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Jazzfest: Eating lunch with melody, harmony and swing

By Alejandro Bustos on June 21, 2015

Sometimes in life special surprises are free.  In the case of the Ottawa Jazz Festival, the Jazz at Noon and Rendez-Vous Rideau Jazz series both offer free shows every day until June 30.  These lunchtime soirées are not only a great way to have a break from work, they will also allow audiences to see some of the best musical talent from the National Capital Region.

The Jazz at Noon concerts take place at the Laurier Avenue Music Stage, Marion Dewar Plaza, while the Rendez-Vous Rideau Jazz concerts are at the Rideau Centre.  Showtimes are noon during the work week, while on the weekend of June 27-28 there will be concerts at noon and 2 pm (check schedule for details).

Note: Festival shows are also free on July 1 for Canada Day.

Curious about these performances I checked out the free vibes at the Laurier Avenue stage this past weekend, where I saw some of the best middle and high school bands in Ottawa.  To my pleasant surprise, these up-and-coming artists provided very enjoyable performances, and piqued my interest on what else will be on offer for the next week-and-a-half.

While the following list is by no means exhaustive,  as there are many other wonderful musicians who will be performing in these two different series, here are some quick hits on what is coming up this coming week. (Note: all of the shows listed below start at noon).

  • Monday — The Doug Martin Quartet, which contains some of the best musicians in Ottawa, perform at the Rideau Centre;
  • Tuesday — Swing and blues combo The Kingmakers play at the Laurie Ave. stage;
  • Wednesday — If you enjoy New Orleans-inspired sounds, then head to the Laurier Ave. stage to see The Sun Crescent Barbecue Stompers;
  • Thursday — Old Stereo play their soulful rhythms at the Laurier Ave. stage on the heels of their recent EP release; and
  • Friday — Local musician Danielle Allard plays at the Rideau Centre.

So if you want to take in some great free music during your lunch break this coming week, then head off to Marion Dewar Plaza or the Rideau Centre.

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