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From gigging with Aerosmith to The Burlingtone Music Academy–Suzie McNeil’s journey


From gigging with Aerosmith to The Burlingtone Music Academy–Suzie McNeil’s journey

“Just like that, touring with Aerosmith stopped. I was devastated,” McNeil remembers.  

44-year old Burlington resident and singer/songwriter Suzie McNeil gained notoriety as an artist in 2005 during the singing competition Rockstar: INXS. She then went on to pursue her solo career garnering tremendous success with her Broken and Beautiful album, touring with artists like Pink. In 2014 Suzie McNeil and her husband Andrew Mactaggart joined a country rock group, formed by  chart-topping producer, singer/songwriter Marti Frederiksen, bearing similarities to Fleetwood Mac, called The Loving Mary Band. After releasing their much anticipated debut album, the band was invited to tour in 2016 with Steven Tyler.

Spring of 2019 McNeil and Mactaggart were asked to be part of a 35-show run in Vegas with Aerosmith, the band; an experience that McNeil claims was, “surreal”. A year later, the tour came to a sudden stop while the world experienced the onset of a pandemic, together.

“It was the right time for Burlingtone Music Academy.”

Suzie recognized that it was necessary to recreate herself. “I have dreamt of teaching for some time,” recalls McNeil. “Andrew has been teaching music for more than 20 years for entities like Capstone Music and Oakville Academy of Music.

“Andrew and I discussed how exciting it would be to have a place to be around, locally; with a cafe, open mics, recitals, stage performances and band camps. Establishing an online presence before opening a physical space was an important first step. It was the right time for Burlingtone Music Academy,” remarked Suzie. The virtual music school launched November, 10, 2020 with spectacular interest!

The academy offers vocal and instrumental lessons; private and in groups, for all ages. They hold circle-time with music books for kids, music production and host artist series’ mentored by music industry experts.

“What sets this academy apart from others is the performance aspect, focusing on full-artist development”, McNeil is proud to share. “We don’t just want to teach an artist or musician how to create music in a room. We want to help them know how to perform it on a stage.”

Check the Burlingtone Music Academy website for more details.

Follow @thesuziemcneil for information on upcoming events for The Loving Mary Band.

Michele Bogle is a Burlington-based food & entertainment journalist.

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