Born in Chiang Mai Thailand, and raised outside of Edmonton, Jenie Thai is building a musical presence throughout the country through the electric energy she displays on stage and the old soul that’s conveyed through her songwriting. Raised in a musical household of six, silence was rare. Jenie’s blues and folk education began young when she fell asleep to the music her parents played while entertaining guests downstairs. Her training on the piano began at age five; she took private lessons for fifteen years. Through her classical training she spent her early school years performing difficult repertoire at various workshops, camps, and yearly round festivals receiving national accolade.
Graduating at seventeen, she continued her musical development, studying classical piano at Augustana University. In 2008, Jenie diversified her education attending Grant MacEwan Jazz and Contemporary Music Program as a performance major. Upon graduation, Jenie was offered a part-time teaching position at Grant MacEwan University and gained acceptance into Paul McCartney’s international music school based in Liverpool.
In 2011, Jenie released her EP “Lady Flower”. With the titled track she received an “honourable mention” as a finalist in the International Songwriting Competition (ISC) under the performance category (a category of 13 finalists out of 16, 000 submissions from around the globe). With the EP, she has been heard on many festival stages including both the Edmonton Folk Music Festival (2011) and the Canmore Folk Festival (2012).
Both solo and with her trio, Jenie has shared her songs across the country on festival stages, in blues bars, theatres, lounges, and living rooms. In spring of 2012, Jenie started the “Couch Concert Series”, a continuing project where she arrives on strangers steps to play a living room show in exchange for donations and a couch to sleep on.
In April 2013, Jenie Thai released “Only The Moon” which is “a beautifully crafted nine-song album of original songs showcasing a voice that has warmth and beauty…” writes David Farrell, writer for Toronto’s New Canadian Music. The organic and vibrant music has been unearthed through the stereos of CBC Radio 1, 2, and 3, CKUA, CJSR, and other various stations from coast to coast and internationally being aired in states such as Flordia and New York. With the album, Jenie was nominated for several Edmonton Music Awards (2013, 2014) for “Artist To Watch” and “Female Artist of the Year”.
Furthermore, in January 2014, Jenie Thai represented Northern Alberta as a semi-finalist in the 30th International Blues Challenge held in Memphis.
Vocally, she has been compared to an early Maria Muldaur but soaks in the musical influences of Tom Waits, Bonnie Raitt, Memphis Slim, Muddy Waters, Ella Fitzgerald, and Ryan Adams. A performer, song-writer, singer, and instrumentalist: Jenie Thai combines classical technique, jazz harmonics, and a life-long appreciation for blues and folk to produce a unique charm as a singer-songwriter on the on the Canadian folk, roots, and blues music scene.