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Sick Boss (Schmidt / Meger / Peggy Lee / JP Carter / Naylor / Page): Sick Boss (Drip Audio)

A richly refined and sophisticated album drawing on improvisation, experimenation and rock elements from the collaborative Vancouver ensemble Sick Boss of core members guitarist Cole Schmidt, bassist James Meger and drummer Daniel Gaucher, with guests including guitarist Tony Wilson, cellist Peggy Lee, trumpeter JP Carter, synth player Tyson Naylor, &c. &c.

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product information:

UPC: 875531013245

Label: Drip Audio
Catalog ID: DAO1324
Squidco Product Code: 24209

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2017
Country: Canada
Packaging: Digipack
No recording data listed.


Cole Schmidt-guitar, effects

James Meger-bass, effects

Dan Gaucher-drums, effects

Peggy Lee-cello

JP Carter-trumpet, effects

Tyson Naylor-synthesizer, organ, piano, accordion, effects

Jeremy Page-clarinet

Tony Wilson-guitar

Ted Crosby-bass clarinet, clarinet

Debra-Jean Creelman-voice

Molly Guldemond-voice

Malcolm Jack-drum Computer

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Artist Biographies:

"Cole Schmidt, is an active participant in Vancouver's creative music scene. As a composer, Cole spends the majority of his time writing and recording with 2013 Juno Award winners Pugs and Crows and the newly formed group Sick Boss. He can also be heard alongside other local artists such as Debra-Jean Creelman, Copilots, Karen Foster and John Paton's Soft Morning City. In 2013, he received the Vancouver Mayor's Arts Award for Emerging Artist in Music. Cole has toured extensively throughout North America and Europe, including a 5 week tour with Drip Audio's DarkBlueWorld in Eastern Europe and Russia and participating in the Vilnius Jazz Festival."

-Pugs and Crows (

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"James Meger was born and raised in Surrey, British Columbia. He began playing the electric bass in early high school and took up the double bass upon entering post-secondary. After a brief stint studying music and Capilano College in North Vancouver, James moved to Montreal where he earned his Bachelors in Jazz Studies from McGill University and studied with drummer/composer Chris McCann.

Despite working and studying primarily in the fields of jazz and improvised music, James' experience on the bass spans many different areas of music. In his late teens he was a member of the acclaimed Vancouver based indie-roots band, The Sumner Brothers, with which he recorded two studio albums over 3 years. Later he went on to tour Eastern Europe with art-rock band, Dark Blue World, as well as tour all over Canada with Vancouver folk act, The Fugitives.

While attending McGill University, James helped form the collective saxophone trio, Braveheart. They have toured several times around Canada and self-released one album of original music entitled Acoustic Music.

James currently resides in Vancouver, where he is an active member of many diverse groups including: The Bruno Hubert Trio, Squareheart, 4=4, O.A.B., Tom Wherrett Trio, Proud Animal, The Jaclyn Guillou Band and Cow Trance."

-Reach Out Psychosis (

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Vancouver based drummer Dan Gaucher has been a member of the following projects:

The Abramson Singers 2008-present
The Buttless Chaps Drums 2007-present
The Crackling Drums 2005-present
The Crackling Drums 2005-present
Francois Houle Tentet drums
Tom Varner/Francois Houle Quartet drums
Melody Diachun EQ drums
The October Trio with Brad Turner drums
Anatma drums
Dan Gaucher Trio
Ribcage drums
Uncommon Gold drums
Stop Time drums
Fond Of Tigers drums
doppler (d)efect drums / electronics
Alita Dupray Quintet drums
Ian Cox Trio drums
Shift drums
Terra Grimard drums
Sick Boss drums
The Bruce Freedman African Groove Band Drums 2007-The End
Rabnett 5 Drums 2002-The End
the october trio Drums
Bess Durey Quartet drums
Headwater (Guest) drums ?-2006

-Squidco 8/8/2022

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"Cellist, improviser, composer Peggy Lee was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. She studied classical cello, completing a bachelors degree in performance at the University of Toronto as a student of Vladimir Orloff and Denis Brott. She furthered her studies on the cello with lessons with Martha Gerschefski in Atlanta Georgia. In the fall of 1988 Peggy began a year residency with a string quartet at the Banff Centre in Banff, Alberta. It was here that she first became interested in collaborating with artists from different mediums and in veering away from the classical path. This led to a decision to move away from the known and thus to her relocating to Vancouver, B.C. where she now makes her home.

