Nancy Walker’s music reflects her view of the times we live in: at times intense, at times poignant, at times cerebral. The Toronto-based pianist and composer has been recognized with honours Canada-wide, including the National Jazz Awards Keyboardist Of The Year Award, the Montréal International Jazz Festival’s prestigious Grand Prix de Jazz, a JUNO nomination for Instrumental Album Of The Year, and an induction into the Mississauga Music Walk Of Fame.
Nancy has a solid background as a pianist and keyboard player for a variety of international recording and concert acts, both in and outside the jazz idiom. She’s recorded and toured with children’s entertainer Raffi, folk artist Sylvia Tyson, pop icons The Parachute Club, balladeer Roger Whittaker, and the late well-loved composer Hagood Hardy. She has recorded and performed in concert with the cream of Canada’s jazz vocal crop, from Vancouver’s Karin Plato to Toronto’s Emilie-Claire Barlow, and has worked frequently alongside Toronto saxophonist Kirk MacDonald and trumpeter Bruce Cassidy. As the pianist in the John Geggie Trio, Nancy held the piano chair in the house rhythm section for The Ottawa International Jazz Festival’s nightly jam sessions for over a decade. She can be heard on recently released recordings by Kirk MacDonald Jazz Orchestra, Fair/Galloway Quintet, John Geggie + Donny McCaslin (this Plunge Records release garnered rave reviews and made several “best of” lists), and Swedish guitarist Mikko Hildén.
Nancy also has several discs to her credit as leader. Her most recent release is ‘Til Now Is Secret. Showcasing ten of her original compositions, the recording features multi-reed player Shirantha Beddage, guitarist Ted Quinlan, bassist Kieran Overs and drummer Ethan Ardelli.
“Nancy Walker has played enough piano to know how to keep listeners interested however hard she pushes the boundaries of familiarity.” – Geoff Chapman, The Whole Note Magazine
“Walker is one of Canada’s most creative and interesting jazz writers, possesses a fine piano technique, and time after time produces recordings with some of the best players in the country that truly reflect that the state of the jazz community in Canada is one we can all be proud of.” – Lyle Rebbeck, Medicine Hat Jazz Festival