Matt Humphreys
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Matt Humphreys

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Band Pop Adult Contemporary


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"Idol Showdown"

"...he has a voice for which road show productions of Godspell are launched."
~Rick McGinnis - Metro News

"Matt Humphreys -"

John Emms
Entertainment - Thursday, April 12, 2007 @ 10:00

Timmins musician Matt Humphreys dips his chops lightly into the Canuck musical pool with a short six-song, 21-minute EP.

It's an easy-going pop rock affair of well-written songs. Humphreys was smart enough to enlist session players like axe-man Kevin Breit and bassist Fergus Marsh. Songs like the excellent "Mrs. Carter," the mostly acoustic and laid-back "Bailee" and the rootsy "Carson's Grove" should be a natural fit to Canadian Idol-type audiences across Canada and abroad. - Timmins Daily Press - Osprey Media

"Matt Humphreys is primed for hometown performance"

A lot has happened since Matt Humphreys' last performed in Timmins, and he's hoping his hometown fans will like what they see.

Since he last performed at home in 2002, Humphreys, 29, has left his band Urban Folk, and has appeared on Canadian Idol twice - in 2003 making the top 100 and in 2005 making it to the top 32.

"The show was good," he said. "It kinda kicked me in the ass to become a musician who writes his own music and does his own thing." Humphreys has spent the last 10 years touring Ontario, either with a band or as a solo act, and is finally making his way back up North at the end of the month for an intimate concert at the Shania Twain Centre.

"I just really hope they accept what I'm doing now," said Humphreys, who has moved away from his Celtic/folk roots to a more adult-contemporary pop sound.

"I think I might be a little more nervous playing in front of people who have seen me perform since I was 12 and in music festivals," he said.

Those who attend Humphreys' show will not only be provided with an evening of music, but will be supporting a good cause.

All proceeds raised from ticket sales of the event will go to the Porcupine United Way.

"I think it's really important, given his background, that he's looking to give back to the community by supporting the United Way," United Way executive director Jean Warren said.

"It was definitely appreciated."

Humphreys said he specifically chose the United Way because the money goes to helping those in need within the community, and not much spread nationally.

"It's one of the organizations that gives back to the community itself," said Humphreys. "And that's kind of what I wanted to do for my hometown."

The show will include local performer Alicia Marcoux, who will perform a half-hour show, before Humphreys takes centre stage for an hour long solo acoustic set.

The show will cover Humphreys' latest project, a six-song EP titled "Everything Changed Along the Way," as well as other originals and a few covers, he said.

Tickets for the May 26 show are $12 each and available at the Porcupine United Way, Shoppers Drug Mart and Alfie's Cigar and Gourmet Coffee Bar, with only 120 seats available.

Doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the concert beginning at 8 p.m. - Chelsey Romain / The Daily Press Local News - Wednesday, May 9, 2007

"If it's March, it must be time for a Meltdown; Up and comers audition for Festival Boreal"

Lara Bradley
Entertainment - Thursday, March 29, 2007 @ 11:00

Ever wonder what happened to the contestant who made it to number 32 in the third season of Canadian Idol?

Well, Matt Humphreys has recently released an EP, Everything Changed On The Way, to a packed club in Toronto and will be one of the acoustic artists auditioning at Northern Lights Festival's Meltdown on Saturday.

Meltdown, in its 15th year, provides a way for "hot and up and coming groups" to make it into the festival.

This is how it works. There are three spots in the festival up for grabs and three judges (whose identities are not being released at this time) who will determine the winners.

On Friday, the bands play short sets at the Townehouse Tavern. The night finishes with the headlining act of The Next Best Thing, a dub-reggae band from Burlington whose sound is described as "a thoughtful combination of Peter Tosh rebel roots with Sublime's modern energy."

Then, on Saturday, it's the acoustic acts taking the stage at the Jubilee Centre. The Jubilee's all-ages show culminates with Mose Scarlett. His concert, which begins at 9 p.m., will feature two sets of ragtime, blues, swing and jazz with an accompanying guitar player. Veteran Northern Lights Festival goers are pretty familiar with Scarlett's bushy face and finger-pickin' stride guitar since he has played the festival about a dozen times as both a solo artist and as a member of a trio that included Jackie Washington and Ken Whiteley.

