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Best Music Video by a Local Artist

By Katie Marsh on April 3, 2012

What makes a great music video? An awesome song helps for sure, but the best videos makes full use of both mediums by combining a catchy tune with eye-popping cinematography. The combination of Juno fever with a bout of crappy spring weather last weekend put us in the mood to go searching on YouTube for the best of what the local music scene has to offer. We also asked the Ottawa twitterati to help us out.

The result was our five picks for the best videos to have come out of Ottawa. For our purposes, ‘local’ means that the artist either considers Ottawa their hometown or that they currently reside in the city.

THE ORGANIZED RHYMES AWARD FOR BEST RAP VIDEO: Jesse Dangerously – Bring your girlfriend to rap day


Ottawa stole Rap Legand Jesse Dangerously from Halifax and we’re not giving him back. “Bring your girlfriend to rap day” is hilarious, the type of song you’ll listen to again and again to catch all the clever lines, and this fun video really helps to bring the song to life. I really identify with the girlfriend, since I also think that I could rap if I really tried (it’s just talkin’). A video in the best tradition of Ottawa native Tom Greene’s Organized Rhymes.

Runner up: Kool KrisShow Stopper



Watch this video, then guess the budget. With $200, a basketball and a few hours of time, the team of animators came up with something that blows away $1,000,000 worth of gyrating ladies in fancy costumes (no disrespect Beyonce). The song is catchy, the animation is cute and funny and there’s a little something for everyone (Monkeys! Pirates! Killer Robots!). The video has reached 1,000,000 views spread out over a variety of video sharing sites. Kudos to animators Kevin Parry, Carla Veldman, Andrew Wilson and Andrea Nesbitt.

Runner up: Amos The TransparentSure As The Weather

THE JIM CUDDY AWARD FOR A VIDEO FEATURING JIM CUDDY: Kathleen Edwards – I Make The Dough, You Get The Glory


This is probably the most Canadian thing I’ve seen in a while: Hockey, folksy singer song writer, the CBC and of course a guest appearance by Jim Cuddy… The only thing missing is a bottle of maple syrup and a dancing moose. Hometown favourite Kathleen Edwards’ fun video is the perfect thing to watch while sipping a cup of Timmy Ho’s on Canada Day.

Runner up: Jim Bryson – Somewhere Else (Also featuring Jim Cuddy)



OK GO shot to fame on the back of their incredibly cool videos (here’s the most famous example). Helped along by video genius Greg Jardin, hometown rockers Hollerado look set to accomplish the same feat. This isn’t just one of my favourite videos by a local band, it’s one of my all time favourites.

Runner up: Hollerado Got to Lose

THE SPIRIT OF OTTAWA AWARD: My Dad Vs Yours – Happy Wanderer / Carry The Weight


There’s something about this video that captures the spirit of the city: a stolid exterior masking a bunch of kids-at-heart who just really want to go play in the snow. The aftermath of the recent budget announcements makes the video, which won best music video at last year’s Ottawa International Film Festival, even more poignant and topical.

Runner up: The JoyntCapCity (Ottawa Song)

THE FRANKY WANTS A DANCE CATEGORY AWARD: Jokers Of The Scene – Baggy Bottom Boys


While Fool’s Gold JOTS now travel the world with their beats, they’re originally from Ottawa and the psychedelic video for Baggy Bottom Boys was even partly shot in the city. Heck, I think I even recognize a young LeChampionDuMonde in there!

Runner up: Bonjay – Stumble

We couldn’t stop at just five… here are a few of the other suggestions off of facebook and twitter.

The Murder Plans – Tell a Lie
The Love Machine – Love is on your side
Amanda Rhéaume – Better Days
Craig Cardiff – When People Go
The Claytones – Won’t Let Go

What did we miss? Did we get it tragically wrong? Let us know in the comments.


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