Beverly Glenn Copeland (with Indigo Rising)
“There was a generosity to the performance that afternoon that was as rare as it was overwhelming. And there was a deep and rare honesty. He sang spirituals, and he sang openly of the spirit. He drummed on African hand drums and electronic pads. He sang Onward And Upward. He revealed the mischievous tenderness that made him such a beloved entertainer for children (having appeared for years on the Mr. Dressup show). He addressed us directly as a trans person while celebrating a multiplicity of heritage, and acknowledged the reality of pain and struggle by telling us how encouraged he was by the young people of today. And he sang, in an incomparable voice.”
– Steven Lambke, Sappyfest
New Age & Folk Jazz pioneer Beverly Glenn Copeland is already known amongst collectors and music heads for two sought-after albums of folky jazz in the key of Joni. But it was this album, Keyboard Fantasies, originally self-released on cassette in 1986 that really caught peoples attention. The album, entirely recorded on DX-7 and TR-707, lies somewhere between digital new-age and (accidentally) early Detroit techno experiments. The inimitable style of BGC here is both peaceful and meditative while simultaneously rhythmic and bass heavy. The album was recorded in the northern Canadian town of Huntsville where BGC was living at the time and is a beautiful fusion of personal vision, technology and place. It is not surprising that Red Bull Music Academy, Sappy Fest, Suoni Per Il Popolo, Kazoo Fest invited him to perform following a re-release.
Beverly Glenn Copeland, born into a family all of whom were very musical, essentially studied the classical piano repertoire from ‘cradlehood,’ listening to his father playing the piano four to five hours a day. He went on to study classical music at McGill, and then after a few years of concertizing, he felt called to write music that would weave all the different musical cultures he had come to love together.
During his life thus far, Glenn has written a large body of music for adults, music for film, four musicals for children, recorded six albums of his songs and been the recipient of composition awards from Canada Council, Ontario Arts Council, and Arts NB. His songs have been performed by various Canadian artists including Rita MacNeil and Jackie Richardson, as well as by the Toronto Pops Orchestra under the direction of David Warrack.
Concurrent with writing compositions for adults, Glenn wrote music for children’s television programs in England, Canada, and the U.S. He also had the wonderful opportunity to spend twenty-five years entertaining kids as a regular actor on the Mr. Dress-Up Show.
After many years of absence from the concert stage, Glenn has resumed performing with his new band, Indigo Rising, in Canada and Europe. With great joy and appreciation, Glenn acknowledges his deep connection with the younger generations that are now so enthusiastically embracing his music.