Viewing: News - View all posts

Emergence. A new life. Gala Gardens 

It has been a strange year. 

While tracking demos for a future vocal album a war broke out in Ukraine. I wrote a song for the people of Ukraine. These are compositions I am working to release, however I got sidelined unexpectedly. 

During March I felt overwhelmed. I started learning midi because I wanted to make beats for a chill track, quick and unapologetic. A song for me without any regard for what I had ever made before. I tried to make a lo-fi track in a day. It was so fun. By April I’d created 11 songs. A mosaic of melodies, the songs are comforting and relaxing. Warm vocal harmonies paint soundscapes for intricate refrains and counterpoint. Improvised trumpet and electric ukuleles groove over laid back lo-fi hip hop beats. Being able to create it all on my own was so liberating. I was putting solid ground under my feet and taking control of my life through creation. It felt natural. 

Throughout the pandemic my garden has been a safe haven. A place where I’ve spent many hours, be it in the labour of growing the vegetables, or simply reading in the afternoon sun with my bearded dragon. When reflecting on the feelings I expressed through each song, I found aspects of wonder and a connectedness to the natural world. Where these songs came from and how they were connected to my own relationships to nature. 

I am pleased to release my new instrumental album, Gala Gardens on November 4th, 2022. I wrote, produced and mixed it myself, and brought in Chris Gestrin (Public Alley 421) to master it. I enlisted Emily Valin (EACV Designs) to create the artwork, a fantasy garden fit for a gala. The first single is “Golden Hour” for which I co-produced a super sweet music video with Patrick Collins (Alwaysfurther Films). 

So yeah, I accidentally made an instrumental lo-fi jazz album this year and it’s my new desert island disk. I have changed, grown into a different kind of creator. It is a new chapter on my musical journey and in my life. I remain plotting my next vocal release, anticipating now a shift in style and interpretation. All good things in time. 

Please sit back and enjoy Gala Gardens. It is the best music I have ever made.

A lady is reading aloud to a bearded dragon in her lap while sitting under a tree during the golden hour of the evening.

Here are some things that you can do to support this work and help it reach to more ears. It all makes a huge impact and means everything to me to have your help. 

  • Purchase a digital copy or CD + digital directly from my website
  • Save it to your library or "heart" it on your streaming service of choice 
  • Add songs from Gala Gardens to playlists 
  • Follow me on Spotify and Subscribe on YouTube 
  • Use these songs as your "sound" on TikTok vids or Instagram reels & stories 
  • Mention it to friends, play it for them when they visit, share it on your socials, etc. 

Thank you so much! xo Anita


I made you a present. 

'Long Nights' is a cozy new holiday song with a laid-back jazzy vibe, brimming with nostalgia for family Christmases. 

Sometimes songs take a while and sometimes they pour out in a couple of days. I wrote this one quite rapidly last December. I missed my family, and wanted to paint a tribute in song to our memories and traditions together. 

I engineered it at home and banded together with exquisite cellist Doug Gorkoff (The Living) on the recording. Kris Ruston (Death Mountain Sound) mixed and Chris Gestrin (Public Alley 421) mastered the track. I partnered up with Patrick Collins (Alwaysfurther Films) to create a sweet and intimate music video to capture the soul of 'Long Nights.' 

Today I am so pleased to present my new single to you. A personal song from me to you, warm and full of love. Watch and share the video here.

Jazz Fest Jazz Trance 

For me, Vancouver's jazz fest has always been a celebration of music to usher in summer with a concentrated infusion of improvisation, deep grooves and eclectic programming that stokes my imagination. It is my version of a vacation after a long year of teaching music lessons amidst my own gig schedule.

This year it has more meaning for me. Last year we lost the sweet release the festival brings as we waited, hunkered down, living in a strange limbo feeling both creative and crippled. I have used the time to write new songs that I am eager to share with you. To be able to come back to both performing and watching live music for this year's jazz festival as things have become safer finally and our world begins the shift into a semblance of normality is the greatest feeling I've felt in a very long time. I'm so grateful to Coastal Jazz for this incredible opportunity to emerge back into the world on their stage.

