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February 2, 2006

Canadian Jazz Guitarist Oliver Gannon in Calgary

Written by
cindy mcleod

‘Guitarist Of The Year’ – National Jazz Awards Of Canada, 2003

Long considered one of the premier jazz guitarists in Canada, Oliver Gannon performs at Calgary’s Beat Niq Jazz Club Feb. 3rd & 4th.

The long-time Lower Mainlander is only now, a year before his 60th birthday, putting out his first album as a leader.

Gannon has been the sideman of note on at least 30 jazz albums since moving to Vancouver in 1969 from the Berklee School of Music in Boston. His early days in Vancouver were spent working with the fusion group Pacific Salt, and he recorded numerous albums with longtime partner Fraser MacPherson.

When you list the great guitarists in Canada, Gannon is right there along with Ed Bickert, Sonny Greenwich, Nelson Symonds and Lenny Breau. In the chapter devoted to him in Mark Miller’s 1987 book, Boogie, Pete & the Senator: Canadian Musicians in Jazz: The Eighties, Gannon is quoted as saying, “I’m not in a hurry. I feel things are happening, maybe at a snail’s pace. But I’m here now—right? – and doing my own thing.”

The past five years or so, his “own thing” has meant taking a sabbatical from performing and going legit. His brother is the programmer for the popular musical accompaniment software ‘Band in the Box’. Ollie has been working full-time for the company in charge of musical production.

But he’s back—and in a big way. Gannon credits the Cellar jazz club on Broadway for his re-emergence onto the jazz scene. His album was recorded live there on the club’s own record label, and owner Cory Weeds deserves the credit for making it happen.

“I’m getting out more and a lot of it has to do with the Cellar,” says Gannon. “It looks like a jazz club, and it’s got that feel. I just really like Cory and the staff down there and I like playing there. And we usually get good crowds. It’s nice when people are lining up to get in.”

Presented by the Jazz Is Society of Alberta www.jazzis.org/

Oliver Gannon
Beat Niq Jazz Club – Calgary
February 3rd & 4th, 2006

For more information visit www.beatniq.com

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