Illiteratty is a folk band from Vancouver, BC. We play metafolk…meaning, original swing, european cabaret, ambient, celtic, rockabilly, a cappella, folk, world, pop, (did I mention folk?); with sharp lyrics and up to 5 part vocals. The instrumentation is from 3 to 6 people…full complement is guitar, mandolin, violin, keys/accordion, standup bass & small percussion. It’s funny, angry, idiosyncratic, intelligent, and extremely varied…

Earle Peach has been a fixture on the Vancouver folk music landscape for decades, playing with Songtree, Natural Elements, Ship of Fools, Flying Ship, Sudanda and countless others. He conducts several choirs, teaches a variety of music skills and creates music for film, video and theatre. Because Earle is such a prolific composer (he’s probably composing something right now), he does the lion’s share of the writing for Illiteratty.


Albert Klassen has always played whichever instrument he could get his hands on – violin, piano, french horn, bass, tuba, guitar – but eventually he found his focus, playing bass for many years and then mandolin. Albert acquired his mandolin by employing a traditional Mennonite strategy – he couldn’t afford to buy the one he wanted so he built one. Here he’s playing the AK3. At the rate he’s cranking them out (one every two years on average) he’ll be 141 years old when he builds the AK47.


Kirsten Daub began studying violin at the age of five, learning to read music around the same time she learned to read words. She must have been influenced by her parent’s lp collection, a mix of classical and folk, because she soon discovered that the violin was good for more than just concertos and began playing in folk bands. Today Kirsten’s ipod has everything from Bach to Bruce Cockburn to the Beastie Boys and while she listens to just about everything she always comes back to folk music.


Mark Bender is the most recent addition to Illiteratty. He’s been playing jazz, rock and classical music and teaching and recording ever since he bought a bass guitar when he was 17. He played with Earle in a band called Ship of Fools in the mid 1990s and he and Albert were the New Westminster Symphony’s bass section briefly in the late 1980s.

Mark still plays with the New West Symphony and he also plays with jazz singer Wanda Nowicki and with Mennonite Jazz Committee.


Simon Kendall is probably best known as the goofy gargantuan keyboard player from Doug and the Slugs but that gig was a mere 15 year blip in a long career composing and producing music for film, TV and theatre. We recorded our CD in Simon’s studio with Simon producing and he couldn’t resist the temptation to add piano and accordion to the mix. Of course we did nothing to discourage this. Now he joins us as a special guest whenever his busy schedule allows.

marching2smIlliteratty welcomes our new percussionist!
We’re delighted to announce that we have added Todd Biffard as our percussionist. Todd has a questing ear and is always seeking just the right sound for a piece of music. He played with popular band Maria in the Shower for years, and has played at 35 different festivals in BC. Welcome Todd!