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Congrats to Turboprop 

I wanted to thank everyone for their well-wishes and kind thoughts in regards to our JUNO-nomination for Undertones. Enjoyed the online awards show and so honoured to be a nominee surrounded by such amazing talent. Congratulations to Ernesto Cervini and his group Turboprop on the win. Well-deserved!

Jens Lindemann - A Hope For The Future Video 

Had the honour to be included on Jens Lindemann's new video featuring Matt Catingub's new song 'A Hope For The Future'. The video features 32 international trumpet stars from 14 countries paying tribute to global health care workers.

Click Here for Link to Video

What can I say....


What an incredible video, and for such a worthy cause. You amaze me with your talents and creative abilities. 

I think you picked me to be on this project because: 

  1. I am really old and still playing
  2. you have known me since you were a kid 
  3. I have a Bass Trumpet and you don't 
  4. my "Arban's" method book is older and in worse shape than yours! 

However my friend, I am thrilled and honoured to be a part of this with Matt, Steve, Mike, and some of my favourite Canadian and American Trumpet players. Getting to hear some of the rest of the world's players was a real treat. Great tune, great arrangement Matt! 

I think I'd better go practice now - stay safe! 


JUNO Awards Postponed 

Thanks to everyone for their well-wishes on the JUNO-nomination. Was looking forward to playing and saying hi to old friends at the JUNO's, but it is far more important that people stay healthy and safe right now. Look forward to hearing about the award at a later date. Such an honour to play with Reg, Kelly, Neil and Ted and be nominated in this category! Congrats to all the nominees and eventual winners!

JUNO Nomination - Undertones 

Just found out that my Canadian Quintet with Kelly Jefferson (sax), Reg Schwager (guitar), Neil Swainson (bass) and Ted Warren (drums) have been nominated for our recent album Undertones in the 'Group' category.

It's quite an honour to be nominated again for a JUNO. There are so many great musicians in our country, and to be honoured beside them, makes me realise that this can happen to any of us, at any time, at any age. 

We live in, I believe, the greatest country in the world. Thank you Canada for all you are doing, and for all that you have done for our musical community. 

A special thank you to Kodi and Stephanie Hutchinson from Chronograph Records, for all your hard work, dedication and love in all of my musical endeavors

Student Painting 

Thanks so much to Rode De Waal for her lovely painting of me. Such a pleasant surprise when I received this from this great young bassist and apparently painter!

Undertones hits #16 at 

Really lovely to see how people are embracing the new album. Playing with Reg, Neil, Ted and Kelly was such a treat for me, Listening to those guys groove - how they support your ideas - and hinting at other things you might try in your soloing. World class musicians. It was such an honour to get to know and play with these guys.

Undertones is chartbound at 

Honoured to see that my new album 'Undertones' featuring my Canadian Quintet (Chronograph Records) is chartbound on the US JazzWeek National Charts. I'm quite happy with the new album - it's just a straight ahead jazz album that was such fun to record with these tremendous musicians from Toronto. Thanks to my musical friends and collaborators; Kelly Jefferson (sax), Neil Swainson (bass), Reg Schwager (guitar) and Ted Warren (drums) for their fantastic work!

'All About Jazz' Album Review - Undertones 

For those of you just checking out what I am up to, my new album Undertones featuring my new Canadian Quintet and myself on the Bass Trumpet is set for release on September 28th on Chronograph Records! Check out the wonderful review from Dan McClenaghan giving the album 4 Stars out of 5.

Undertones All About Jazz Review - click here

Al Muirhead's Canadian Quintet

Al Muirhead - Bass Trumpet, Kelly Jefferson - Sax, Reg Schwager - Guitar, Neil Swainson - Bass, Ted Warren - Drums

Undertones - Midwest Record Album Review 

Midwest Record Album Review - Undertones 

For those of you just checking out what I am up to, my new album Undertones featuring my new Canadian Quintet and myself on the Bass Trumpet is set for release on September 28th on Chronograph Records! Check out the wonderful review from the Midwest Record. 

Undertones Midwest Record Review - click here 

Al Muirhead's Canadian Quintet 

Al Muirhead - Bass Trumpet, Kelly Jefferson - Sax, Reg Schwager - Guitar, Neil Swainson - Bass, Ted Warren - Drums

Summer Tour Wrap Up 

Thanks to everyone who came out to hear us play this summer. Had a wonderful time and recorded three of the festival shows in Vancouver, Edmonton and Niagara. Looking forward to hearing the resulting music.


