Biography

Juno nominated artist Dayna Manning exemplifies the very best that Canadian Folk music can be. Her cool clear voice along with her insightful songs represent a history of Canadian musical art that goes back to the early 60's and sounds just as vital today.

 

Originally from Stratford Ontario, Dayna Manning grew up in a musical family and launched a professional songwriting career at 18, releasing two self-penned albums with EMI Music Canada and Nettwerk America. Her songs drew praise from countless industry tastemakers, including Billboard Magazine and led to working with Sean Ono Lennon, as well as luminary LA-based producer Jim Scott. Manning toured North America extensively as a duo with cellist Kevin Fox, performing with Great Big Sea, Jann Arden, Spirit of the West, and Radiohead, toured nationally with Burton Cummings and Joe Cocker, and was part of the original Lilith Fair.

After six years in the major label music industry, Manning took some time to reflect and reconnect with her musical heart. She then released FOLKYO, a refreshingly independent album that showcased her wide range of writing styles, and further demonstrated her acumen as an arranger, producer and engineer.

In 2011 Manning, along with Emm Gryner, formed the Canadian folk trio Trent Severn, penning all original songs about the land and people they love. In a few short years the fiercely independent group’s unique "Canadiana" approach and stage show landed festival appearances, a feature article in MacLean’s,  a CBC live recording, two Canadian Folk Music Award nominations, the honour of singing the national anthem on Parliament Hill for the Canada Day flag-raising, and musical guest appearances at their shows by none other than Commander Chris Hadfield.

Most recently, Manning completed producing and engineering Trent Severn's third album “Portage”, (June 2017). Her full-length production debut, Trent Severn’s “Trillium” (Oct 2015) reached #1 on the Earshot! Canadian Campus Folk/Roots/Blues chart, and made the 2016 Polaris Prize Longer List. She has national commercials and radio brands to add to her production and engineering credits, and her insightful ballad, “I Know How the Moon Must Feel” from the feature film Thomas and the Magic Railroad still helps young fans find Dayna today.

Fully engaged in the greater music community, Dayna also mentors 20 young women through her Folk Army program in Stratford Ontario, and lectures on writing and recording, making annual lecture stops at OIART recording school in London, ON. In 2017 alone she lectured and performed at the Stratford Writer’s Festival, Dave Brosha’s acclaimed Land and See conference in PEI and was a panelist at the Jack Richardson Music Awards. This summer, (2018) Dayna is a faculty member of SongStudio at The Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, ON.


Dayna has it all to be a modern renaissance artist. She writes, produces, engineers, arranges, conceives, designs, organizes, engages, envisions, connects and plans. Above all, her musicianship is striking, her stage manner seasoned, and her songwriting is simply skilled.

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Musical Background

Dayna plays mainly acoustic guitar in her performances, but previously performed for many years on piano also.

She is known to pick up any instrument needed in the studio, and in addition to piano and acoustic guitar, has played banjo, bass, electric guitar, and even drums on her records. 

Dayna has studied:
  • Suzuki Method Piano
  • Royal Conservatory Piano
  • Royal Conservatory Voice
  • Guitar 
  • Drums 

Dayna continues to take vocal and guitar training with top professionals whenever possible.

To view Dayna's instrument collection click here.