Colin Hunter and JUNO Award winner Joe Sealy

I recently had the pleasure of sharing a brunch with two other singers and a JUNO Award winning jazz composer and pianist. Colin Hunter is a crooner in the style of Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett; and by day he is the founder and Chairman of Sunwing Vacations. Sam Char has a big voice that channels rhythm ‘n’ blues greats like James Brown; and by day Sam is the Sunwing VP in charge of the company’s Quebec business. Jazz pianist and composer Joe Sealy won a JUNO Award for his Africville Suite recording, and many other awards for musical direction of television and theatre productions.  Joe is full time on his music.

Colin’s re-launch into performing was almost accidental when he came out of retirement to launch Sunwing Vacations 10+ years ago. “Someone in the company suggested that I record Frank Sinatra’s Come Fly With Me and that we’d play it before take-off on our aircraft. I soon found out that it would cost the same to record one song as it would to record and album – so we prepared and recorded an album.”

“Including that first one, we’ve recorded twelve albums; six with a big band and six with Joe and his quartet,” states Colin. “I enjoy the quartet format, because there’s more room for expression.”

“Colin and I are a month apart in age, we share many of the same musical interests, and we enjoy working together. Over the years we’ve established a healthy level of trust with each other. ”

“For a singer, Colin Hunter is a pretty good businessman”

. . . Joe Sealy, OC

Both Colin and Joe enjoy the music known as the American Songbook. “There’s often a sense of humour in those songs” notes Joe; and Colin is quick to give an example by offering a verse of Dean Martin’s Standin’ On The Corner; “Brother you can’t go to jail for what you’re thinkin’…”.

“We have a good circuit here in Montreal.” notes Joe. “We enjoy playing at the two House of Jazz locations, Upstairs Jazz Bar & Grill on Mackay and now Le Balcon. We perform pretty much every month at the Jazz Bistro in Toronto, which is co-owned by Colin and his wife Joan.”

Upcoming Montreal shows include: March 31 at House of Jazz Laval, April 1 at House of Jazz downtown on Aylmer, and again on May 19. Colin, Joe and the quartet then move to Upstairs on Saturday, May 20. Sunday Jazz at the Ritz has become a popular show for the quartet, and they’ll complete their Montreal weekend on May 21 with three brunch shows.

Then it’s back to Toronto and the Jazz Bistro for shows from June 1 – 3. Colin is particularly proud that Sam has secured an engagement at the prestigious Mont Tremblant Jazz Festival on August 3. For a complete list of Colin Hunter’s upcoming performances, please visit his website:

Related Posts