Feature Musicians Hamilton
We are working hard to build a community of amazing pros in Hamilton. The League Of Rock prides itself on the amazing pros that we bring to the table. Stay tuned for more news on the Hamilton Lineup. In the meantime, check out our amazing lineups in out charter cities.
Suzie was nominated for a 2012 Juno in the Blues Album of Year Category for her album Me ‘n’ Mabel. recently won the 2011 Canadian Folk Music Award for Contemporary Singer of the Year and Female Vocalist and Songwriter at the 2011 Canadian Maple Blues Awards.
Suzie was also nominated for a 2011 JUNO for her album with The Marigolds entitled That’s the State I’m In and for a 2009 JUNO for her 3rd solo album, Happy Here, produced by Juno-Award winning singer/ songwriter Stephen Fearing. She has previously won 6 Canadian Maple Blues Awards and has also twice won 1st place in the Blues Category of the International Songwriting Competition - in 2010 for the song Sometimes I Think I Can Fly, co-written with Dan Kershaw, and in 2005 for the song The Honey I Want, co-written with Liz Tansey and David Leask.
Suzie has toured nationally with Stuart McLean’s The Vinyl Café, the John McDermott band and with Girls Sing Boys. Suzie recently made her New York City debut supporting John Hammond at a free outdoor stage in Madison Square Park and has performed for Canadian Peacekeepers in Bosnia and the Persian Gulf. She performs powerfully as a solo act or with her tasteful side players, as a duo and band with Rick Fines, and is also a member of the groups the Marigolds (with Gwen Swick and Caitlin Hanford of Quartette) and Betty & the Bobs. She was also the voice of Tim Horton’s for 5 years.
Suzie’s latest release is a solo acoustic blues album entitled Me ‘n’ Mabel which was produced by Danny Greenspoon. Suzie’s website is www.suzievinnick.com.
While on tour in 1983, Robert Plant met with Michael and told him to contact Atlantic Records. This resulted in Michael signing a $350,000 record contract with the label and the release of his self-titled debut album on Atlantic in 1987. Since then Michael has recorded two more CD's for Griffin Music. One in 1990 titled "Michael White/The White" and a 1994 release "Michael White Plays the Music of Led Zeppelin". All of these albums have received critical acclaim from the press in Europe, the U.S. and Canada, including excellent reviews in The Chicago Tribune, Billboard and Britain's Kerrang magazine."
During his career that began in 1973, Michael has worked with performers such as Nikki Sixx (Motley Crue), George Lynch (Dokken & Lynch Mob), Randy Piper (W.A.S.P.), Lanny Cordola (Giuffria & House of Lords), and for a short time in 1987 the German band 'Accept'. Coincidentally, in the Motley Crue biography "The Dirt", Nikki Sixx credits Michael as having been the original singer in the legendary heavy metal band! Also, a little known fact is that in 1975 Van Halen was a warm-up band for Michael and George's band "The Boyz" as credited by Gene Simmons in his book 'Kiss & Makeup'. Michael has worked in recording studios around the world with producer/engineers such as Andy Johns (Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones & Van Halen), Mack (Led Zeppelin, Queen & E.L.O.), and David Glover (Yes & Tom Waits), as well as the band 'Blue Murder' whose members included drummer Carmine Appice (Vanilla fudge & Rod Stewart) and John Sykes (Whitesnake & Thin Lizzy).
Steve Koven was born in Toronto, Canada, and began playing piano at age seven. He has been a professional musician since earning a BFA in Contemporary Improvisation from York University in 1987. In addition to performing world-wide with his trio, Koven plays solo piano concert throughout North America, Europe, and the Caribbean. When not on tour or in the studio, Steve composes music for film and television and conducts master classes and workshops which focus on the development of improvisational tools and musical self-expression.
Steve is currently on staff at York University where he teaches Contemporary Improvisation and Jazz Piano in the Faculty of Music. Currently, Steve is working on his Masters Degree in Composition from York University. As an Educator, Koven has conducted master classes and workshops in China, Japan, Colombia, Barbados and Mexico.
For more information please visit www.stevekoven.com
Peter originally hails from Windsor Ontario, but now calls Toronto home. After completing his musical studies at Humber College, he has continued to study with legendary jazz pianist Barry Harris and classical voice instructor Alan Reid. Equally comfortable in a surprising variety of styles, and demonstrating a thorough mastery of synthesizer technology, Peter has become one of the most in demand keyboard players in the greater Toronto area. He has performed with The Second City, and such artists as Alannah Myles, Mike Reno from Loverboy, Alan Frew of Glass Tiger, and Jimi Jameson of Survivor, among many others. More recent artists include Eva Avila (Sony), Jarvis Church (EMI), Roz Bell and Jully Black (Universal Music Canada).
