Soul-icious Grooves- a fall tour

November 14th, 2015 by admin Categories: EVENTS, Joanna Finch Jazz, Press 2 Responses
Soul-icious Grooves- a fall tour

Soul-icious Grooves poster 1 web

Jazzy Soul-icious Funk Rap-Blues with Cheko Soto

Mexican musician and a long time friend, Cheko Soto is joining Joanna for a fall tour. The duo made their first appearance  August 2015 at the Texada Blues Festival, impressing both fellow musicians and the audience with their cool, jazzy blues sound. 

Cheko grew up in a musical family in Guadalajara, Mexico studying classical guitar and trombone. Since moving to Duncan with his Canadian wife in 2003, he has played with several reggae and roots bands including his own project, Cheko and the Lion Rockers,  Ali and the Budz, and other Latin bands. He is a regular guest with Los Rastrillos and spends winters in Mexico, touring and surfing.

“This project is more about groove, and sensuality, and choosing soulful, jazzy, funky tunes that I’ve written over the past ten years. I’ve been waiting for the right partner to bring these out into the light. Cheko has such a beautiful, smooth groove to his playing and this puts me in the mood to sing from the heart and soul. Rhythm is so infectious; we will be adding more instrumentals to our sets as the project builds. For now we supplement our own originals with some choice cover tunes like, Stevie Wonder, Isn’t She Lovely; Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds, the Beatles, Come Together, and some classic Latin tunes, Besame Mucho and La Paloma.” From her repertoire of her most requested original songs, Joanna will be performing  Cette Fleur, We Are One, Raspberries, Invisible,  Weeping Willow Blues and moreas part of this tour’s set list. Joanna’s soon to be released video of of My First Love Was My Bicycle will be showcased.

Jazzy Soul-icious Funk Rap-Blues with Cheko Soto:

November 21 Base Camp Powell River 7:00-9:30 (an afternoon show is in the works!) 4548 Marine Avenue
November 22 1:00-4:00 Royal Coachman Pub
in Campbell River, 84 Dogwood St. with guests, Blaine Dunaway, violin, percussion, trumpet, and Anthony James, guitar and percussion

November 26 DuncanShowroom “Gals Who Write Songs” 7:30-10:00 with special guest Blaine Dunaway- violinist extraordinaire for the next THREE concerts!

November 27 The Denman Island Guest House Bistro
November 28 Cumberland House Concert 2750 Dunsmuir Ave at the old Bickle house, located between the library and the post office. Doors at 7:00; concert at about 8:00 Percussionist Anthony James will be added to the line-up of talent.

Concerts are by donation. Suggested donation $10.00-15.00


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Cochlea: The Freak Show Musical!

October 12th, 2014 by admin Categories: Blog, Musical Theatre, Projects No Responses
Cochlea: The Freak Show Musical!
Dame Sonja singing "A Bad Woman" at the 2012 Tsk Tsk Revue

Dame Sonja singing “A Bad Woman” at the 2012 Tsk Tsk Revue”Go Fund Me” project will get me back on the stage with support

“Go Fund Me project will get me back

Below are the details of my GoFund Me campaign. Read it here, or go directly to the site to donate:


“Cochlea the Freakshow Musical” is an avant garde musical-cabaret of three women, who live inside the head of Cochlea, the quirky, child-like narrator who tells the story of her disturbing and hilarious life through the songs and poems of Amanda, Treva and Sonja.

The project is complete when the show is on the stage! My goal is to launch the show in October 2015 in Victoria BC. From there I will tour it for one year across North America and South America to France and Germany, ending up in New York in November 2015.

In the meantime these are the steps that will take me to my dream goal…and here’s how YOU can help:

Produce 3 professional videos of 3 songs performed by each of the 3 characters.
FINANCIAL GOAL: $1000.00 each
Money will be spent on hiring musicians; renting location space, hiring videographer/producer; editing and marketting.


The Black Widow's Tango showcases Dame Sonja's cabaret style

The Black Widow’s Tango showcases Dame Sonja’s cabaret style



A) The Blackwidow’s Tango (Fall 2014)


Seductive Sonja sings this Marlene Deietrich style tango with the accompaniment of acordian, viloin and drums. Set in a 1930’s cabaret, The Black Widow seduces her prey, then appologises for her “voracious, rapacious, and salacious” appetite!










My First Love Was My Bicycle is the first video to be shot in October

My First Love Was My Bicycle is the first video to be shot in October



B) My First Love Was My Bicycle (Fall 2014)

Treva, the hopeful, upbeat earthy love child sings this happy,danceable ska tune about the freedom she feels when she rides her bike. Set amid the splendid colours of autumn, accompaniment includes a full reggae band with a violinist on a unicycle!






