One of contemporary music’s versatile woodwind musicians, Jonathan Kay is leading the younger generation towards a truly original and creative approach to improvisation and global music through his Tenor and Soprano Saxophone.
Based in Toronto, Canada, Jonathan has performed alongside some of the world’s leading Jazz musicians including Phil Woods, Dave Douglas, Ingrid Jensen and Kieran Overs. Graduating from the renowned Humber College in Toronto with Honours, Jonathan spent this time under the mentorship of the legendary Pat LaBarbera. He has also traveled to New York to learn from Kenny Garrett, Seamus Blake, Lenny Pickett.
His recent work as Co-Director of Indo-Jazz band Monsoon and The Toronto Indo-Jazz Festival, has received national recognition, bringing Jonathan to the forefront among Canadian musicians making a unique contribution to the Canadian Jazz Scene.
In 2006, when Jonathan was 26, he traveled to Kolkata, India in search of understanding Indian Classical Raga music concepts, and started training under Guru, Sri Shantanu Bhattacharyya, one of India’s premier Classical vocalists. He returned to India in 2008, with the goal to gain a greater knowledge of Hindusthani Raga Music through more intense training, focusing on the deeper spiritual connection of Raga music and how that can be expressed on the soprano and tenor Saxophones. Through his devoted study of Raga Consciousness, Jonathan is experiencing higher ideals of creativity and expression and its purest application to his western musically. His dedicated practice, has already helped him emerge as a contributor to the evolution of Raga music performance by rendering the entire Raga on Saxophone, in both the vocal and instrumental styles, innovating certain techniques hitherto not attempted.
Throughout Jonathan’s travels in India he has performed many concerts playing Raga music and Indo-Jazz and been blessed to learn and collaborate with some of India’s greatest maestros like Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty, Tejendra Majumdar, Dhruba Ghosh, Bickram Ghosh, Subhankar Banerjee and Nityanand Haldipur.
In 2010 an 2011, Jonathan was nationally recognized by receiving a grant from the “Canada Council of the Arts” and “The Indo-Canadian Shastri Fellowship” to live in Kolkata and continue his taalim on Saxophone with Shantanu-ji for the next 2 years. He is working towards releasing his first Raga music album with his trio “Monsoon” soon.
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