My Background
My Book

Bob Bossin
   Songs and Stories of Davy the Punk

Eliana Cuevas
Iskwew Singers
Veda Hille
Tao Ravao and
   Vincent Bucher with
   Jean-Noel Godard

Gary Cristall
PO Box 21547
1424 Commercial Dr
Vancouver BC
V5L 5G2



Music Outside the Box
Sampler CD 2009







October 2007 to the present


             In the fall of 2007 I began teaching in the Arts and Entertainment Management program at Capilano College, now University. This has grown into just shy of three sections which include courses in touring, artist management and an introductory course on arts and entertainment that moves from an overview of the arts through short components on resource development, organizational structures, touring and artist management. It includes an overview of the arts in Canada from pre-contact through Can Con to the near present. In May of 2012 I started teaching a course on Canadian Cultural Policy for the new Bachelor of Performing Arts degree program under the rubric of Capilano University, Douglas College, Vancouver Community College and Langara College.

May 2000 to present


Since 2000 I have been worked with selected artists in a variety of areas of their career development as an agent and manager. These activities include tour and concert booking, production and coordination; conceptualising, producing and writing of biographical and promotional material; grant writing and administration; negotiations with agents, record companies and distributors and critique and development of repertoire and stage presentation. Until I decided to not reapply in 2011, I received operating funds for these activities from The Canada Council for the Arts. While maintaining my full management services to Veda Hille and a variety of more limited services to other artists, I have been progressively reducing my commitments in this area to make room for teaching and writing. Artists with whom I have had an ongoing relationship include Veda Hille, Mother of Pearl, Galitcha, John Millard and Happy Day, Ann Vriend, Zeellia, Maryem Tollar, Mariam Matossian, Tamara Nile, The Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band, Bob Bossin, Annabelle Chvostek and Eliana Cuevas. In addition to these regular clients, I have previously advised, booked or managed a number of other artists in the area of Jazz, Folk, World, and Classical music on career development issues and projects. Among these artists are Marilyn Lerner, Uzume Taiko, Sandy Scofield, Kiran Ahluwalia, Lee Pui Ming Jane Siberry, the Australian a cappella quintet Coco’s Lunch and the Malgache-French Duo, Tao Ravao and Vincent Bucher.

April 1994 to May 2000


During my six year tenure I was responsible for Touring, Career Development, Festivals, and Sound Recording programs as well as other activities in the field of jazz, folk, world and other music. I was responsible for the creation of several new programs of support to music artists, including the Festival Programming, Festival Travel and Career Development programs. Between June 1999 and April 2000, I replaced the head of the Music Section. In that capacity I was responsible for the implementation of all Canada Council for the Arts activities relating to the support of music artists and music organizations (budget- $22,000,000), relations with Provincial and other governmental arts bodies, and administration of the Music Section. In 1996 I was a member of The Transition Team charged with the redesign and reorganization of Council. I was also the founding president of the Canada Council local of the Public Service Alliance of Canada, the first union at the Canada Council.

January 1978 to April 1994


As co-founder I was responsible for all aspects of the Vancouver Folk Music Festival. Involved in overall planning of festival organisation leading to the first festival in August 1978. Artistic Director from 1980 until 1994, booking over 60 national and international acts per year. Built 1000 member volunteer organisation. From 1980 through 1984 acted as agent, manager, and tour booker for artists including Stringband, Ferron and Roy Forbes.  Established Festival Records in 1980, which handled national distribution of thousands of recorded titles of folk music. Established Aural Tradition Records for the production of folk music recordings. Producer or executive producer of over 20 titles.  Produced yearly concert series totalling hundreds of shows. Designed promotional and fundraising campaigns.  Coordinated national and international tours for various performing artists attending festival. Administered annual budget of $2,000,000.


As a speaker, facilitator, advisor, writer and jury member I provide expertise to a number of organizations. This work has included giving touring workshops for the Pacific Music Industry Association, helping to assess requests for the Saskatchewan Arts Board, addressing arts funding issues for the British Columbia Touring Council, speaking on issues related to artists with disabilities at the Kick Start Festival and Conference, advising on programming to the Vancouver Storytelling Festival, the Festival d’ete de Quebec, among others and facilitating the meetings of the Jazz Alliance of Canada and National Aboriginal Recording Industry Association boards of directors. In June of 2007 I was a featured speaker at the GVRD ‘Future of the Region’ Culture Dialogue. Since I left their employ, I have worked on contract for the Canada Council for the Arts designing, coordinating and presenting a three-day workshop on touring called On the Road- a Touring Workshop for the Commercially Challenged Musician. This work included the development of a several hundred page resource binder of touring information. I have presented this workshop over a dozen times in the last decade from the Exposed Roots showcase and conference in Montreal in November of 2003, to Happy Valley, Labrador in spring of 2005 for the Music Industry Association of Newfoundland and Labrador, to the Ontario Conference of Folk Festivals in Ottawa in 2006, 2008 and 2010 among others.