Feel the Love with Amanda's soulful songs

Feel the Love with Amanda’s soulful songs



C) The Beautiful Mystery (Winter 2015)

Romantic, sensual Amanda melts hearts and touches into the soul of all who hear her sing. “The Beautiful Mystery” is a R&B style ballad that released her from a dark spell of depression. Set in a temple, by the sea, and in a stark room, accompaniment includes piano, bass, drums and saxophone.









Write the show…
This provides me with travel expenses to work with my musicians and directors and all materials, props, etc that need to be purchased for the show.Your contributions to this stage will grant me the resouces to research, write and prepare the show for production. It will also allow me to hire an arranger, director and an editor.
Much of the music has been written and or recorded professionally, so I have a very good start. I have three directors in Quito, Cuenca and New York who are willing to help me pull the show together, and many theatre professionals from whom I can get support and guidance.

Practice practice practice!
The third stage will take us up to Spring and summer of 2015 when the band, the ‘extras’ in the show, the director and I, all work out the kinks… (Sonja, sexy Sonja, will love this part…)
There will be spring, summer and fall festivals in which all three characters will perform their individual shows, each of them talking up “Cochlea, The Musical… Freak Show Cabaret!”
The videos that YOU help me to produce in PART ONE will help me to get into these festivals that will give me a greater chance of making “Cochlea” a success.

“Cochlea, The Freak Show Musical” is my chance to make it onto international stages with a show that pulls together 40 years of dedication to my art. It is my opportnity to show you my gratitude for what you have helped facilitate with your support. And the best apart: you will get to witness me fully, happily, doing what I love to do best.
Why “Freak Show” Musical you might ask?

No one has ever heard or witnessed in one sitting the full spectrum of what I can do with my voice. Often friends and fans ask me to put on another cabaret cause they were very popular, risque and fun. Others want to hear more of my celtic folk cause it touches thier heart. And others love it when I sing jazz cause I have a remarkable voice and write great melodies. I keep looking for an “appropriate” stage to pull it all together and fit into a genre, a format that is marketable. But I am unique. A freak show implies a dispaly of unrestrained emotion , or a person who has “lost it”; it suggests images of crazed animals in cages with people gawking in rapt horror. A circus geek. The important part of being a Freak Show is that is definatly piques interest.

But that is not why I named it that.

“I am a freak show”, I exclaimed happily, just last week- as I listened to myself doing my thing: singing, vocalizing, moving from opera into rap-beat-box-Tuuvan-throat-singing catharsis, dancing freely, freaking, letting it all out… I am a survivor, fully alive healthy human being, therefore I sing. I felt my energy shift as my breathing got deeper and the sounds that emerged amazed and enlivened me. This is SO. MUCH. FUN!! I laugh when i sing! It feels so great! I cathart.

“How can I do this on a stage so people witness the power of the voice? How can I sing those song I wrote so long ago and play all my instruments and make it a cohesive story that people want to see? How can I turn my depression into enlightenment that inspires others? How can I contribute my special talents to a world that needs more laughter?” I ask these and other questions. I want to give. I love, therefore I am.

All my life I have been told I am ‘different’. I’ve been told I am ‘weird’ a freak, and incredibly creative. As a survivor of early childhood trauma, sexual abuse, severe depression and a head injury that led to epilepsy, I have struggled with confidence, often sabotaging my success to be at the top of my game. I put motherhood ahead of my career, juggling many jobs and ways of supporting myself while continuing to dabble in my musical passions. Living for 30 years in small communities where it is almost impossible to support myself as an artist has further impeded my success. I suffered many falls in my attempts to reach out to others with my gifts as an artist. It has taken me around 40 years, five professional CDs, including two studio albums, many, many performances and confusion around my stage identity: am I a jazz singer? a folk singer? or am I meant to sing opera? Now I have come to the point where I am ready to bring it all to the public in a one woman biographical fantasy Freak Show.

I wondered: which is the musical genre I most relate to? Earthy celebrations in rhythmic vocally driven alt-rock? Latin jazz and R&B? Or musical theatre wrapped up in Burlesque Cabaret? In this show I celebrate all three.

I love my Muse. She is so generous. I call her Cochlea. Cochlea is the inner ear. This name was suggested to me by my darling Rodney Gage who died of cancer in 2007. He also taught me to take one step at a time… Cochlea offered me three women, the Tryptic Sirens I call them, to study the scope of my artistic canvas.


AMANDA LOVE is the jazz, R&B singer with the dulcet tones;
TREVA BILEEVA is the energetic, androgynous, earthy alt-rock dancing dynamo, and
DAME SONJA is the sophisticated, cabart diva with the big pipes.

