Take Five with Wayne Eagles of trio \ DEF

Wayne Eagles By

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How would you describe the state of jazz today:
There's always a ton of tremendous creative music being recorded and performed, though seemingly fewer outlets for having it seen/heard. Of course, recording revenues have diminished as has airplay, while creative music venues and festivals struggle to balance finances with ticket sales. Does appear a more dire situation in North America than overseas. Yet, the quantity of top quality, challenging improvised music being played and released is sure inspiring.

What are some of the essential requirements to keep jazz alive and growing:
I certainly believe cultural funding greatly assists creative music stay vibrant and accessible, be this federal/provincial/municipal support or business subsidies. There's a lot of noise out there, and it is difficult to get heard above the din of pop culture promotion and advertising. I truly believe people will be supportive of artistic endeavours if more exposed to them via media or accessible performances. While perhaps a "grass is always greener" belief, it does appear improvised music and festivals are in good shape in many European countries as culture (seemingly) remains a priority.

What is in the near future:
Working hard to line up tour and festival dates for trio \ DEF in 2016; we're all anxious to continue performing our existing and new material. Feel free to contact us if booking! In addition, I have some trio recordings with Boston-based drummer Lee Fish that are still in need of editing/mixing. I hope to release those soon as well as several Bruce Wayne tracks (my duo with T Bruce Wittet). Also chatting with my colleague, pianist/composer James McGowan, about revising our collaboration. Hoping to get a long discussed project with Adam Nussbaum back in the queue, perhaps a revival of REGALS with guitarist Ken Rosser.

What is your greatest fear when you perform:
I'd say, being ill-prepared. You always want to put your best foot forward, whether leader or sideman. Technical/equipment issues next on the list (especially re: backline gear).

What song would you like played at your funeral:
Hmm... Subject to change, but one of a small handful of tunes that never fail to move me to tears: Joni Mitchell's later symphonic version of "Both Sides Now" or her "Come in From the Cold." The Beatles' "Long and Winding Road" another.

I had the harrowing task of playing John Abercrombie's "Timeless" and Roy Forbes' "If I Was a Raven" at my father's funeral. Bittersweet, indeed.

What is your favorite song to whistle or sing in the shower?
I'm a dreadful singer/whistler, so tend to dream up tune ideas instead!

By Day:
Full-time musician/educator. Did spend a few years as a part-time musician/educator and fulltime dad when our kids were young.

If I weren't a jazz musician, I would be:
Hopefully still involved with arts and culture, perhaps in an administration or educational role.

What motivates you?
The constant goal of improving as a player, composer and producer. Always so much to learn and improve. Will always remain a moving target...
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