Highlands councillor, jazz musician kick off music coffee house

Highlands Music Coffee House releases 2020 lineup

Highlands councillor Karel Roessingh Quartet performs at the year’s first Highlands Music Coffee House on Jan. 11. (Black Press File Photo)

Highlands Music Coffee House is gearing up for its first concert of the year.

The Coffee House concerts, held on the first Saturday of each month at the historic Caleb Pike House, kick off with performances from jazz and blues vocalist Maureen Washington and Highlands councillor and musician Karel Roessingh.

Washington released her ninth album, Harvest Moon, in the winter of 2016 and has been performing on the main stage at the Prince George International Folk Fest for four years. Washington also performs with duos, sextets and solo artists, singing backup on Canadian Folk legend Valdy’s 2011 album, Read Between the Lines. She is described on her website as having “effortless charisma, crystal-clear control and room-filling stage presence.”

READ ALSO: ‘Trio Espresso’ brings jazz to Highlands coffee house

Roessingh, who has served two terms as Highlands mayor and is in his fifth term as councillor, is a composer, arranger, producer and musician with more than 500 scores for TV, films, documentaries and more under his belt. Roessingh has produced more than 15 original CDs and recently completed a one-of-a-kind solo project where he played original music based on bird songs in a parkade – aptly named, Birdsong in the Parkade.

The first Highlands Music Coffee House concert is on Jan. 11, starting at 7:30 p.m. Admission is by donation, though a $10 donation is suggested for those 15 and older. Organizers ask attendees to bring their own mugs for coffee and tea to promote a more environmentally friendly Music Coffee House. Those who bring their own drink ware will be entered for a chance at a door prize.

Other headliners scheduled for 2020 include the Carolina Bluebirds on Feb. 8, the Mechanical Botanicals on March 14, Auto & Jennifer on April 11, the Curl Trio on May 9 and Ken Williams and friends on June 13. For a full lineup visit highlands.ca.

According to the District of Highlands website, the Highlands Coffee House was started in 1998 with the goal of creating a community service where locals of all ages “could gather once a month to listen to good music and have a place where kinship could grow.”

READ ALSO: Highlands family plans to rebuild after losing home, three dogs to devastating fire



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

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