173. Hold On Me: Esperanza Spalding with Gretchen Parlato, June 28, 2012

Esperanza Ticket 2012 This was one hot show, in both good and bad senses.

173. Hold On Me: Esperanza Spalding with Gretchen Parlato, Toronto Jazz Festival, Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Thursday June 28, 2012, $48.25.

It was less than one week after experiencing the brilliant Janelle Monáe under unnecessarily difficult circumstances thanks to the intuition-challenged burghers of the Ottawa Jazz Festival, and here we are five hours south at the Toronto equivalent. Staged right downtown at the feet of City Hall, Cublet and I were here to hear the similarly-brilliant Esperanza Spalding and her big band wail away, showcasing her new release (and one of 2012’s very best), Radio Music Society. Read the rest of this entry »

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153. I Feel Possessed: Crowded House, July 15, 2010

Crowded House Ottawa Bluesfest July 15 2010

And the highlight of Week Two is …. 

153. I Feel Possessed: Crowded House, Ottawa Bluesfest, Lebreton Flats, Ottawa, Ontario, Thursday July 15, 2010, $40.

Two nights on from the Arcade Fire gig that I thought was a mixed bag, and here I was again with Cublet in tow at the Lebreton Flats. Read the rest of this entry »


152. Ready To Start: Arcade Fire, July 13, 2010

Arcade Fire Bluesfest July 13 2010 ticket 

For some reason, I couldn’t order a single pre-pay in the pre-sale for Cublet on this night, so I went for the print-at-home option.  I’m glad those options exist, but I’m still old school in liking the pre-printed tickets.  At least this gives a differentiating visual.

152. Ready To Start: Arcade Fire, Ottawa Bluesfest, Lebreton Flats, Ottawa, Ontario, Tuesday July 13, 2010, $50

After attending Ottawa Bluesfest annually for close to a decade, I’ve come to expect that a series of archetypes will play out via the performances of each year’s featured artists.  As Week Two kicked off after a mid-festival Monday break for both staff and punters (btw, great idea, Bluesfestfolk!—it’s a relief to be able for all to take a pause and come back refreshed), many of them have already materialized for me. Read the rest of this entry »


148. Dr. Feelgood: Aretha Franklin, May 30, 2010

ArethaFranklin10Ottawa

Luckily no balcony falls were incurred.

148. Dr. Feelgood: Aretha Franklin & Her Orchestra, Southam Hall, National Arts Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, Sunday May 30, 2010, $116.75.

After 35 years of concert going, there remains a number of acts that currently perform live who are on my Still Must See List (Tom Waits, Stevie Wonder, and U2 among others).  Aretha Franklin has long been on there as well, and with this performance I was able to cross off another name. Read the rest of this entry »