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Bill McBirnie – flute & alto flute (all tracks)
Bruce Jones – guitar, percussion & synths (all tracks); vocal (track 7 only)
Robin Latimer – electric bass (all tracks except track 2)
Compositions – Bruce Jones (SOCAN)

Produced by – Bill McBirnie & Bruce Jones
Recorded at – Da Da Music Productions & Extreme Flute Studio, Toronto, Ontario
Engineered by – Bruce Jones
Edited & Mixed by – Bill McBirnie & Bruce Jones
Mastered by – Pacy Shulman at Hilo Studio, Toronto, Ontario
Cover Image by – Tim Moore (Collingwood Stream, 1993)
Layout, Design & Manufacturing by – Staci Patten, Accurate Audio, Toronto, Ontario

Bill is a Designated Hayes Artist. On this recording, he plays several Wm. S. Haynes flutes and, in addition, an Armstrong alto flute.

Other Extreme Flute albums available at BandCamp:

Desvio (with Bruce Jones) – EF01
Scratch It! (Extreme Flute) - EF02
Grain of Sand (with Bruce Jones) – EF07

Contact: Bill McBirnie – Extreme Flute
Phone: (416) 652-1541
E-mail: extremeflute@look.ca
Website: extremeflute.com


Several months into the pandemic, Bruce and I decided to work on our third Extreme Flute recording project, because we were both looking for something to do musically, and we also needed to maintain a sense of musical belonging in what had become very challenging circumstances, for all of us.

Of course, with COVID protocols in place, we had no choice but to tackle this project remotely, which meant we had to exchange sound files, back-and-forth, back-and-forth, throughout the entire process. So it felt as though this was taking us...forever!...

Nonetheless, it was a genuinely satisfying endeavour. Bruce’s compositions have always been a draw for me, because they are diverse, and inevitably infused with a Brazilian spirit. So we sorted through his current—and past—works, picking tunes that had a more relaxed vibe in the hope that this repertoire might resonate with our equally COVID-distressed family, friends, fans and followers. My wife, Svetlana, had a big hand in the final selection of tunes...so one of the new ones is dedicated to her!...

Bruce is a multi-talented vocalist, instrumentalist and engineer whom I have respected and admired for many years. In fact, when I first heard Bruce play with his band, Da, at the Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival about 30 years ago, I said to my friends at the time, “I want to be in this band!”...And soon enough, I was!...

So I have been playing and recording with Bruce from the very beginning of my career as a freelance flutist.

In keeping with our earlier Extreme Flute projects, Bruce laid down the bed tracks, I overdubbed my flute lines and improvs, and then we mixed the tracks. However, what makes this Extreme Flute project different—and a genuine treat as well—was having bassist, Robin Latimer, record with us. She displayed outstanding workmanship and provided a solid foundation for this most recent incarnation of Extreme Flute.

Finally, Bruce and I would like to convey our continuing gratitude to Canada’s premier jazz station, Jazz.FM91, for including music from both of our earlier Extreme Flute albums (Desvio and Grain of Sand) in their spin cycle for what is now close to two decades.

And so even if it felt like it would take us forever to finish, FOREVER is finally here...and now!...

Bill McBirnie


"...McBirnie’s brilliant flute technique and sensitive improvisatory style happily unite with Jones’ diverse skills and genuine gift for songwriting as they demonstrate their shared love for Brazilian music. You will sense the empathy between them immediately, from the opening track of the album, “Grain of Sand”, where bossa nova is fused with the plaintive melody of traditional Portuguese fado. Flickering like a candle caressed by the wind, the sound of Bill’s flute enchants the listener, right from the first few bars. And following this tender opening comes a whirlwind of samba rhythms combined with hip-hop vocals and yet more flawless flute improvisation on “If I Stay With You”. Just the two opening tracks portray the scope of moods in the music awaiting you on the rest of this album!…” (LEONID AUSKERN, JazzQuad)

"Hi Bill, I meant to write you months ago when I first listened to your record [Grain of Sand]. It is without a doubt the most outstanding record by a flute player that I’ve heard in a very long time. I loved everything you did on it, including the overdubbing, the alto flute, and all the rest. It’s just a great record and I carry it everywhere. In fact, I loaded it into my iTunes library so that I can listen to some decent flute playing while on the road." (SIR JAMES GALWAY, February 2016)

“I have always admired Bill's great technical facility, melodic clarity, and seemingly effortless inventiveness...Here he swoops and soars with his trademark mix of bebop and Latin jazz phrasing.The settings range from sambas and bossa novas (reflecting Bruce Jones’ Brazilian upbringing) to rock, hip-hop, fado and other folkloric elements that he has integrated into his own very personal mode of expression.” (PETER WESTBROOK, The Flutist Quarterly, Spring 2016)

“…McBirnie fits into this style of music perfectly as he demonstrates remarkable power and control. He is a superb soloist. As I listened to this CD, over and over again, I noticed how fluid all the arrangements were. The whole album flows, from one moment to the next…” (DAVID SWIDERSKI, BandBlurb.com)

“…Drawing inspiration from Brazilian samba, maracatú, forró and choro, Bill McBirnie and Bruce Jones create a fresh, unique, seductive and focused sound…Although each of the fourteen pieces has its own identity, they share a consistency that could easily be perceived as a discourse on one continuous thought…” (RAUL DA GAMA, Latin Jazz Network)

“…A fine album! I look forward to playing the tracks on Stolen Moments!...” (DAVID BASSKIN, Jazz.FM91, Canada's premier jazz station)

“…Bill McBirnie and Bruce Jones blend a delightful taste of jazz with soul to deliver a thoroughly compelling performance…From the production level, to the musicianship, to the mind-blowing flute solos, “Grain of Sand” delivers in grand fashion…” (CHRIS JACQUIN, Rock n’ Roll View)

“…This record really excited me because it’s outside the realm of our typical submissions, but even more so because this Extreme Flute album has kept my spirits high, my mind focused, and my mood uplifted…” (JOSHUA SMOTHERMAN, Middle Tennessee Music)

“…The strategic interweaving of melody and impressive flute performances are an absolute delight…” (NICK KOTTENSTETTE, GigBand.com)

“This CD is wonderful! BRAVO!” (PAULA ROBISON, Distinguished American Classical Flute Soloist)


released September 28, 2021


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Bill McBirnie - Extreme Flute Toronto, Ontario

Bill McBirnie is a jazz and Latin flute specialist who has been personally solicited by Sir James Galway to serve as his resident Jazz Flute Specialist at Sir James' official website. Bill also enjoys the unusual distinction of having been declared a winner in all three of the National Flute Association’s Jazz Flute (1) Soloist, (2) Masterclass and (3) Big Band Competitions in the US. ... more

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