Peter was recently seen and heard across Canada with Sony recording artist Eva Avila as she opened for Beyonce on her I Am Sasha Fierce tour. He also enjoys an increasingly steady amount of studio work ranging from country and jazz, to hip hop and synth pop, and has recently recorded with Indian pop superstar Mika Singh.
As a vocalist, Peter is a high tenor with a musically useful three octave range. Years of classical training have given him tremendous power, flexibility, and endurance.
When not performing, Peter enjoys being a staff member in the Musical Theatre program at Sheridan College, and an accompanist/vocal instructor in the Commercial Dance program at George Brown College. He is also a member of Natural Born Hustlaz, a production company specializing in urban music.
He strives to bring his blend of talent, creativity, and enthusiasm to his peers and listeners everyday.
As well as performing as Glass Tiger's keyboardist, Sam has been involved as a main songwriter and producer for the band's recordings. He now prefers to live and work in the country, close to Toronto in a fully-equipped digital MIDI studio built over the Holland River-Riverside Studios: a unique "home in the country" atmosphere combining a creative environment with the latest technology, and the former site of his father's workshop and boathouse.
Sam's creative home surroundings inspired a shift in musical focus and direction. He founded his production company Willow Music, and soon after, the first of the Sanctuary™ series, A Day Remembered, was released. Since that time, Sam has continued to release selections of his peaceful, evocative piano and keyboard music, and A Day Remembered has reached Gold sales status in Canada.
Sam is also a director and resource leader for the Songwriters Association of Canada, teaching the craft of songwriting through educational programs and workshops for songwriters across Canada, as well as co-writing and producing other artists..
A professional bassist in the GTA, available for touring, sessions, and lessons. Well versed in all styles of music Steve is an asset to any musical situation. Live Credits include Colin James, Jarvis Church, Matt Andersen, Tara Oram, Derric Ruttan, Sass Jordan, Jeff Healey, among many others. Steve has also appeared on National Broadcasts of Canada Am, BTV Toronto, Edmonton and Calgary.)
Bass guitarist Dave McMillan grew up in Midland, Ontario, Canada. It was there that Dave began his musical career playing professionally in many local clubs and bars. Influenced early on by the music of Led Zeppelin, Miles Davis, The Beatles, Pearl Jam, along with many others, Dave quickly became one of the areas busiest working bassists. At 19 Dave moved to Toronto to study Jazz at Humber College where he graduated with Honours.
Since then Dave has carved out a very successful career as a professional Musician both in the studio and on stage. He has toured Canada and the U.S. extensively and has played with many of Canada's top Artists. The list of artists that Dave has worked with include Big Wreck, Justin Beiber, Carly Rae Jepsen, Nick Carter, The Philosopher Kings, Fefe Dobson, Ko, Crash Karma, Brian Melo, Keisha Chante, Treble Charger, and Shiloh to name a few.
Dave's studio career has afforded him the opportunities to work with some of the industry's top producers including Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Rush, Alice in Chains), Eric Ratz (Billy Talent, Cancer Bats) Gavin Brown (Three Days Grace, Tragically Hip) and Jon Levine (Philosopher Kings, Kreesha Turner)
Currently Dave is the bassist for the band Big Wreck, currently touring in support of their album Albatross. The album has seen two singles released that have charted in the top 10 on rock radio including the title track, which spent a total of 7 weeks at #1 on the active rock charts.
For over 30 years Steve has been in demand as a freelance bass player, vocalist and record producer. He keeps very busy with his current bands, (NIAGARA MUSIC AWARD winners) The Niagara Rhythm Section, the Fringe Locals and the Stevie GeeBees as well as with a diverse list of folk, jazz, blues, country and R&B artists in both the Toronto and Niagara-On-The-Lake areas.
In between all of the freelance work he manages to write, record and perform his own solo projects and has since released 5 albums and performed in clubs and concerts in the Toronto & Niagara regions.
Every Saturday night since 2003 he hosts a show in Niagara-on-the-Lake with his band, the Niagara-Rhythm Section, backing up a different guest artist every week. He's recorded and released two "Live at the Anchorage" CD's featuring many of the different and diverse artists that have joined them on their Saturday night romps.
In addition to live performance Steve keeps busy in his studio "Hitsville NOTL/the shed studio" producing and recording his solo projects as well as the music of several other artists.