I've seen five shows live and have been taking in every single show offered from Coastal Jazz's inventive streaming focused incarnation this year, and I am so primed for tomorrow. Please tune in tomorrow LIVE at NOON (Pacific) to catch my show when it airs, join the chat and say hello, If you miss it, you can enjoy my presentation on your own time until at 11:59pm on July 6th. Rejuvenate your spirit with me and embrace your jazz fest jazz trance. Click here to watch:


Girl A Girl B  

So I started a band this summer with my twin sister Elizabeth Eccleston (Blythwood Winds, Prof. Queens), and my best buddy Doug Gorkoff (Black Dog String Quartet, KSO). It all started with a Sound of Music and Phantom of the Opera Medley for my brother's wedding in May (the wedding theme was musicals). We killed it and never thought about it again until jazz fest. As Lizzie and I plotted future plans for my solo act, we also began a list of all the songs we've always wanted to play. And the list got long and longer and continues to grow. I guess we are kind of a cover band at the moment, picking tunes hearkening back to our teenage years, while tinging our sets with peculiar, quirky contemporary songs. Who knew that Gollum's Song would pair well with Daft Punk's Instant Crush?

Our rather unusual instrumentation challenges the cover band format, ukulele paired with cello, highlighted by oboe and english horn supporting our twin vocal harmonies dancing above.

A concept we've maintained with Girl A Girl B is to invite guests to sit in wherever possible. It began with my other brother Wesley (Prof. TRU) and his secretly amazing voice as the Phantom in our epic medley, and spawned this summer into guests from Las Estrellas de Vancouver (Michelle Cormier and Jocelyn Waugh) for Rich Girl and a slow-jam version of La Bamba. Our most recent guest, violist John Kastelic (Salt Thief, Black Dog String Quartet, KSO) practically played the whole show with us and even graciously let me sing his amazong original song Lovely Day. Previously recorded with Black Dog String Quartet, we were lucky to have Elyse Jacobson sit in on first violin and Elizabeth covered vocal harmonies and 2nd violin on her oboe.

As summer came to a close my twin Elizabeth headed back to Toronto to teach at Queens University, freelance in orchestras and produce shows with her woodwind quintet (Blythwood Winds) while I'm still plotting my future plans, which now include this unexpectedly delightful project. We began writing songs in the final days of summer, inspired by those artists we've covered and that have influenced and driven us through the years.

To keep up with Girl A Girl B please follow us on Instagram: @girlagirlbmusic, Facebook: @girlagirlbmusic and Twitter: @GirlAGirlB to see where this whimsical voyage is leading.

A Story about Jazz in Kamloops 

I am going to Kamloops to host the district jazz workshop on March 29th. There is a pretty neat story surrounding this which I’d like to share, to help increase student enrollment and community engagement. The official info is here: 

Christy Gauley (a peer of mine from jazz choir at Westsyde Secondary) is now the District Coordinator for the Arts for SD 73 in Kamloops. Working together with Kim Mangan of Kamloops Music Collective (KMC), Christy approached me to plan and run a jazz workshop for grade 8-12 students (we are calling it "Jazz Jam"). It is facilitated by a grant through the 2018 JUNO Awards Host Committee, in partnership with Creative BC and Music BC, part of $30,000 in funding for 33 @letshearitbc Experience Music Program events across BC. 

Our aim is to teach the basics of jazz to make it more accessible to students, who often balk at the idea of playing jazz and improvising, since it can seem intimidating and overwhelming. It is a rekindling of the District Jazz Program where professional jazz musicians mentored students leading up to a live performance in a cafe or club. For the young musicians at Jazz Jam, their workshop day will end in a finale jazz concert from 5:30-7PM at the Kamloops United Church, where they will perform alongside the professionals. 

I am really excited about this event because of my personal history with jazz in Kamloops. 

I was in grade 11 when the first District Jazz Program started, spearheaded by Steve Griffith and his band S.G.H.Q. I auditioned on trumpet, which I had been excelling on, playing in the Westsyde Stage Band for a little over a year. I had also participated in jazz bands and combos at KISSM (Kamloops Interior Summer School of Music). 

I didn't know very much about improvising at that time, save for a few scales that were supposed to work. Steve was a sax player that I had always admired. I used to go hear his band play at Java Cycle and other venues, so this was an exciting opportunity to perform with the pros. His leadership was inspiring and I learned lessons from him that I still teach today. The other members of the Quartet were highly engaging to work with as well. Virtuoso drummer Richard Graham was a recent Westsyde grad and composer Peter Ward on bass was a seasoned pro. Lastly, I was also coached by Oliver Rinaldi, composer and pianist. 

