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Upcoming Events List

Live Music at The Jazz Room

Featuring International jazz acts that play the world’s top clubs (the Saturday program features artistic direction from Mark Kelso). For the latest news and & promotions, click here.

Please note that only Grand River Jazz Society events are shown below
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Suspended: Barry Elmes Quintet
Mar 28 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm


Photo Credit: Don Vickery

“International performer, drummer, composer, record producer, educator and multi-award winning Barry Elmes is a mainstay of the Canadian jazz scene. His work has been documented on over 90 jazz CDs and he has performed all over the world. In 1991 he formed the Barry Elmes Quintet featuring a “who’s who” of the best in Canadian jazz. A success from the beginning, this group has released six notable recordings, the first of which, the critically acclaimed “Climbing”, featured Barry’s own compositions and received a Juno nomination for Best Jazz Recording. His CD “The Five Minute Warning” received an Indie Award nomination for Best Jazz Recording 2001. The Barry Elmes Quintet won Acoustic Jazz Group of the Year at the 2002 National Jazz Awards. The long-awaited recent CD “Dog’s Breakfast” showcases Barry’s latest compositions. At the Jazz Room, the quintet will perform selections from all of their CD releases.”

Barry Elmes – drums/leader
Mike Murley – tenor sax
Kevin Turcotte – trumpet
Lorne Lofsky – guitar
Steve Wallace – bass

Check out:       “isabel”

Suspended: The Phoenix Jazz Group
Apr 3 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm
The Phoenix Jazz Group performs jazz in a melodic fusion style. Group members are very versatile in a number of different genres. A review from The Jazz Society of Oregon stated ” they’re a Canadian quintet of musicians with impressive credentials whose program of all original music swings with ease. ” Since their debut album ” Extensions ” was released in 2009, the music of The Phoenix Jazz Group has received ongoing airplay on Canada’s Premier Jazz Station Jazz FM 91.1 in Toronto as well as on jazz radio in the U.S. and over 60 other countries worldwide. Phoenix performed at the 2018 Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festival in Waterloo On.  A review of the group’s most recent album Amparo from Whole Note Magazine in Toronto states ” It is in the fusion of myriad styles that the group’s music speaks best. This can be felt throughout the album, but
nowhere more strongly than in the profound beauty of Amparo, the title track itself.”
  • John Mclelland, Piano and Keyboards
  • Andy Klaehn, Clarinet and Saxophones
  • Scott Neary, Guitar
  • John Goddard, Percussion
  • Greg Prior, Bass


Listen to The Phoenix Jazz Group in “Something (Never Change)“.

Suspended: Jocelyn Gould
Apr 4 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm

Jocelyn Gould is a jazz guitarist based in New York City and Toronto. She cites Grant Green, Kenny Burrell, Wes Montgomery and Joe Pass as primary influences of the instrument.

Jocelyn maintains an active performance career in the U.S. and Canada. She has performed at the St. Lucia Jazz Festival, the Detroit Jazz Festival and the TD Toronto Jazz Festival. She has performed internationally with Grammy nominated vocalist Freddy Cole, Trumpeter Etienne Charles and DownBeat Rising Star trombonist Michael Dease. She currently holds the guitar chair of The Gathering Orchestra, a big band based in Detroit under the directorship of bassist Rodney Whitaker. She is featured on saxophonist Diego Rivera’s album “Connections”, and recently recorded with Michael Dease and acclaimed guitarist Randy Napoleon for their upcoming albums.

Jocelyn is passionate as an educator and in August 2019 began a professorship at Humber College in Toronto as Professor of Guitar. She is recording her debut album as a leader in September 2019 on Positone Records. In August, 2018, Jocelyn won 1st place in the Wilson International Jazz Guitar Competition.

