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Fall 2014: Christmas Every Day, Bare Bones & Up Front 2

October 4, 2014

Fall is my favourite season. I think it has to do with the changing of the weather, and the beautiful colours of the leaves. It’s also a time of reflection and planning for the seasons to come.

So, what have I been doing with myself the last few months? So glad you asked! Here’s the run-down:

I mentioned in my last post that I’ve been songwriting quite a bit, and working on some recording projects. One of them is about to launch this month, and with it, we’ve attached a very ambitious goal. My partner in co-writing crime, Elana Harte, & I wrote a non-traditional holiday song, “Christmas Every Day”, and it is our hope that we can use it to not only promote awareness of hunger in Toronto, but raise $10,000 (yes, “ambitious” definitely applies!) for Daily Bread Food Bank. We recorded it with some other community-minded musicians and artists (20 of us in total!)* who donated their time and talents, dubbed “Toronto Musicians for Change”, and we know you’ll enjoy the song, and support us in our fundraising efforts.

We will keep everyone up-to-date on the release of the song and the campaign launch on our facebook page, so I encourage you to please visit and “like” it to learn more and contribute:

Christmas Every Day

*Mitch Girio/Slaugherhouse 754 (co-producer and engineer), Elana Harte (co-writer, co-producer, lead vocal), Kim Jarrett (co-writer, co-producer, back vocals), Cathy Marchese (drums), Mike Costantino (bass & back vocals), Lucio Agostini (guitars & back vocals), Janet Whiteway (piano, organ, back vocals), and a group of backing vocalists: Jennifer Brewer, Elaine Dark, Marianne Mazur, Sarah Hiltz, Amy Kate, Denise McRiner, Lee Taylor, Angela Saini, Pamela Gilmartin, Marcia McVean and Cheryl Beatty. Plus two anonymous contributors of visual art.


We are so looking forward to sharing our song and campaign launch, “Christmas Every Day”, with you all!!

In other news, Elana & I were pleased to once again act as co-producers (along with Lanrick Bennett, Jr.) of the second installment of Bare Bones & Up Front presented by The Toronto Centre for the Arts. Already 4 weeks in, Bare Bones & Up Front 2 is in full swing! Check out the show listings at and head on up for one (or more) shows on an October Thursday night!


Till then – keep on soft rockin’ !


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Writing, writing, recording, recording…

June 18, 2014

Oh boy.

Busy, busy, busy!

A while back I posted about how I was shifting my focus back to my first love: songwriting. Of course, Mike & I have still been playing some shows, and private events but I’m really enjoying the break from slogging gear up and down the street/s to host jams… Miss the jamming part, but not the set-up and tear-down. Not one bit! 😉

Happy to report I’m having a blast on the writing side. I’m in the middle of two recording projects! A new release of my own, AND a duo project with my friend, Elana Harte! We’re doing a bunch of the tracks we’ve posted on youtube (among others) that have yet to be released on a recording. So fun!

And as for some other songs Elana & I have written – some have been immortalized by the kickin’ blues/rock members of Elana Harte & Stiletto Flats! The band is comprised of Elana Harte (obviously), Jen Benton (bass), Lucio Agostini (guitar) & Robyn McDonald (drums). Live you can often find Jennifer Brewer with them on backing vocals, too.

I’m so honoured these fine folks decided to record them!*

The EP has only been out for a little while, but it’s already received some radio airplay on stations like CHMR 93.5 FM in Newfoundland, & CHIP 101.7 FM in Quebec.

If you like blues/rock, I recommend checking out the EP from Elana Harte & Stiletto Flats on itunes, and go see them live in Toronto soon! You’ll have fun. I promise. Plus, you could pick up a physical copy of the EP directly from the band.

Elana Harte & Stiletto Flats







Till soon – keep on soft rockin’ !


gigs – cds – mp3s – news – blog

*disclaimer: my bias is showing since I not only co-wrote 4 of the 6 tracks, but also sang some backing vocals with Jennifer Brewer on the EP, but even if I wasn’t involved – I’d still dig the music! 🙂


Thank you for supporting Bare Bones and Up Front: 8 Weeks of Indie Music Showcases

April 13, 2014

I can’t believe the first ever Bare Bones & Up Front is done!

Thank you to all who ventured up to the Toronto Centre for the Arts to take in one of the 8 evenings of Bare Bones & Up Front. Many of you even came out to more than one, which speaks to the quality and variety of the intimate music performances we crafted.