For all those who pre-ordered our new album 'Undertones' it is currently being manufactured and we expect it should be in your hands before the end of the month! Thanks so much for your support and patience.

Live Recording tonight at Frankie's in Vancouver 

Looking forward to playing tonight with my new Canadian Quintet Frankie's as part of the Vancouver International Jazz Festival. We'll be recording the show so come down and enjoy. Show starts at 8pm. Al Muirhead - Bass Trumpet, Kelly Jefferson - Tenor Sax, Reg Schwager - Guitar, Neil Swainson - Bass & Jesse Cahill - Drums.

Signed copies of our new @chronorecords release Undertones will be available for pre-order!

Al Muirhead's Canadian Quintet 2018 Summer Jazz Festival Tour 

Al Muirhead is on tour with his new band for the 2018 Canadian Jazz Festivals! 

Al will be performing at six Canadian Festivals this June and July with his Canadian Quintet presenting new music from their upcoming release 'Undertones' featuring him on the bass trumpet. The band is as follows: Al Muirhead (bass trumpet), Kelly Jefferson (tenor sax), Reg Schwager (guitar), Neil Swainson (bass), Ted Warren (drums). Check Al's 'Shows' section of the site for all the details.

June 16 - JazzFest regina - Regina, SK 
June 26 - TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival - Vancouver, BC (Live Recording)
June 27 - TD Victoria International Jazz festival - Victoria, bC 
June 29 - SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival - Saskatoon, SK 
June 30 - TD Edmonton International Jazz Festival - Edmonton, AB (Live Recording)
July 2 - Montreal  International Jazz Festival - Montreal, QC 
July 29 - TD Niagara Jazz Festival - Niagara-on-the-lake, ON

4-Star Downbeat Magazine Review of Northern Adventures 

May 2017 DownBeat Magazine Review:


Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1 (4 of 5 Stars)

Al Muirhead is a bright light on the Canadian jazz scene, a JUNO-nominated trumpeter with 26 albums to his name and a roster of sideman gigs that includes stints with Dizzy Gillespie and Diana Krall. Long a supportive player, he released his debut album in North America in 2014—at age 80. Northern Adventures—The Canada Sessions Vol. 1 (Chronograph Records; 57:58) is his second album in two years, and it brings together fellow luminaries of Canadian jazz for an intimate program of jazz standards. Listeners will find themselves luxuriating in Muirhead’s deep, mellifluous tone, which at times conveys the warm, downy timbre of a trombone, especially in the lower register. That’s nowhere more evident than on “Love Me Or Leave Me,” on which the trumpeter unspools fluttering ribbons of bottom-heavy bop. Muirhead and vocalist Laila Biali entwine sweetly on the ballad “The Nearness Of You.” The song is an airy, stripped-down marvel, and its serene weightlessness nearly sets it afloat. 

Ordering info:

Al Muirhead Summer Jazz Festival Tour 

Al Muirhead is heading on tour for the 2017 Canadian Jazz Festivals!

Al will be performing at six Canadian Festivals this June! The tour is very much in the spirit of his new album 'Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1' that recently garnered a 4-Star review from DownBeat Magazine!. Al will be featuring a variety of ensembles across Canada drawing from many of the musicians who played on the new disc including jazz luminaries such as Guido Basso, Tommy Banks, PJ Perry & Laila Biali. The final show in Edmonton will be a special evening featuring his 2016 JUNO-nominated quintet! (click on the festival names below for more info)

Friday JUNE 16 - Lethbridge Jazz & Blues Festival
with Laila Biali (vocals), Vern Dorge (sax), Chris Andrew (piano) & Kodi Hutchinson (bass)

Saturday JUNE 17 - JazzYYC Summer Festival
with Laila Biali (vocals), Chris Andrew (piano) & Jason Valleau (bass)

Sunday JUNE 18 - Medicine Hat Jazz Festival
with Laila Biali (vocals), Chris Andrew (piano) & Kodi Hutchinson (bass)

Sunday JUNE 25 - TD Ottawa Jazz Festival
with Guido Basso (flugelhorn), Brian Browne (piano) & Kodi Hutchinson (bass)

Tuesday JUNE 27 - TD Toronto Jazz Festival
with Laila Biali (vocals), Reg Schwager (guitar) & Kodi Hutchinson (bass)

Thursday JUNE 29 - TD Edmonton International Jazz Festival
with Tommy Banks (piano), PJ Perry (sax), Kodi Hutchinson (bass) & Tyler Hornby (drums)