"He's one of the favourite festival performers over the past 30 years," said artistic director Paul Loewenberg.

This year's Meltdown has a considerable cross-section of talent, he said.

"This is the best we've had in all the years of doing it. Well, in the eight years I've been artistic director," Loewenberg said.

The Comfortable Chairs, a Sudbury group made up of 19- and 21-year-olds, is one of the groups bringing a different vibe to the Friday night show.

While others their ages are pounding out heavy metal and frenetic punk, The Comfortable Chairs have got their sights set on "soulful blues, groovy rock and upbeat funk," said bass player Jesse Leclerc. "We're playing the music our parents listened to," added vocalist Danielle Mallette, the newest addition to the group. "My biggest influence is Eda James."

For a slim girl, she has a big voice, said Leclerc.

"If you're in another room, it sounds like she's a 45-year-old black woman," he said.

Leclerc, who's blown away by the playing of Victor Wooten, can't really explain why they've gravitated to this music.

"I like the blues just because I like the blues. It's influenced music in so many ways. It really is a roots music, because it is the root of so many other forms, like rock 'n' roll," he said.

The band has made a name for itself as the youngest group to play Sudbury's Blues for Food for a couple of years running. The Comfortable Chairs' set will feature three original songs - Danielle's Blues, Glow Groove and the Purple Hippo Funk.

Loewenberg described them as a "wonderful R&B blues band with young members and youthful energy."

Meltdown of 2007 will also one of the most diverse geographic ones, pulling in performers from across Northern Ontario. There's 19 James from Parry Sound, Mother's Pride from Blind River and Jennifer Plummer from North Bay.

There's also Humphreys, who was born in Sudbury, raised in Timmins, but now lives in Toronto. He moved there initially to earn a bachelor of music at University of Toronto, but now works as a marketer by day for a music publishing company and a musician by night.

Besides Canadian Idol, Sudburians might remember him also as one of the member of Urban Folk, a Celtic band that played Peddlar's Pub in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

The Canadian Idol experience was more about learning how to work in a different medium than any kind of amazing music experience, he said.

"It's very different to be involved with a TV show with eight cameras on you onstage than playing as a rock band in a bar," he said, in a telephone interview.

At 27, Humphreys said he felt like the "older brother" to the other contestants who were about a decade younger than himself. He did get his five minutes of fame before he was knocked out in a heat that included Sudbury's Daryl Brunt.

(Humphreys still thinks it was unfair that the two Northern Ontario guys went up against each other in the same round.)

All around, the Canadian Idol experience was positive in that it gave him national exposure, which is hard to come by for regular indie artists, but also because it gave him a creative kick in the butt.

Afterwards, Humphreys decided to take his own craft more seriously and stop playing other people's covers.

His current EP has been in the works since 2005 and draws on a lot of talent from other musicians and engineers.

It was produced by Paul Milner, whose previous credits include Queensryche, Sass Jordan and the Doughboys, and is backed by a band of musicians including Kevin Breit (Celine Dion, Norah Jones), Mark Rogers (Kazzer, Edwin), and Jamie Oakes (Amy Sky, Tom Cochrane).

Currently, Humphreys has a tour of Florida campuses planned for the fall. He describes his sound as drawing on folk/roots vibe to create "adult contemporary pop" and draws his inspiration from performers like Elton John, Billy Joel and James Taylor.

So why Northern Lights Meltdown?

"I've always wanted to play Northern Lights Festival," he said.

His mother took him to his first festival at the age of three. Even after the family moved to Timmins they would return for the July gathering in Bell Park.

"I even had the 25th anniversary T-shirt," he said. "While not many people in Toronto know about it, it's always been kind of a personal benchmark."

The lineups

15th Annual Northern Lights Festival Boreal Meltdown.

Bands Friday

Where: The Townehouse Tavern, 206 Elgin St.


The Jupiter Project 8 p.m.

