Ivana jazz

By Stephanie Schewchuk

Seldom is an artist as expressive, talented, and real as Ivana Santilli. Coinciding with her appearance at the TD Canada Trust Jazz Festival in Calgary, the Canadian with French and Italian roots will soon release her sophomore album, Corduroy Boogie.

"I’ve learned a lot since it [Brown] was released," she says. "I’ve dug a lot more into groove. It’s also why I called the album Corduroy Boogie because I realized the kind of music I was doing was much more about texture than just colour. There’s something more to grab on to."

Reluctant to classify herself as purely a jazz artist, Santilli agreed to play the festival because her project embodies the spirit of jazz.

"Jazz is all about free experimentation and it always has room to grow. I think that’s why I’m part of it because it can branch off into many different directions."

She acknowledges her music is much smaller in Canada but that the country is unparalleled in its support for independent artists.

"I have gotten so much good feedback from the people who really do buy the music. I’ve gotten a lot of signs that say I’m really supposed to be doing this because whenever I steer away from it, it calls me back."

Santilli speaks with particular enthusiasm when asked about her participation in the festival, "The venues are great and the audiences are intelligent and adventurous."

After the jazz festival, Santilli plans to tour across Canada and the United States, as well as concentrating on the release of the album in other countries.

"Canada is many things–we’re not just country music and pop/rock female angst acts. [Those women are amazing] but it’s never good to define a country by one artist."

Santilli can add herself to the group of strong women that characterize the Canadian music scene. In addition to being able to blend musical innovation with a personable and honest sincerity, she truly believes in the music she releases.

"If it weren’t my record, I’d listen to it. I’m just telling you straight–it’s hot."

Ivana Santili plays the Gateway on Mon., June 28. Tickets are $25 at Ticketmaster.

Leave a comment