We are thrilled to announce that Grammy-nominated pianist Geofrey Keezer and wide-ranging Jazz vocalist Gillian Margot have joined the 2019 Jazz Port Townsend artist faculty.
With his highly regarded discography, unique compositions, and acclaimed performances in a variety of conﬁgurations, multiple Grammy-nominated pianist Geoffrey Keezer commands the attention typically reserved for the living legends of jazz. A native of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Keezer was playing in jazz clubs as a teenager, holding down the piano chair for Art Blakey at age 18,and touring in the company of Ray Brown, Joshua Redman, Diana Krall, Art Famer, Benny Golson and Barbara Hendricks in his 20s. More recently he has toured with Wayne Shorter, Dianne Reeves, David Sanborn, Chris Botti, Sting, Joe Locke and Christian McBride; produced and arranged three Grammy-nominated recordings with vocalist Denise Donatelli, and released a series of albums drawing inﬂuences from Hawaiian, Okinawan and Afro-Peruvian folk traditions. His 2009 album Áurea (ArtistShare) was nominated for a Best Latin Jazz Album Grammy award. Geoffrey’s 2013 solo piano release, Heart of the Piano (Motema Records), seeks to redeﬁne solo jazz piano as a personal and interactive showcase of melody, energy and groove, while his latest album On My Way to You (MarKeez Records 2018) is a stunning new set of music featuring his working trio with the addition of guest vocalist Gillian Margot.
Geoffrey’s compositions have been commissioned by the Mainly Mozart Festival, Art of Elán ensemble, Saint Joseph Ballet, Zeltsman Marimba Festival, Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra andScottish National Jazz Orchestra. His music can be heard in the ﬁlms What Happens in Vegas and Inhale, and in numerous TV shows including The Young and the Restless (CBS), Parks and Recreation (NBC), House of Lies (Showtime), and Casual (Hulu Original).
Time Magazine wrote, “Geoffrey has more than enough virtuosity and sheer musical wit and intelligence to weave all of his apparently disparate strands of inﬂuence into an original and compelling whole”, and pop icon Sting said “In the universe of piano players that I have been exposed to over the years, Geoffrey has proved himself to be not only a superb technician and improviser, but also above and beyond this, a composer and conceptualist who can maintain the overall line and the DNA of the song in everything he plays. A musician’s musician.”
Gillian Margot is the rarest sort of singer – the kind that makes people sit up and listen.She has an exquisite voice, a disarmingly wide range and a style that is deeply rooted in the tradition of the great jazz vocalists, yet she possesses a gift of storytelling and emotionally intelligent lyrical delivery that is refreshingly free of “jazz singer” clichés. Trained as a vocalist, multi instrumentalist and dancer, Margot feels equally at home in the musical worlds of jazz, R&B and pop, and commands a stage presence and confidence honed through years of performing for audiences worldwide.
A native of Toronto, Margot studied under a generation of jazz legends including Oscar Peterson, Freddy Cole, Carol Welsman, and Norman Simmons. She credits her love of multi-culturalism and mixing of genres to her educational background in both music and anthropology. Considered a young stalwart of the Canadian jazz scene, Gillian Margot has expanded her talents beyond borders through collaborations with artists in the United States, Australia, and Asia. Her vast experience includes sharing the stage with a host of greats including soprano Kathleen Battle, conductors Wayne Marshall (London Philharmonic) and Jukka-Pekka Saraste (Toronto Symphony Orchestra), as well as performing for Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Peter Gabriel, and the Honourable Lincoln M. Alexander.