4.28 –> Solos, Duos, Trio: Darren Johnston, David Lee & Chris Palmer


Friday, April 28
8 pm

($10 at the door)


330 James St. N., Hamilton


DARREN JOHNSTON (San Francisco) trumpet
DAVID LEE (Hamilton) double bass/cello
CHRIS PALMER (Hamilton) guitar

San Francisco-based, ex-Burlingtonian, Darren Johnston joins forces for the first time with ⅔ of Hamilton powerhouse Lee/Palmer/Bennett, to exhaust solo, duo, trio possibilities in the intimate confines of You Me Gallery.

Photo by Peter Varshavsky

Since settling in San Francisco in 1997, Canada-born trumpeter / composer / songwriter Darren Johnston has collaborated and recorded with an extremely diverse cross-section of artists. His interests rotate around composing instrumental music, writing songs, and performing all styles of jazz, experimental and purely improvised music, as well as traditional music of the Balkans, Greece, Macedonia, Turkey, and the Arab world. These interests have coalesced into his primary ensemble of late, Darren Johnston’s Broken Shadows. He has performed and/or recorded with luminaries such as Fred Frith, ROVA Sax Quartet, Myra Melford, Ben Goldberg, Matt Wilson, Mark Dresser, Marshall Allen, Marcus Shelby, and others.

Photo by Julie Caine

He has received commissions for dance companies such as Kunst-Stoff, and Robert Moses’ Kin, and AXIS Dance, presenting organizations such as Intersection for the Arts, the De Young Museum, and the Yerbas Buena Garden Festival, and his music has been used in a few independent films. His original works have been supported by the Zellerbach Family Fund, Meet the Composer, and SF Friends of Chamber Music. In June of 2013, he will premiere his upcoming commission from the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival, “Letters From Home,” developed in collaboration with choreographer Erika Chong Shuch, for which he is forming a multi-generational chorus with over eighty participants, the Trans-Global People’s Chorus. As an educator, Johnston currently teaches privately, at the Community Music Center in San Francisco’s Mission district, the Oakland School for the Arts, and as adjunct faculty at the University of California, Berkeley.

David Lee - LondonOnt - June 10 - 2011

DAVID LEE is a writer and double bassist. Originally from BC, he spent years in the Toronto music and art scene, playing bass and cello in a variety of settings,  then moving to BC’s Sunshine Coast in the 1980s, and currently lives in Hamilton. The author of books on jazz and other subjects (winner of the 2007 Hamilton Literary Award for non-fiction for Chainsaws: A History), currently a PhD candidate in English at the University of Guelph, David sits on the curriculum committee of Guelph’s International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation. In 1996, while living in Pender Harbour, BC, he was part of the founding committee that launched the successful Pender Harbour Jazz Festival. In 2012 Tightrope Books of Toronto published David’s first novel, Commander Zero. Wolsak & Wynn recently published a newly revised edition of David’s critically-acclaimed jazz book The Battle of the Five Spot: Ornette Coleman and the New York Jazz Field. More recently, the Cthulhu mythos was brought to the mean streets of modern-day Hamilton with David’s young adult novel, The Midnight Games.

A truly original improvising guitarist with a keen sense of adventure, humour, fire, curiosity and mischief, New Zealander / Hamiltonian CHRIS PALMER can easily rock a house party or stun a literary audience, hypnotizing them with his charm and chops.  Palmer has been playing guitar for over thirty years in a variety of contexts. For over a decade before moving to Canada from New Zealand, he was actively involved in the Wellington improvised and avant-rock music scene. He has appeared on a number of albums including Leila Adu’s debut album ‘Dig a Hole’ and was largely to blame for the Elephant Men release, ‘Let You Entertain Me’.  He also featured in a, let’s say, ‘cult’ film by Young Guns II director Geoff Murphy… which he doesn’t want to talk about.

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