Mavis Staples

Jazz Warriors Series

Monday June 26 @ 7pm, National Arts Centre Theatre


Mavis Staples - lead singer
Rick Holmstrom - guitar
Stephen Hodges - drums
Jeff Turmes - bass
Vicki Randle - background vocals/percussion
Donny Gerrard - background vocals

Renown as the perky young front-woman of the Staple Singers, who provided the soundtrack for the Civil Rights movement, Chicago’s Mavis Staples is an indomitable voice of positivity. At 78, her voice has aged since R&B and gospel-derived hits such as “Respect Yourself,” preached with her brothers, sisters and their beloved “Pops” Roebuck Staples on guitar—but Mavis has retained her bubbly charm and commitment to activism. Last January she was a guest vocalist on Arcade Fire’s “I Give You Power,” benefiting the American Civil Liberties Union (she’s also recorded with the Montreal-based band). And she remains musically up to date, as on her 2016 album Living on a High Note, produced by Jeff Tweedy of Wilco. Mavis!, an acclaimed bio-doc released in 2015, tells her story of struggle, faith, persistence and success through historical footage and recent interviews. On stage today, Mavis Staples embodies a lifetime of warmth, realism and musical spirit.