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She Can Bloom

March 2, 2019

March is the month that signifies the beginning of a new season. It’s also the month when I’m involved in assisting with and performing as part of the Strong Women Strong Music concerts. These fund raising events specifically help Enterprising Women Making Art (EWMA), a program of Atira Women’s Resource Society based in Vancouver. This will be the 13th year we’ve presented women in jazz performing these concerts.

This year, since the SWSM concerts take place March 5-7 and, because International Women’s Day is actually Friday March 8th, I decided I’d like to produce another special event celebrating creative women artists. She Can Bloom will be an intimate community event which will take place on the Hood 29 Stage in East Vancouver. Hood 29 is a local Bistro with a warm and inviting atmosphere with a good stage and room to seat 100 people max. Expect spontaneous laughter, tears, joy and appreciation when these artists take to the stage with songs, poems, prose and thought provoking themes with wide ranging appeal. All are welcome to attend! Consider this a Dinner + Show event with the show starting at 8 PM, doors open for dinner by 6:30 PM.

Blooming Women composite

Five creative, intrepid & inspiring artists in collaborative and solo works:

Kristina Olsen -American based song-writer/multi-instrumentalist

Jodi Proznick – Juno Award winning bassist/composer/educator

Shauna Johannesen- Leo Award winning actor/writer/film maker

Kate Braid – Acclaimed Canadian poet/writer

Karin Plato – Juno nominated vocalist/composer

I am absolutely thrilled that these extraordinary women have agreed to perform for the ‘She Can Bloom’ project. These are women I have watched and listened to, have been inspired and deeply moved by. I have cried, I have laughed, I have cheered for these talented artists. I have read the poems, books and songs that they have written. I have watched their films and plays. I have listened to their recordings and in some cases I have been able to share the stage with them. Now, the Vancouver audience will be able to attend an evening featuring each of these creative women in celebration of International Women’s Day.

Advance tickets are available through eventbrite.ca (She Can Bloom) Here’s the link:

She Can Bloom Tix

She Can Bloom – Friday, March 8th – 8 PM at Hood 29 – 4470 Main Street Vancouver 

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Q&A with vocalist Kate McGarry

December 29, 2018

Kate-Q&A-PHOTO

It’s no secret that I am a big fan of vocalist Kate McGarry! I am just one of legions of fans that she has around the world. Kate is like a quiet star gently ascending without a big production or fanfare. Perhaps you know what I mean when I say this or maybe you’ll discover this to be true as you listen to Kate for the first time. Recording after recording and concert after concert there is a steady and persuasive climb up through the many vocal jazz artists in the world. Year after year more people discover the true artistry of Kate McGarry.

She’s a composer, a song stylist and a vocal improviser. She has a pure and direct voice that can burn a blues while at other times coax and caress a tender melody that leaves you breathless or teary-eyed. She can sing truly difficult compositions with ease and grace. She can turn something simple and seemingly straightforward into a work of art.

2019 marks Kate McGarry’s second Grammy nomination, this time for “The Subject Tonight Is Love” recorded with guitarist/husband Keith Ganz and pianist/organist Gary Versace.

SUBJECT TONIGHT

The fact is that many acclaimed artists have included Kate in their own recording or concert projects or, have appeared as guests on Kate’s own projects. People like acclaimed pianist Fred Hersh, vocalist Kurt Elling, arranger/composer John Hollenbeck, vocalist Theo Bleckmann, vocalist Tierney Sutton, composer/arranger Jeremy Fox and others have played, performed and recorded with Kate.

Here is my recent Q&A interview with Kate in advance of the January 10 Vancouver Pyatt Hall concert presented by Joy of Jazz Concerts. (www.joyofjazzconcerts.com)

1. Kate, could you name for us some specific musical influences you have had over the years?

My influences ranged from the singer songwriters of the 70’s such as Cat Stevens, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, to Irish folk singers like the Chieftains to jazz singers such as Carmen McRae, Anita O’Day, Betty Carter, Shirley Horn, John Hendricks, and of course Sarah Vaughan and Ella. During the 80’s and 90’s I fell in love with Milton Nascimento, Tom Jobim, Toninho Horta, Elis Regina.

2. What are some of the reasons that these artists were/are influential to you?

I tend to be most affected by the storytellers and how intimately they’re able to get across the point to you. This may happen through a lyric, ability, or certain kinds of rhythms. All these things made a mark on me. Whatever methods the artist used to tell their story was what influenced me.

