Injuring his back proved to be a great career move for Don Scott of the jazz band Peripheral Vision.
Scott recalled there wasn’t a whole lot he could do while recuperating in the fall of 2011 — “I was stuck at home lying on my back and playing the guitar.”
To ease his boredom, he began composing new tunes for his Toronto-based band’s upcoming tour.
One of the songs was given the tongue-in-cheek title Backbone.
And wouldn’t you know it? That was that tune that won Scott a Galaxie Rising Star Award for best composition at the 2012 Montreal Jazz Festival.
“Definitely something came out of it,” said the guitarist, who believes that as a result of the $5,000 award, his quartet is getting a lot more airplay — both on the Galaxie satellite radio, another other dedicated jazz as well as campus stations.
Listeners who hear Peripheral Vision — which performs on Wednesday at the One Eleven Grill in Red Deer — will catch modern jazz influences, such as that of Miles Davis, Charles Mingus and Booker Little.
But they will also hear melodic traces that go well outside jazz circles to include the alt-rockers Radiohead, as well as classical, world and folk music.
Scott said his band plays an inclusive form of jazz that borrows liberally from other genres.
“Hopefully it has something everyone can latch on to — good melodies and toe-tapping grooves.”
Even the titles of instrumental tracks on the group’s last Spectacle: LIVE! album are relatable, from Teenage Breakup Song, written by double-bassist Michael Herring, to Scott’s Says You, described as having a “take that” attitude: “It’s got high energy, it’s fast-moving and has a barrage of melodies.”
Scott, Herring, saxophonist Trevor Hogg and drummer Nick Fraser are all from southern Ontario and met while students in the University of Toronto’s music program.
Although they are all in their mid-30s now, the teaching environment is one the musicians continue to foster, scheduling student workshops into each tour.
Peripheral Vision will next be holding a workshop at Red Deer College on Tuesday.
Scott said it’s a nice opportunity for post-secondary students to learn from working musicians, and also a great chance for his group members to think through what sometimes comes intuitively. “It’s interesting for us to try to put what we’re doing into words.”
There’s no cover charge for the 7:30 p.m. performance at the One Eleven Grill, 5301-43rd St. For more information, please call 403-347-2111.