Our #womancrushwednesday this week is musician Tara Kannangara!
Categorizing her diverse sound is a difficult proposition. Tara’s preferred tag is “Groove-Based Indie Jazz,” for elements of melodic indie pop are seamlessly meshed with fresh jazz grooves. Similarly, the mellow feel of her trumpet playing neatly complements the subtle nuances of her unaffected vocal style.
Growing up in Chilliwack, BC, she studied classical piano and singing from an early age. She was active in musical theatre and choirs, then picked up the trumpet in high school, concentrating on classical before later moving into jazz. Tara studied at the University of Victoria and concentrated on classical trumpet and vocals; later, Tara moved to Toronto to pursue jazz studies at the University of Toronto where she came into her own as a performer and songwriter.
As a bandleader, Kannangara has quickly made a splash on the Toronto jazz scene and continues to perform all across Canada. Tara has also had a chance to shine south of the border. This summer she performed a full set re-imagined music made famous by Ella Fitzgerald tribute at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC, dazzling the crowd with both her playing and singing. She also had gigs in Baltimore, Brooklyn, and New York City’s Jazz Gallery. Tara’s group has been awarded the 2016 Julian Award for excellence in emerging Canadian jazz artists and her debut album “Some Version of the Truth” has been nominated for a 2016 Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year.
What is your definition of romance?
To me, romance is the act of selflessly attempting to understand a person you really care for. I think a lot of people enjoy the mystery that is inherently associated with romance; I much prefer the deciphering process because I want to feel as close to the person as possible. I understand that everyone wants to maintain a bit of mystery because it keeps the “magic” alive, but I think true romance appears when you find someone who understands that you like to watch Frasier reruns with a bucket of popcorn by yourself in the dark. At least that’s what I’ve heard.
What is the best piece of romance advice you have ever received?
My parents have been happily married for decades and while they’ve never given me any specific pointers about romance I’ve noticed one of the keys to their success is that they are always talking to each other even if it’s about the minutiae of everyday life. I think they’ve also taken the time to better themselves, they always want to be learning and growing and as they get stronger as people the seem more capable to give to each other; its something that I really try to do.
What’s the strangest thing someone has done to get your attention?
Some guy said I had a small head and then asked me out on a date. I said no, and then went to the washroom to look at my head. In a way he was quite successful in that he brought to my attention that I have a small head. What a guy.
What’s the strangest thing you have ever done to get a love interest’s attention?
Someone once told me that eye contact is very alluring. I once tried to maintain eye contact with a guy in high school in hopes of winning him over but I’m pretty sure he was put off by it. I’m sure he thought I was trying to put a hex on him like that snake from the Jungle Book.
If there was one piece of advice you could give to other men/women out there, what would it be?
I would say that it’s important to attempt understand other humans and while that may be impossible, the attempt is the important part. You have to connect.
Nadia Elkharadly is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of Addicted Magazine. Her myriad of addictions include music, fashion, travel, technology, boxing and trying to make the world a better place. Nadia is also a feminist, an animal lover, and a neverending dreamer. Keep up with her on social media through @thenadiae.