Amanda has taught me to love myself, and I through her gentle guidance I have grown into a peaceful acceptance of who I am. Treva gives me the courage to keep believing in love and humanity and to listen to the wisdom of Mother Earth, and Sonja reminds me to be completely unrestrained, to play as the woman or the man, and to always make it FUN!

Thank you from my heart for your kindness and support. I hope to meet you face to face soon so I can thank you for helping to make my dream a reality.

In loving kindness,
Joanna (Cochlea)

September 21 2014 as summer turns to fall

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Danny and Joanna- “Songs We Made Up”

November 22nd, 2013 by admin Categories: Blog, Press, Projects No Responses
Danny and Joanna- “Songs We Made Up”



Danny Zanbilowicz and I have been enjoying each others music for around 18 years, sharing a love for words and interesting melodies and the blending of our voices and instruments. Danny is often compared to Leonard Cohen for the timbre of his voice and the intelligence of his eloquence. I am told my voice is ‘beautiful’.  As two Canadians with very different backgrounds, we have lots to work with; with me being an ‘everything organic’  middle aged, divorced, bike riding, nature-loving actress/teacher, youngest sibling in a messed up middle class anglican family from Victoria, and Danny being a happily married middle aged playwright, newspaper publisher, elastic band snapping, organ meat eating, youngest sibling in a Romanian Jewish family from Montreal, we have found humour and poetry our common bond.

We have two concerts coming up as part of our ‘grinding  organ’ fall tour, showcasing songs we made up. We  both enjoy a somewhat sardonic sense of humour, and while many of our songs are inspired by romance, we like to make light of the human condition, thus the ‘grinding organ tour’, or ‘songs from the pumping heart’.




November 29 Doors 7:30 Cumberland House Concert (refreshments included) $15.00 tickets can be obtained by calling 250 218-1689 or through the artists.
December 17 Kameleon Cafe, Quadra Island Doors 7:00 Suggested donation $15.00 (licensed)




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Norbury & Finch Perform In The Garden

May 16th, 2013 by admin Categories: Blog, Norbury & Finch, Press No Responses
Norbury & Finch Perform In The Garden


Art and Bloom Festival


On Saturday, May 18  the eclectic, harmonious duo of Judy Norbury and Joanna Finch will play at the Art and Bloom Festival in Comox BC.The duo has been performing their original music in this popular artisans festival since its inception over a decade ago.

The lively and heart stirring folk ballads and pop-jazz inventions of these eclectic multi-instruentalists have touched the hearts of thousands of  people, performing as an opening act for Rita McNeil, Jane Siberry and Zubot and Dawson and as guest performers at the Disabled Persons International and the Taiwanese Cultural Festival. The uniqueness of Norbury & Finch has earned them a loyal following around the world.

Both artists have been travelling recently, deepening their personal commitment to humanitarian service though environmental activism and musical collaborations. Always pleased to be invited to perform, their music is ideal for private functions, fund raisers festivals and conventions wherever a listening audience needs interesting, harmonious music with a message that brings laughter and sometimes tears. It is a rare event to hear the songs of Norbury & Finch performed live. Catch them while you can!


Judy and Joanna have performed together for over twenty years

Judy and Joanna have performed together for over twenty years


Judy and Joanna can be found in the Artisans Glade

Judy and Joanna can be found in the Artisans Glade














Nestled in their usual location in the artisans glade among potters, sculptors, painters and knot artists, Norbury and Finch will be performing time-treasured originals from their vast repertoire of original music.There is a minimal daily fee to enter the three day festival. Judy and Joanna will be performing for one day only on Saturday from 10:00-2:00.


CDs will be for sale along with Judy’s popular biographical travel book, Come Back, Judy Baba. Find out more about Judy’s Travel Biographies here:



'In The Arms of Morpheus' Joanna's "...stunning debut album" (Joseph Blake- Coda Magazine)

‘In The Arms of Morpheus’ Joanna’s “…stunning debut album” (Joseph Blake- Coda Magazine)

'Tease For Two' the Norbury & Finch Classic, "...will tickle your fancy" (Bill Henderson, SOCAN)

‘Tease For Two’ the Norbury & Finch Classic, “…will tickle your fancy” (Bill Henderson, SOCAN)


'Come Home Judy Baba- Memoirs of India' is Judy's amazing account of her early life in India and her return 50 years later. Co-written by her mother Mary Hargraves.

‘Come Home Judy Baba- Memoirs of India’ is Judy’s amazing account of her early life in India and her return 50 years later. Co-written by her mother Mary Hargraves.





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