John Erlendson Passes Away in Toronto, Ontario

John Erlendson and son John-Michael.JPG

Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Toronto musician John Erlendson passed away on Saturday, March 7 at age 70.  Hailing from Winnipeg, he followed his jazz pianist brother Bob to Toronto and became the "hot young bass player" in the late 60s.  He went across Canada with nit singer Bobby G. Griffith ("Give My Love to Lady Canada") and Sunnyside.

In 1977 he formed the Sphere Band, which was a staple in Toronto and Ontario nightclubs.  On the side, the group did clown shows, ending up with a deal with A & M Records for the first Sphere Clown Band album, "I Can Do Anything". It rated a Juno nomination. The next album went Gold, only the 8th Canadian children's artist in history to achieve that status.  John continued to play the local jazz scene until a couple of years ago, when cancer slowed him down.

He'll be remembered for his mellifluous voice, solid bass playing, very entertaining clown character, and contributions to the jazz scene. A musical celebration is planned for Thursday, March 19th starting at 7:30 pm at Whistler's Grille & The McNeil Room in Toronto. Should you want to participate musically please contact John-Michael Erlendson at jaan.koel@primus.ca.

All are welcome to celebrate the life and love of John Murray Ross Erlendson.