Oliver was the first person to tell me I should sing jazz. He was coaching a vocal student on her song, and I somehow got to sing a few notes for him by accident, trying to help her with the phrasing. He immediately asked me if there was any song that I knew and wanted to sing. At the time I only knew the standard song "When Sunny Gets Blue" from my first audition attempt for Westsyde's Jazz Choir over a year earlier. Needless to say, my secret wish to be a jazz singer materialized and I performed that song at the concert. Through university while studying jazz trumpet, my combos would often invite me sing here and there. Ironically, after graduation I ended up performing mainly as a vocalist at first instead of as a trumpet player. 

Coming full circle to Kamloops as a young professional, I started working with some of these same players from the days of District Jazz. The arts community of Kamloops was grieved in 2003 after Oliver Rinaldi passed away too soon from cancer. For District Jazz and SGHQ, guitarist and keyboardist Kris Ruston filled Oliver’s shoes in the years since. I am very pleased that Kris will be joining my group for this workshop to share his unique stylistic approach to soloing with the kids. 

The pictures included below I dug out from my old photo albums while contemplating this story. I am pictured playing my trumpet alongside Steve Griffith in 2000. Steve also tragically passed away in 2011, leaving a treasured legacy of students he had positively influenced. One of the best lessons I learned from him was, "If you play a wrong note, play it again immediately. Then it seems like you meant to do that." 

The other picture included is of me performing at Paradiso (now the Commodore) in Kamloops with Kris Ruston, Richard Graham and Peter Ward in 2006. 

Sadly, just last year our friend Peter Ward also passed away. He and I worked together many times so I was happy to hear that his son, Alexander, has picked up the torch and is now an exciting up and coming bassist and keyboard player living in Kamloops. He is excited to carry on with his father's work sharing the joys of jazz with the ambitious bunch that sign up for this workshop. Of course my longtime friend and bandmate Richard Graham and SGHQ veteran will be backing us up on drums at Jazz Jam. 

I am looking forward to sharing the secrets of this music with the next generation of Kamloops students and honouring the legacy of jazz in Kamloops.

Jazz is in the air... 

Happy Victoria Day! All kinds of good news and goodies to share with you today. 

So thrilled by this new review from Dave O Rama of More Trumpet in BC Musician Magazine.

Here's a playlist of videos from my appearance at The Paddock in Toronto with the sensational pianist Steve Amirault, performing at Canadian Music Week 2017. Please share recklessly and muchly!

While I was in Toronto I also had a chance to sit down with Valerie and Ashley for Mix Sessions at CIUT 89.5 FM (Radio of University of Toronto) for an interview.
You can listen to it here:

Pictured above is the endless sunset I flew into on my way home to Vancouver after the whirlwind trip to Toronto.

Glad to be home and enjoying some time digging in the garden in today's sunshine, all ready and set to perform tonight at my my monthly installment of jazz at The Kino (3456 Cambie - 9PM) in Vancouver. xo


More Trumpet Day!! 

More Trumpet is out now and the reviews are HOT! 

You can preview the album NOW here on my website:  or use this direct link to full streaming to preview: 

Available for download NOW on CD Baby or iTunes! for only $6.93 CAD!!! 

I am super excited for the party tonight at The Kino (3456 Cambie) in Vancouver. 8-11pm, by donation. Learn more here: FB Event

New jazz album: More Trumpet  

It's finally happening! It has taken me six months and now my new jazz album More Trumpet is in pressing as I type this. I am so happy to finally be able to share it with the world! The CD release party is set for Sunday, December 18th @ The Kino (3456 Cambie St) in Vancouver at 8pm. The album will be available on iTunes, CD Baby and streaming on Apple Music, and Spotify.

I had been talking about recording a fresh traditional jazz album for almost a year before I was able to get into the studio to start sessions. Although I am often artistically drawn to many genres of music, my deepest love is for jazz and I feel the most at home within the sphere of the jazz world. I wanted to create an album that would allow me to sing and play from my heart. I also feel that now after all these years my voice as expressed through my playing has caught up to my vocal abilities.

