Photo by Kalina Veleva

Kimberly Bourgeois - September 12, 2021 

Montreal-based singer-songwriter KIMBERLY BOURGEOIS loves nothing more than to paint pictures with words—and then magnify the mood with melody. 

Born in Moncton, N.B., Kimberly has lived in five Canadian provinces and spent more than half her life in Montreal, Quebec, where she’s had the pleasure of meeting and collaborating with many fine musicians, leading to the independent release of two EPs (2011 and 2016) under the project name KIMBERLY AND THE DREAMTIME.

“Tripping on the lyrics. Quite the artist,” said Kimberly’s co-producer Dave A. Sturton (Jean Leloup/Leclerc, Mark Berube) while working on Kimberly and the Dreamtime's debut EP (2011). Sturton described the album as “an amazing mix of stripped down pop, spoken-word, and electronica.” Top-notch players contributed to the smoky sounds on these recordings. Here, Kimberly’s velvety vocals are enveloped in the powerful musical performances of: Scott Diffee (guitar), Jerry Catanescu (bass), Daniel Zanella (drums), Daniel Loyer (keys), Shoukry Aboulehaf (keys), Myles Hildebrand (mandolin), and Norman Nawrocki (violin). 

Pulsating with emotional power, Kimberly and the Dreamtime’s second EP, HEART WAVE, was launched before packed houses in both Montreal (Casa del Popolo) and Ottawa (The Elgin) in 2016. Thematically, Heart Wave lets out a howl, rocking the boat in all the right ways. Songs about holding on rise like a transformative tide, toppling exquisitely into songs about moving on. For the recordings, Kimberly had the honour of collaborating with veteran engineer and producer Bill Szawlowski, whose career has earned him more than 30 gold, platinum, and double-platinum records. For this album, Kimberly played rhythm guitar on the title track, and sang lead vocals on all the songs. Her voice—sometimes silky, at other times fierce—was reinforced by a stellar lineup:  Martin Saint (electric and acoustic guitars), Robert Saulnier (bass), Raymond Newton (drums), Julie Abel (keys), and Carole Senécal (back vocals).

Inspired by artists like Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, and Patti Smith, as a lyricist, Kimberly crafts verse that denotes her parallel path as a writer. While working in book publishing, she became the first editor of The Montreal Review of Books (1997-2000)  and continues to write features and reviews for this publication today. She has also contributed articles to The Globe and Mail, Quill & Quire, and University Affairs Magazine. /publications

Over the years, Kimberly has remained active on the local scene, performing her spoken-word poetry and music in a broad range of Montreal cafés, nightclubs, theatres, and galleries (O'Patro Vys, Ursa, La Marche à côté, Casa del Popolo, Playhouse Cabaret, Café Mariposa, Inspecteur Épingle, Club Balattoo,The Yellow Door, the Visual Arts Centre, Lion D’Or, Centre Ste-Ambroise, Shaïka Café, The Wiggle Room, Galerie 1507, Arsenal Montreal, Piccolo Teatro Centre Leonardo Da Vinci, etc.).   

Notably, in the fall of 2013, her band gained favourable attention from the local press (Le Canada Français) in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, when they performed at the Bibliothèque Adélard-Berger thanks to an invitation from the city.  

Another highlight was being selected to perform at Nuit Blanche à Montréal Festival (2019) where she and her band shared the stage with Muusika ja Mõtted, a Nordic Fusion formation created by Estonian artist Mari Sild. For this occasion, Kimberly and Mari produced a special event called WE TOO ARE WILD, addressing the festival’s 2019 theme—the future—from an environmental perspective. 

While championing Mother Earth, Kimberly has lent her voice to other worthy causes. In 2011, she and her band performed on Montreal's bustling Ste-Catherine Street for Handicap International, while in April 2014, Kimberly and the Dreamtime helped raise funds with “Behind Closed Doors,” a collective and charitable art exhibition at the elegant Galerie 1507 in support of Shield of Athena, a service that helps women and children victims of domestic violence. Two months later, Kimberly once again donated her singing services to the Shield of Athena's membership campaign, performing an acoustic set for a packed house at Le Bâton Rouge restaurant in Montreal. 

Throughout it all, the poet/singer-songwriter has made regular appearances on Montreal radio stations, including CJAD 800, CIBL, Radio Centre-Ville 102,3 FM, CKUT, Radio Ville-Marie, CHOQ FM, and received airplay on CKCU FM 93.1 in Ottawa while launching her second EP (listen at 41:19):

More recently, while working on a solo EP with multi-instrumentalist Scott Diffee, scheduled for release in early 2022, Kimberly accepted an invitation to cover “Marilyn,” a song composed by poet, novelist, and singer-songwriter Bob Jensen, also known for his PEI-based booking agency, Jensen Music International. Here, lush arrangements by Réjean Arseneault support Kimberly’s vocals and Bob’s storyteller flair, while evocative cover art by Swiss photographer Geneviève Cygan further elevates this haunting single to be released on September 20, 2021. 

Today, Kimberly Bourgeois is excited to take things to the international level as her cover of “Marilyn,” composed by Bob Jenson, is set to be released to radio stations and programs in 22 countries around the world. 

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