Jason was born and raised in Cheticamp, Nova Scotia. He began playing the keys at the young age of five and was introduced to the Celtic style at thirteen. Today, he is an enthusiastic twenty-five year old with a Bachelor of Music degree from St. Francis Xavier University. He has performed in public since 1997, including many piano solos and sharing the stage with a variety of instrumentalists. Some highlights included opening for Jimmy Rankin in at Rock the Dock (2002), traveling to Italy and France with fiddler Dominique Dupuis for the Celtica festival of music (2004 & 2005), a trip to Scotland for the Blas Festival and Vancouver for the Vancouver Celtic Festival with Fiddler Chrissy Crowley (2008) American and Canadian tours with Stepcrew (2008) and various Celtic Colours performances. Thus far, he is featured on Maybelle Chisholm Pure Celtic Hearts which was released in 2001. He is also featured on the St. Francis Xavier University Jazz Nonetâ€™s CD Mix Up. The next year, the Jazz Nonet that followed Jasonâ€™s graduating class will release a recording featuring one of Jasonâ€™s original compositions a testament to the inventiveness Jason wishes to maintain as both a writer and performer. His own recording was produced at Lakewind Sounds this year. More recently Jason was featured on Dawn and Margie Beaton's "A Taste Of Gaelic". Instead of resting, however, Jason is already creating a buzz about a new album with fiddler Colin Grant at Lakewind Sounds.
Driveâ€™er Sponsorship, 2007. An award that includes a recording grant, release at the Celtic Colours Festival Club, and the sale of an album through the Celtic Colours venues.
ECMA Roots / Traditional Solo Recording of the Year Nominee 2009
Chrissy Crowley's 2nd album, forthcoming.
Colin Grant's 2nd album, forthcoming.
Dawn and Margie Beaton "A Taste Of Gaelic" 2008.
Celtic Colours Compilation XI, 2007.
Jason Roach, 2007. Debut album.
Mix-Up, 2005. With St. Francis Xavier University Jazz Nonet.
Pure Celtic Hearts, 2001. One solo, one duet with Maybelle Chisholm McQueen.
CHNE TV, 2000. Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow. With Robbie Fraser.
CHNE TV, 2000. Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow. With Denis Larade.
CHNE TV, 1999. Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow. Solo.
CHNE TV, 1999. Yesterday,Today & Tomorrow. With Rodney MacDonald.
BBC Radio (England)
CBC Radio (Canada)
CJFX (Antigonish, NS)
101.5 The Hawk (Port Hawkesbury, NS)
Cabot Trail: Music, Scenery, People. Seabright Productions.
Cape Breton Step Dancing (With Mary Janet MacDonald).
Repertoire des Artistes. Le Conseil culturel acadien de la Nouvelle-Ecosse.
Nirca Golf Course.
Red Shoe Pub.
West Mabou Dances
South West Margaree Dances
New Waterford, N.S.
Fisherman's Lounge (a.k.a. Jack Duggan's Kim Bar)
Knights of Columbus
Port Hawkesbury, N.S.
Sydney Curling Club
Westmount Square Dances
Notable Festivals and Performances:
Scotland, Blas Festival, September 2008
Asheville, North Carolina U.S.A. Summer Evening Concert at the Biltmore, August 2008
Dublin, Ohio U.S.A. Dublin Irish Festival, August 2008
Surrey, B.C. Fusion Festival, July 2008
Vancouver, B.C. Vancouver Celtic Festival, March 2008
Fredricton, N.B. East Coast Music Awards, Febuary 2008
Cheticamp, N.S. Festival de L Escaouette, Various Years.
Le Moine, N.S. Le Moine Scottish Concert, Various Years.
Halifax, N.S. Gros Tyme, Various Years.
Whycocomagh, N.S. Whycocomagh Summer Festival, Various Years.
Belle Cote, N.S. Celtic Colours: Archie Neil's Cape Breton, 2007.
St. Peters, N.S. Celtic Coulours: The Young And The Restless, 2007.
Cheticamp, N.S. Celtic Colours: The French Connection, 2007.