Other recent projects have included:
•Steve Grisbrook - full CD (blues)(producer/engineer)
•Craig Roberts & the Jumpin' Jive Band -full CD (jazz)(producer/engineer)
•Martin Springett - several tracks for various CD's (new age) (engineer)
•The Marantz Project - full CD (rockin' funk)(engineer)
•Matinee Slim & the Ultralite Orchestra - cd overdubs and mastering
•James Brown - full CD (folk) engineer/mastering
•The Amazing Flying Hammer Brothers (rockin' funk)(mastering engineer)
•Bruce Jones -(Brazillian funk) full CD (producer/engineer)
•Andrew Thomas MacKay - (pop) currently producing and recording a full CD of original music
•Deisel Dog - cd mastering
•The Shoeshine Boys - album mixing and mastering
•and many more demo and one-off projects for music and commercial clients from the Niagara and Toronto areas.
Tom Lewis has been a professional bassist and vocalist for over 30 years. Tom’s abilities were recognized even in the early years: He was awarded a special license from the LCBO, to play his bass in licensed establishments even though he was well underage…The envy of his peers!
The exceptional experience Tom has gained throughout his journey as a musician, has allowed him to share the stage with some of rock’s biggest names. These names include The Beach Boys, The Moody Blues, Al Green, Randy Bachman, Tom Cochrane, Alan Frew, Amanda Marshall, Honeymoon Suite, FeFe Dobson and many, many more.
Tom is endorsed by Fender/SWR amplification, D’Addario strings and Yorkville sound.
CANADIAN DRUMMER GRAHAM LEAR : Born July 24, 1949 in Plymouth, U.K. Lear’s proclivity for rhythm led to a successful audition for a boys’ band sponsored by the police force in London, Ontario, Canada. He was just eight years old. By age 14, in the same city, he had graduated to playing with the Orchestra London symphony. Tutored by former police band alumni, Don Johnson and Robert Comber, Lear cites two other Canadian drummers - jazz great Terry Clarke, and the soulful Penti ‘Whitey’ Glan as important influences on his musical career. Lear’s musical roots in R & B, rock and jazz helped him cultivate a unique style substantiated by thousands of viewings of his drum solos on ‘You Tube’.
Most notably, Canadian drummer Neil Peart (Rush) acknowledges Lear as an early influence (The Top One Hundred Canadian Albums - Bob Mersereau 2007). But, the heart of Lear’s personal musical passion has always been jazz. Lear moved to Los Angeles in 1974 to record with Canadian singer Gino Vannelli. Produced by A&M Records icon Herb Alpert, the collaboration resulted in Grammy nominations for Vannelli’s ‘Powerful People’ and ‘Storm At Sunup’ (1974-75). It was a great honour when drumming legend Buddy Rich chose to cover the title track 'Storm At Sunup' as well as ‘Love Me Now’ on his ‘Speak No Evil’ recording.
The following year, Vannelli’s ‘Gist Of the Gemini’ (A&M 1976), recorded at Air Studios in London, UK, was met with great critical acclaim. Carlos Santana was so impressed by Lear’s playing on the Vannelli recordings that he asked his (then) manager, Bill Graham, to personally track Lear down to audition. At the time, Lear was in Toronto rehearsing with Domenic Troiano. A month later, Lear was in London, England performing with ‘Santana’ at sold-out Wembley stadium concerts. Live recordings from the ensuing European tour culminated in the multi-platinum album ‘Moonflower’ (Columbia 1977).
With his reputation well established, Lear left ‘Santana’ in 1987. Rock stalwarts ‘REO Speedwagon’ engaged him to play their tour of South America and the U.S. The Canadian progressive group ‘Saga’ also hired Lear for their European dates.
In 1991, Lear took a break from the rigours of touring and relocated to Portland, Oregon to raise sons Brian, and Trevor. He taught privately, reunited with Gino Vannelli on his 1995 (Verve) ‘Yonder Tree’ CD (Vanelli’s personal favourite), and forged new musical relationships. Lear joined the jazz ensemble ‘Clovis (Teal Creek, 2004), a collaboration of four professors of music including Tom Bergeron of Western Oregon University, and bassist Glen Moore of the group ‘Oregon’. He also performed and recorded with Gary Small, winner of several Native American Music Awards, on his CD ‘Wild Indians’ (Medicine Tail 2002).