The Paul Disalle Band 8:30 p.m.

Penthotal 9 p.m.

Mother's Pride 9:30 p.m.

19 James 10 p.m.

Ireny 10:30 p.m.

The Comfy Chairs 11 p.m.

Headliner: The Next Best Thing 12-2 a.m.

Cost: $5. Must be 19 years old to attend.

Acoustic Saturday

Where: The Jubilee Centre, 195 Applegrove St.


Newt 5 p.m.

Jennifer Plummer 5:30 p.m.

Matt Humphreys 6 p.m.

Ed Landry 6:30 p.m.

Patricia Cano 7 p.m.

Jean Wells and the Pleated Folk Etiquette 7:30 p.m.

Mary Milne 8 p.m.

Headliner: Mose Scarlett 9 p.m.

Cost: Admission is $5 for the Acoustic Saturday auditions. All ages welcome. Tickets for the Mose Scarlett concert are $12 in advance, $15 at the door, and $10 for NLFB members.

They are on sale now at Jett Landry Music, Gloria's Restaurant, Records on Wheels, Walden Home Hardware, and the Northern Lights Office.

Memberships, which cost $20 for individuals or $30 for families, are available at the Northern Lights Festival Boreal office. For more information, call 674-5512. - The Sudbury Star - Osprey Media

"Humphreys Goes Solo"

Arron Pickard
Saturday, March 24, 2007 @ 10:00

Timmins native Matt Humphreys is reinventing himself. For the past 10 years, Humphreys and his band have been a mainstay in the Toronto music scene - a regular performer in various pubs and clubs throughout the city. Born and raised in Northern Ontario, Humphreys ventured to the province's capital to study at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Music.

He is now on the brink of releasing his first solo album, "Everything Changed On The Way." In fact, today marks the unofficial release of the six-song EP.

Humphreys is hosting a CD release party in Toronto where he hopes friends and family will gather to help celebrate his crowning achievement. The six songs contained within the CD are all written by Humphreys - the end result being a product the singer/songwriter says he is extremely proud of.

After playing live for 10 years and with 600 shows under his belt, Humphreys said it was time to take his career to the next level. Being a musician has taught him many lessons and has opened a number of different doors. Of course, Timmins resident will remember the 27-year-old as being a featured contestant on the first season of the CTV television show "Canadian Idol," battling his way to the top 48 singers in Canada, and more recently, in the third season, reaching the TOP 32. all of these experience have contributed to him becoming a better person, he said.

But his new project, he said, strays from the path he is used to treading and is leading him in an entirely new direction.

"This CD is a lot different than anything I've ever done before," he said. "It took about a year to put together and that included about 80 per cent mixing time and 20 per cent recording time.

"I did a photo shoot in February and the artwork was completed this month.

"The songs encapsulate the last 10 years of my life, hence the title, and I just hope people enjoy listening to the CD as much as I enjoyed making it."

The CD's tracklisting includes his title track "Everything Changed On The Way," followed by "Salinger Sent," "Bailee," " Mrs. Carter," "This One," and "Carson's Grove." Most of the songs have been tested during performance around Toronto, Humphreys said, and have proven popular among the crowds.

"I brought them to the studio, hired session musicians - experts with their respective instruments - and now the CD will be available online at by mid-April."

With his biggest inspirations coming from piano-pop greats Billy Joel and Elton John, Humphreys is confident he's put together a solid CD but said he will leave that up to everyone else to decide. While plans aren't written in stone, Humphreys said he hopes to get back to Timmins sometime in the near future for a CD release party in his hometown. - Timmins Daily Press - Osprey Media


Mama Said Knock You Out (November 2008)
Everything Changed On The Way (March 2007)
Matt Humphreys Promo EP (January 2005)




“The music of Matt Humphreys brings a folk/roots vibe to adult contemporary pop. The singer/songwriter bubbled just under the Top 30 on Canadian Idol, but places much higher in this estimation for songs that are once original and highly reminiscent of the classic pop of James Taylor and Billy Joel. This is a debut album that bodes well for a long career...”