3. Along with jazz-based music what other specific styles of music you currently listen to or enjoy singing?

I am enjoying some of the jazz vocalists of today- Jazzmeia Horn, René Marie are some of my favorites.

4. We are delighted for you, Keith and Gary about being nominated for a Grammy Award for “The Subject TonightIs Love”. What does this nomination mean to the three of you?

For me this nomination represents the fact that an artist can follow your instincts and make a body of work that truly reflects how they feel without pandering or worrying about how it will be received-and strangely enough, find that the work is received at the highest level from their community of colleagues. There are a few things as satisfying as this. To feel heard and valued as an artist by your community and to be honored in this way-I don’t really have language for it but it satisfies me at a very very deep level.

I am also filled with gratitude for all of the people who helped us make this record! This was our very first fan funded project and that is even more of an exhilarating surprise to know that you don’t have to be on a big label and have machinery behind you to you have your work recognized.

5. When you were working on “The SubjectTonightIs Love” how did you go about selecting the songs?

Our approach was to gather as a trio for about four days and play through our repertoire – try different instrument combinations and arrangement ideas. We went into the studio with way too much material. As we recorded themes began to become apparent.

6. Where do you turn if you find yourself in need of fresh inspiration creatively speaking?

Mother Nature is my nurturer. Also, I find if I unplug and take time to sit and contemplate and “do nothing “I am at first exhausted and usually fall asleep, but pretty soon after start to be filled with energy again and new ideas.

7. Do you enjoy being on stage performing concerts and going on tour?

I have to be honest here-the experience of performing and being on stage ranges from sublime to excruciating-depending upon the sound quality and the vibe and my own mental state and how connected or disconnected I feel from my bandmates. When it’s good it’s the best! And so far, after 36 years, I can still say it is worth it. It is a journey I am always willing to take and feel I constantly grow from

8. What is the most challenging and perhaps disheartening aspect to your existence as a jazz musician?

That’s tough-I think the thing that is hardest is the many ways that the profit motive   Makes creating music harder and harder. The more our culture and society is focused on the bottom line and on making the highest amount of profit from each interaction, the harder it is to create artistic and creative spaces that are free from the desire for profit. These two intentions usually don’t align or produce the same results.

9. While composing your own material do you use the piano, voice alone or, another instrument in your process?

I use the piano, although sometimes a melody or an idea just comes to me when I am walking out in nature.

10. In your opinion what is the most important in playing music: pitch accuracy, phrasing, time feel, expression, other?

Yes! I have gone through phases where each of those skills are important to me. At different times in my life I need to focus on one skill but later on I’m interested in exploring another. They are all important parts of being able to express oneself. I guess most important is to follow what you are authentically interested in, and to stay engaged in an artistic process of some kind despite all the crazy roadblocks that life throws up each day.

Thank you Kate!

Karin

Kate-&-Karin-ONE

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Do you LIKE karinplatomusic?

December 5, 2018

Not so many months ago I released a new recording and although there hasn’t yet been a tour associated with the recording (maybe in the future?) my band mates and I performed two concerts in the Vancouver area to celebrate. I’ve only just begun to send out CD’s to radio stations and music reviewers.  Fans of my music have been very supportive already and have made various requests to have my music heard and featured on radio stations in their region of the globe. Thank you everyone! A spiffy new website will be up any minute now as designed by my good friend and at times the busiest man in town Paul Norton. I’ll let everyone know when it’s up and happening!

These days it appears that social media activity is rather important as it relates to an independent artist’s life and therefore I decided to hold a type of contest to give away a special KP gift package to some individual who “likes” my official facebook karinplatomusic page  karinplatomusic

It’s a bit of silliness to have to request people to like your page (in my opinion) however if you can imagine this: Apparently there are certain artist grants that musicians are currently applying for will look at those numbers and apparently are making some decisions based on those figures. Not the numbers on your “regular” facebook profile but the numbers on your artist page. So, rather than simply request those “likes” I’ve decided to give something back in the form of this gift package. It includes a copy of my new CD This Could Be The One, a spiffy new bebop bo bag featuring the character Bo who appears within the graphics of the CD and vinyl plus a gift card once again featuring Bo.

KP-GIFT-PACKAGE-fb

To enter simply go to my the karinplatomusic page on facebook and there are two things you will need to do to be “officially” in the contest:

1. LIKE the page itself.

2. LIKE the photo image of the KP Gift when you find it on the karinplatomusic page

I will make a draw for the winner on December 21 which, people often associate as being the first official day of winter. I’ll probably do a little video and have one of my friends be there to make the draw with me. I’ll have the package ready to be mailed (or if you live in the lower mainland I’ll try to have it delivered directly to you)

Do you like the sound of the contest? Ha!

