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Lynne Hanson in concert at Watson's Mill on Sept. 24, 2020. Photo: Terry McGovern.

Watson’s Mill concert series offers world-class performers for open ears

By Joyce MacPhee on July 18, 2022

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The Watson’s Mill 5525 Music Series continues with three upcoming Thursday evening concerts showcasing roots music, blues, and jazz, with the proceeds going directly to the musicians. All shows commence at 7:30pm in the historic Watson’s Mill in Manotick. The festival’s name comes from the mill’s address, which is 5525 Dickinson Street.

“After a COVID-induced hiatus, Festival 5525 has returned to Watson’s Mill Museum,” said producer Terry McGovern. “We are bringing in world-class performers to this 162-year-old mill–arguably the capital area’s most beautiful and sonically wonderful small space.” McGovern added, “It is so nice to be getting back to ‘normal,’ seeing the other patrons’ faces and being able to chat, over a beverage, perhaps.”

Ros’n’Rob (Rosalyn Dennett and Rob McLaren) will perform on July 21. This charming husband and wife fiddle/banjo duo draws upon years of combined experience playing all varieties of roots music within the Canadian folk music community. While Rosalyn grew up steeped in the Irish fiddle tradition and later became immersed in the old-time Appalachian style, Rob cut his teeth in bluegrass and country rock bands in Toronto. Together, they apply their instrumental prowess and tight harmonies to a collection of fiddle tunes, original songs, and folk music from myriad sources.

Ian Tamblyn performing at Watson’s Mill on Sept. 17, 2020. Photo: Terry McGovern.

Suzie Vinnick is slated to appear on August 18. The Saskatoon-born and raised vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and producer is familiar to Ottawa audiences. She lived here in the 1990s and has performed extensively in the city in various groups and solo. In concert, Vinnick is known for her creative, crowd-pleasing performances and winning sense of humour. She has won many awards and is a six-time winner of the Maple Blues Award for Best Female Vocalist and a two-time winner of the Maple Blues Award for Best Songwriter. In 2012, Vinnick won a Juno Award for Blues Album of the Year and also awards for her bass-playing and songwriting skills.

Watch for versatile jazz pianist and composer Miguel de Armas on September 15. De Armas is a versatile jazz pianist and composer who weaves strands of Cuban and American jazz influences in a compellingly eclectic way. Born in Havana, Cuba, he studied at the Conservatory Amadeo Roldan and graduated from the Instituto Superior de Arte with a Bachelor’s degree in Cuban Percussion.
In 1988, de Armas co-founded the acclaimed Cuban band NG La Banda Orchestra with José Luis Cortés and other prestigious Cuban musicians. He toured around the world with this band for over a decade and performed at world-class jazz festivals, such as the North Sea, Montreaux, Nice, Nantes, and Normandia, among others. De Armas has played with jazz greats such as Ivan Lins, Clark Terry and Tania Maria.


Tickets are $40 and are available through Watson’s Mill. For more information, call 613-692-6455 or access their website at watsonsmill.com.

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