~Mark Rheaume, Fresh Air, CBC Radio

“Every once in a while, a singer comes along that demonstrates to the music industry that he means business. Well, this time it is Canadian singer-songwriter, Matt Humphreys. Matt began his musical career in Timmins and later attended the Faculty Of Music at the University Of Toronto.”

“He has never looked back - not for one moment. I can confidently say that he is one of the most talented singers that I have ever witnessed. Matt, even as a young vocal student or choral singer with the Timmins Youth Singers, exuded a prodigious talent that I knew, with time and patience, would carry him very far in the music industry.”

~Rosanne Simunovic, Founder/Conductor, Timmins Youth Singers
Online Blogger/Reviewer,

“This artist abounds with potential that is only outweighed by his skill as a singer and songwriter. His accuracy is impeccable, and his professional attitude is a welcome relief. A pleasure to work with.”

~Paul Milner, Producer & Recording Engineer, A Major Sound, PEI

“...he has a voice for which road show productions of Godspell are launched.”

~Rick McGinnis, Metro News, Toronto

“Not only is this guy a great guitar player and sideman for my artist Bianca, but he’s got some killer tracks, reminiscent of Daniel Powter, with a hint of Elton John. I can’t wait to work on some of the production for his next records.”

~Adam H. Hurtsfield, Executive Vice President, RockSTAR Music Corp.

“(Everything Changed On The Way...) is an easy-going pop rock affair of well-written songs. Humphreys was smart enough to enlist session players like axe-man Kevin Breit and bassist Fergus Marsh. Songs like the excellent “Mrs. Carter,” the mostly acoustic and laid-back “Bailee” and the rootsy “Carson’s Grove” should be a natural fit to Canadian audiences across Canada and abroad.”

~ John Emms, Timmins Daily Press, Osprey Media

Toronto Independent Music Awards Nominee
• 2008 Best Adult Contemporary Artist
• 2007 Best Pop Artist
• 2007 Best Live Acoustic Artist

APCA (Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities)
• 2007 Mainstage Showcasing Artist

Midpoint Music Festival
• 2007 Showcasing Artist

Dewey Beach Music Festival
• 2006 Showcasing Artist

Canadian Idol Finalist
• 2005 Top 32
• 2003 Top 48

'Everything Changed On The Way...' the new EP from Matt Humphreys is more fact than fiction for this singer/songwriter from Toronto. Having grown up in a Northern Ontario town, Matt brings a folk/roots vibe to his brand of adult contemporary pop. His songs speak of growing up, experiencing life, and finding (and losing out on) love.

The EP, produced by veteran Paul Milner who's previous credits include Queensryche, Eddy Grant, Sass Jordan, and the Doughboys, is backed by a band of stellar musicians including Kevin Breit (Celine Dion, Norah Jones), Mark Rogers (Kazzer, Edwin), and Jamie Oakes (Amy Sky, Tom Cochrane). 'Bailee', a song about breaking free from an emotionally negative relationship, highlights Matt's soaring melody over layered instrumental arrangements.

Born in Sudbury and raised in the town of Timmins, Ontario, Matt studied piano and voice privately before moving to Toronto to complete a Bachelor of Music in Voice. He continued to embrace the popular side of music as a frequent performer in pubs and clubs in the Toronto area, joining the ever growing Irish pub circuit of the late-90s.

From 1998 - 2003, Matt founded the successful celtic/folk ensemble Urban Folk with his brother Beau. They toured extensively across Canada, releasing two albums both containing original material penned by Matt. Post-Urban Folk Matt continued to play solo, building on the relationships he established at dozens of venues across the province.

Matt was recognized for his vocal abilities by being a featured contestant on the first season of the CTV television show 'Canadian Idol', battling his way to the top 48 singers in Canada, and more recently, in the third season, reaching the TOP 32.

After his TV appearances, Matt decided to concentrate on creating a solo persona that melded together the piano-pop greats of the 1970s with a much needed urban feel. Striving to break the mold of the contemporary pop singer, Matt draws inspiration from artists like Billy Joel, Elton John, and James Taylor. His EP 'Everything Changed On The Way...' has received nati