Stephen holds an Honours BFA from York University (1984) in Jazz performance on double-bass. In 1983 he was awarded a Canada Council Grant to study at the Banff Centre's Jazz Workshop led by renowned double-bassist Dave Holland. He completed his MA in Musicology at York University (2014).
As a performer, he has appeared on twenty different recordings playing styles as diverse as jazz, folk, rock, latin and world music. He toured and recorded with Grammy-nominated flautist Ron Korb throughout Japan, Taiwan, Panama, and Canada including a live-concert DVD filmed in Victoriaville, Quebec. Stephen currently performs as a freelance bassist in the greater Toronto area where he is also a section bassist with Orchestra Toronto.
Stephen is currently a doctoral candidate in Musicology at the Don Wright Faculty of Music. His research examines the double-bass tuned in fifths with a focus on its uses in nineteenth-century France as well as the current resurgence of this tuning and its applications in the modern orchestra. Inspired by a series of masterclasses with esteemed Canadian double-bassist Joel Quarrington, Stephen adopted the historical practice of tuning the double bass in fifths, a practice touted by Mr. Quarrington and jazz-bassist Red Mitchell. His Master’s thesis, Red Mitchell: Tuning in Fifths and the Walking Bass Line, is a featured article on Joel Quarrington's website. Stephen has presented his research most recently at the University of Ottawa's Graduate Symposium in Music (2018) and was a guest lecturer at Mr. Quarrington's 2018 master class at the Centre d'Arts in Orford, Quebec.