Saturday July 15th, 2:30pm
As part of the Halifax Jazz Festival free daytime programming.
Stingray nominee! Vote for your favourite Stingray nominated act in-person at our info tent, or online at halifaxjazzfestival.ca/vote
Toronto based singer and songwriter Melissa Lauren has smoothly made the transition from veteran swing “crooness” to songwriter. The music - her own brand of old school jazz, Do-wap and blues mixed with indie pop inflections and sounds....very much a product of her early musical training meeting her adult musical encounters. Melissa's Sophomore album, "Your Mess" was released in October 2015 to quick charting and radio play across Canada.
The singer’s love for swing and jazz music began when she started performing with the Toronto All-Star Big Band; she continued singing with them until 2004. She had the opportunity to work with and open for many wonderful musicians; Jeff Healey, Gordon Lightfoot, Renee Lee, Henry Questa, Tommy Ambrose, Peter Appleyard, Buddy DiFranco, Jackie Richardson, and Clark Terry to name a few. She has performed as part of the Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival, Beaches International Jazz Festival, Markham Jazz Festival and Oakville International Jazz Festival as well as Canadian Music Week, and North By North East. While touring Canada has become a constant in her touring life, she was thrilled to debut in Europe this Spring with shows in Germany, Hungary, Netherlands and Poland.
Melissa debuts a slightly edgier and mature sound on the new project, “Your Mess.” After spending early adulthood immersed in the Toronto club scene, and working with DJs, producers and different Indie pop bands, Melissa widened her repertoire venturing into non-jazz territory in her songwriting.
The album also debuted Melissa as a producer and worked in conjunction with the band to create a vibe. The outcome is a quirky, more playful sound that tests an interesting balance of darker harmonies and more theatrical grooves, coupled with the singer's signature delicate word inflections. The live show is not to be missed a fun mix of originals and jazz, pop and blues standards stamped with the singer’s brand. The first single released in Canada, “Send Them Away,” was song of the week on CBC radio in Toronto, and has been nominated for a Toronto Independent Music Award.
In addition to her own music, Melissa has been lending her voice to studio work in the electronic music scene. She has sung on five of producer/writer Hibernate’s recently released tracks, one of which was the opening track on one of seminal pioneer trance DJ Paul Oakenfold’s compilation albums, released under Perfecto Records.