Thanks everyone!
Karin

 

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Bye Aug! Hi Sept news & reviews

August 30, 2018

One more day of August remains as I write this and I know many people are making plans for what is typically a final long weekend away before heading back to school and university when autumn kicks in with earnest. I do love this change of season so very much! The colours in flowerbeds boast the bold yellows and oranges and other shades that beckon my eyes to stay, to remain transfixed in appreciation. Ah but, indoor music work is what is beckoning me too and, right now the inside work especially NEEDS me.

There are many “to do” lists and I’m trying to keep on top of it. How to keep things in balance? That is another skill!  I am trying to make the time to go on bike rides and long walks when I am able to so that I don’t miss the spectacular seasonal shift.

Whereby there’s only one day left in August, there are 11 days remaining in my indiegogo campaign. You can pre-order the CD, VINYL or other items related to this recording or, simply help spread the word about the campaign to others. I’m currently at 25 % of my goal. Thank you everyone who has come on board already!!!

Here’s the link:     Karin’s indiegogo campaign

Karin-sings-2018

In advance of the official release of my new recording I sent just a few advance copies to people in the industry who have supported and taken an interest in my career over the years to see what they might have to say about “This Could Be The One”.

I’d like to share a review that CKUA Radio host and producer Dianne Donovan wrote regarding my new recording. Dianne has supported my musical efforts for many years now and I’m grateful that she took the time to listen and to share her comments in the form of this review which you’ll see below.

TCBTO CD cover 1

On Karin Plato’s-This Could Be The One

For two and a half decades, B.C.-based jazz vocalist,  Karin Plato, has been carving her own place on the Canadian jazz scene. Her vocals are often beautifully understated, yet, with such an expert control of her instrument, she brings fresh readings of old standards and crafts her own intricate tunes with a delivery that sounds effortless.

Her new release, This Could Be The One, just may be the most fully realized Karin Plato album yet! The majority of the tunes are by Plato herself. A fine composer, she writes some lines that a lesser singer would not be able to execute. Yes, there’s the delicate voice that seems caress each note but on this release, she is also singing OUT!

The CD kicks off with the strong title track, This Could Be The One, a breezy tune with deft phrasing and some lovely interplay with the rhythm section, accentuated by clarinetist, James Danderfer.

The mood shifts with the gentle, Sweet Summer, and we slip into bluesy suspended-animation with, July, wherein we hear the full range of Plato’s vocal range, and colour. Ms. Plato’s use of dynamics (an oft-neglected skill) has always been a long suit of hers, Jwith which, she continues to surprise, delight and “bring the listener in”.

Her take on Hank Williams, I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry, would even make the cynic tear-up.

On her tune, Insomnia, Plato turns a “condition” into a haunting companion.

This Could Be The One, is a stunningly beautiful, intimate release. Karin Plato, is a singer’s singer but she is so much MORE! She is a a revelation for anyone with ears, feelings and heart.

Dianne Donovan/vocalist

Producer/Host

Voices in Jazz

CKUA Radio Network

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SEPTEMBER ~ Karin’s album release concerts:

Sept 7 at PYATT HALL (Vancouver)

with special guest vocalist Marcus Mosley

TIX here:

Pyatt Hall concert

Sept 14 at BLUE FROG STUDIOS (White Rock)

with special guest vocalist Rebecca Shoichet

TIX here:

Blue Frog concert

 

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This Could Be The One

August 20, 2018

KP-CONCERT-POSTER

Can a poster say everything I need/want to say about my upcoming album release concerts? Well…perhaps but maybe not quite everything.

Here are the facts as I know them:  WHAT + WHO + WHEN + WHERE  + HOW 

Indeed, these things have been covered by the information included on the poster.

And now this…jazz is not really a “popular” form of music. It’s true! The music that I sing/play/compose  is regarded as very mainstream, straight ahead kind of jazz and has some people interested while others hearing/seeing the word JAZZ may turn away to something else. My hope is that some people who are about to turn away when they see these concerts advertised somewhere (on social media, on the radio, on a poster etc) will consider coming. WHY?

Ahh….that is a question I will now try to answer! I believe that my band mates and I will be sharing a wide range of music at these concerts. Yes, there will be the sensibility and musicality of my fellow musicians who are without a doubt jazz musicians and yes, that’s what we’ll be performing.  I too consider myself a jazz vocalist above all else with an “in the moment” approach to singing the songs. We’re more than too!

