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Weekend roundup: What to do in Ottawa

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We’re sticking with our tradition of at least one festival per weekend, folks – we’ve got the Haiti en Fête festival happening down on Petrie Island all weekend long, with music and food and dancing guaranteed. If you can’t wait for the Centretown Movies outdoor film festival to start next week, head to Dundonald Park on Saturday for TreePot5: Indie Koala Invasion, showcasing some of the best indie films from a few local filmmakers. Timber Timbre will be playing tonight out at the Black Sheep, with special guests Fiver, while Loh El the... | Continue reading article

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This is not a review: My Wu-Tang, from Shaolin 1993 to Bluesfest 2013

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Photo by Andrew Carver on flickr.Photo by Andrew Carver on flickr.

As we stood in the Bluesfest rain, waiting for the Wu to show, I asked the group of teenage girls next to me: what’s your favourite Wu-Tang song? Blank stares. “Ummm, I dunno.” There we were, those who were infants when Enter the 36 Chambers dropped, mixed with those who held Wu-Tang as rap Gods. The dichotomy was not lost on me. Everyone who grew up listening to Wu-Tang talks different. Since ’93, the Wu-Tang diffused the phrases “nah I’m sayin?” and “nah I mean?” to every corner of the earth,... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Bluesfest, Music

Digital painting, graffiti, lasers and DJs: Night Light Masquerade brings it together at Wall Space Gallery

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Piggyback by Stefan Thompson. Image courtesy of Wall Space Gallery.Piggyback by Stefan Thompson. Image courtesy of Wall Space Gallery.

It’s hot out there, Ottawa. If you need a reason to escape the heat this weekend, head over to Wall Space Gallery for a night of dancing, DJing, lasers and live digital painting by one of our favourite local artists, Stefan Thompson. You may already be familiar with Thompson’s work if you frequent the Idle Hands Craft Sale – he also had a show awhile back at the Ottawa Art Gallery. Known for his mysterious, other-worldly bestial figures, Thompson is a part of the group exhibition, Night Light Masquerade, opening... | Continue reading article

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Angela Hewitt joins NAC Orchestra for two special Mozart piano concerts

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Photo of Angela Hewitt courtesy of the NACPhoto of Angela Hewitt courtesy of the NAC

The National Arts Centre (NAC) Orchestra is a delight to hear.  What is equally wonderful, however, are the many brilliant guest musicians that they perform with. The NAC Orchestra’s 2013 summer concert series continues this fine tradition, with four shows in July featuring the works of Mozart and such composers as Antonín Dvořák and Jean Sibelius. The performances scheduled for this coming Thursday and Friday are particularly special, as Ottawa-born pianist Angela Hewitt joins the NAC Orchestra for two piano concertos by Mozart (No. 22 in E-flat major and No. 24 in C minor).  Also on the... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Music, Sights & Sounds

Outdoor Salsa at City Hall provides free dance for beginners and experts alike

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Photo by Jared DavidsonPhoto by Jared Davidson

Last Wednesday, two local Latin dance studios teamed up to kick off a series of free events under the title Outdoor Salsa at City Hall. Every Wednesday this summer, Azucar! Latin Dance Company and Salsa Force will be bringing a free evening of dance to the Rink of Dreams in front of City Hall. Each event consists of two parts: a beginner lesson from 6 until 7 and a night of social dancing from 7 until 11. The dancing is backed by live or DJed Latin music, and food courtesy... | Continue reading article

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Blogging Bluesfest 2013: Three Little Birds

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Photo by Ayoub Ben SessiPhoto by Ayoub Ben Sessi

Three Little Birds have made headlines in the past for the politically driven messages in their music. You’ll get a chance to take in their eclectic mixed-bag of musical influences, which range from country to reggae, when they take the stage at the Rideau Centre on Sunday at noon. Thanks to Three Little Birds for taking the time to answer a few questions for us. How would you describe your sound? We pull upon a wide range of musical styles - everything from Balkan styled harmonies within reggae beats to country-flavoured melodies... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Bluesfest, Music

Blogging Bluesfest 2013: John Carroll and the Epic Proportions

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Photo by Jesse A. WolfePhoto by Jesse A. Wolfe

When John Carroll takes the stage at Bluesfest on Sunday, he’ll be a long way from his roots as a street busker. Now a seasoned veteran, playing gigs for the CBC and holding down a long-term residence at the Laff in the Byward Market, John Carroll and his Epic Proportion offer a study in real blues. If you want to take a break from the big name acts this weekend, these guys would be a good bet. Read our mini interview with John below to get a feel for how... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Bluesfest, Music

Blogging Bluesfest 2013: The Wicked Mercy

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Photo by Alexander VladPhoto by Alexander Vlad

The Wicked Mercy bill themselves as apocalyptic blues and, if their heavy, lick-laden sound is any indication, it’s an apt descriptor. Led by Case Bronson (an assumed name based on local lore?), the band will take the stage at Bluesfest today at 2pm. But first, they were kind enough to answer some questions for us. How would you describe your sound? We’d describe our sound as gritty rock n’roll soaked in blues and whiskey and mixed with whatever feels good.  Some tunes have Spanish melodies, psychdelic, prog-rock and funk elements. How long... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Bluesfest, Music

Weekend roundup: What to do in Ottawa + giveaway!

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Photo courtesy of Autumns Cannon.Photo courtesy of Autumns Cannon.

So Bjork is stopping by for a visit, if you haven’t heard – her first time in the country in 11 years. If she’s not your cup of tea, perhaps an actual cup of tea is? Bad jokes aside, this weekend has a few hidden activity gems. Roller Derby Saved My Soul, a light, fun theatre production, is playing one night only at Arts Court (we’ve got a ticket giveaway below!). Cyclists can get out for a 20km scavenger hunt and bike rally with a few friends, competing for some great... | Continue reading article

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Blogging Bluesfest 2013: Medhi Cayenne Club

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Photo by Marie Andree Blais.Photo by Marie Andree Blais.

Those that live on the Gatineau side of the river and like to dance party probably already know about Mehdi Cayenne Club. There’s a party groove to their sound but there’s also sentiment in their prose. This is how they describe themselves, in French, on their site: Punky Funk POW-WOW. Pour rêver, danser et réfléchir. MCC, c’est le calme et puis la tempête: un papillon qui s’enfuit de la prison dans sa tête. To dream, dance and think. Mehdi Cayenne Club is calm and stormy: a butterfly leaving the prison in its head.... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Bluesfest, Music
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