Margaree, N.S. CD Release Chrissy Crowley, Feb. 2007.
Canso, N.S. Canso Causeway Celebration, 2005.
ChÃ©ticamp, N.S. Celtic Colours: Acadian Winds, 2005.
Aosta Valley, Italy. Celtica Music Festival, Summers 2004 and 2005.
Newfoundland. Three Rock Cove Music Festival, 2004.
Villefranche de Rouergue, France. VISA Francophone Festival, 2004.
Halifax, N.S. Congres Mondial Acadian, 2004.
Sherbrooke, Granby, and Drummondville, QuÃ©bec. 2004.
Antigonish, N.S. St. Francis Xavier University. Celtic Harmonies. 2003 and 2004.
Sydney, N.S. Waterfront. Rock the Dock, 2002 (Opened for Jimmy Rankin).
New York State. Catskills Mountain Music Festival, 2002.
Broad Cove, N.S. Broad Cove Scottish Concert, 2001.
Judique, N.S. Celtic Colours: Chisholms of Margaree, 2001.
Margaree, N.S. Normaway Inn. CD Release Maybelle Chisholm McQueen, 2001.
New Hampshire, U.S., New Hampshire Highland Games, 2001.
Mabou, N.S. Strathspey Place. Tribute to John Morris Rankin, 2000.
Judique, N.S. Annual Judique Piano Summit, 2000.
Halifax, N.S. Mount St. Vincent University. Ceilidh on the Mount, 2000.
Sydney, N.S. The Playhouse. Celtic Colours: Piano Summit, 1999.
Creignish, N.S. Celtic Colours: The Next Generation, 1998.
Fiddlers Whom He Has Accompanied Recently:
Branden Carey Block (US Junior Champion)
Premier Rodney MacDonald
Liz O'Hare (US)
Ron Short (US)
And many more.
Personal references are available upon request, and may include:
Ronald Bourgeois, Master of Ceremonies and Acadien Festival Organizer (Halifax). (902) 455-7688
Maybelle Chisholm McQueen, Pianist and Teacher (Cheticamp, N.S.)
- (902) 224-1896
Dan MacDonald, Celtic Music Enthusiast and Critic with the Cape Breton Post (Sydney, N.S.)- (902) 562-2243
Pure Celtic Hearts- 2001
St. FX Nonet Mix Up- 2005
Jason Roach- 2007
Dawn and Margie Beaton's "A Taste Of Gaelic"- 2008
Celtic Musical Traditions Pass On Into Good Hands
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"But the most remarkable performance of the evening came from 23-year-old Jason Roach, a pianist fro..."But the most remarkable performance of the evening came from 23-year-old Jason Roach, a pianist from Cheticamp. Cape Breton pianists are superb musicians, but almost all confine themselves to “chording” – accompanying the fiddlers with pulsing rhythms, liquid runs and great sweeping chords. The only major exception I know is Dougie MacPhee, a legendary figure precisely because he is an accomplished solo performer, playing the tunes with his right hand while accompanying himself with a powerful rhythmic left hand.
Jason Roach does the same thing. He has studied with some of Cape Breton's finest pianists, notably Maybelle Chisholm, and he also has a degree in music from St. Francis Xavier. He is a dazzling performer who plays at sizzling speed, with arms and fingers of rubber. Yet he also has a musicality which serves the tunes rather than overwhelming them. I have never seen anything like him. Like J.P. Cormier on the guitar, Roach does things on the piano that I wouldn't have believed possible. "
Siver Dollar Cameron
The Chronicle Herald
The French Connection Brings The Audience Back To Our Roots
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"His unique way of piano playing and the manner in which he embraces music, living the moment on sta..."His unique way of piano playing and the manner in which he embraces music, living the moment on stage like there's no tomorrow, has provided the opportunity for him to share the stage with various musicians as well as being a repeat performer with Celtic Colours International Festival.
October 17, 2007
Sets consist of traditional tunes of the pan-celtic repertoire (i.e Cape Breton, Scotland, Ireland) and original compositions.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.