Other highlights of Lear’s extensive music career include playing with Pat Metheny, guest of ‘Santana’ at the historic original ‘Live Aid Concert’ (1985), performing at Steve Jobs’ launch of the first Apple computer at the US Festival in California (1982), playing the Moscow International Peace Walk (1987), and accompanying both ‘Santana’ and Paul Anka on separate occasions at London’s Royal Albert Hall. Lear also played with Mexican jazz ensemble ‘Sacbe’ for the Latin Cultural Festival at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
In 2005, after almost fifty years of touring and recording with a host of international artists and producers, Lear moved to the historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. He continues to live there with his wife, Penny. Lear’s future plans include forming his own jazz group and offering music instruction, with an emphasis on clinics, master classes and private lessons.Selected recordings include the Grammy nominated Powerful People and Storm at Sunup, as well as Gist of the Gemini and Yonder Tree with GinoVannelli. Moonflower, Inner Secrets, Marathon, Zebop, Shango with Santana. Second Decade with REO Speedwagon and Clovis .
Steve Negus is a Canadian drummer and songwriter who was a member of the progressive rock band Saga for twenty-six years. In the late 80's, he and keyboardist Jim Gilmour left Saga and formed the GNP (Gilmour Negus Project).
While playing at Larry's Hideaway, a club in Toronto, Steve Negus' drumming came to the attention of the Canadian rock band, Fludd. The band was searching for a new drummer, and offered Steve the job that night. Several weeks later Steve joined Fludd as their new drummer. While in Fludd, Steve Negus met bassist Jim Crichton and keyboardist Peter Rochon, who would later join him as founding members of Pockets, the original working name of Saga. Brian and Ed Pilling were the creative force behind Fludd, and about a year after Steve joined, Brian was stricken with leukemia and the band couldn't continue to perform. A new band, Pockets, was formed out of Fludd's rhythm section. Negus, Crichton, and Rochon went into eight months of rehearsal to form the new band with Jim Crichton's younger brother Ian Crichton on guitar, and Michael Sadler as the singer. They changed their name to Saga a year later. With Saga, Negus earned many gold and platinum selling CDs in Europe, Canada and the U.S. In 1981, the band went to England to work with Rupert Hine as producer, and Worlds Apart was recorded at Farmyard Studios. Producer Hine also had Steve plays drums on Chris de Burgh's album, The Getaway. “Don't Pay the Ferryman” was the single from that album, which went to #34 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. The Getaway went to number one on the German charts, followed by Saga's own Worlds Apart at number two.
In the late 80's, Negus and keyboardist Jim Gilmour left Saga and formed GNP (Gilmour Negus Project) with singer Robert Bevan for Virgin Records. The CD Safety Zone which was produced by Negus came out in 1989. Before a follow-up CD could be written and recorded, Negus and Gilmour reunited with Saga which ended GNP. In 2003 Steve left Saga once again. In 2007, Negus released his first true solo project "Dare to Dream" through Cyclone Records. Steve Negus also co-produced and engineered songs for Jaclyn Kenyon on her original songs "Whatcha Gonna Do" and "See it Through me" in 2009.
Steve is working on his next solo CD which will be progressive instrumental music. Won drummer of the year at the HMA 2009 for my last solo CD..."Dare to Dream". Currently working out of his own studio....The Blue Room....engineering and producing local artists.
Jim McCarty (born James Stanley McCarty, 25 July 1943, Liverpool) is a British musician, best known as the drummer for The Yardbirds and Renaissance. He has also played in the bands Shoot (on lead vocals), Illusion (with three other ex-members of Renaissance), Stairway and Pilgrim.McCarty has also been a member of The British Invasion All-Stars, and his own Jim McCarty Band. By now, everyone knows the Yardbirds legend, if not their music; the band graduated three of the great Ph.D.s of rock guitar: Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page.
They created hard rock out of standard twelve-bar blues, doubling the tempos and whacking the amps up to ten. On the British club scene, the Yardbirds, the Animals, and the Rolling Stones ruled the stages. The Yardbirds expanded the range of the electric guitar, experimenting with feedback, sustain, and fuzztone.
