After years of singing and performing with various Minneapolis bands, chanteuse Stephanie Winter has finally stepped out on her own and recorded a long overdue solo album.   Stephanie was a founding and integral member of the much beloved Legendary Jim Ruiz Group.  They toured the US and Japan, put out 2 acclaimed albums of loungey jazz pop on Minty Fresh records.

Eventually the band broke up, Stephanie and husband Jim parted ways and Stephanie Winter-Ruiz went back to being Stephanie Winter. Throughout this she also founded 60's garage pop group Zipperpuss with Allison LaBonne and Brian Tighe, though they played very sporadically and never quite got around to releasing anything…..

In 2001 she released a recording collaboration with soundsmith John Crozier (Ninian Hawick, Ninotchka, The Hang Ups, et al.) under the name The Shebrews.  Off With Their Hearts was lauded as"a true pop gem" (Splendid) and "perfectly crafted art-pop… the songs are crushingly heart rending and beautiful." (Rockbites).

In May 2003 she was invited to join the Autumn Leaves as singer / guitarist, and has been seen and heard playing with them around town ever since.  Autumn Leaves members have returned the favor by appearing on Sex, Socialism, and the Seaside.  

Sex, Socialism, and the Seaside is credited to the "band" Stephanie Says.  Ms. Winter wrote all the songs, which touch on all aspects of love, but tend most often towards the simple and classic topic of heartbreak. Influenced by Blondie, Nick Lowe, Francoise Hardy, and growing up by the English Seaside, the songs hearken to the simple pleasures of a short and bittersweet pop song.  The honey-voiced Ms. Winter has a carefree and intimate vocal style. Time Out New York wrote (sic) "the British-born Winter's stunning vocals - though she may have been raised on Blondie and Elvis Costello - conjure up a little bit of Julie London and Astrud Gilberto."  

Guest appearances on the album are made by a slew of her friends, who just happen to also be local music luminaries:  Allison LaBonne (The Owls) on keyboards and backing vocals, Mike Crabtree (The Carpetbaggers) on guitar, Autumn Leaves members David Beckey, Scott Berndt and Dwight Erickson, and Brian Tighe (The Hang Ups, The Owls).

Stephanie’s Email

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Grimsey records:

The Autumn Leaves website: