Canadian composer, artist/musician, bassist, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, music educator, arranger, music producer, sound engineer, sound designer, and samplist, Sage Reynolds, works from Ottawa & Montréal doing projects in a variety of musical styles and contexts, including jazz, folk, indie folk/rock, country, world music, R&B, hip hop, cinematic music, and others. As an educator, Sage’s activities include Private Study instruction at Concordia University (since 2009) and the independent instruction of other private students. Sage was a jazz combo coach at The McGill Conservatory of Music (2004-2022).
Sage has performed on both national and international stages and has performed and/or recorded with a multitude of groups/artists (see CV for highlights), including Life in Winter, Sage Reynolds Quartet, Thomas Hellman, Jordan Officer, Sage Reynolds- The Long Drift, Emilie Clepper, Andrea Lindsay, Notre Dame de Grass, Alejandra Ribera, Sussex/Rob Lutes, Katie Moore & Andrew Horton, Li’l Andy, Joe Grass, Courtney Wing, Matt Lipscombe, Julian Brown, Jade McNelis, Stars, Land of Talk, Sarah Neufeld, Amon Tobin, Ismail Fencioglu, Shtreiml, Kaba Horo, Arboreal Quartet, Sean Craig Quintet, Gabriel Lambert Trio, André Leroux, François Bourassa, Guy Bélanger, Rick Haworth, Rita Chiarelli, Lonesome Paul, Dan Livingstone, Howard Levy, Bella Fleck, Rodney Brown, Damon Dowbak, Kim Erickson, Sienna Dahlen, Andrea Revel, and Dawn Tyler Watson. Other musical activities include his composition projects, regular freelance gigging, and studio session work for albums/EPs/singles and film/TV, including remote sessions from his home studio (see Discography for examples). Sage composes/performs music for theatre & dance and has started composing for film & television. Lately, he has been involved in various media composition projects and has started collaborating with other film composers. Sage is open to all types of projects/collaborations in the media composition world, such as scoring to picture and composing for games.
In March of 2007 Sage founded the indie folk/rock band Life in Winter in which he is the primary songwriter, as well as lead vocalist, bassist, and rhythm guitarist. Life in Winter has played many shows in Montréal (including dates at POP Montréal), a couple of shows in Toronto, and has recorded their material with such engineers as Marcus Paquin (Arcade Fire, The National, Stars, Torngat, Little Scream), Vid Cousins (Amon Tobin, Moondata), George Massenburg (Beck, Toto, Frank Sinatra, Journey), and Olaf Gundel (Thomas Hellman, West Trainz, Bïa). Current/past members have included: Sheenah Ko, Rich White, Eric Couture-Telmosse, Liam Killen, Gabriel Lambert, Ben Shemie, Eric Thibodeau, and Christian Olsen. In 2011/13 Sage received Research and Creation grants for this project from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec. Life in Winter’s self-titled debut album was released independently on October 29, 2012 (Personnel: Sage Reynolds, Rich White, Brad Barr, Andrew Barr, Laurel Sprengelmeyer, Marcus Paquin, Gabriel Lambert) and two of its songs (Lone Rider & Wood Fire) received extensive airplay on Montréal’s CHOM 97.7 FM. Sage is currently releasing an EP recording project for Life in Winter, has started a new acoustic indie folk songwriting project under his own name, and has been composing new music for string quartet.
Sage was awarded the “Prix Étoiles Galaxie de Radio-Canada” at the 2005 Montréal International Jazz Festival for his compositions Saturday Afternoon and On the Wall. In October 2005 his quartet opened for John Scofield at the famous Spectrum. Sage Reynolds Quartet played a second and third concert at the MIJF in 2006 & 2008 and performed at both the Ottawa International Jazz Festival and l’OFF Festival de Jazz de Montréal in June of 2007. On the Wall, Sage’s first full length CD as a composer, bandleader, and producer, was released in September of 2006 on Effendi Records (FND067, Montréal, QC).
In addition to his work in the Provinces of Ontario & Québec, Sage has performed elsewhere within Canada’s borders, including concerts and festival appearances in Ottawa, Toronto (including NXNE & Planet IndigenUS), Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Red Rock (Live from the Rock Folk Festival), Owen Sound (Summerfolk Music Festival), Winnipeg Folk Festival, Vancouver International Jazz Festival, and the Edmonton Folk Music Festival. He has performed internationally in locations such as Alaska, Central America, South & Southeast Asia, New York, NY, Merida, Mexico (at the 2005 Merida Jazz Festival Internacional), Austin, Texas (at the 2006 Folk Alliance conference), and Europe.
Two of Sage’s main collaborative projects during the 2010s were with Thomas Hellman and Jordan Officer. With each artist he completed several recording projects (including composing the string arrangements and collaborating for the vocal/instrumental arrangements (with Olaf Gundel and Thomas Hellman) on Thomas’ latest album), staged multiple shows (often with stage direction by Brigitte Haentjens), and toured extensively in Québec, France, Ontario, Belgium, Switzerland, and Italy (over 150 shows to date for Thomas’ Rêves américains). Besides working with each bandleader, these projects gave Sage the opportunity to collaborate and perform with two other excellent musicians: Olaf Gundel (with Thomas Hellman) and Alain Bergé (with Jordan Officer).
Much of Sage’s musical training occurred while completing his Bachelor of Music Degree, Majoring in Jazz Performance (double bass), at McGill University (2000), where he studied composition & arranging with Jan Jarczyk, Kevin Dean, Joe Sullivan, & Christopher Smith. Other training has included several years of private study (w/ Jordan O’Connor, Michel Donato, Alec Walkington, and others) as well as participation in numerous masterclasses and seminars, including bass masterclasses (Mark Dresser, Drew Gress, Larry Grenadier, Dave Holland, Dezron Douglas) and participation in The International Jazz Workshop at The Banff Centre for the Arts (1999), where he played and studied with Dave Douglas, Joe Lovano, Dave Holland, and Kenny Werner, amongst others. This workshop included the exploration of many different approaches to composition, including serialism, the use of multiple metres & time signatures, and writing using improvisation. More recently (2021-2022), Sage has been doing coaching sessions in orchestration, composition, songwriting, and marimba performance with some of Montréal’s most talented artists.