To say Glenna Switzer has a lot of experience under her belt is an understatement.
A classically trained pianist, and music teacher in Swift Current, Sk., Glenna spent 10 years playing with Sk. Band “Backroads” before starting her own band, “Glenna Switzer and Blackwater”. It’s no stretch to say she’s covered thousands of miles of Saskatchewan landscape.
“We were booked 50 times a year back then! Every weekend it seemed we had a gig.”
In 2010, Glenna took a bit of a hiatus from playing music and founded the Southwest Chapter of the Saskatchewan Country Music Association.
“I had always wanted to create a community of musicians, who played together and helped each other. The camaraderie in these kinds of situations, is amazing”
So, while she was building the chapter and recruiting musicians, she also Co-Chaired the 2011 Saskatchewan Country Music Awards, which were held in Swift Current for the first time and hosted by the newly formed Southwest Chapter
“We started out with zero dollars in the bank, and when it was all over, we had put on the most successful SCMA awards ever in the history of the province”
In the months leading up to the awards, the Southwest Chapter put on an 11 town tour in the Southwest. The shows consisted of performances by members of the newly formed Chapter.
“We made a lot of money for the chapter and had a whole lotta fun!”
“I had so much fun and found it extremely rewarding playing with so many different musicians”
These shows were crucial in her decision to become a freelance keyboard player. She now plays keys fulltime for the Vern Michaels band and can be seen playing with several back up bands for artists such as Will Ardell, Oran Anderson, Corinne Newton and Mark Penner, all the while, still doing shows of her own when time allows.
“Ya, we took Blackwater out of retirement and dropped the “Glenna Switzer”. I think it’s extremely important to feature a guy singer in the band as well.”
Glenna has been nominated five times for SCMA awards, was recipient of the 2011 SCMA “Country Music Person of the Year” and 2012 SCMA “Keyboard Player of the Year.” She also received a special award in 2011 from the SCMA for the building of the Southwest Chapter.
Since becoming a Freelance Keyboard Player, Glenna has had the pleasure of performing on several albums:
The Vern Michaels Band, The Swift Current Sessions
Laura Hayes, Storyteller
Corinne Newton, Party Line
Mark Penner, The Cabin Door
Glenna is married to Champion Tie Down Roper Blaine Switzer .
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