Kevin Hicks
Life and the Drum

...the Road Back Home

I was born in Ottawa, Canada, and moved to Nanaimo British Columbia, a small community on Vancouver Island, Canada, when I was 3. This also happens to be where jazz great Diana Krall went to school.

Being a member of a musical family, my dad and older brother Billy both played drums. I started playing drums in elementary school. Playing the drums became an obsession when I entered high school. Since the age of 14, I had been asked to play with some of the local blues musicians. Because these opportunities to play were in bars, I was asked to spend my breaks in the back hallways. As long as I promised to attend school the next day my mother allowed me to play these gigs. Keep in mind that the city of Nanaimo has a very low crime rate and I am sure that was a key factor in my mom's decision to let me follow my dream of being a musician.

By the age 16, jazz music had found a place in my heart. It was then that my high school band went to the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival in Moscow, Idaho. All of my practice and dedication gained me the attention of Wally "Gator" Watson, drummer for Lionel Hampton.

Our friendship remained solid over the next few years as I ran into some serious personal problems. Through these dire times, I constantly found peace in music.

Still tarnished by the past, I began to travel the world, finding more than what I was looking for. In honor of my savior, I spent the turn of the millennium in Bethlehem, Israel. That trip came to a close as I journeyed up through Turkey in order to buy some priceless cymbals.

With my spirit back intact, and the cymbals from Istanbul, I was ready to play again.

Larry Miller Quintet
Freya's Song




Saxophonist/Composer Larry Miller is an active performer and teacher. He has two CD releases as leader that features his original compositions and his ability on jazz standards. His CD “Freya’s Song” was released in November of 1997, and his second CD “Storm Head” was released by the jazz/funk/fusion group Navica in July 1999. Both CDs have seen radio play. Ross Porter, host of the popular “After Hours” CBC radio show, has featured selections of “Freya’s Song”. Miller currently leads his own group that has performed on the BCTV News hour and at many jazz festivals and venues throughout Western Canada.

 Miller’s compositions are gaining international notice as his Suite for Saxophone Quintet and Woodwind doubles has been published through Brazinmusikanta Publications of New York, U.S.A.  This Suite was premiered at the World Saxophone Congress at Montreal in July 2000. Miller was commissioned to write the piece by the Pacific Saxophone quartet of Victoria, B.C. and was the featured soloist with this group. In November of 2000 his arrangement for female vocalist and big band was performed at the Port Theatre in Nanaimo B.C. featuring Elizabeth Ryan on vocals and Miller on Alto Saxophone. This performance was part of the Port Theatre’s tribute to Remembrance Day.

            Miller has played in small and large ensembles with players such as Hugh Fraser, Campbell Ryga, Ross Taggart, Ian McDougall, Don Clark and Mike Herriott. With these players he has performed Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Duke Ellington’s arrangement of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite. He has performed lead Tenor sax for the big bands of Dal Richards, (when on Vancouver Island), Chris Millington, noted trumpeter Gary Guthman, Nanaimo’s NMA, and the exciting mini-big band called Decadence. He has performed lead alto, tenor, and the Bari sax chair with Hugh Fraser’s International Jazz Orchestra. This group is dedicated to performing the works of past masters and the compositions of its members. Miller has performed in numerous musicals such as “The Music Man” and “Kiss Me Kate”.  He also plays in Blues groups, does free-lance jazz gigs, and works in show bands on cruise ships. Miller played Saxes, clarinet and flute with John Forest (Bass) in the Chemainus Theatre’s

Production of “Hello Dolly” during the summer of 2002.

            Miller was born in Port Alberni B.C. His education consists of an Associate in Music Diploma from Malaspina College, and an Honors Degree in Music from York University in Toronto. “My time in Toronto in the 1980s was invaluable for me as it allowed me to hear and participate in a great variety of music.” He has studied saxophone with Lynne Greenwood, Pat Labarbera, David Mott, Phil Dwyer, Mike Murley, and Steve Jones. He has studied clarinet with Earl Thomas and flute with Jennifer Cluff. He moved back to Vancouver Island in 1990 to complete a Bachelor of Education Degree (1992) and a Masters in Performance/Composition (1994) at the University of Victoria.

            Miller is currently rehearsing a new quintet that will perform his original compositions in preparation for recording and touring.  He teaches at Malaspina University-College, the Conservatory of Music in Nanaimo B.C. , and Shawnigan Lake private School.

Laura Langstaff
Summer Sage

Lisa Atkinson & George Kincheloe
Simple As That

recorded at Raincoast Studio in Nanaimo this cd is a mix of romance and politics; strong songwriting, beautiful harmonies with cutting edge acoustic instrumental performances.

