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Duncan Hopkins

British born Duncan Hopkins is a double bassist, composer, arranger and educator based in Toronto, Canada. He has been likened to the world’s best : “St.Catharines has given the jazz world one important composer…Kenny Wheeler. It may have another one … in the person of Duncan Hopkins”. Globe and Mail and “(Duncan’s) strength’s lie in his writing and sense of textural organisation, which show him willing to stretch, push or otherwise challenge style and format.” Globe and Mail

Aside from his own projects, he is a popular sideman for a wide variety of artists such as Dianna Krall, Mark Murphy, Norma Winstone, Lester Bowie, Kenny Wheeler, John Hicks, Peter Appleyard, Ken Peplowski, Ed Bickert, D.D. Jackson, Scott Hamilton, Houston Person, Warren Vache, Sam Rivers, George Masso, Tony Malaby, Bobo Stenson and arrangers Robert Farnon and Ralph Carmichael to name but a few. He was the last bassist in the famed Rob McConnell and the Boss Brass for several tours including Brazil and concerts including Carnegie Hall. He has also been the bassist with the popular Canadian Jazz Quartet since 2000.

Duncan has toured extensively throughout Canada, Great Britain, Europe, Brazil and the United States. He can be heard on over forty albums, numerous CBC, BBC and NPR recordings with such groups as The Pat LaBarbera Trio/Quartet, Dianna Krall, Peter Appleyard, Robert Farnon,The John Tank Quartet, The Warren Vache Quartet, The Nikki Iles Trio, The Martin Speake/Bobo Stenson Quartet.

Duncan’s solo albums which feature all original material from the leader, have received international acclaim : Le Rouge (1994) “This CD is Excellent!” {Cadence Magazine NY, USA} and Kindred Spirits (1996) “..a high grade release where the writing…is as impressive as the playing.” {The Toronto Star}. Snapshots (2000) “Snapshots …. is an impressive and accessible CD of contemporary jazz….(it) lends the disc (to) an early 60’s Miles Davis Quintet feel {Downtowner 2000}. His European band Secret has also been garnering a lot of attention for Secret (2002) “Make the effort to get this exceptional CD. {Phil Erenshaft Whole Magazine} and “very intelligent, sharp and very musical.” {John Fordham The London Guardian U.K. and also Bloor st.”The quality of the compositions, the incisiveness of the soloing and the collective spirit of the enterprise make this a better album than its predecessor. Hopkins’s seamless countermelodic flow beneath Speake and Iles is reminiscent of the late Bill Evans sideman Scott La Faro…”{John Fordham The Guardian UK} Duncan’s stunning Red & Brassy first combined the jazz tradition with the British Brass band tradition(2005). “Duncan Hopkins adds an inspired voice to Canadian jazz composition with his masterful Red & Brassy, offering a fascinating glimpse into the past, present and future in one invigorating breath.{ e-jazznews} and “This cd is a remarkable musical accomplishment – highly recommended!” (Wholenote Magazine Mar 01, 2006)

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