Peggy's first forays into improvisation in Vancouver happened with dancers at the EDAM (experimental dance and music) studio at the Western Front and eventually led to her meeting and joining guitarists Ron Samworth and Tony Wilson in their respective bands; as well as becoming a member of the New Orchestra Workshop, which went on to have interesting and fruitful collaborations with Butch Morris, Wadada Leo Smith, René Lussier, Barry Guy and George Lewis.

Peggy continues to collaborate frequently with Ron and Tony and with her husband, drummer Dylan van der Schyff, as well as with many other longtime musical associates including Dave Douglas, Wayne Horvitz, Robin Holcomb, Veda Hille and Lisa Miller. She also leads or co-leads a number of musical projects: The Peggy Lee Band, Film in Music, Waxwing (with Tony Wilson and Jon Bentley) and Beautiful Tool (with Mary Margaret O'Hara).

She has also collaborated extensively in theatre and dance with companies and artists such as Ruby Slippers, Rumble Theatre, Presentation House, David Hudgins, Peter Bingham and Delia Brett.

In 2005, Peggy received the Freddie Stone Award for integrity and innovation in music and in 2010 she was awarded a Jesse Richardson Theatre Award for outstanding composition."

-Peggy Lee Website (

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"JP Carter is a multiple Juno award-winning musician from Vancouver, Canada. Carter's singular approach to the trumpet and versatility as an improvisor and composer make him a vital contributor to the Vancouver music community. JP incorporates a variety of techniques into his trumpet playing, utilizing and experimenting with acoustic (traditional, extended) and electronic (effected, amplified) methods to create a wide spectrum of sound. Currently a member of several Vancouver-based groups, including Destroyer, Dan Mangan, Fond of Tigers, the Tony Wilson 6tet, Handmade Blade (with Peggy Lee & Aram Bajakian), Gordon Grdina's Haram, Michael Blake's Variety Hour, and the various New Orchestra Workshop ensembles. JP's main projects as a composer/performer continue to be Inhabitants, Aeroplane Trio, and Carsick. These three long-standing original projects have all released albums on Vancouver's Drip Audio label []. Most recently, JP has been working on a solo amplified trumpet project. He will be releasing a self-produced document of this solo work in 2017 entitled "Toy & Tool".

Awards & Achievements: Juno Award Winner (2012, Dan Mangan, Alternative Album of the Year); Juno Award Winner (2011, Fond of Tigers, Instrumental Album of the Year); Juno Award Nominee (2016, Destroyer, Alternative Album of the Year); Juno Award Nominee (2012, Destroyer, Alternative Album of the Year); Juno Award Nominee (2009, Inhabitants, Instrumental Album of the Year); Polaris Prize Short List (2011, Destroyer, "Kaputt"); Galaxie Rising Star Award (2005, Inhabitants, Vancouver Int'l Jazz Festival)


JP studied Jazz Performance with Kevin Dean and Andre White at McGill University in Montreal from 1993-96, and Jazz Trumpet with Alan Matheson at Vancouver Community College in 1992/93. As a teenager, JP studied privately for a brief time in 1990/91 with Vancouver-based trumpeter Bill Clark, while studying under David Proznick in the award-winning jazz program at Semiahmoo Secondary in Surrey, BC."

- Website (

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"Vancouver-born pianist, keyboardist and composer Tyson Naylor has toured extensively across Canada, the US and Europe. A JUNO award recipient, he has played with Dan Mangan, Frazey Ford, the Warsaw Improviser's Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Turning Point Ensemble, Destroyer and Wayne Horvitz. Current and past collaborators include Jesse Zubot, François Houle, Tony Wilson and Peggy Lee. Naylor spent three years living in Berlin, Germany, where he immersed himself in the city's vibrant improvised music scene. In Europe he's played with Tobias Delius, Axel Dörner, Mats Äleklint and Joe Williamson. Current projects include Limbs of the Stars, Tiny Pyramids, Sun Ra's Star System, Dalava, Sick Boss, Sun Belt and Longhand.

His own project, the Tyson Naylor Trio, has toured Canadian and U.S. Jazz Festivals and his debut album, Kosmonauten, on the Vancouver-based Songlines label, has received very positive reviews from the New York Jazz Record, Georgia Straight and Signal to Noise.

Tyson composed the soundtrack to short film, Lynnwood, and was included on the soundtrack to feature film, Hector and the Search For Happiness."