Co-Host for Monica Miller's Mixtape Tonight on CKUA 

Tune in tonight (Feb 22nd, 2017) at 7pm MST at as I co-host mixtape with host Monica Miller. For more info and for my full playlist visit


On this week’s Mixtape we’re all about brass as we spend the hour with Calgary jazz trumpeter Al Muirhead. Originally from Regina, Al has been a Calgarian since the 1960s – running a music store, working in television, writing, arranging, teaching and, with his wife Ida, raising a family. Now in his 80s, the past 2 and a half years have been something of a renaissance for Al Muirhead jazz trumpeter with the rapid-fire release of 3 albums in 3 years featuring Al as leader – all on Calgary’s Chronograph Records. The first, was 2014’s It’s About Time – the title a reference to it being Al’s first recording as a leader after something like 70 years as professional musician. It was nominated for a JUNO Award. Oop! (2016) featured Al in the company of P.J. Perry and Tommy Banks. The most recent, Northern Adventures: The Canada Sessions Volume 1 was just released this month. 

Al was the recipient of the 2013 Heritage Award from the Western Canadian Music Alliance. As part of that year’s Western Canadian Music Awards ceremony this video shown illustrating to the audience gathered that evening why he was more than deserving of the honour! video link

New album #1 in Canada & #27 in the US this week! 

What a pleasant surprise. The new album 'Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1' is in it's 2nd week at #1 in Canada on the Earshot Jazz Charts and just entered the US charts at #27. Such an honour that people are enjoying this music. Thank you all so very much! We're all very proud of the new album featuring so many wonderful #Canadian #Jazz musicians!



Calgary & Edmonton CD Releases 

Thanks to everyone who came out for some very special shows for the release of my latest CD 'Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1'.

Such great listening crowds in Edmonton at the Yardbird Suite and in Calgary at the King Eddy at the National Music Centre. If you missed the shows we had a great band featuring myself on  trumpet and bass trumpet with my good friend Tommy Banks on piano, Campbell Ryga from Vancouver on saxophone and bassist Kodi Hutchinson.

We had some very special guests at both shows with guitarist Bobby Cairns on guitar for the Edmonton show and PJ Perry popping by for a tune lighting up the room. In Calgary, Johnny Summers of the Calgary Jazz Orchestra joined me on trumpet.

Thanks so much to everyone for your support!


CD Release Ticket Links for Edmonton (Jan 28th) & Calgary (Feb 4th) 

To purchase tickets for the 'Northern Adventures - Canada Sessions Vol. 1' CD Releases click on the following links:

Edmonton - Jan 28th at the Yardbird Suite

Click here to buy Al Muirhead Edmonton CD Release Tickets!

Calgary - Feb 4th at the King Eddy

Click here to buy Al Muirhead Calgary CD Release Tickets!

Join Al for the release of his newest album 'Northern Adventures - Canada Sessions Vol. 1'. Both shows will feature Al with some old friends playing music from the new album that features some of Canada's top musicians. Al Muirhead (Trumpet), Tommy Banks (Piano), Campbell Ryga (Sax) & Kodi Hutchinson (Bass).

For the Edmonton show guitarist Bobby Cairns will also joining Al!

New album coming out this month! 

Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1

I am excited to announce the release of my third album "Northern Adventures - The Canada Sessions Vol. 1" featuring collaborations with some old and new musical friends from across the country! The album will be coming out January 27, 2017... 

Introducing the first of five combinations of musicians on the album:

Mike Murley (sax) + Chris Andrew (piano) + Al Muirhead (trumpet & bass trumpet)

Thanks to Alberta Foundation for the Arts, The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent On Recordings (FACTOR), Bill Treherne and Jolene Treherne for helping this project come to life!

Breakout West Performance with Jack Semple 

So happy to be back in my hometown performing this evening as part of the Western Canadian Music Awards at the Breakout West Festival. Such an honour to be nominated for Jazz Artist of the Year!

What started as a small affair performing in trio tonight has expanded with so many wonderful musicians in town.

Joining my trio of Jack Semple on guitar and Kodi Hutchinson on bass will be drummer Tyler Hornby, pianist Kristian Alexandrov and Dean McNeil on trumpet. Looking forward to making music with so many old friends.

Show is at 10:15pm at the Capitol club in Regina, SK.


YYC Music Award Win 

Such an honour this past weekend to be the first ever recipient of the 'Jazz Artist of the Year' award at the inaugural YYC Music Awards.

Congratulations to all my fellow nominees: Johnny Summers, Tyler Hornby, The Hutchinson Andrew Trio and the KIVA Singers.

Wonderful event at the brand new National Music Centre in Calgary!

