Singer-songwriter Crissi Cochrane.Singer-songwriter Crissi Cochrane, a research assistant in the Centre for Smart Community Innovation, has a CD for sale in the University Bookstore.

Windsor expanded her musical horizons, says songwriting staffer

Growing up in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley, Crissi Cochrane was inspired to pursue a career in music, but Windsor helped her discover soul. A singer-songwriter who also works as a research assistant in the Centre for Smart Community Innovation, she says her experience in eastern Canada largely revolved around folk music.

Little Sway album cover“Moving to Windsor in 2010 totally changed my taste in music,” says Cochrane, whose third release, Little Sway, is now available at the University Bookstore. “I discovered soul, jazz, R&B and Motown.”

She cites Billie Holliday, Motown groups the Supremes and the Temptations, as well as jazz saxophonist Stan Getz, as influences. In fact, a rendition of the Gershwin standard The Man I Love, first popularized by Holliday, is the only song on her most recent album Cochrane did not write.

“My sound now reflects a lot of jazz and soul,” she says, along with the pop-song format she generally employs.

Besides exposing her to new genres of music, her new hometown has been supportive of her career in other ways, Cochrane says. Little Sway was independently produced in Windsor with local engineers and musicians, and received funding support from, the Windsor Endowment for the Arts as well as the Ontario Arts Council and the Foundation to Assist Canadian Talent on Recordings.

She also says she was “honoured” to represent Windsor in CBC’s Searchlight talent contest. Cochrane finished in the Top 10 of 4600 competitors with the single And Still We Move from her most recent CD.

Those hoping to hear her can purchase Little Sway from the University Bookstore for $15 or catch her live at Phog Lounge on June 12. For more information, visit her website at