An exclusive look at one of the city's most dynamic bands
"The music has made so much healing" - Gaby and Selci
Sapphire Empire is a jazz-based collective fronted by the wonderful singer Selci Wind and guitarist Gaby Cardenas. And I write jazz-based not to sound purposely vague but because their sound is so tough to define, in the best way possible. The benefits of being a 'fusion' band (as they're often called) is that they have the freedom to play around with and be inspired by so many sounds, and the only definitives in their music are the recurring jazzy horns and guitars. They sound like soul, R&B, rap, ska and funk music all wrapped up in a cozy saxophone and trumpet blanket. Their track Allied 1 Mind is a great example of this: it starts off like a romantic slow jam and then breaks into a super catchy ska-influenced beat as if you were listening to The Selecter, with Selci's voice keeping you enthralled throughout the song's ebbs and flows. Go listen to the Sapphire Empire EP if you haven't already, you'll get what I'm talking about.
Ryan, Gaby and Selci discuss art, film, and travel, growing up as an immigrant in Winnipeg, and whether the internet sucks or not in this comprehensive interview.