CD Review - Oop! - Ted Quinlan - The Whole Note 

Oop! CD Review - Ted Quinlan (

Oop! - Al Muirhead; Tommy Banks; PJ Perry 
Chronograph Records CR045 ( 

Oop! by Calgary-based trumpeter Al Muirhead exemplifies the reasons that the American songbook continues to inspire jazz musicians some eight decades after many of its tunes were originally written. Accompanied by iconic musicians PJ Perry on alto saxophone and Tommy Banks on piano, Muirhead virtually owns the compositions presented here and embodies the approaches that are essential to getting deeply inside this time-honoured material. All three of these musicians (as well as percussionist Rogerio Boccato who guests on Black Orpheus) possess a longstanding connection to this music and play it in the most natural way possible. 

Miles Davis’ The Theme (based on the chord changes to Gershwin’s I Got Rhythm) opens the album with Muirhead and Perry playing the line in harmony over Banks’ relentlessly swinging piano. Perry, one of the world’s finest exponents of the bebop tradition, solos brilliantly followed by Muirhead who exhibits impeccable taste and tone in his relaxed, melodic delivery. Tommy Banks plays one perfect chorus of unaccompanied piano, demonstrating his blues-infused bop style. Rhythm changes, as we refer to tunes based on the classics, are a test piece for jazz musicians and The Theme firmly establishes the impressive credentials of these players. 

The ballad medley is a testament to the deceptively simple art of playing a melody beautifully. Alfred Newman’s Street Scene, featured in the overture of How To Marry A Millionaire, and an uncharacteristically languid reading of Mean To Me, are pleasant surprises from this superb trio of seasoned pros.

- Ted Quinlan (

Oop! #5 on Canadian Jazz Radio for Month of May 

!earshot charts - may 2016 - top 20 jazz 

Asterisk (*) denotes Canadian artists. All !earshot charts in this issue reflect actual airplay on campus/community stations during the month of May 2016. Charts are weighted according to broadcast range and market size. To view older charts from as far back as 1999, go to our charts main page. 

top 200 >> electronic | hip hop | international | jazz | loud | folk/roots/blues | main charts page 

1 Atlantis Jazz Ensemble * Oceanic Suite Marlow 
2 Henry Threadgill Ensemble Double Up Old Locks And Irregular Verbs Pi 
3 Snarky Puppy Culch Vulcha Ground Up 
4 Nick Fraser Quartet* Starer Self-Released 
5 Al Muirhead * Oop! Chronograph 
6 Organik Vibe Trio Things We Did Last Summer Cellar Live 
7 James Danderfer * Time and Tide Reigning Parade 
8 The Beeched Wailers * The Johnson Lake Sessions Self-Released 
9 Ches Smith The Bell ECM 
10 Dr. Lonnie Smith Evolution Blue Note 
11 Horse Lords Interventions Northern Spy 
12 Misc * Misc Bonsound 
13 Gunwale Polynya Aerophonic 
14 Thumbscrew Convallaria Cuneiform 
15 See Through 5 * Utilities All-Set! 
16 Kinga * Guess Who I Saw Today Arts7 
17 Michael Formanek Ensemble Kolossus The Distance ECM 
18 Brahja Waldman * Wisdomatic Self-Released 
19 Alex Goodman * Border Crossing OA2 
20 Myriad3 * Moons Alma

Cadence Magazine Review - 'It's About Time' 

Thanks to Sheila Thistlethwaite who came across a nice review of 'It's About Time' from Cadence Magazine's January 2016 issue:


Muirhead, tpt, b tpt, vcl; P. J. Perry, as, ts; Tommy Banks, p; kodi Hutchinson, b; Tyler Hornby, d.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada. 

Here's a new name for us. Our neighbors to the north have produced many musicians we have eventually become familiar with, Oscar Peterson being the most well known. But trumpet ace Al Muirhead is very well known among fellow Canadian musicians especially on the studio scene where he has appeared on a multitude of albums many by A-list artists. The easily recognized reed master P.J. Perry is probably the most recognizable to Cadence readers and life-long friend Tommy Banks mans the piano bench. The principal's clear, ringing tones are heard on eleven tracks many of which are salutes to trumpet kings (Dizzy Gillespie, Clifford Brown and Miles Davis). The title number and “Ida Mae” are both from Muirhead's pen and while not especially memorable serve as good blowing vehicles. With eight decades in his pocket, 
it is heartening to see veteran players receiving some well-deserved exposure while they are still here to enjoy it. - Larry Hollis