I am working on a book on the history of folk music in English speaking Canada. In 2007 I was commissioned to write and host a five part radio series based on my book research. The People’s Music was broadcast twice on the national network of CBC. I have written an occasional ‘blog’ for the music section of The Canadian Encyclopaedia.  A section of my book research on the Vancouver Folk Song and dance Festival between 1933 and 1943 was published in Canadian Folk Music, Summer 2012. An earlier presentation on my research into Canadian Folk Music at the North American Folk Music Alliance annual conference in 2001 was recorded and broadcast on CBC radio as an hour-long component of Definitely Not The Opera. Selections from my archive of recorded Canadian folk music were broadcast as part of The Roundup on CBC. I have done irregular spots on a local CBC radio show, North By Northwest on my continuing research on Canadian folk music. I have written a five thousand word biographical essay on Penny Lang and her role in folk music for her CD- Gather Honey, for Borealis Records and a fifteen thousand word booklet on the history of Stringband for their CD anthology. Recent published work includes a profile of the Canadian-Vietnamese ensemble, Khac Chi for Sing Out!, the American folk music magazine.


From the summer of 2005 through the holding of the event in June of 2006, I was the coordinator of the Arts and Culture Working Group of the World Peace Forum, an international gathering in support of peace, sustainability and social justice. In that capacity I was responsible for producing several dozen performances of music, dance and theatre as well as another dozen visual arts displays. Venues ranged from small theatres to the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts to Vancouver’s 2800 seat Orpheum Theatre. Audiences ranged from a few dozen to a few thousand.

            In June of 2006 I conceived and produced a two-hour multi-disciplinary presentation on the culture of the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD) for the regional government as a networking session at the World Urban Forum, held in Vancouver. The presentation included music, dance, architecture, photography, fashion and other cultural manifestations. It was the first time the GVRD had expressed itself in a cultural presentation.

            In July of 2006 and again in July of 2007 the Our Way Home Reunion was held in Castlegar, BC. This event marked the legacy and contribution made to Canadian life by the US war resisters who came to Canada during the Vietnam War and the courage of those currently seeking safe haven in Canada now, during the US war in Iraq. For this event I programmed concerts of music with artists as diverse as the traditional Vietnamese ensemble, Khac Chi, noted folk and pop artists, Buffy Saint Marie, Country Joe MacDonald and Holly Near, BC icons, DOA and Pied Pumkin and Arab-Canadian poet Ehab Lotayef.

            I produce the occasional concert for artists I like and, often, whom I have a history with. These have included Ani DiFranco, whose Vancouver and Victoria shows my companion and I have presented since 1994; the Irish traditional ensemble, Altan, the Jorge Miguel Flamenco Ensemble, the American blues guitar virtuoso, Roy Bookbinder, veteran singers Jennifer Warnes and Judy Collins, and artists with whom I enjoy an ongoing relationship.


City of Vancouver

Overall responsibility for designing and producing the official City of Vancouver component of the Captain Vancouver Bicentennial comprising a multi venue (four city parks) program of performing and visual arts and oral histories chronicling the development of the city of Vancouver and its various ethno-cultural communities over the last two hundred years.

1982 to 1986
Expo 86 Corporation, Vancouver

On part time and later full time basis, conceived produced and administered 6 month long Folklife Pavilion as part of the onsite entertainment at Expo 86.  Led research and production for an all Canadian program of performing and visual arts, crafts and other activities. This program surveyed "the living tradition" as it exists in every province and territory.  Presented over 5,000 performances and demonstrations to over 2 million people. 



Until 1994 when I was required to resign all positions as part of the conflict of interest guidelines of the Canada Council for the Arts, I gave my time to a number of boards including the Pacific Music Industry Association, Sing Out!- The Folk Song Magazine, Vancouver Co-operative Radio, Vancouver Mayworks Festival, and the Folk and Traditional Advisory Committee of the JUNO awards. I was also a member of the Vancouver Arts Initiative, a committee of 12 established by and including the mayor to make policy recommendations on art and culture in the city.


Prior to joining the Canada Council for the Arts I consulted to a number of organizations on music related issues. These projects included written contributions, radio programs, program evaluations, and programming advice. Clients included Microsoft Corporation, Department of Canadian Heritage, Secretary of State Multicultural Program, CBC Radio, Ontario Arts Council, National Capital Commission, and Calgary Olympic Arts Festival.


Honours Bachelor of Arts in History from Simon Fraser University.


I speak decent Spanish, passable French, ‘cosi cosi’ Italian and excellent English.


1992 - Canada 125 Medal
1986 - Vancouver Award for Music