This album is titled More Trumpet for that reason and a few others... My sense of humour never leaves me, thank goodness, and when I thought of this title, it fit so well, being that I am playing on every track of the album, that I often shout out "MORE TRUMPET!!" at concerts (shamelessly biased), and that I believe that 'more trumpet' is a good answer to almost every question. Then there was that time I had 4 backup trumpets at my show: See "Red Shoes" video.

Making this album has been therapeutic for me as well, in such a dark and turbulent year, music has been a constant comfort. When I listen to it I feel like I am being wrapped in a warm blanket of love, trust, and hope. May it give you the same feelings as you all deserve happiness as you find your way through this winter.
xo Anita

PS. I could not have made this album without the help of my players: Andrew Smith (Guitar & Vocals), Graham Clark (Bass), Doug Gorkoff (Cello), and my production team: Trevor Lorence (Engineering), David Spidel (Engineering & Mixing), Chris Gestrin (Mastering) and Natasha Tentes (Artwork). 

P.P.S. I would like to add that this album was inspired by and is dedicated to my dear friend Peter Collins, a man who had limitless talent and the voice of an angel, who believed in me when I was at my lowest, and who taught me to believe in myself. He is missed every day, and never forgotten.

Summer: New Jazz EP & Music in the Park 

Summertime... and the living is out there...

Jazz festival season is always my favorite time of the year. It comes and goes so fast and I always miss a few shows, while taking in as many as possible, some really tough choices to decide between this year! For my own performance I brought a 9-piece band to the Railspur Stage on Granville Island for Van Jazz Fest Canada Day Celebrations. I had my twin Elizabeth backing me up on Vocals (pictured right, with our mother), Heather Anderson on trumpet, Ben Henriques on tenor sax, Doug Gorkoff soaring on cello, Andrew Smith (of Sweetpea Swing Band), on guitar and uke, Graham Clark on bass, and fellow Kamloopsians Kris Ruston on keys and Richard Graham on drums. It was EPIC! What a powerhouse behind me! I feel so lucky to be able to do what I do and continually develop my craft and my material. Thank yous go to everyone who has ever encouraged me, given me an opportunity, and for all who believe in the dream I have of putting out real, world class, honest music. My goal is always to connect with you, whether it's the way I sing or play a line, to the words I write or songs I choose to play, you are always in my mind and in my heart.

With the intensity (jazz binging) of the 10 days of the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival behind me I look upon the next 2 months with a longing to relax, hit the beach, and soak up the patio life. However so far the 10 days since the festival have proven to be packed with hilarious costumed gigs. From "Bollywood" Indian brass bands to an appearance with Las Estrellas de Vancouver (Mariachi) at the tremendous Carnival del Sol (left), coupled with sweet little jazz performances. So far July seems a like it has more surprises in store.

My plans for the summer are to finish recording my new jazz album. I hope to be able to release it in the early fall, and am gearing all my focus that direction.

If you would like to hear me perform you can catch me in Vancouver at The Kino (3456 Cambie) July 25th and August 22nd, 9pm by donation. I play there on the 4th Monday of every month.

For my hometown crowd in Kamloops: I will be appearing at Riverside Park - Music in The Park on August 13th with a large band (deets TBA). 7PM, free. It has been too long since I voyaged across the Cascades to the meeting of the Thompson rivers, and WAY TOO LONG since I got to eat yummy Senor Froggy!

Aside from recording and performing, this summer I will be writing and developing new songs for another original album, off in the future. Hopefully with my ukulele at a beach. :)  May your summer be splendid and filled with love and fun! xo Anita

You are invited!!  

Come party with me at this year's TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival!

I am exceedingly happy to announce and invite you to my performance at the 2016 TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival on Canada Day on Granville Island Railspur Stage! 5:30-7:30pm FREE 

Count them, there are seven, that's right SEVEN, in my band lineup this year for jazz fest! And we get a beer garden---It's going to be a PARTY. I am excited to be playing with such a wildly energetic band. We will be bringing the funkiest, swingingest, sweetest and most lively show ever! 

The Lineup:
Anita Eccleston - Vocals & Trumpet
Andrew Smith - Vocals & Electric Guitar
Ben Henriques - Tenor Saxophone
Doug Gorkoff - Cello
Graham Clark - Upright & Electric Bass
Kris Ruston - Keyboard
Richard Graham - Drums 

The Railspur Stage is located in the middle of the island, between the Railspur Alley and Cartwright Street. Just follow your ears East past the Brewery. 