In co-creating/producing/curating this series, I was constantly reminded of, and struck by the power that positive momentum and a solid team can provide. My co-conspirators Lanrick Bennett Jr., and Elana Harte are amazing people that I am so proud to work with, and call friends. When we were in the early stages of conception of Bare Bones & Up Front (before we even named it), I knew that no matter what happened, we were building something important to our community of musicians, and music lovers – something bigger than we could do alone. This project was a joy. We are all so happy to have shared the talents of some amazing Toronto musicians and songwriters with you.

Thank you Kristin Sweetland, Paul Reddick, Arlene Bishop, Elana Harte, Sarah BurtonRehan Dalal, Wendell Ferguson, Fergus Hambleton, Tim Bovaconti, Patrick Ballantyne, Meredith Shaw, Melanie Brulee, Julian Taylor, Blair Packham, and LINDY. And thanks also to your band mates, and to mine – Mike Costantino.

We couldn’t have done it without you all and we loved listening to you. 🙂

Thanks also to the Toronto Centre for the Arts for presenting the series, and the staff who helped support the shows whether by back office finance and design help, or working the bar, or as ushers. And thank you Blair Packham & Bob Reid of In The Studio on CFRB 1010, and Errol Nazareth and the Toronto Sun for helping us get the word out.

It is our hope that with the continued support from music loving folks like you – this series will continue to live and grow. Please keep up to date and in touch with us by visiting the Bare Bones & Up Front facebook page:

Thanks again to you all. We had a great time with you these last 8 weeks!


gigs – cds – mp3s – news – blog

Bare Bones and Up Front – Wednesday March 5th 2014 – Sarah Burton, Kim Jarrett

February 17, 2014

Join Sarah Burton & myself for a night of music as part of the Bare Bones & Up Front Indie Music Series at The Toronto Centre for the Arts.

Sarah Burton & Kim Jarrett
The Toronto Centre for the Arts – Gallery Theatre
5040 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON M2N 6R8
March 5th, 2014
$20 at ticketmaster or the door


Introducing… Bare Bones and Up Front: 8 Weeks of Indie Music Showcases

January 20, 2014

So exciting to be a part of this new indie music series, presented by The Toronto Centre for the Arts!

Bare Bones and Up Front

Click the image above, or here to purchase tickets from

Bare Bones & Up Front is an 8 week indie music showcase that will feature some of Toronto’s best talent, stripped down to the essence of their songs.  Beginning Wednesday nights on February 19, you will be able to experience 2 different artists.

More information is online at:

Like Bare Bones & Up Front on facebook: – and visit the “Contest” tab for your chance to win tickets to all 8 dates!

Another Year Older… A Birthday Wish

November 20, 2013

Times flies. People say this all the time. Some people feel it more than others. I’m feeling it very strongly these days. Mostly because being a December baby, I get hit with a double dose of reflectivity – the year end in general, and my own personal year end. I used to find it depressing. Luckily, for the last decade or so I’ve felt pretty satisfied at the end of each year. I guess that comes with knowing what you want, and doing it. And maybe, just getting older in itself helps.

So, as I approach my 39th birthday (!) I’m sitting here thinking I should do something special to mark the occasion. It’s not the big 4-0 yet, but I think 39 is a good number. Not too old, not too young. Experienced and a bit more cynical perhaps, but still hopeful and excited about, well – *some* things… 😉 See – there’s that cynicism.

Often people ask me what I would like for my birthday. I normally don’t want anything aside from hanging out with friends and family but this year I *do* want something, and I’m asking for it. For those of you who have read my blog before, you’ve no doubt noticed that some posts are videos of songs that I write with Elana Harte in her kitchen. We write them in a few hours, then we post them that same session. It’s a ton of fun and we’ve written quite a number of tunes together over the last few years. I believe 16 is the current count, although we only started videoing them recently.

So – what do I want for my birthday, then? I would love, love, love for you to reserve a seat (or two!) to come see Elana & I play some of these songs, among others, at the very beautiful and intimate downtown Toronto listening room – Musideum. The show isn’t until Saturday, January 18th, 2014 so it won’t interfere with your busy holiday plans. And – I would love you even more than I already do.

Please click the link below and make my birthday dreams come true!

Thanks as always – I look forward to seeing you in 2014!

gigs – cds – mp3s – news – blog

Songwriting Video Demo – October

November 1, 2013

Yay! Elana Harte and I wrote another one: “Lucky”.

So much fun. 🙂

gigs – cds – mp3s – news – blog

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