100 million albums sold world-wide, 22 Grammy Awards, an Academy Award (Best Original Song), Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, R&B Hall of Fame, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, are but a few of the accolades honouring the spectacular musical career of the one and only Stevie Wonder.
The universality of Stevie Wonder and his music serve as the inspiration behind this Saskatoon Jazz Orchestra show, marking our return to live performance after an 18-month hiatus due to the global pandemic.
This SJO performance will feature guest artists Heidi Munro (vocals), Todd Martin (vocals & harmonica) and Mark Dejong (sax).
It will feature a blend of classic and reimagined renditions of Stevie Wonder’s incredibly joy-filled music, presented though the ‘lens’ of Saskatoon’s premiere large jazz orchestra the SJO.
Saskatoon’s Heidi Munro is a R&B vocal powerhouse with over 25 years in the business.
Heidi leads a group of seasoned professionals, widely known to Western Canada. Whether it’s her full eight-piece band or trio, Heidi’s ability to scale her band is perfect for intimate settings, big stages, and clubs.
Collectively, all of the musical influences of these A-List musicians, their history and "years of service" became a signature style and “feel good” groove, a blend of R&B/Jazz, Blues and Rock ’n’ Roll with a hint of Country flavor. The fantastic musicianship, original musical arrangements, tasty guitar riffs, intricate piano rides, and spot on horns, will all make you smile … it’s like coming home. In a moment it can also feel fresh, exhilarating, innovative, and full of passion.
Todd Martin began his musical studies at a young age on violin and piano. An accomplished young pianist, he became a serious student of the French horn in high school. A student at the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy, Todd went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Music and was awarded a Licentiate diploma with high distinction on French horn from McGill University. He spent three summers with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada where he toured Japan, Europe, and all ten Canadian provinces with some of Canada’s finest young musicians.
In 2002 Todd moved to Winnipeg and began to explore new avenues in music. He has been a frequent guest with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, both on French horn and harmonica and is a founding member of The Dirty Catfish Brass Band, a cutting edge New Orleans style band, soul cover band Dr. Hotbottom, and blues band Driving Wheel. Harmonica recording credits include The Dirty Catfish Brass Band Steve Bell, and The Bros. Landreth . He can be seen regularly around town playing horns, harmonica, and singing and has performed at the Winnipeg Folk Festival, Prairie Wind Music Festival, Winnipeg Jazz Festival, Winnipeg Fringe Festival, and the Barbecue and Blues Festival.
Mark has been active as a performer and educator since graduating from the University of Calgary in 1991. He taught saxophone at the Mount Royal College Conservatory, organized music for the Beat Niq jazz club from its inception until 2000, and maintained a busy performing schedule with The Swinging Bovines saxophone quartet. After moving to Vancouver in 1998 to study with acclaimed sax teacher Stan Karp, Mark again relocated to New Jersey in 2001 to pursue graduate jazz studies with master saxophonist Ralph Bowen. After completing his graduate studies Mark returned to Canada to begin teaching jazz studies at the University of Saskatchewan.