R.S.V.P. on Facebook! 

If you haven't seen it yet, watch my video of last years guest appearance with the Plastic Acid Orchestra: 

Super hungry for jazz? There are several other amazing shows at Granville Island on Canada Day! You can learn more about them and the whole Vancouver Jazz Fest here. 

Huge THANK YOU to TD, and Coastal Jazz for this incredible opportunity!

The thrill of a lifetime... 

The videos from Vancouver Jazz Fest are ready. I am so pleased to share them with you. :)

It was an evening to remember. My sister Lizzie sitting, smiling in the front row at the fountain. The sun was reflecting from a nearby building, shining directly on the stage. The solar spotlight with it's warm glow. It was a magical experience... Surreal. It really was a dream come true. Now here it is for you to enjoy. To view, click  Mirror and Valerie.
Many thanks to the Plastic Acid Orchestra, the Vancouver International Jazz Festival and Wood Box Films. Special thanks to all of you with your exquisite ears, for the love and support.
More to come soon from this extraordinary performance by the Plastic Acid Orchestra.

Spread the good vibes by sharing these videos using the handy links below!

Direct links to share the videos:

TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival Announcement! 

Liz & Anita Eccleston @ Vancouver Jazz Fest circa 1999 Gastown

In 1999 I was a kid dreaming about being on a Vancouver International Jazz Festival stage. Roaming Gastown and David Lam Park seeking more jazz to feast my ears on, I was gearing up for summer jazz camp in Courtenay, my senior year in high school in the fall, and the prospects of university music school auditions all year.

I vividly remember the day (pictured first) with my twin sister Liz, listening to Brad Turner and Mike Allen, finding hole-in-the-wall used book stores and eating pizza. The second slice destined to hit the cobblestones of Gastown moments after this photo was taken.

Last year Lizzie made it out from Ontario to join me in my yearly pilgrimage to as many jazz performances as possible, particularly the outdoor events. The picture below is from our adventures last year, enjoying the Robson Stage (and beer garden).

Liz & Anita Eccleston @ Vancouver Jazz Fest circa 2014 Robson

So now I am extremely delighted to announce that this year I will finally live that dream, twice. First as a featured guest of Plastic Acid performing my sick new funk/soul song 'Mirror' with full orchestra (Friday, June 19th 7:30PM), then with my very own Anita Eccleston Trio featured on Canada Day at Granville Island's Public Market Stage at 12PM.

The morning after finding out I had been selected this year, I had been having one of my recurring dreams that I got into the festival. That exquisite moment of realization that my dreams had literally come true was something truly remarkable. I am planning a very unforgettable performance for Canada Day.

I want to thank every single person out there for every word of encouragement, every tapping toe, my musical peers for your generosity and amazing abilities, and everyone who has believed in me and my dreams. EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE. My dreams are ever expanding and this is just the beginning. You can follow my journey on Twitter, Facebook, and my Anita Eccleston Jazz Mailing List.


Free Music for a limited time! 

I am giving away free tracks on my website from So It Goes and the Trio EP for the simple bargain of an email address.

It's my aim to use this shiny new website to stay directly in touch with you, my fans, friends and supporters, instead of relying on unstable and limiting social media platforms, very especially Facebook (see Ari's Take on the subject, and these two well put together videos: The Problem With Facebook and Facebook Fraud).

An email address is the best way for me to stay in touch with the real, and very special people who connect with my music and believe in my musical dream. I have been focusing on making sure that my website is your NUMBER ONE choice for where to find up-to-date information, and have a direct link with me.

If you arrived here today because of my email to all of my list subscribers, WELCOME! This means that you are already a part of my Jazz Dream Team. Don't forget to collect your free download from the link provided in the email! Contact me at if you have any difficulties downloading it. If possible, please pass on the download link (CC me please) and a recommendation to any of your friends that you feel would also like my music, and I will send you another track for FREE! We can get the word out about my music by working together to get these songs into the ears of great listeners.

New Website! 

Hi Everybody! I am redoing, remodeling and beefing up my website. I have left wordpress and am on the path towards interactive awesomeness with the help of my friends at Bandzoogle. Check back for more development everyday! Love Anita