Since graduating with a Film Scoring degree from the prestigious Berklee College of Music in 1995, Vancouver native Chris Gestrin has become an integral part of the Canadian music scene. As a versatile pianist and multi-keyboardist, composer, engineer and producer he has appeared on almost 200 albums covering a wide range of musical styles. From avant garde electronic improvisations to greasy soul organ music, introspective piano jazz to top of the charts rock and hip-hop, Gestrin is in high demand for his eclectic talents and ability to bring a high level of musical inspiration to any situation. 8 Juno awards, 3 West Coast Music awards, 2 East Coast Music awards, Aboriginal music awards and a Canadian Folk Music award are just some of the accolades from the numerous projects he has been involved with.
As a jazz artist, Gestrin has performed on and off the stage not only with his great Canadian colleagues, but with a who’s who of the Jazz world. Gary Peacock, David ‘Fat Head’ Newman, Kenny Wheeler, Mino Cinelu, Jerry Granelli (Vince Gauraldi Trio), Petra Haden, Duke Robillard, Dave Douglas, Ben Monder, Michael Blake, Peter Bernstein, Jimmy Green, Ralph Bowen, PJ Perry, Red Holloway, and producer Lee Townsend to name a few. In the more mainstream music world, Chris has had the pleasure of working with a large number of prominent artists including Randy Bachman, D.O.A., Colin James, K-OS, Swollen Members, Jim Byrnes, Steve Dawson, Nickelback, Kelly Joe Phelps, Loudon Wainwright III, Long John Baldry, Alvin Yongblood Hart, Coco Love Alcorn and Jeff Healey.
Chris's original music has been featured in numerous television shows including The Dead Zone, Dark Angel, The L-Word, The Outer Limits, Crash Test Mommy, and Rob Feenie's New Classics. In 2007 Chris collaborated with Ocular tip media and film makers Jeff Carter and Diarmuid Conway to create a beautiful pairing of images and music in the 24 minute film ‘Inside Passage’, which was featured in film festivals throughout Canada and the United Sates. His recording, 'Stillpoint', on the Songlines label was listed as one of the best albums of 2003 in Downbeat magazine.
Currently Chris performs regularly with locals such as The Hard Rubber Orchestra, N.O.W. Orchestra, Kate Hammett-Vaughan, Peggy Lee, Brad Turner, Cory Weeds, The Night Crawlers, Jim Byrnes, and Steve Dawson and is hard at work in the studio producing new recordings for various artists across different genres including ‘AstroPop Revelation’, a new duo project joining Gestrin with Canadian vocal great and long time friend and musical cohort Denzal Sinclaire.
Vancouver-based guitarist/composer Ron Samworth is known on the Canadian improvised/contemporary music scene as an inventive textural improviser and a strong fluid melodicist informed and inspired by a variety of music traditions including jazz, rock, new music and folk music of many cultures. He is the founder and leads the internationally acclaimed improvisation ensemble, Talking Pictures.
He has appeared at all the major Jazz Festivals across Canada, the Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville, at New York's Knitting Factory, and the New York Improvisation Festival, New Music America, Vienna's "Lets Cool One" Chamber Jazz Festival, Chicago and Berlin jazz festivals and other leading venues in Europe. His inter-disciplinary work includes composition, performance and sound design for theatre, spoken word, film, and dance. He has composed music for Talking Pictures, Standing Wave, the Hard Rubber Orchestra, the NOW Orchestra and EDAM Dance Company. Samworth is also a longtime member and from 1992 to 2003 the artistic director of the New Orchestra Workshop (NOW), and a co-curator of a weekly concert series at Vancouver's grunt Gallery from 1987 to 1994.
Samworth's playing credits include John Zorn, Barry Guy, George Lewis, Wayne Horvitz, Rene Lussier, and the New Music operas The Gang and 120 Songs for the Marquis de Sade. He has composed for the Hard Rubber Orchestra, Standing Wave, the NOW Orchestra, the Vancouver New Music Festival and various dance, film and theatre projects.