GARNETTA CROMWELL
&
DaGROOVMASTERS

her story image
GARNETTA CROMWELL
www.garnettacromwellmusic.com

"If Aretha Franklin & Tina Turner had a child, her name would be Garnetta Cromwell.”
~ Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne (Juno Award winner & Canadian Music Hall of Fame member)

Garnetta Cromwell’s story begins in Montreal as a bilingual, Afro-Metis (Mi'q Ma'q Community) Canadian girl, a musical daughter of a sophisticated and strong woman; and the youngest of six daughters. Watching her mother, Miss Marva Ann, use music to survive, thrive, heal, and grow; Garnetta used music for the same purpose. As a child, Garnetta had a hearing impairment that left her temporarily deaf and required surgical treatment to repair. Loving music gave her the impetus to survive, the determination to thrive, the peace to heal and a reason to grow.
She diversified her musicality at a young age with a passion for gospel, blues, country and soul music. Following her sisters in talent contests, Garnetta was a child performer in costumes tailored by her mother and performing hit songs from The Supremes, The Staples Singers and The Jackson 5. With her bold, rich tone and innate talent; Garnetta became the lead vocalist in a junior choir, often performing with her sisters.
Garnetta reflects on recording “Miss Marva Ann” - “I felt compelled to write a song tribute to my mother, Marva Ann Fairfax. She was raised in the 1940s, in a very strict home as the only daughter with two brothers. My mother’s strength to feed, clothe and most importantly, protect her six girls, empowers me to this day."
“Dance & Shout, It’s A Woman’s World, was inspired by my upbringing", she relates. "It’s an anthem to all women, meant to empower and inspire. I inherited my mother’s will to fight and survive in any circumstance; I hope my songs will connect with many audiences."
As Garnetta continued her music journey, she became the lead vocalist and drummer for Toronto’s only female reggae band Sweet Sensation, performing on the same stage with Platinum/Grammy Award artists Maxi Priest, Shabba Ranks, Shaggy, Gregory Issac, Sean Kingston and Platinum/Grammy soul legends Percy Sledge, Dorothy Moore and The Manhattans. Retreating from the group, she returned to Nova Scotia to pack up life and be with family during a time of loss. Relocating within weeks, Garnetta scooped any job she could to pay the bills. After a restructuring promotion at one of those jobs, Garnetta was placed under the supervision of a racist and violent individual. Needing to move forward, she registered with the Canadian Armed Force Reserves. Meanwhile working as a Correctional Officer, Garnetta was treated with incredible levels of disrespect and indecency, which put her in a dark and angry place.
Emerging from the darkness, Garnetta joined Bonafide, a R&B band in Nova Scotia and set off for happiness, success and change. Garnetta soon experienced loss again when her nephew in Ontario was shot and killed. Filled with sadness and anger, Garnetta channeled that energy through the sport of Olympic Weightlifting and the power of music.
Focusing on weightlifting for physical and mental health, within six months of training Garnetta won a gold medal and set a new Ontario record which led to competing in the Pan-Am Masters Canadian Games in 2018. Winning two gold medals and setting new Canadian records, Garnetta was heading to the 2019 World Championships in Montreal, Quebec when an accident with a dump truck robbed her of her ability to compete. In October of 2021, her eldest son was shot and injured. By this time, Garnetta admitted that she needed to heal. She turned inside with self-reflection about life and her music. She decided it was time for her to take the reins and lead her band, DaGROOVMASTERS, on a full-time basis. She committed to creating the music that was the soundscape to her story and to live her best life.
GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS is a classic soul and R&B band that delivers a high-energy show. They are a reflection of Canada's multicultural society. Their upbeat music brings pure joy to all listeners. Garnetta has been in the studio recording with many notable musicians and has graced the stage with Juno and Maple Blues Award recipient, Hall of Famer, the King of Boogie Woogie, Mr. Kenny "Blues Boss" Wayne. GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS performed at the 24th Annual Southside Shuffle in September 2022, one of Canada's best known blues festivals. GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS won the Toronto Blues Society's (TBS) Talent Search in July 2022, which earned them a spot to compete at the finals in the International Blues Challenge, being held in Memphis, Tennessee, which takes place January 24-28, 2023.
Their first Blues single, “Miss Marva Ann”, was released January 2022 and has been ranked # 1 locally, #4 regionally, #45 nationally and is still climbing globally on the Reverbnation music charts. It can be purchased on cd or digitally on Spotify, Apple Music, Bandcamp, Soundcloud & Reverbnation, as well as other streaming platforms.
Their style of upbeat music brings pure joy to all listeners and they continue to spread their soulful & funky fusion blues sound throughout their live performances. Please feel free to visit their Youtube channel, under GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS.
GARNETTA CROMWELL performed at the 35th Annual Women Blues Revue held at Massey Hall, on November 25, 2022, alongside Ann Vriend, Miss Emily, Angelique Francis, Selena Evangeline and Suzzie Vinnick, who are some of Canada's top female blues singers. 
GARNETTA CROMWELL closed the show with a powerful performance and received a full standing ovation. 

MARK HOWE aka "DaFUNKMASTER"

BASSIST

Mark Howe is an extraordinary bassist and has mastered the groove to any genre but specializes in Funk, Soul & Blues. He played as a fill in bassist with The Jeff Healy Band in the mid 80's before the “See The Light” album. He played 3 years with The Jimmy Dooley Band from The Platters and did a fill in tour with Amanda Marshall. Mark led his own band, Spectrum, from 1982 to 2020 until he became the full time bassist for GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS.

