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This project was made possible by funding through the Canadian Culture Online Strategy and the Heritage Policy Branch of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Canadian Heritage

Dave Johnston


DAVE JOHNSTON (trumpeter) was born in Aberdeen, Scotland, and played professionally throughout England and Scotland before emigrating to Canada, where he quickly became an integral part of the music scene, playing and recording with some of the biggest names and bands of the day. He is a charter member of Jim Galloway’s Wee Big Band, and played with them when the band made its 1979 debut, with its first-ever public performance taking place as a “Sound of Toronto Jazz” Concert on February 12, 1979. He is also a founding member of the Canadian Tribute to Glenn Miller Orchestra.

During the early years after arriving in Toronto, Johnston played with Bill Butler at the Lord Simcoe Hotel’s famed Pump Rom, with the society bands of Johnny Linden and Frank Bogart playing for some of the most prestigious events in the city, on the Dixieland circuit with several bands including The Jazz Corporation and Ragweed, and all the biggest of the big bands led by the kings of the genre: Art Hallman, Mart Kenney, Eddie Graf, Benny Louis, Elllis McLintock, and Paul Grosney.

He has worked with a long list of prominent international players including Warren Vache, Doc Cheatham, Clark Terry, Peter Appleyard, Jay McShann, Hank Jones, and Jake Hanna, and for nearly 25 years, has been a front-line player with Jim Galloway’s Echoes of Swing Sextet, playing on annual jazz cruises aboard Holland America luxury liners.