The Jessica Stuart Few

Jessica Stuart-Koto/Guitar, Liam Smith-Double Bass, Tony Nesbitt-Larking-drums

Many are called, but the chosen are The Jessica Stuart Few.
Simply put, when you’re the only 'koto' (a traditional Japanese 13-stringed instrument) playing indie singer-songwriter in the world, whose trademark red hair and genre-bending dancefloor grooves have taken you on multiple tours throughout Asia and Australia, despite being Vancouver born and a long-time Toronto native, you’re bound to raise an eyebrow or 2000.
Three albums into her career, since 2008, musician Jessica Stuart has always determinedly and instinctively expanded her music playing abilities, as a rare female quadruple threat musician who produces, writes, plays and performs all of her own music arrangements. Certainly as an inventive genre-bending composer, guitarist and vocalist on her own past recordings Kid Dream and Two Sides to Every Story, and contributor to the works of other fellow nouveau musical innovators (e.g. she sings back-up vocals on the forthcoming album by Polaris Prize and Juno Award-winning throat singer Tanya Tagaq featuring The Element Choir), shape shifting becomes necessary. And because Stuart intentionally attaches herself to wide ranging indie rock, soul and jazz music scenes in North America, being rhythmically and harmonically adventurous is just another day at the office for this multiple Award-nominated and winning musician. “I am convinced that people’s taste in music is so much more than what they’re fed through the mainstream, and that we should stop ‘dumbing it down’ and using formulas to try and make art,” says the multi-lingual Stuart who has been playing the koto since she was nine-years old, describes herself as a “prog Joni Mitchell”, and who over the last three years has won Best Album Award designations at the international (IMA’s) Independent Music Awards, and was the runner up in Harbourfront Centre’s Soundclash Music Awards, among other accolades. “What I do doesn’t easily fit in a box, and different listeners hear the thing they are the most familiar with. Dancefloor jazz enthusiasts can hear the obvious grooves. And perhaps rock music lovers can hear that I listen to rock music even though I’m not playing rock!”

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