The 2018 TD Halifax Jazz Festival Announces this Year’s Stingray Rising Stars Finalists

The 2018 TD Halifax Jazz Festival is proud to partner with leading international digital music provider, Stingray Music, to present the Stingray Rising Stars program at this year’s festival. The finalists will perform on the Waterfront Stage every afternoon at 2:30 pm!

The Stingray Rising Stars program seeks to discover, encourage, promote, and champion new and up-and-coming Canadian artists. Stingray Rising Stars programs are presented at a variety of music festivals and conferences each year, including the East Coast Music Awards, and the Western Canadian Music Awards, as well as the TD Halifax Jazz Festival and numerous others.

This year’s 2018 Stingray Music Rising Stars showcases began on Wednesday, July 11 with the Emie R Roussel Trio, and Thursday, July 12 with Hear Willem Paynter & The Hardbop Collective. Continuing through the weekend you can enjoy The Blue Lane on Friday, July 13; Chelsea Mcbride Socialist Night School on Saturday, July 14; and on Sunday, July 15, don’t miss Benjamin Deschamps Quintet perform!

Through a process of peer assessment and online voting, one winning act will receive $3,000 to advance their career. Voting takes place at or at the Stingray Music booth on-site in the Information Booth at the Waterfront Stage until 5 pm on Sunday. The winner will be announced later that evening, Sunday, July 15, from the Waterfront Stage. Visit the Stingray Music Booth at the Waterfront Stage to cast your vote!

Drop by the Waterfront Stage every afternoon, July 11 through 15 @ 2:30 pm to listen to music by artists for the 2018 Stingray Rising Stars Program at the TD Halifax Jazz Festival. The shows are free, and this year’s lineup includes:

Emie R Roussel Trio:

Wednesday, July 11 at 2:30 pm Waterfront Stage (Modern Jazz)

Winner of the 2015 Félix for Jazz Album of the Year for their 3rd album Quantum, and the 2013‑14 Opus prize for Jazz Album of the Year for their preceding release, TRANSIT, the Emie R Roussel Trio has experienced a dizzying ascent since 2010 and is now an unstoppable force in the Canadian jazz scene. With Emie R Roussel on piano (Révélation Radio-Canada Jazz 2014-2015), Nicolas Bédard on bass, and Dominic Cloutier on drums, the trio delivers creative and captivating jazz with passion and undeniable chemistry.

Willem Paynter & The Hardbop Collective:

Thursday, July 12 at 2:30 pm Waterfront Stage (Jazz)

ECMA Nominated (Jazz Recording of the Year) Bassist and Bandleader Willem Paynter is leading the charge putting Halifax on the map. Winner of the Coast’s “Best Of Jazz Artist” in 2016 (GOLD) and 2017 (BRONZE), Willem has played a central role in expanding the Halifax jazz music scene. His bi-weekly engagement at Obladee Wine Bar showcases the best in Canadian talent, with bands that have included Mike Murley, Steve Amirault, André LeRoux, Kenji Omae, Alison Young and countless other amazing jazz musicians. His debut EP “City Grit” was nominated for Jazz Recording of the Year by Music Nova Scotia, and his most recent release, “Wise Guy”, is nominated for the 2018 East Coast Music Award for Jazz Recording of the Year.

The Blue Lane:

Friday, July 13 at 2:30 pm Waterfront

Stage (Rockabilly /Jazz / Blues)

The Blue Lane is a Halifax-based “Jazz Rock” trio that creates a fusion of rockabilly, jazz, blues, indie rock and pop music. The Blue Lane has a unique sound, weaving sultry vocals, intricate harmonies, jazzy guitar shreds and thick beats. Their EP “Blind.” was awarded Music Nova Scotia’s Jazz Recording of the Year. The title track from the album is featured in the upcoming film “Every 21 Seconds” along with The Blue Lane’s debut single “I’ll See You When.” Since 2015, ECMA award-winning artist Rachael Henderson (lead vocals/bass), Morgan Alexander Cruickshank (guitar/vocals), and “The Machine” A.K.A Connor Booth (drums/vocals) have been writing and performing their genre-blending original music to enthusiastic audiences everywhere.

Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School:

Saturday, July 14 at 2:30 pm Waterfront Stage (Big Band)

Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School is a Toronto-based 19 piece modern jazz orchestra led by fast-rising orchestration trail-blazer Chelsea McBride. Award-winning veterans like William Carn, Colleen Allen and Brownman Ali stand next to the city’s hottest 20-somethings in this contemporary modern big band. The Socialist Night School’s debut full-length album “The Twilight Fall” has been hailed by critics as “a dazzling set anyone with even an interest in big band should check out,” and “a progressive jazz eic…a musical experience that delights in many ways.” The Socialist Night School is a storytelling vehicle for bandleader McBride’s evocative writing style.

Benjamin Deschamps Quintet:

Sunday, July 15 at 2:30 pm Waterfront

Stage (Modern Jazz).

Based in Montreal, Benjamin Deschamps is a highly sought after freelancing saxophonist and composer who has played throughout Canada and Europe. Recently named ”Révélation Radio-Canada Jazz,” he released his second original record, Demi-Nuit on MCM and presented this music on tour with the Montreal Arts Council. Deschamps studied Classical Saxophone at Collège Notre-Dame where he discovered a passion for jazz. He joined the Montreal All City Big Band as lead alto and participated in the recording of the album “Lulu Hughes & The Montreal All City Big Band.” Deschamps has a singular ability to interpret many musical styles and is a multi-instrumentalist,  playing flute, clarinet and saxophone. In January 2010 he formed the Atomic Big Band and directed the Montreal All City Big Band during the 2012 winter session. In 2013 he formed the Benjamin Deschamps Quartet. The band quickly got noticed and won the Rimouski Festi Jazz Grand Prix. Deschamps and the Quartet launched his first record “What Do We Know” with Montreal’s label Oddsound Records in March 2014.


All tickets are available to purchase online through or in person at Etixnow kiosks, which are located at the Halifax Forum (2901 Windsor St.) and Music Nova Scotia (open weekdays 9am-5pm 2169 Gottingen St.), they accept debit and credit cards.

During the festival, the HJF Box Office will relocate to the Waterfront Stage (corner of Lower Water Street and Salter Street) and is open 12 pm-9: 45 pm on July 10 and 10am–9:45pm July 11-15. Walk up tickets can be purchased at the door of the concert venue, half hour before show time. Cash or credit card payment accepted.

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