TOSHIHIRO OTANI aka "TOSHI"

LEAD GUITARIST

Toshi Otani was born and raised on Japan's most northern island of Hokkaido. When he was 12 years old, he taught himself to play by listening to the radio and records. His first experience playing the blues was at the age of 19, as a bass player. In 2005, he moved to New York and joined a band called East Village Pharmacy and recorded an album. He spent many years in Tokyo's lively Chicago-style blues scene before relocating to the Niagara region in 2013 and then to Hamilton 2019.

JUAN ARCE MANUEL aka "SAXY"

SAXOPHONIST

Colombian born sax player Juan Arce graduated from York University with an honours degree in fine arts, specializing in jazz performance. He started his musical career in 2003 working with his father at an early age. Since then, he has developed a highly versatile playing style performing, recording, and touring with several jazz, funk and pop ensembles as well as various latin groups and salsa orchestras. Juan has collaborated on several projects with Toronto band Shuffle Demons, and performed with several international latin artists, including Gabriel Romero, Luis Felipe Gonzales, and Armando Hernandez, among others.

ROBIN HOUSTON aka" DaBEAT"

DRUMMER

Robin Houston was born in a small Northern Ontario community. His mother was a musician and he always listened to her play the piano, which inspired him to pick up a set of drum sticks. Robin received his first drumkit when he was 8 years old. Robin played with local bands and would often sub in when needed. Robin moved to Southern Ontario in 1980 and his drums were a hobby until he joined The Whiskey Chasers, a band from the Hamilton, ON region. He continued to play with The Whiskey Chasers until he fully committed to become the full time drummer for GARNETTA CROMWELL & DaGROOVMASTERS.

Upcoming Events

TitleDateLocation
Hamilton Public Library17 Feb 2023To Be Announced
John Holland Black Awards18 Feb 2023LIUNA Station Banquet Hall
Winterfolk Festival 202326 Feb 2023319 Augusta Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada
Moonshine Cafe24 Mar 2023137 Kerr Street, Oakville, ON, Canada
Function Bar31 Mar 20232291 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, Canada
Music By The Bay Live13 May 20234580 Concession Road 6, Uxbridge, ON, Canada

Past Events

TitleDateLocation
International Blues Competition25 Jan 2023Beale Street, Memphis, TN, USA
International Blues Showcase at Hard Rock Cafe24 Jan 2023126 Beale Street, Memphis, TN, USA
Fundraiser for Memphis at The Brown Barrel21 Jan 20231515 Upper Ottawa Street, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Road To Memphis Fundraiser15 Jan 20232291 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, Canada
Pre Christmas Party @ Sammy's Creamery23 Dec 202275 Erie Avenue, Brantford, ON, Canada
Garnetta & Dagroovmasters17 Dec 2022137 Kerr Street, Oakville, ON, Canada
Jeans & Sparkle Holiday Party w HBHAS03 Dec 2022828 Legion Road, Burlington, ON, Canada
Function Bar26 Nov 20222291 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, Canada
Women In Blues Revue25 Nov 2022178 Victoria Street, Toronto, ON, Canada
Function Bar19 Nov 20222291 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, Canada
Gator At The Norfolk05 Nov 2022200 Main Street, Port Dover, ON, Canada
BIPOC hART Music Series14 Oct 2022200 Caroline Street North, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Queen Street West Art Crawl Festival24 Sep 2022790 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON, Canada
Play The Parks (Harmony Square) TDCanda & CMIncubators18 Sep 202289 Dalhousie Street, Brantford, ON, Canada
Hamilton's Supercrawl10 Sep 2022324 James Street North, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Southside Shuffle- Main Stage09 Sep 2022Memorial Park, Port Credit, ON
Beggar's Blues Banquet08 Sep 202235 Front Street North, Mississauga, ON, Canada
8th Annual T.U. Jazz Fest 202204 Sep 20225100 Yonge Street, North York, ON, Canada
Club Envy27 Aug 202293 Cedar Drive, Turkey Point, ON, Canada
Gator @ the Norfolk26 Aug 2022200 Main Street, Port Dover, ON, Canada
Brant Parker's Special guest20 Aug 202254 Front Street South, Thorold, ON, Canada
City Of Hamilton "Jazz in the Creek"19 Aug 202254 King Street East, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Emancipation Day Celebration13 Aug 2022Port Dalhousie, St. Catharines, ON, Canada
Halton Freedom Celebration30 Jul 20221400 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, ON, Canada
Pub Fiction23 Jul 20221242 Garner Road West, Ancaster, ON, Canada
Donnelly's Pub Sunday Matinee17 Jul 202254 Front Street South, Thorold, ON, Canada
Black Swan16 Jul 2022154 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada
70's Night at Club Boullee09 Jul 202298 Boullee Street, London, ON, Canada
Toronto Blues Society Finals02 Jul 2022Yorkville Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada
Canada Day Celebration01 Jul 2022To Be Announced
Moonshine Cafe25 Jun 2022137 Kerr Street, Oakville, ON, Canada
Soulful Kafe18 Jun 202281 Brant Ave, Brantford, ON, Canada
George Hamilton28 May 2022152 King Street West, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Turkey Point Hotel22 May 202293 Cedar Drive, Turkey Point, ON, Canada
Gator At The Norfolk20 May 2022200 Main Street, Port Dover, ON, Canada
Spices on Sydenham-Afternoon Matinee14 May 2022159 Sydenham Street, Brantford, ON, Canada
Friday the 13th In Port Dover,13 May 2022200 Main St, Port Dover, ON, Canada
Spring Up!07 May 2022270 Sherman Avenue North, Hamilton, ON, Canada
Commodore's Ball30 Apr 2022RHYC Royal Hamilton Yacht Club
International Blues Competition27 Mar 2022339 York Blvd, Hamilton, ON, Canada
The Black Swan26 Mar 2022154 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada