The Spanish Waiter
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The Spanish Waiter


Band Folk Classical


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Polyester Heart"

Last Wednesday night after stuffing my face with some delicious nachos at Sneaky Dee's, I had the pleasure of seeing Mike Hopkins play at the Magpie. Quite the change of scenery and atmosphere. This show came as a complete suprise to me. I have seen Mike play with the Formula in the past, which is a funk/pop outfit and alot of fun to watch. This particular night at the Magpie was a CD release for the Spanish Waiter - which I liken to Baroque era court musicians. It was amazing and completely unexpected. Mike is like a chameleon, he can play any genre and be a master in every one.

I have seen him play so many genres of music and only now have I learned he has been trained in classical music. This performance was solo and featured a very gifted violin player (who is actually not featured on the album - Drew Jurecka plays on the album and is equally as talented), clarinet and drums on some of the tunes. The very talented Marshall Bureau on drums of course. Seeing Mike's fingers move so fast that he had to shake his hands out after each song - this is passion. And you could feel it in the product. To describe it, I would say it is like a court musician from the 16th century who has traveled to the future to pick up pop sensibilities and landed in 2008. - Polyester Heart <>

"Wavelength Reviews "Getting There""

The Formula, Getting There (Beastridge Productions, 2002)
Mike Hopkins likes to call his band “lounge funk with a turtleneck sweater”. This is pretty appropriate, though you'd also have to throw in soul, jazz, pop and latin if you wanted to come close to understanding this disk's diverse elements. Though he is a classically trained guitarist, Mike reveals that he leans more toward the Earth Wind and Fire than the Four Seasons.

Even though the songs are replete with such 70s influences as the smooth sound of a Rhodes, or tight, punchy horn lines, the merging of styles places it definitively in the resent. Sounded out by a cast of talented players, a Cram, a couple of Bairds, a little Fear and many others who cross-pollinate in many different bands to represent some of the heavy-duty music happening today in Toronto's jazz/funk scene. A decent first release that works to showcase Mike's strengths as a songwriter and a really hot guitar player
-- thought not for the avant tastes. NC

File next to: Earth Wind and Fire, The Mommyheads.
- Wavelength


The Spanish Waiter (album) 2009
Shakespeare's As You Like It (play) 2009
Erika Werry - Parking (album) 2009
Erika Werry East Coast Tour 2005 and 2006
The Formula - Gettin' There 2002
Gameface-Comedy Network 2001
The Paddock (house gig) 1996-2000
Graffiti's (open Mic) 1996 -1998
B.F.A. Ottawa University 1996
The Freeway band What's up 1995
The Freeway Band What it is 1993
The Freeway Band self titled 2 1992
The Freeway Band self titled 1 1990



Mike grew up in Ottawa where he studied studied classical guitar at the age of 14. He went to Canterbury Arts high school where he studied Viola, Trumpet, Double bass and French Horn. After high school he pursued the classical guitar at Ottawa University completing his B.F.A. It was during this time that he performed in the Freeway Band. This all original classic rock band which included Dominic Salole and Beau Dixon had a large following throughout Ontario and Quebec. They broke up in 1996 but not before releasing four full length albums the biggest one being What it is. He has since moved to Toronto where he has won classical guitar competitions and more notably released and all original classical album The Spanish Waiter. This album featuring Drew Jureka on Violin has been played numerous times on C.B.C.'s As It Happens. Mike has also played back up guitar and bass in other projects, most notably Erika Werry with whom he toured twice with to the east coast. In the summer of 2009 Mike was musical director for Shakespeare in the park (Repercussion Theatre) in Montreal, where he wrote and performed an all original score for As You Like It. In 20002 he released Gettin' There with his all original band The Formula. This band's blend of Latin, Funk, Afro-beat and Progressive rock keeps the crowd dancing with a unique but highly accessible sound. Some of this Music was also featured on the Comedy Networks Gameface for two seasons. For his next project Mike is planning an all original Latin Jazz album called Nice Guys Finish Later.