The experience of hearing us live will be so much more. There will be accessible music. We will include the familiar. We will include some surprises. We will include improvisation. There may be pop. There may be a folk tune. Dynamics, energy, interplay, groove…

AND… lots of this music (which appears on the recording) is brand new. So there will be the element of fresh for your ears.

I think we could win over some new fans. There have been times at some of my concerts that people have come up to tell me that they thought they disliked jazz however they liked the type of jazz that we were playing.

Okay then! This Could Be The One….title of my new recording AND possible describing potential new fan to jazz as well.

Thanks everyone.

Karin

 

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August days ~ sunshine & shades

August 3, 2018

August is here and that means its just over a month now and I’ll be officially releasing my new recording “This Could Be the One”.  My band and I will be performing two concerts in September (Sept 10 & Sept 14) and tickets for both concerts are on sale now.

This drawing below is by my husband Gorm, the artist who created the character “BO” for the graphics of the new CD and VINYL packaging. This BO drawing relates to the song “Sweet Summer”  my song which appears on the new recording. Hopefully the sunshine and shades continue in this month of August!

GD-signature-on-Sunglasses-art

I’m also in the midst of an indiegogo campaign which includes pre-sales of the new CD or VINYL plus there are various other perks available related to the project.
Just in case you are interested in checking out the indiegogo campaign I’m including a link here https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/karin-plato-releases-new-independent-jazz-record/x/19056504#/   here you can view a video all about the recording as well as take a look at the “Plato Perks” available in this campaign.
Now, I’m getting ready to teach a few weeks at music camps: PSGW followed by BC Swing Camp.
Have a wonderful August everyone!
Karin
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New Joys coming up

July 18, 2018

Two days in a row for me to be writing on this neglected Plato’s Words Blog!! Even I am surprised by this. The reason I am here again so soon is that my friend and webmaster Paul Norton has just finished the new 2018/2019 site for this year’s JOY OF JAZZ CONCERTS series that I am the curator of and I want to let everyone know all about it.

CMYK banner-JOY

I am excited about this year’s series as you will find out in a moment!

Three highly acclaimed and celebrated jazz artists will be a part of this series and this is the DO NOT MISS event for jazz fans. Grammy Nominee vocalist Kate McGarry along with Keith Ganz and Gary Versace will be at Pyatt Hall on January 10, 2019  YES, you read that correctly. Tix available soon.

Kate McGARRY

Many Vancouver fans may recall that just a few years ago Kate and Keith made their Vancouver debut at St. James Hall. We are so thrilled that they will come again as a trio celebrating their incredible new recording THE SUBJECT TONIGHT IS LOVE.

On a personal note, my husband Gorm and I were able to be in NYC this past February when the trio performed an album release concert to their devoted NYC fans plus two of their super fans (there are many of us!) from Vancouver. We were deeply moved by every single aspect of their concert. Kate, Keith & Gary are bringing that magic HERE! 

Kicking off the season on September 7 will be my Karin Plato Quintet performing one of two album release concerts. Of course I am buzzing about the Quintet concert, however, today I’ll let you know about the rest of the season which, excites me immensely.

Looking ahead a bit further into the fall season will be the Joy of Jazz “mini-invitational” series of concerts taking place at HOOD 29 (formerly called Cottage Bistro) and this year, for the most part, the series will feature primarily, though not exclusively, VOICE and BASS combinations.

I am thrilled about the artists performing in these concerts! We’ll be paying tribute to a very special woman and special jazz vocalist SHEILA JORDAN who made the whole voice + bass combination into a true art-form.  Sheila celebrates her 90th birthday this coming November so we’ll perform some of the music that she has recorded. For those who don’t know, Sheila continues to tour around the world spreading the word of bebop and more. She’s a true inspiration to say the least!

NOW, look at these sweet combinations of voice & bass artists:

Laura Crema & Conrad Good

Steve Maddock & Paul Rushka

Guido Heistek & moi (voice & Uke)

Natasha D’Agostino and Brent Gubbels.

These invitational concerts have become dear to my heart. They’re intimate and collaborative and I get to sing and play with colleagues but I also get to hear them as they perform their solo and duet pieces with each other. Those who have attended in the past know how truly unique these evenings can be.

Here’s the new website where you can read more about the entire series of concerts; the artists, the dates, the details:

http://www.joyofjazzconcerts.com/

Enjoy your summer days everyone! K