Jared Popma recently streamed a live concert from the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre. (Ashley Daniel Foot photo)

21-year-old jazz artist talks favourite tunes and joys of music theory

Jared Popma recently streamed a concert from the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre

Before his recent concert streamed live through the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre, musician Jared Popma had a one-on-one with CPAC’s Ashley Daniel Foot:

By Ashley Daniel Foot

Local jazz/pop/funk/rock artist Jared Popma will knock audiences socks off with his delectable blend of multi-genre music. Raised in the Cowichan region, Popma is familiar to audiences for his musical theatre performances, songwriting, and pleasing and pleasant style. Performing from the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre’s beautifully lit stage, Popma was joined by a host of talented jazz musicians from Vancouver Island University’s jazz program and beyond including Drake Shoemaker (bass), Ryan Bennet (drums) and Jamie Johnstone (tap).

Popma is a singer-songwriter/guitarist born in the Cowichan Valley and currently based out of Nanaimo. He grew up studying a variety of instruments and pulls inspiration from an array of different styles and genres. Popma has just recently completed his first year of Jazz Studies at Vancouver Island University

Who is Jared Popma?

Jared Popma is a 21-year-old musician from the Cowichan Valley, currently studying jazz in Nanaimo.

Who are your dream collaborators?

Dream collaborators would have to be Cory Wong for his incredible guitar playing, Charlie Puth with his production skills, and Ed Sheeran with his great songwriting.

Quick advice for young musicians?

My advice for young musicians would be to spend time with your instrument to hone your skills, play as many gigs as you can, and build up your fellow musicians. You want to build alliances, not rivalries (also, learn music theory. I know you don’t want to — but it helps a lot!)

What artists are on frequent repeat on your Spotify/Apple Music?

One of my favourite artists right now has got to be Sammy Rae and the Friends. They have a super cool style which pulls from jazz, funk, reggae, and pop. It’s super fun music, with a lot of interesting aspects to it.

What has surprised you most about your musical studies?

The most surprising thing about my musical studies was recognized in the year leading up to school when I realized that music theory is super dope! Theory can definitely get exhausting at times, but the feeling of finally understanding a new concept and learning to incorporate it on your instrument is just the best!

Any Cowichan region arts community shoutouts or people you want to acknowledge?

I’d love to give a shoutout to all the music teachers I’ve had through the years, specifically Conor Searl who taught me guitar for many years, and Meredythe Broadway who helped me with voice. I also need to shoutout Longevity John and Dr. Ted Cadillac at the Duncan Showroom. They’ve given me so much opportunity to work my performing chops, and I am so grateful.

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