MEET THE BAND
Favourite song in the repertoire: Fascinating Rhythm
The backbone of our rhythm section, Greg became fascinated with the drums at an early age. After banging on anything and everything, studies with the famous Jim Blackley helped Greg develop a musical drumming style. Now an in-demand drummer and teacher, Greg plays in numerous bands spanning a wide range of styles and venues, and he considers himself fortunate to have shared the stage with some successful nationally and locally well-known musicians. His innate ability to capture all styles of music is to our benefit.
Favourite song in the repertoire: My Favorite Things
Steven played drums in High School and college, making it three times to the National Finals of Stage Band competitions. He spent a year studying recording engineering and drumming in the studios of Fanshawe College before settling down to raise a large family in the country. In 2016, he eased back into drumming by joining the Perth Citizen’s Band and playing at the First Baptist Church of Arnprior, before being invited to play with The Wild Cards. Drumming being one of his favourite things, he is thrilled about returning to big band music and says “Playing this type of music again is like coming home”.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Down to the Nightclub
Sarah traces her jazz roots to her high school where, at age 12, she auditioned for her school’s wind ensemble and, to her surprise, was also selected for the jazz band. Although she had no idea what jazz music was (true story!), she was eager and excited to learn. Sarah now has several years’ experience playing electric bass and double bass in jazz bands, orchestras, and wind ensembles around the city. She has been a member of the Nepean All-City Jazz Band, and has played with the U of O Community Concert Band, Standing Room Only, and the Ottawa New Horizons Two Beats Ahead Jazz Band. No “Down To The Nightclub” for this girl! She currently performs with the Ottawa Chamber Orchestra and the Ottawa Wind Ensemble, and is delighted with her newest role: big band charts with The Wild Cards.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Unforgettable
After meeting him, no-one could forget Howard, the energetic executive. His ability to lead and motivate carries over into his music. He is a versatile, reliable, well-rounded professional musician, equally at home on the keyboard and the bass – electric or upright. Catch Howard on bass with the Glebop Jazz Trio, which plays on the first Sunday evening of every month at The Arrow and Loon Pub (Bank St. & Fifth Ave., Ottawa). His welcoming smile and extensive repertoire make him an Unforgettable addition to any group, and we are blessed to have him on the keys.
Copyright 2015 The Wild Cards. All photographs used with permission. All rights reserved.
Favourite song in the repertoire: Birdland
Elvis, Bill Haley, and Buddy Holly made Ivan want to play guitar at a young age. So he taught himself and ended up playing guitar in several rock, blues, and country pick-up bands as a teenager into his early 20s. In 1980, after a 12-year hiatus from music, Ivan helped start a Beatles “spirit” band in the Ottawa region, and The Shooz ran for 3 very busy years. In the early 1990s, Ivan’s focus switched to bass, and he became proficient in jazz and other music from the 1930s and 1940s. He never wandered far from his love of many other genres and styles, however, and Birdland is where he goes when he wants to amuse himself.
Favourite song in the repertoire: High Maintenance
The title of Bob’s favourite song does not in any way reflect on Bob’s approach to life. After 25 years of standing in front, directing and teaching high school bands, Bob was thrilled to move to the back of the band and play the first instrument on which he began his lifelong musical journey: the drums. Bob enjoyed a wonderful career in teaching, where he directed both percussion and guitar ensembles that earned national awards. Bob has played in rock bands, jazz groups, and orchestras from Ottawa to Victoria. When not sitting in the drum chair, Bob loves to remain sitting at the back of the band and play guitar. Bob is ecstatic to play once again with fellow musicians from “the good old days”, with whom he’s become reacquainted as a result of joining The Wild Cards