  • Jocelyn Gould, Guitar and Vocals
  • Mike Downs, Bass
  • Mark Kelso, Drums
  • Will Bonness, Piano


Here is Jocelyn with “You’ve Changed” and “It’s All Right With Me | Live at Stereobus

This performance is part of the WOMEN IN JAZZ series, sponsored by DIVA INTERNATIONAL, makers of the Diva Cup

????? Andy Klaehn
Apr 10 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm

Andy KlaehnAndy Klaehn is a dynamic, multi-talented, professional musician, bandleader, and master teacher. He is a highly sought after alto, soprano, and tenor sax player, as well as a flute and clarinet player performing with various artists in a wide array of collaborations from duos to sextets. Andy is also a founding member of the renowned Top Pocket Jazz Quartet.

Andy was born in Kitchener, Ontario where he studied classical clarinet under K-W Symphony clarinetist, Victor Sawa, a renowned world class performer. Andy’s interest in jazz and contemporary music led him to enroll at Humber College in Toronto where he studied under Eddie Sossin and Pat Labarbera. Andy has played with many jazz legends, including Woody Herman and Buddy Rich. Andy has played at the Uptown Waterloo Jazz Festival, the Hillside Festival, the Guelph Jazz Festival, as well at the legendary Rex Jazz and Blues Bar in Toronto.

Andy has shared the stage with many musical giants, such as Maynard Ferguson, Moe Koffman, Kenny Barron, Carol Welsman, Barry Elmes, and Peter Appleyard. He has also played with the Stratford Festival Orchestra, the K- W Symphony, and as a sideman for Bo Diddley.


Andy plays “The Look of Love” with Kevin Murch on guitar


????? Saturday Afternoon Jazz Jam – Perform on the Jazz Room stage
Apr 11 @ 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Please join Steve Montgomery and Lukas Bouda as they host and coordinate the jam session at the Jazz Room on Saturday from 3 – 5 PM.Now in Season 9 of the Jazz Room, the Jazz Jams are still free to attend and/or to play on stage. It is still open to all age groups. Both listeners and performers are welcome.

When you arrive, please sign in even if you are just listening. The Jazz Room is sponsoring the Jazz Jams to help involve the community more in jazz.

We have a drum set and grand piano for use by all during the jam session. Steve will bring cymbals for the drum set. If you plan to perform on stage with any other instrument, please bring your own instrument – do not ask to use another person’s instrument. Drummers bring your own sticks.

We supply original Real Books for charts on stage: three copies of concert C, two copies of Bb and one copy of Eb. For playing in the jam, we will perform  any songs from the Real Book, Volume 1. Songs played at each jam session change.

So that you can plan ahead, here are the dates for the Jazz Jams which  will always be the second Saturday of the month, as follows

  1. May 9, 2020
  2. June 13, 2020
????? TuneTown
Apr 11 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm


TuneTown is an exciting new collective featuring creative Toronto mainstays, Kelly Jefferson on Tenor Saxophone, Artie Roth on Bass and Ernesto Cervini on Drums. All three members are highly-respected Juno-nominated musicians with serious band leading chops, and the combination of the three leads to some breathtaking and powerful musical moments.   The band plays imaginative re-arrangements of standards, and originals from all three members.

Kelly Jefferson, Tenor and Soprano Saxophones

Artie Roth, Bass

Ernesto Cervini, Drums


Check out:         “There from Here”       “The Monks of Oka”

????? Don Thompson and the Penderecki String Quartet
Apr 17 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm


Although his international reputation is that of a bassist having appeared on some landmark recordings including “John Handy Live at The Monterey Jazz Festival” (1965) and “Jim Hall Live” (1975) Don Thompson is also an accomplished pianist, vibraphonist, composer and arranger. He spent many years with George Shearing with whom he appeared playing bass and piano (in a duo setting) and vibraphone in the quintet.

Through the years he has worked and recorded with many of the greatest jazz musicians in the world such as Jim Hall, Paul Desmond, Frank Rosolino, Kenny Wheeler and John Abercrombie.