-Tyson Naylor Website (

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"Vancouver's Coastal Jazz and Blues hails him as "unquestionably one of the most original guitar stylists on the Canadian scene". Down Beat Magazine entitles him as "...a talismanic West Coast figure." Tony Wilson has studied with many acclaimed jazz musicians including Dave Holland, John Abercrombie, Kevin Eubanks and Steve Coleman and has shared the stage with well know international artists such as William Parker, Gerry Hemingway, Han Bennink, Toby Delius, Benoit Delbecq & Eric Boeren. As a composer, he has been commissioned by Standing Wave, Joe Trio, the Little Chamber Music Society, New Orchestra Workshop and the Hard Rubber Orchestra. He has released six CDs under his own name for the Drip Audio recording label. Favourable reviews of his work have appeared in Downbeat, the Wire, Exclaim and Signal to Noise among other publications."

-Pugs and Crows (

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"Ted Crosby is a Vermont-born, Montreal-based saxophonist, clarinetist and composer."

-Soundcloud (

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"While you might not know the name Debra-Jean Creelman, there's a sense of familiarity upon hearing her sing. It may be the deeply powerful and intimate nature of her voice that makes you feel like she's singing the truths of the world directly to your soul, or it may be the fact that she has leant her voice to a bevvy of notable Canadian acts.

Starting as a founding member of Canadian indie-pop act Mother Mother, Creelman moved on after several albums to focus on her solo career, and has since been featured on recordings and in performances with Frazey Ford, the Wooden Sky, The Crackling, Louise Burns, Aidan Knight, Dustin Bentall, and Pugs and Crows. Her own projects have ranged from Debra-Jean and the Means, a hard hitting guitar led indie rock band that placed her in the prestigious PEAK Performance Project, to Debra-Jean and the Dreams, a cover band focusing on folk and doo-wop covers that has been a featured act at the Vancouver Jazz Festival. Regardless of the setting, what consistently stands out is Debra-Jean's commanding vocal presence, that can take you from a whispered secret to a howling lament in the blink of an eye. Paired with her pointed, whip-smart lyrics, a performance by Debra-Jean is one you simply cannot look away from."

-Debra-Jean Creelman Website (

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track listing:

1. Amadman 7:46

2. Bad Buddhist 5:03

3. Ruthless Waltz 4:37

4. Bug Ya (Pt. 1) 4:12

5. They've Got Tombstones In Their Eyes 4:41

6. See You Out There 4:03

7. Mona 6:59

8. Bug Ya (Pt. 2) 4:57

9. Troubled 4:13
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"The initial material for the debut, self-titled album by Sick Boss was recorded nearly two years ago in a whirlwind session at Vancouver's Warehouse Studios. What followed was at least 50 hours of overdubs, creating a massive bank of composed and improvised material that was treated to a year of analogue and digital editing and experimentation before the finalized arrangements were passed to Toronto's Sandro Perri for mixing. The big, bold music that emerged from this process never stops moving, creating a rugged collage of ideas and references that evokes Captain Beefheart's relentless experimentalism. Yet, the unruly freak-outs and driving melodies frequently give way to moments of exquisite fragility, recalling both the complicated melancholy of Elliot Smith and the woven compositions of Radiohead. The record broadcasts conceptual urgency, decisively pulling the ear through lush chamber landscapes to unrepentant psych-rock. It's in these frequent moments of radical juxtaposition that Sick Boss reveals its true edge: though two years of refinement have given the work a lot of polish, this is a band that will always agitate for creative upheaval.

In its sinuous melodies and complex rhythms, Sick Boss immediately calls to mind composer Cole Schmidt's work in Juno-award winning outfit Pugs and Crows. Yet, the frenetic swirl of creative improvisation, rock, folk and modern jazz hints at the many voices propelling the material. The songbook grew from weekly residencies in a pair of Vancouver bars, where guest artists were invited to sit in with core members Schmidt, bassist James Meger and drummer Daniel Gaucher, who also contribute compositions to the project. Sometimes, this process was incredibly spontaneous, involving musicians who hadn't played together before improvising for an entire evening. At other times, the trio collaborated with their guests to prepare entire programs of original music. The debut record features great playing by a sextet of key voices from the West Coast creative music scene, alongside aching vocal spots by Debra-Jean Creelman and Molly Guldemond, popularly known for their work with Mother Mother."-Drip Audio

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Rock and Related
Improvised Rock
Vancouver and Western Canada
Large Ensembles
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
Canadian Composition & Improvisation

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