

From the screw-you lyrics over lilting pop of the first single "Something I Can Use," to the surprise reunion with a long-lost cousin set to a tumultuous backbeat in "Life's Luxurious", Kathryn's music sucks in th e listener, then packs a punch. She likes to mess with the status quo. "I guess I could be a pretty girl singing pretty songs, but that gets dull pretty quick. Even though they call me 'the Dark Queen of Subtlety who can make Mary Had a Little Lamb sound like the saddest song ever', personally I find many of my songs quite funny," she says. "They're full of in-jokes to me. I'm not always 'Tormented Serious girl,' I just play her onstage and maybe sometimes around the house. In real life, I'm a goofy girl. With a latent depressed streak."

Produced by Thomas Ryder Payne (Joydrop), My Little Flame was recorded in Toronto at Lionheart Studio, and includes a special guest appearance by Ron Sexsmith as a "Beautiful Boy" in the tearjerker last cut, "Virginia". The full list of band members on the album is impressive: Paul Brennan (Chantal Kreviazuk), George Koller (Holly Cole), Kevin Fox (Sarah Harmer), Bryden Baird (One Step Beyond, Esthero) and Josh Hicks and Dennis Mohammed (Spookey Ruben, Wild Strawberries).

The themes on My Little Flame range from overcoming a negative force in a relationship ("Something I Can Use"), to a 'beautiful kiss on the lips on the stairs on a night for the books' ("Deserving"), to Dionysian revelry ("Life's Luxurious"). There's an ode to a well-known late rock star Kathryn came to know ("Dear The Mother Of A Dead Son"), there's a period piece that tells the true story of the hand of fate placing a young bride's life in suspended animation ("Virginia"), and there's ("I Married Myself"), her new theme song for independent women, which ended up lending some of its imagery to the artwork.

My Little Flame stimulates not just aurally but visually too, and that's on purpose. "Thomas and I consider this album quite filmic, and I wanted the artwork to look like film stills and raise some questions. I'm standing in that white prom/wedding dress with this man. Who is the man? What are they doing in those clothes on the train tracks, in the empty swimming pool? What's the deal with the wagon? All I'll say by explanation is, notice I'm always looking away from him, looking for my little flame," she explains. "I'm looking for the real love. Our pose is repeated with slight variations (different locations, different time of day or night) so that we become iconographic to the album. Plus I thought it would be fun to have the credit: 'male model' in my liner notes!"

Born in Toronto, Kathryn inherited her singing talent from her mother, who forfeited her own early dream to be a jingle singer to raise a family. She developed an appreciation for singing by eavesdropping on her mom rehearsing with her madrigal trio around the house. Kathryn sang in the choir all through grade school. "I remember coming home from school one day and asking my mother, 'Why does my voice shake when I sing? The kids are making fun of me at school.' She said, 'That's not shaking. That's VIBRATO!"

Kathryn's thespian father had the family often moving around. Once settled in Toronto after spending much of her youth in Vancouver, she developed serious interests in modern dance and singing as a theatre major attending Earl Haig's Claude Watson School of the Arts. Her dad's agent started sending her out on auditions and she landed parts in commercials, sitcoms and a couple of films. "I originally thought I would be an actor," she admits, "but being in bands at the same time, I had the luxury of comparing the hurdles of both worlds. In music it's easier to make your own work and chart your own course. I've never been any good at being at anyone's mercy. My motto has become: 'where the heart lies the stomach will follow.'"

At 17, Kathryn and two friends started up their very first band, Lazy Grace. Toronto alternative luminary Andrew Cash invited the group to play several songs in the middle of his weekly Monday night set at the now defunct Spadina Hotel. "I credit Andrew with giving me my underage start in the clubs."

