Khari McClelland (December 29 - Jan 16, 2015)
Dawson City Music Festival Song Writer in Residence
Reared on gospel, blues, jazz and soul in Hitsville, USA, the home of Motown Records, Khari began his musical education early. Every Sunday provided lessons in the roots of African American music and cultural expression,through the wafting sounds of Gospel from street corner churches and local radio programs. Every other day,the sounds of hip hop and contemporary R&B blared from car speakers and boom boxes.
Khari made his exodus from Detroit a decade ago and is currently based in Vancouver, Canada. There, he cut his teeth with some of the best in roots and folk music. Khari is currently a member of the Juno nominated and 2014 Western Canadian Award winning band, The Sojourners. He has worked extensively with the likes of Jim Byrnes, Steve Dawson and Frazey Ford (of the Be Good Tanyas). Khari also had a singing role in a television movie staring Toni Braxton (Twist of Faith, on the Lifetime Network) and sang background vocals for Michael Buble on his NBC Christmas Special.
Khari is currently writing a suite of songs based on the book: I’ve Got a Home in Glory Land (2007). The book won the Governor General’s Literary Award for Nonfiction and was written by Karolyn Smardz Frost, who fullyendorses the project. The book explores the lives of a couple from Kentucky and their escape from slavery to their eventual freedom in Canada. The suite will be used as material for The Sojourners’ next album and an accompanying theatrical interpretation.
During his time in Dawson City, Khari will be working on various outreach projects within the community as well as working on his own songwriting.
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