In 2003, a new album, Birdland, was released under the Yardbirds name on the Favored Nations label which consisted of a mixture of new material mostly penned by McCarty and re-recordings of some of their greatest hits, with guest appearances by Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Slash, Brian May, Steve Lukather, Jeff "Skunk" Baxter, John Rzeznik, Martin Ditchum and Simon McCarty. Also, Jeff Beck reunited with his former bandmates on the song "My Blind Life". The Yardbirds released a live 2007 CD, "Live At B.B. King Blues Club" (Favored Nations). As a solo artist Jim has released numerous albums and projects including 2002s Two Steps Ahead, and 1994s Out Of The Dark, and has a new album that will be released shortly
TOPHER STOTT - As a musician, Topher has performed live with a variety of artists including Tommy Shannon (Stevie Ray Vaughn), Earl Slick, Reeves Gabrels (David Bowie), Jeff Healey, Phillip Sayce, Classic Albums Live, Hot Fo' Gandi, The Tiny Specks, Sara Kamin, Rik Emmett, Blair Packham, Bruce Gordon (I MOTHER EARTH), Derek Kai, Dj Carlos, Cherone Moore, Morgan David, Karen Durrant, Janet Whiteway, Stop Die, Andrea Florian, Bob Reid. In the studio,Topher has recorded numerous cds and has played on jingles/productions for companies such as Microsoft, Bausch and lomb, Catelli Pasta, Uniden Communications, NexxTech Phones, Wolverine Work Boots, to name a few. He is currently working on a cd of original children's music with his wife, Laurel James. As a leader, Topher runs "The Saints Of Cinema", a deep ambient groove project, and the power trio "Kings Of The Midway", featuring Michael Zweig and Jeff Jones.
Topher holds a Honours BFA-Music from York University (Toronto), where he focused on improvisation with Casey Sokol + David Mott, Jazz and Carnatic music with Trichy Sankaran. In 2005, Topher was asked back to York University in Toronto, teaching Contemporary Improvisation.
Terry began his career as an assistant engineer (“tea boy”) at Olympic Studios in 1960s “swingin’” London. Terry says “During my apprenticeship there I was a part of the team that recorded hits for The Troggs, The Moody Blues, Marianne Faithful, Spencer Davis Group, Donovan, Barbra Streisand and many more.”
Soon Terry moved into actual engineering, tackling some rock projects, as Terry says, “one of the first being the recording and mixing of The Who’s ‘Substitute’ under the direction of Mr. Peter Townsend.” Terry also engineered such classics as ‘Homburg’ by Procol Harum, and ‘Mellow Yellow’ by Donovan. It wasn’t long before a connection was established overseas, through the unlikely conduit of a series of beer commercials for Canadian radio.
Working in London at Morgan Studios, Terry met Torontonian ad-music-makers Mort Ross and Doug Riley; ultimately, this work led to Terry plotting to open a recording facility and record label in Toronto by the fall of 1969. (In the meantime, Terry mixed another landmark recording: Joe Cocker’s “With A Little Help From My Friends”).
Arriving in Canada, Terry engineered recordings for Motherlode, Dr. Music, April Wine, The Stampeders, Michel Pagliaro, Moe Koffman (the theme for “As it Happens” is still heard on CBC Radio One every weeknight). About the 1970s, Terry continues, “It was then that I started to take the production aspect of things more seriously and started a long relationship with Rush, then cut three albums with Klaatu and as many with Max Webster. The 80’s saw a Billboard #1 with ‘I Just Died In Your Arms’, the band Toronto went gold with ‘Head On’, ‘Tom Sawyer’ from ‘Moving Pictures’ pushed Rush over the edge and ‘Try’ was the big hit for Blue Rodeo’s ‘Outskirts’ CD.” Busy doing great work to this day, Terry continues to engineer and produce music with the same passion and enthusiasm that drew him to music in the first place. Garth Richardson
Garth "GGGarth" Richardson is a Canadian music producer and engineer. He is the son of renowned Canadian music producer Jack Richardson (whose credits include Alice Cooper, The Guess Who, Badfinger and Poco). Jack was a pioneer of the music recording industry in the 60's and 70's. Garth Richardson has racked up hits engineering such acts as The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nickelback and Motley Crüe, and producing Rage Against the Machine, Mudvayne and The Melvins.  Richardson also recently launched the Nimbus School of Recording Arts in Vancouver, British Columbia, with famed producer Bob Ezrin. Richardson has the nickname 'GGGarth' because he has a slight Stutter.
Below are some of the artists and records Richardson has been involved with: Biffy Clyro – Puzzle, Only Revolutions, Hedley - Hedley, Melvins, Nickelback, Rage Against the Machine - Rage Against the Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers - Mother's Milk, Rise Against - Siren Song of the Counter Culture, Skunk Anansie - Stoosh, Testament - Low, Ugly Kid Joe.
Blair Packham is perhaps best known as the former leader of The Jitters, a Canadian band popular in the late 80s and early 90s. Blair wrote five hits for the band between 1987 and 1991, including "Last of the Red Hot Fools" and "'Til the Fever Breaks". Currently, Blair has a flourishing career creating music for TV and film, but songwriting and record production remain passionate pursuits, as he works with artists both established--like the legendary Andy Kim or Ron Sexsmith---or emerging.