It took a couple of gorgeous summers in British Columbia, some marvelous musicians, a small hidden jewel of a studio; and we think you'll enjoy every minute of it.
Simple As That features 14 original songs performed by Lisa and George on guitar, piano, dulcimer and harmonica, backed by an incredible band of studio virtuosos.
Eric Wyatt Walsh: acoustic & electric guitars
Marty Atkinson: guitars, dobro, mandolin, guitarron and harmonies
(Check out Marty Atkinson's CD's on cd baby.)
Jonnie Atkinson: violin
Jerry Pacquette: (legendary Vancouver Island performer/producer): harmonica
These songs reflect a decade of live performances. Some are songs most requested by audiences through the years, some are simply close to our hearts.
Before they met, Lisa and George both traveled the country as solo singer/songwriters. George also toured with his original rock bands (Evening Stage, Hooligan and Boardinghouse Reach). George's solo 1993 CD release Painted Dragon (graced by Lisa's harmonies) received critical acclaim and radio airplay in California, the Northwest and East coasts.
Lisa is also nationally known as a children's/family singer and songwriter. She has four award winning recordings on the independent label A Gentle Wind (www.gentlewind.com) and performs regularly in schools, libraries and festivals. You can also hear her radio program, "Don't Panic It's Just Us Folks" on KKUP FM, 91.5 (Cupertino, CA), totally listener supported radio on Tuesday's from 10am to 1pm. "Don't Panic" has been on the airwaves for 11 years and features national and local singer/songwriters, peace activists and political commentary.
Together, they have shared the stage with Pete Seeger, John Stewart, Leon Rosselson, Tom Rush, Alex DeGrassi and many others

"Simple As That" has clarity and freshness that goes deep to the heart. This folk music journey has all the best elements of the genre. These songs have a lasting impact.
Mike Meyer
Music Director
KRVM, Eugene OR

Lynn Redford
You Stop My Heart

In 1992, Lynn wrote her first original tune when urged by a friend to enter
a songwriting contest in Dawson Creek, where she was living at the time.
Since then, Lynn has written over 40 songs, nine of which appear on
herdebut album.

Lynn moved to Nanaimo in 1999, with the goal of recording her songs in the
back of her mind. She had heard about the island's thriving music scene,
and was eager to meet Nanaimo's singer/songwriters. Lynn attended the local
songwriters' circle, which meets on the first Thursday of each month,  and
has felt supported and inspired by this group to continue to develop as a
musician. The group has also given her the courage to seek out
opportunities to perform her music. She has performed at Cedarbrook
Restaurant, as one of the featured artists in the restaurant's "Dinner with
a Songwriter"
series. You can also catch Lynn on open stages around the island,
including the Tree House Restaurant's open stage on summer Tuesdays on
Saltspring Island,  Folk Connection Coffee House in Nanaimo, and the
Gabriola Coffee House.

Lynn's CD showcases her unique voice and her versatility. Her sensitivity
and sense of humor are evident in the lyrics of her original songs, which
range from that tug at your heart strings, to upbeat tunes with a jazz
flavor that beg you to snap your fingers. The CD features Lee Billwiller on
guitar, Paul Nixon on drums, Scott Kingsley on electric bass and Steve
Sutton on stand-up bass.

Lynn's debut album, entitled "You Stop My Heart," was recorded at Raincoast
Studios in Nanaimo

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Melissa Hill
Across and Back

A Vancouver born musician with a Bachelor of music from U.B.C., witha major in piano performance, Melissa is a consummate professional with a style all her own. Already with one successful EP to her credit, and a full length album of original music, she is poised to take the Canadian music scene by storm.
Her music is a blend of standards and originals, largely influenced by the earlier styles of composers such as Gershwin, Porter, Ravel, Evans, Tyner and Hancock, all given a unique modern twist. Her vocal influences range from Holly Cole, to Cassandra Wilson, to Liz Wright, and Sarah McLachlan. She seamlessly weaves old and new to create her distinct sound.
A seasoned performer Melissa has entertained audiences across the globe with her unique blend of Jazz and Pop.
Her seasoned quintet consists of four Montr? based musicians with extensive experience in the music industry. From composing, to arranging, to producing, and with performances at major festivals around Canada, Europe, and Asia, these musicians have done it all. Her new album, "Across and Back" is truly a Pan-Canadian album, reflecting the wonderful diversity of this great nation.
Melissa Hill is a rising talent in the Canadian music scene. A woman destined for greatness, her music can be gentle or powerful, simple or complex, but no matter what, it is always unforgettable.

Merisa Donoghue
Finally Come Home

Michelle Ross
HeartBody & Soul
Healing, Meditation & Sound

I recorded this CD with the intention of helping people take charge of their healing and growth,  to provide a useful ‘tool’ for experiencing more of what you want, i.e. health, wellness, peace, harmony, joy, & love.  Teaching others how to feel good,  sharing some of what I’ve learned along the way and increasing my own experiences of well-being in the process.

Change and wellness come from within.  I am the source of all that I think, feel and experience,  whether I judge it to be ‘good’ or ‘bad’.   In other words,  I am the source of everything that shows up in my life, (good & bad.)  Everything and everyone else is a mirror, (for me anyways), of what is going on inside of me, (what I am vibrating, i.e. love or fear.)  The best way I know to help make a difference in the world and what I am experiencing, is to get busy ‘feeling good’.  It is through my ‘feeling good’ that I create more of the same around me, rippling ‘feeling good’ out into the world.  It is my desire that everyone who listens to my CD ‘feel good’.  I hope you do too.


With love & gratitude,

Michelle Dianne Ross

Reiki Master –Teacher

HeartBody & Soul Healing Centre


email: heartbody@shaw.ca


Love Beyond Measure