The Sicilian Jazz Project

The Sicilian Jazz Project

Take a trip to Sicily when international jazz project arrives in Vernon

Michael Occhipinti's The Sicilian Jazz Project performs an outdoor concert at the Pottery Road Yoga Studio, June 26.

A Canadian-American-Italian jazz connection is about to be make itself seen and heard in Vernon.

One of Canada’s most respected jazz guitarists is bringing The Sicilian Jazz Project to Vernon’s Pottery Road Yoga Studio for an outdoor magical and music-filled evening, June 26.

The group consists of eight-time Juno award nominee Michael Occhipinti, Italian singer Pilar, and American clarinetist Don Byron.

The Sicilian Jazz Project has been dazzling audiences worldwide with its intriguing mix of Sicilian folk with jazz, world music, funk, and chamber music.

Putting an original twist on the music sung by fishermen, miners, and peasants, the group captures old world Sicily set within the modern sounds of the new world.

“Sicily is the land where the musical traditions of Europe, Asia, and North Africa mingled to create something new. Throw in the dramatic lives of pirates and peasants, and transport it all to the new world where jazz, funk, and reggae grooves come together, and the result is the Sicilian Jazz Project,” said Sherrie Erickson, who runs the Pottery Road Yoga studio with husband Neil.

Toronto guitarist/composer Occhipinti has recorded albums in ode to Bruce Cockburn and John Lennon, and has also released critically appraised solo projects. He also leads the Sicilian Jazz Project, formed in 2004, which has been called “a masterpiece of cultural fusion.”  The group has released two albums, including 2009’s Juno nominated self-titled album, and a new album, Muorica, which features the riveting Italian singer Pilar and renowned clarinetist Byron.

“Bring your picnic blanket/chair and enjoy an enchanting outdoor evening under the stars with this international jazz ensemble. It doesn’t get better than this,” said Erickson.

The studio is located at 964 Pottery Rd. Gates open at 7 p.m. Music is at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25, available at the Bean Scene or contact Erickson at or call 250-260-0878.