Throughout solstice/equinox her instrument is gorgeous, lustrous, precise and feather-light. Her musicianship is ineffably beautiful as she digs into the expression of each word, brings ceaseless variety to soft dynamics and gives every phrase hallowed grace.
Raul da Gama, liner notes
・2019 JUNO Best Vocal Jazz Nominee
・Editor's Pick, DownBeat Magazine
・2017 Palmarès, ICI Musique
・#1 HMV Jazz Chart, Hong Kong
・#1 Books.com and Eslite Jazz Charts, Taiwan
・#1 iRadio BCC's International Pop Chart,
・#2 Eslite year-end sales, Taiwan
We gratefully acknowledge support from the City of Hamilton's City Enrichment Fund.
1. They Say it's Spring
2. The Heather on the Hill
3. Up Jumped Spring
4. That Sunday, That Summer
5. Estate (Summer)
6. Manhattan
7. La Fin des vacances

8. September in the Rain
9. Tis Autumn
10. Septembre
11. Cloudy Morning
12. I Like Snow
13. By the Fireside

Diana Panton - vocal
Guido Basso - cornet, flugel, trumpet
Phil Dwyer - saxophones
Reg Schwager - guitar
Don Thompson - bass, piano, vibraphone

solstice/equinox is an exquisitely cra­fted jewel of an album whose multiple facets enchant the listener. As Diana's pristine voice lures us to follow her through the changing seasons, she takes us on a journey through time and space echoing both the ephemeral and enduring qualities of the cycles of love and life. Once again, Diana's repertoire selection is masterful and Don Thompson's superior arrangements provide luxurious wrapping for Diana's jeweled tones. Equally impressive is the diamond-quality soloing throughout this album. Saxophonist extraordinaire Phil Dwyer (Order of Canada) is featured on soprano sax in spring and later returns on tenor in autumn. Guido Basso's (Order of Canada) liquid flugel and playful trumpet are featured in summer and winter. Don Thompson (Order of Canada) provides lyrical accompaniment on piano, vibes and bass throughout, along with the exemplary guitar work of Reg Schwager (four-time National Jazz Award Winner). The album went to #1 on the HMV Jazz Chart in Hong Kong, as well as Taiwan's Books.com and Eslite where it ranked #2 in year-end sales for 2017. It was also voted one of the Top Albums of 2017 by ICI Musique. In 2018, the album was an Editor's Pick in DownBeat Magazine and in 2019, solstice/equinox was a nominee for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year at the JUNOs.