Don has won three Juno awards, The Oscar Peterson Award (Montreal Jazz Festival) and the Hagood Hardy Award for Composition (Socan) as well as thirteen National Jazz Awards. In 2009 he was made an Officer of the Order Of Canada. Don now resides in Toronto where he enjoys playing, writing and teaching.

Formed in Poland in 1986, the Penderecki String Quartet has been based in Waterloo, Ontario since 1991. Recent appearances include New York (Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall), Amsterdam (Concertgebouw), Hong Kong (Academy for the Arts), Los Angeles (REDCAT Hall at Disney Center), St. Petersburg (Sheremetev Palace) and the Adams Festival in New Zealand. The PSQ has also toured from coast to coast in Canada, participating in concert series such as the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival, Festival of the Sound, the Banff Centre, and Music Toronto. The Quartet is a devoted champion of the music of our time, having premiered over 100 new works from composers in Canada and abroad. The Penderecki String Quartet members are on the Faculty of Music at Wilfrid Laurier University where they have built the string program to be one of the best in Canada, attracting an international body of students.

  • Don Thompson, Piano
  • Jeremy Bell, Violin
  • Jerzy Kaplanek, Violin
  • Christine Vlajk, Viola
  • Katie Schlaikjer, Cello



This performance is part of the WOMEN IN JAZZ series, sponsored by DIVA INTERNATIONAL, makers of the Diva Cup

????? Yvette Tollar Group
Apr 18 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm

JUNO Award Nominated jazz vocalist, Yvette Tollar, sings vibrant new material worthy of becoming future Canadian standards. Her elegant and highly expressive vocals soar alongside long time collaborator, Dave Restivo (3x winner of The National Jazz Awards). Yvette and Dave are joined by Mike Downes, who Jazz Report Magazine called, “one of Canada’s immensely talented young giants”.

Joining Yvette Tollar is Mark Kelso and Mike Downes.


This performance is part of the WOMEN IN JAZZ series, sponsored by DIVA INTERNATIONAL, makers of the Diva Cup

????? Rob Fekete Quintet featuring Laura McNabb
Apr 24 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm


Robert C. Fekete is a Canadian Jazz pianist and composer who shares his musical philosophy with others through performance and audio recording. His roots are planted firmly in classical and jazz traditions; however he aspires to build a bridge between modern popular music and older musical art forms without losing his focus on the relevance and necessity of art in the world. Robert recognizes the importance of recruiting young people to the jazz art form. He conveys this message through his musical compositions and when he performs live. Currently he is  teaching jazz piano and ensembles at Mohawk College and teaching Jazz improvisation, Jazz piano, and Jazz vocal at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Laura McNabb is a graduate of McMaster’s Music Cognition program, during which time she had the opportunity to study jazz voice with Rob Fekete. A performer at heart, she has helped to establish an a cappella community at McMaster, starting 3 performance groups with singers from various academic and professional backgrounds. She co-chaired  the second annual Canadian A Cappella Conference (CanACC) and led Macappella to the quarter finals of the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella (ICCAs) in both 2017 and 2018.

Check out:    “I Should Care”     “I Could Write a Book”

This performance is part of the WOMEN IN JAZZ series, sponsored by DIVA INTERNATIONAL, makers of the Diva Cup.

????? Rich Brown & the Abeng
Apr 25 @ 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm


Rich Brown & The Abeng is the latest project from Canadian bassist and composer Rich Brown.

The band takes its name from an African instrument made from a hollowed out cow horn and used by the Maroons of Jamaica to call the community together for all social gatherings.

The music of The Abeng has been described as highly charged, richly imaginative, and at times poignant, and will showcase some of the finest musicians on the Canadian jazz scene.

The Band plays a form of groove oriented jazz that explores modern concepts in rhythm, harmony, melody, and improvisation. The music is progressive, and challenging, yet still dedicated to the deepest groove.

Rich Brown bass
Luis Deniz sax
James Hill piano
Jinu Isak drums
Here is the band with “Window Seat”      or Rich alone “Twice”