About the Artists

 

An accomplished writer and vocalist, Vélez sings through six strings. He began his guitar studies in 2007, and the instrument has since been a constant companion. New England's Native Son, Vélez moves and shakes with a presence that is "light as a feather yet soulful and sincere," weaving story, soul, and electric neo-blues energy.

 

Prior to his days as bandleader, Vélez studied Music Theory, Composition, and Jazz Performance at Brown University and Manhattan School of Music, respectively. Influenced by a wide swath of textures and timbres, he paints with harmony that is neither predictable nor pretentious. The most enduring impression is etched by his "raspy, romantic style of singing," and the adventurous spirit with which he improvises. Vélez transmutes pain and passion into poetry, accompanied by his guitar and the secrets they share.

Vélez's debut album was recorded live at Gee Studios in Ansonia, CT in 2020 and is available for pre-order on his website.

$jvelez1492 on Cashapp | velezunveiled.com | @callmevelez

Born and raised in Haiti, right in the capital of Port-Au-Prince, growing up she's always known she was drawn to art and music. She eventually settled in the states where she began to learn how master her instrument: her voice. She's been professionally singing for about seven years, and the journey has been amazing. Her genre is Jazz infused with Neo-soul and Reggae. She's been blessed to perform out of state and at many monumental places such as “The Voice” in L.A. for their ninth season, as well as MGM Springfield, BB King's, SOB's, and the list goes on. Her dream is to help make the world a little brighter through the gift that God has trusted her with! Her name is Berdine Joseph, and this is the beginning of your story together.

$berdineJ on Cashapp | @berdine_j

Y'all loved our first-ever Deepwood Jazz in June, and due to popular demand: we're back on the cul-de-sac Saturday, September 12 at 2pm. Talented, young Connecticut natives with combined decades of soulful music-making hit the Deepwood Lane stage once again.

Sit on the lawn with the fam or plop your picnic down on a designated social distancing square, and get ready to get your minds blown. These musicians are world-class students, educators, arts administrators, and performers who have all been financially impacted due to COVID-19 layoffs and performance venue closures. Please support the musicians generously. Preferred payment methods (via the app Cashapp) are in their bios.

Food will be available for purchase (cash preferred) from Greek Style Grill of Norwalk and women-owned South Norwalk Ice Cream Company.

Please wear face coverings for the safety of the musicians and your fellow concertgoers.

Email justineflutes@gmail.com or text Justine at 203-952-5975 with any questions. We'll see you soon!

Exposure to COVID-19 is an inherent risk in any public location where people are present; we cannot guarantee you will not be exposed during your visit. The CDC advises that older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from Coronavirus. Guests should evaluate their own risk in determining whether to attend. People who show no symptoms can spread Coronavirus if they are infected, any interaction with the general public poses an elevated risk of being exposed to Coronavirus. By attending Deepwood Jazz, you acknowledge and agree that you assume these inherent risks associated with attendance. 

Having performed with Grammy-nominated artists across the United States, Mexico, Canada, and Europe, the flutist, singer, and occasional visual artist Justine Stephens has taken the world by storm. Her first major jazz debut feature came in the 2011 short film Kuvuka Daraja, a work featured in both the International Black Women’s Film Festival in San Francisco and the Zanzibar International Film Festival.

 

A New Yorker by birth and at heart—and a Deepwood Lane resident through her formative years—Justine’s art shares the ethos of the city that never sleeps, covering the music of soul greats, Black spirituals, and soaring improvisations over live looped beats. Further, Justine brings her incomparable genre diversity as a highly sought after collaborator for composers, having given more than 70 world premieres of contemporary classical music. Justine holds education from Ithaca College, with additional training from The Juilliard School, and she currently resides in Boston. 

$justinestephens on Cashapp | @sojustinesays

Riki Stevens is a singer songwriter and guitarist from Norwalk, CT. She is also the 2018 Winner of the first Connecticut's Got Talent. Her music is soothing, draws you in, and tells you a beautiful story. Her sound is soulful, airy, dynamic, and expressive. Riki's warm voice, is sensational, and when she sings you recognize it comes from a deep well of life within. Stevens is currently working on an EP with Connecticut's up and coming Underground Factory Studio. She will has also starred in Dreamgirls at the Wall Street Theater in Norwalk, CT. Riki is a RAW Artist and signed by Click Model Management.

$RickettaStevens on Cashapp | @rikistevensofficial

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© 2020 Justine Stephens. Film photography © Holli Stephens.