Her vocal style combines a light, buoyant lilt with immaculate phrasing, an authoritative delivery and a convincing ability to portray the emotions of the lyrics’ protagonists.
Bobby Reed, Editor's Pick, DownBeat
[read full review]
What makes Panton special is that she's herself. You feel her relaxed, playfully personality throughout, and the quality of her voice is remarkable. [...] A voice that's as gentle as a doe but smart as a fox. Brava!
Marc Myers, JazzWax
[read full review]
Multiple albums into her discographic career at this point – and in the exceptional company of multi-instrumentalist Don Thompson and guitarist Reg Schwager – the trio (fleshed out here with Guido Basso and Phil Dwyer) sounds not like a collection of hired musicians, but rather like a working jazz group that exhibits simpatico and a shared investment in the music heard here. Panton sings effortlessly throughout and swings with a bubbly buoyancy that reminds this listener of not only Blossom Dearie, but trumpeter Art Farmer, who also prefigured a relaxed and swinging time feel.
Andrew Scott, WholeNote Magazine
[read full review]
Tous les ingrédients sont donc présents pour faire de solstice/equinox un album qui peut, paradoxalement, être à la fois aussi réconfortant qu’une tasse de chocolat chaud l’hiver, et aussi rafraîchissant qu’un grand verre de thé glacé l’été.
François Lemay, ICI Musique.
[read full review]
[Diana] has a way of making the listener feel she is singing directly to him or her, not an easy accomplishment [...] As to the programme there are a number of very good but not overused standards and a few fine, if unfamiliar tracks. It is all very relaxed and sounds as though they all enjoyed recording the music. And that state, I think, will translate easily to listeners.
Derek Ansell, Jazz Views
An enriching, vibrant soundscape, solstice/equinox is enthusiastically recommended to connoisseurs of quality original jazz.
Wisconsin Bookwatch
A new album for the first time in two years by the cute Canadian diva, Diana Panton, who won two JUNO awards in succession with her seventh album “I Believe in Little Things”, a lovable fine piece, and with her sixth album “RED”, a masterpiece [...]. She has been impressing us with her very successful career as a singer so far. It’s the first time hearing her record with two horns, and here she sings beautiful gems which express seasonal beauty and capture the mood of the four-seasons with her own subtle and airy whisper. It moves our hearts and creates a secret infatuation. As always, her very natural singing attracts us, as well as her singulary fascinating voice, which even Sheila Jordan applauded, will surely hold you spellbound. The sophisticated sound of the album reminds me of the great George Shearing albums and the elegance of the arrangements suit Diana perfectly. The gentle versions of Henri Salvador’s classy “La Fin des Vacances” and Barbra's beautiful "Septembre" which Diana sings in French are especially touching.
Keiichi Konishi, JAZZ JAPAN
Canada seems to introduce us to new wonderful vocalists every year. Almost 12 years have passed since Diana’s debut, and it seems she is now considered one of the backbones of these jazz singers in Japan. Her eighth album highlights the beauty of the four-seasons through her careful song selection. The beauty of Don Thompson’s piano and bass accompanying Diana’s vocal moves me, and Diana’s vocal whispering, in a relaxed manner with drumless combo, attracts me a lot. I feel like a kid again when I listen to her music. It will be nice to pick up this CD again at the end of summer and listen to tracks 5 – 8, as a way to enjoy the album at a different time of year. Looking forward to her concert in Japan, along with this new album.
Ryosuke Mikoshiba, JAZZ LIFE, Japan
Canada has produced a number of international jazz divas, including Diana Krall and Holly Cole. Now there is the young diva, Diana Panton who has become a regular at the JUNO Awards, Canada's equivalent of the Grammy's. As always, she attracts us with her sweet voice and subtle, tasteful articulation. The theme of this new album is the changing seasons: spring with the birth of new life, summer's shining sun, autumn when leaves turn to crimson, and the quiet of winter. The album introduces us to the beauty of each season with clear and fresh singing and it softens the listener's heart.
Kazune Hayata, CD Journal, Japan
Diana Panton’s voice is a fabulous instrument, by turns joyful, somber, and passionate, but always so expressive of the lyrics and mood of the song. Her choices of songs for each season truly evoke their unique qualities (both the songs and the seasons), resulting in a brilliant and delightful listening experience. Even if you aren’t that familiar with jazz, this is a terrific place to start (and then you’ll want to hear Diana’s other albums, which are also fantastic). Highly recommended for music fans of all kinds.
Great Dark Wonder - TOP album pick of 2017
Diana Panton’s eighth full-length studio recording Solstice/Equinox is one of this year’s top new jazz albums and potentially one of the year’s top new albums overall. It is a record that jazz aficionados will enjoy the whole year through.
Phil's picks - TOP album pick of 2017
I felt bathed in gentle warm sunshine when I heard the first note of the first song. Diana Panton's voice is special amongst the many female vocalists in the world today. I would guess that she's one of the brightest stars of the vocal jazz scene overseas. Her distinctive vibrato and warm, soulful vocal style is attracting an increasing numbers of fans. [...] solstice / equinox is a captivating album, highlighting iridescent colours and a variety of climates.
LongPlay, Poland
[This] Juno award winner is finally staking her claim on the States and it’s about time. A jazz vocalist that recalls Blossom Dearie with her voice and jazz vocal sense, this is one of the best palette clearers to come along in quite some time. A modern take on a classic, this is jazz vocalist you have to get to know if you claim to be a genre fan. Killer stuff throughout.
Midwest Record
Diana Panton's gorgeous rendition of September In The Rain would likely enhance your impression of any sound system.
Tim Perlich, The Perlich Post
[Panton] takes the listener on a lush and luxurious musical excursion that meanders effortlessly and exquisitely along a jazz-infused path. To say that Panton's voice is enchanting would be an understatement, and the 13 songs on the album are literally a joy to behold - even when she sings about winter.
Marc Skulnick, Editor's Picks, Hamilton Magazine
Ce huitième album en près de 12 ans est, encore une fois, totalement à l’image de la chanteuse canadienne : lumineux et dans le ton. La justesse des arrangements, en concordance avec l’interprétation de Diana Panton, crée un fil conducteur qui donne une cohérence à l’ensemble. Solstice / Equinox se laisse facilement écouter d’une traite. Un album à la fois réconfortant et rafraîchissant.
Palmarès 2017 : les 50 meilleurs albums de l’année, ICI Musique
Douce célébration des saisons! Une des plus belles voix canadiennes, Diana Panton nous réjouit et nous séduit encore une fois avec «solstice/equinox».
Colette Schryburt, Coco Jazz 100,1 FM-CKVL à Montréal
«solstice/equinox» est le titre du nouvel album de Diana Panton. Tout au long des 13 titres que contient l’album, elle réussit à merveille à mettre en musique toute la beauté de nos 4 saisons. Tout simplement « Magnifique »!
Louis Brunet, CKMN-FM 96,5
"Diana Panton's pure, vibrant voice is a breath of fresh air, subtle as a sigh. The Canadian jazz vocalist presents a pleasing package of songs in her new album,Solstice/Equinox. [...] Throughout, singing in both English and French, Panton communicates every musical moment eloquently. This is a warm and wonderful album."
Paul Freeman, Pop Culture Classics
Diana Panton has a sweet girl-next-door voice not dissimilar from vintage Blossom Dearie as she teams with Guido Basso/tp-fh-ct, Phil Dwyer/sax, Reg Schwager/g and Don Thompson/g-p-vib. With Thompson on vibes, the band turns into a George Shearing hip groove with cool swing on the cozy “That Sunday, That Summer,” “September in the Rain” and “I Like Snow.” Dwyer’s alto is tender on the impressionistic “Septembre” and Basso’s brass is warm and gentle during a glowing “Cloudy Morning.” Rich pastels dominate this well framed work of art.
George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly
When it comes to sweet jazz vocal work, Diana certainly has a handle on it… all you have to do to be convinced of her extraordinary talent is listen to songs like the beautiful “Septembre“ [...] Of the thirteen tunes Diana offers up for your listening pleasure, though, it’s “Estate (summer)” that got my vote for personal favorite, hands-down [...] I’m reminded of Astrud’s wonderful vocals, but Diana’s style is all her own. I give Diana and her players a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED [...].
Rotcod Zzaj, Improvijazzation Nation
To all of her material, Panton brings admirable sincerity and she sings with a soft and gentle vocal sound, excellent diction (here and there, singing in French) and a light sense of swing. She clearly loves the music she performs and is well served in all that she does by Don Thompson and Reg Schwager, both of whom support the singer admirably. They also have solo space, [...]whereon both Guido Basso and Phil Dwyer are also featured, the latter notably on Tis Autumn, which is a lovely duet for voice and saxophone.
Bruce Crowther, UK's Jazz Journal