|Birth||6 February 1980, Port Credit, Ontario, Mississauga, Regional Municipality of Peel, Ontario|
Jill Barber (born February 6, 1980) is a Canadian singer-songwriter. Originally associated with the folk-pop genre, she has performed vocal jazz on her more recent albums.
Barber was born and raised in Port Credit, a small lake-side town in the Greater Toronto Area. Her brother is singer-songwriter Matthew Barber. She studied at Queen’s University before pursuing her musical career on a full-time basis.
Barber won the Female Artist Recording of the Year award for her debut album Oh Heart at the 2005 Music Nova Scotia Awards. In 2007, Barber earned her fourth win as Best Local Solo Artist (Female) in The Coast’s annual “Best of Music Reader’s Poll”, and her first win as Best Canadian Solo Artist (Female).
From February to March 2007, she toured eastern Canada with Dan Hill as part of Stuart McLean’s CBC Radio show The Vinyl Cafe. She returned to the Vinyl Cafe Tour in 2009 performing across Canada with Matt Anderson. In 2008, Barber released Chances, a jazz album with full orchestral arrangements which was partially co-written with her producer Les Cooper, while also collaborating on several songs with Canadian music legend Ron Sexsmith.
This album led to a new level in touring reaching audiences across the globe while earning two Juno Award nominations including New Artist of the Year. The title track to this album is featured on the Netflix series “Orange is the New Black”, at the end of season 1, episode 1.
She followed up with the album Mischievous Moon, released through Outside Music in 2011. In the same year, Jill and Matthew Barber collaborated on a cover of The Hardship Post’s “Your Sunshine”, which appeared on the charity compilation album Have Not Been the Same – Vol. 1: Too Cool to Live, Too Smart to Die.
Barber has performed predominantly in English, although she has also recorded and performed French translations of two of her songs, “All My Dreams” (“Tous mes rêves”) and “Tell Me” (“Dis-moi”). Her 2013 album Chansons, a selection of cover versions of classic songs from Quebec and France, was her first album of material recorded and performed entirely in French.
Barber won the SiriusXM 2012 Jazz Artist of the Year award, as well as the 2013 Western Canadian Francophone Album of the Year for Chansons. In 2016 Barber co-produced an album The Family Album, with her brother Matthew Barber, also a singer-songwriter.
Barber has written two children’s books, Baby’s Lullaby and Music is for Everyone.
Barber is mentor to young women as part of the Girls Action Foundation’s Light A Spark initiative, and an ambassador for Save the Children.
Barber is married to CBC Radio 3 personality Grant Lawrence. They have two children. As of October 2016 they have a 3 year old son and a 9 month old daughter.
- 2002: A Note to Follow So
- 2004: Oh Heart
- 2006: For All Time
- 2008: Chances
- 2011: Mischievous Moon
- 2013: Chansons
- 2014: Fool’s Gold
- 2016: The Family Album with Matthew Barber
Awards and nominations
- 2005 East Coast Music Awards
- nominated Female Artist of the Year
- nominated Folk Recording of the Year for the album Oh Heart
- 2007 East Coast Music Awards
- won Best Album of the Year for the album For All Time
- won Female Artist of the Year
- nominated Folk Recording of the Year
- nominated Songwriter of the Year for the song “Don’t Go Easy”
- 2008 Juno Awards
- nominated New Artist of the Year
- 2017 Juno Awards
- nominated Contemporary Roots Album of the Year for the album The Family Album (shared with Matthew Barber)