Chad Linsley is one of Montreal’s most sought after collaborators “in the service of the songs”. A “discreet and delicate pianist” with “layered poignancy”, he has performed and recorded with the legendary Ranee Lee and can be heard on Mike Rud’s Notes On Montreal with vocalist Sienna Dahlen, winner of the 2014 Juno award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year. This past summer saw the release of Impossible: Live at Musideum with vocalist Renée Yoxon. As an accomplished arranger, he has done well over a hundred arrangements for Musicnotes.com, the world’s largest e-commerce sheet music retailer and publisher.
Since his early years, Chad was already very active in the local music scene in his home province of Saskatchewan. His first band The Jazz Ambassadors opened for Peter Gzowski’s final broadcast of Morningside on CBC Radio. In 1998, Chad moved to Montreal to study at McGill University where he performed, recorded, and toured with the McGill Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Gordon Foote. Among his teachers included Jan Jarczyk, Tilden Webb, Wray Downes, Jeff Johnston, Andre White, and Tom Plaunt. In 2004, he traveled to China with Juno award-winning drummer Jim Hillman and bassist Brian Hurley. In 2009, Chad performed at the Festival international de jazz de Montréal, nominated for the General Motors Grand Jazz Award and the CBC Galaxie Rising Star Award for his debut album of original compositions entitled “Slideshow”. His work as an educator has earned him a teaching award from McGill’s Schulich School of Music and he has been a course lecturer at Brandon University. Chad is now based in Montreal with his wife, Marie-Claire Saindon, an award-winning composer. He teaches at Vanier College and McGill University.
“Vocal accompaniment demands several skills: the knowledge and piano chops to play the repertoire, plus the ear and sensitivity to support the singer. Chad has played for my studio for over 10 years because he is one of those rare pianists who combines these skills. His help in teaching amateur, student and professional singers in classical, jazz, and music theatre styles has been invaluable.”
Madeleine Palmer, Voice teacher
“Knowledge is key! and Chad plays the keys with such passion and knowledge, it is indeed enchanting to be captivated by his knowledge.”
Ranee Lee, Juno award-winning vocalist
“Chad Linsley is magnificent. He’s as solid, researched, insightful and creative a musician as you will ever meet. He’s dedicated – a lifer.”
Mike Rud, Juno award-winning guitarist
“Chad is an incredible pianist and accompanist who plays with his ears and his heart wide open making any music feel like home.”
Marie-Claire Durand, pianist and vocalist
“Chad Linsley is a consummate professional, an excellent accompanist, and knows vocal music better than most vocalists.”
Renée Yoxon, vocalist