Brent Ellis has a passion for excellence in all things guitar. His attention to the details of recording and mixing has produced memorable Jazz CDs that are getting regular airplay.
Brent was born in Calgary Alberta, and began playing guitar at the age of 12. Guitarists Lenny Breau and Lee Ritenour have most influenced his playing over the years. He had Jazz guitar teachers who guided and inspired him throughout his early teens, and later while attending Western Washington University as a Jazz Major. Brent studied with Jazz guitarists Bill Lake, Jim Chew, Lenny Breau, Oliver Gannon, Bruce Clausen, Jim Fricke, and others during his musical journey.
Since his years at W.W.U. he has been refining his skills both as a guitarist and a recording engineer. His passion for making quality recordings that you want to listen to over and over can be heard in his recent recordings. Brent's 2011 CD Cruisin'' Jackson Road has 5 songs getting airplay on Smooth Jazz cable stations across Canada.
Brent currently lives in Abbotsford B.C. where he has been involved in the local music scene, writing the occasional music column, playing live Jazz, teaching guitar, and recording and producing CDs for local artists. Recent work for clients include the audio CD for Hemme Luttjeboer's book, 'The Complete Idiots guide to guitar exercises' , the audio CD for an educational drum book, and contributing some of his music for use in a full length motion picture.
Brent's earlier work includes the release of his debut Jazz CD 'Sunday Drive' in 1997. The album had 5 of Brent's original tunes along with songs written by keyboardist Brad Carlson. Airplay followed.
In April 2007 Brent and his 16 year old daughter were in an horrific fiery car crash caused by a street racer. They were both seriously injured and trapped in their burning car. Eight Abbotsford police officers rescued Brent, one of whom received the Medal of Bravery. Two civilians rescued his daugther, both of whom received the Medal of Bravery. Every day since then has been a gift of life to both Brent and his daughter.
Brent's follow up CD 'Summertime' was released in June 2008. Brent produced this CD as a tribute to the heroes who saved his life and the life of his daughter. It is Smooth Jazz Fusion featuring soulful vocals by Melissa Albertson on Summertime and Sweet Love, Robin Ellis on bass, Lloyd Bates on keyboards, as well as other guest musicians. Six of Brent`s originals are on this album. Brent's melodic nylon string guitar track 'Sunland' gained airplay on the MaxTrax Jazz Cafe across Canada.
In 2008 a concert to honour the many heroes who saved their lives was put together by Brent and was performed at the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium on June 22nd. Several of the heroes were in attendance and Brent's concert truly was a celebration of life and music.
In 2011 Brent was honoured to win the Abbotsford Arty Award for Outstanding Artist - Music.
Brent's CD, 'Cruisin' Jackson Road' was released in May 2011. The album is Smooth Jazz Fusion featuring both melodic, funky, electric guitar lines and beautiful nylon string melodies by Brent Ellis, fun and creative drum solos and percussion, solid bass tones and grooves by Robin Ellis, and tasty closed chord voicings and acoustic and electric piano solos by Lloyd Bates. The CD features 6 original tunes written by Brent Ellis in a variety of styles and rhythms, along with 4 of Brent's favourite Jazz cover tunes. Five songs from this CD are in regular rotation on Smooth Jazz cable stations across Canada.
In 2013 Brent released his highly anticipated live recording of his June 2012 concert. This concert was a hi-lite for the Brent Ellis Group as they pulled out all the stops in their June 9th concert at the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium. They played many original fan favourites as well as a few new originals that had been penned by Brent only days before the concert. The CD features the bass grooves of Robin Ellis, a melodic and funkier Brent Ellis on guitar, Nathan Bosch on keyboards, and Mike Michalkow on drums. Two singles from this concert were also released. A solo Jazz guitar medley of two Jazz standards and two of Brent's original tunes played on Brent's vintage Gibson Howard Roberts Custom guitar, and a spontaneous jam session between drummer Mike Michalkow and Brent on guitar live on stage. Fun stuff for sure.
In 2013 Brent released a few singles that are simpler and more melodic and lend themselves for relaxing to after a tough day. So grab a coffee, sit in your favourite chair, and listen and unwind. . . .