The Jubilation Choir is celebrating twenty-five years of glorious singing.
Trevor Payne – Founder, Director, recipient of the Order of Canada
and numerous other awards visits with The Montrealer
By Peter Kerr
Born one of five children in Barbados, Trevor Payne’s life journey brought him to Montreal where he grew up in Rosemount; became a successful rock ’n’ roll band leader and musician; studied music at McGill; continued in linguistics at Université de Laval; Black Music History at Howard University; and eventually founded the world famous Montreal Jubilation Choir. Here’s the story of his talent being discovered and nurtured, his musical travels, and his faith.
Looking out the window at his snow-covered back garden, Trevor notes; “My mother sent us a picture of her bundled up in a winter coat, hat, scarf and gloves. It frightened me. We had no concept of that kind of cold.”
“My father was a strong-willed man and he insisted on us growing up anywhere but downtown; where most kids were lucky to make it to 12 without getting in trouble with the authorities.
Trevor continues; “We moved to Rosemount – where we encountered a whole lot of other problems as the only black family in the neighbourhood. Kids calling us all kinds of name on the way to school – you name it. My Dad encountered criticism from his co-workers, who thought that he considered himself above them by choosing to live in Rosemount.”
“We were far from rich – but not poor. My mother had several jobs. She cleaned toilets in Simpson’s, and made sandwiches at the Windsor Station.Cafeteria” [FULL STORY]