John Alcorn

BIOGRAPHY

 “…magical music man…” ~ Now Magazine

The Toronto Star calls him “one of our finest interpreters of the ‘great American songbook,’ an artist who always knows how to walk the fine line between respecting the material and offering an original interpretation.”

JazzFM.91 has dubbed him “one of the most exciting vocal interpreters to appear on the scene in many years, Alcorn is the consummate vocal artist combining intuition, musicality and good taste.”

Long acknowledged as one of Canada’s premiere jazz vocalists, John Alcorn has delivered his distinctive renditions of jazz standards on the most prestigious bandstands and concert stages across Canada. His 2009 National Jazz Awards nomination as Male Vocalist of the Year was the latest addition to a long list of citations and acknowledgements. Named Male Vocalist of the Year at the 1999 Jazz Report Awards ceremony, Alcorn released Quiet Night, his first CD of jazz standards, in 2003.

Quiet Night, a self-produced, highly personal project, garnered virtually unanimous praise from critics and fans — and introduced John to an international audience for the first time, receiving radio airplay in Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Denmark, England, Germany, Hungary, Indonesia, Italy, India, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Republic of Belarus, Russia, Scotland, Spain, Wales — as well as Canada and the USA.

As a composer, lyricist, musical director and arranger, Alcorn has made significant contributions to numerous theatrical productions, including Theresa Tova’s Still the Night, for which he earned a Dora Mavor Moore Award. Penny Plain, currently touring internationally, for which he composed and recorded the full score (“John Alcorn’s sometimes spare, sometimes lush sound design, which uses women’s voices extensively, is gorgeous.” – straight.com), is his second collaboration with renowned theatre artist Ronnie Burkett.

While the public knows him best as a singer and composer, in recent years Alcorn has discovered a fresh passion in music production. His extensive credentials in the realms of music, film, television and theatre have made this an effortless and seemingly inevitable transition.

Singers, musicians and studio technicians consistently praise Alcorn’s production aesthetic and approach. With his multifaceted background (as composer, lyricist, arranger, music director, vocal coach, bandleader, accompanist, studio musician, session singer, etc) he is easily able to articulate concepts, both methodological and creative. Singers particularly appreciate his attention to detail — and his ability to elicit their finest work.

The East Coast Music Awards (2001) acknowledged his very first production project (The Second Time Around, Diane Alcorn – his mother!) with a Jazz Album of the Year nomination. He followed up this first success with Telling Stories (Theresa Tova), focusing on traditional Yiddish music. This CD has garnered fervent critical acclaim for its fresh, innovative production, and has sold thousands of units to date – in a notoriously tough niche market. Alcorn produced his own CD, Quiet Night, in 2003, for which he received a 2004 National Jazz Awards nomination. More recent production credits include Judy Marshak’s A Matter of Time (included in Jazz.FM91’s “Best of 2009” year-end list), and the 2010 release, Show Off, for Cabaret artist Gabi Epstein.

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