Hot jazz trio in Cumberland

The dynamic Nanaimo trio of Eugene Burton, James McRae and Nico Rhodes has been playing together and in different configurations for the past few years.

Rhodes and McRae have played together for approximately nine years in many different musical situations on Vancouver Island, while Nico and Eugene met in Vancouver four years ago and have been a united force ever since.

The trio, which performs this Sunday at Studio Live! in Cumberland, has generated a dedicated following throughout mid to south Vancouver Island.

"We are really looking forward to performing to upper Island audiences. Our music is suitable for all ages... anyone who is interested in hearing some magical grooves and unique melodious blends!" says drummer McRae from his Nanaimo home.

McRae comes off a busy 2013, having delighted audiences with several Jimmy Smith Tribute shows in December.

Reflecting his versatility as a drummer and composer, James has played with many renowned musicians across the musical spectrum, most notably Jennifer Scott and Rene Worst; Miles Black's Count Basie/Duke Ellington Tribute; Boogie Woogie bluesman David Vest; John Hyde and Ken Lister; Victoria's Latin dance band Kumbia, Connor Stewart, and "5 Note" Soul Jazz group to name but a few in the past year.

Rhodes is a full-time pianist/composer/arranger completing his symphonic arrangements for the music of Rick Scott, which will be performed by the Vancouver Island Symphony Orchestra in February.

An accomplished pianist and woodwind player, and 2013 Vancouver Ovation Award nominee, Nico has just finished a stint as musical director for the Chemainus Theatre's production of It's A Wonderful Life.

Bassist/guitarist/composer Burton has enjoyed a musically varied year doing bass and guitar session work with a wide variety of musicians, including Mikaila Tombe, Alexandria Maillot and Ken Lavigne. Eugene has also played in two Chemainus Theatre productions over the past 18 months.

Burton, McRae and Rhodes perform at Studio Live! at 2679 Beaufort Ave. this Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets are available at Bop City Records and at the door.

— Studio Live!

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