As for Lazy Grace, Kathryn eventually got the boot. At school, however, she had met Jane Miller and Andres Castillo Smith. Together they would form Wind May Do Damage, a Latin and jazz-influenced pop group, which she would co-head for the next five years. "Andres was the subtle one. Jane and I were a powerful vocal team. It was 'muscle singing.' I don't sing like that anymore," she confides, "but we had a really good run." WMDD played hundreds of shows, toured a little bit and released two independent albums, 1992's self-titled debut and 1994's The Binds of Blood, and a video for "The Lord's Bounty."

Throughout this period Kathryn began singing backup for many Canadian artists. "I started getting a reputation as a singer outside the band and I liked that. I wanted to use my voice in different ways and to know other musicians and feel like part of a community," she explains.
When Jane left the band, WMDD continued for another year with Kathryn stepping up for the first time as main front person. When WMDD disbanded Kathryn was finally ready to create a solo career.

She went to Vancouver to work with David Kershaw, Sarah McLachlan's ex-keyboard player and producer of Veal, Wild Strawberries. Over a two week run in 1995, she hung out in his studio and co-wrote. "I brought songs with me to work on but it was what we created out of nothing that convinced me to do the album with him. We improvised together every day and about seven songs were written on the spot. It was exciting." Every Lurid Detail was released in 1997 to critical acclaim. While she didn't shop it to record labels, she promoted it with some touring and radio and television appearances. "It was strategy on my part. I wanted to see how much I could accomplish on my own. I didn't see any shame in being independent," she says. "I wasn't in a rush. I wanted to build a career, build a reputation."

But after a western tour, Kathryn finally gave in to good old-fashioned burnout. She took her first official break from music since her start in her teen years. Acting money had previously paid the bills but she had been phasing that out for some time. With brilliant timing, her break from the spotlight coincided with a job offer: backup singer for trip hop act Esthero.

She got to travel all over the world and make decent money to boot. She was also able to sell her album, which garnered her a continent of American fans. With no pressure, she started writing songs on the road. Meanwhile, she would run into Thomas Payne, whose band Joydrop was on many of the same bills as Esthero. The two would often slink away to discuss working together on her next solo album. My Little Flame came out independently at the end of 2001.

"Life is about choosing the right people to help you along the way. In my case, the choice of producers is a fine example. David Kershaw was the right person for my first record. He provided an inspiring environment where anything could happen, and it did. That was a pretty nice treat for an artist making their first solo album. Thomas Payne has a whole other working style but was without a doubt, the right person for My Little Flame. This time we wrote the screenplay first. We made the record we set out to make."

Kathryn has been offered opportunities along the way to be moulded by producers and record labels, but has always stuck to her gut. The album's first single, "Something I Can Use," epitomizes such determination. "It's my version of "Hit Me With Your Best Shot." It's about somebody putting stumbling blocks in front of me for pleasure or sport, but I see their game. I'm saying, 'maybe you've locked me in your basement but my knees are still clean. I'm doing fine and that kills you.' The best revenge is kindness and the best defense is resilience. 'You're not going to get me. But knock yourself out.'"
Kathryn Rose merchandise


-Your musical inspirations?-

s hard to say when I was young, Prince was a big influence, but as I grew older, World Music and Dark Electronic music stuck with me.

-Any CD's or songs which are meaningful to you?

Recently I really like the new Harold Budd record as well as I love the last Sasha record and new Alpha cd

-How has music inspired you?

It has inspired me stay focused in my life and has exposed me to different cultures and people from all over the world.

CARMEN RIZZO - The two-time GRAMMY nominated producer/re-mixer/ and writer has a very eclectic list of credits. His unique, international style of production mixing an electronic & Middle Eastern sound, has attracted very diverse artist's ranging from, Paul Oakenfold, BT, Delirium, Sinead O'Conner to Grant Lee Phillips, Seal, Alanis Morrisette to Ryuichi Sakamoto & Cirque du Soile. Carmen is currently recording a new self-titled artist record which has various guest appearances including Esthero, Jem, & Alpha & Lady bug Meca.Carmen has also produced and mixed with outside producers ranging from Marius De Vries, Trevor Horn, David Foster & Don Was.

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