The 12 Nights of the Ottawa Jazz Festival

The Ottawa Jazz FestivalOne would expect any music festival in the heart of a city like Ottawa to turn off the music and shut the lights by 11 PM, just like any other live music event that takes place at venues that are nearly 30 km from the city core, like the Scotiabank Place.  Only a handful of musicians have dared to break the local curfew, including Guns 'N' Roses maniac, Axl Rose who didn't even start up until 12:30 AM, performing until the rockfully respectful 2 AM local time.  No one knows how much they paid in fines.

The 11 O'clock wall is not a problem for the Ottawa Jazz Festival as they have been running the OLG Festival Stage events during the festival run quite successfully, which gives those that want to continue to enjoy music past the standard festival end time into the next morning.  It's very much like bar hours.

This provides even more opportunity to discover new artists, or allow some fans to see certain artists play a more intimate venue than one would normally expect.

The tent is licensed to serve booze, and while chairs are setup, there is usually a very good crowd of people dancing, swaying, and fist pumping to the music.  One never knows what might take place in this magical temporary tent.

Here are a few examples of this year's bookings.

Glen Hansard

While GH will likely have a full band with him, his outstanding and unmatched solo moments will burn into your mind.

DATE: Thu, June 20, 2013
TIME: 10:30 PM

Aoife O' Donovan

DATE: Fri, June 21, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

This singer-songwriter who's involved with the bluegrass band Crooked Still.  According to the performers list, this is a solo show, but they say that about Gregory Porter too, and that probably isn't the case here either.  While it may be mellow, it will probably be that really GOOD kind of mellow. 

Tortured Soul

DATE: Sat, June 22, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

Up to this point, you might have thought that a Saturday night in this magical tent might be mellow after seeing two artists that embrace the silence and pin drops. However, Tortured Soul will set the dance floor grass on a funky fire.

Young Galaxy

DATE: Sun, June 23, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

One of the worst tropes in lists or any journalism is something like this "Is This The New Arcade Fire?" or "The New Talking Heads?."  Yes, this is a Sunday night.  A night typically reserved for a reserved Sunday evening to rest up for another week of work (if you do that sort of thing).  Young Galaxy will keep you from even thinking about your couch and watching queued up episodes of Game of Thrones.

Gilad Hekselman

DATE: Mon, June 24, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

This Israeli guitarist, now based in NYC since 2004, has made a name for himself playing with jazz greats such as Chris Potter, Mark Turner, John Scofield, Anat Cohen, Ari Hoenig, Esperanza Spalding, and many others.  This setup is a great example of how the OLG stage programming is consistently world class.  If you love jazz guitar, this is definitely a night to attend the late night party.

Carmen Souza

DATE: Tue, June 25, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

Someone with this much talent should have a much better web presence. What lacks in design is filled with content. Music and videos all worth checking out before you head to the OLG tent Tuesday to catch Carmen.

10 Years of the Triplets of Belleville - Live!

DATE: Wed, June 26, 2013
TIME: 10:30 PM

This is one of the most unique events of the Ottawa Jazz Festival.  Performing the live compositions by Benoît Charest, his band will be providing a LIVE SOUNDTRACK to the film The Triplets of Belleville.  While this experience already seems jaw-dropping, apparently this film is worth watching on it's own, receiving a fresh Rotten Tomato rating of 94%.  

Tin Man & the Telephone


From the band's website they basically describe their ensemble's performance as a musical adventure.  By incorporating inspiration from every day life, sounds that we take for granted, their creations will turn into something baked from their classical and jazz musical backgrounds and pure experimentation.

The Herbaliser

DATE: Fri, June 28, 2013
TIME: 10:15 PM

The Herbaliser's name sounds exactly like what the music goes with.  Hip Hop Jazz seems to conjure up rooms filled with smoke and the bubbly sounds of water bongs with some super cool background music.  The OLG tent might be missing part of that equation friday night.


DATE: Sat, June 29, 2013
TIME: 11:30 PM

Gypsophilia is a flowering plant native of Europe, Asia and north Africa.  Gysposhilia is also a gypsy jazz band native of Halifax, NS.  One of them will be taking the stage to close off the extra late night set in the OLG tent. The band started as a Django Reinhart tribute band and now perform their own mash-up, playing around with some of the worlds most intriguing musical styles.

Gregory Porter

DATE: Sun, June 30, 2013
TIME: 10:30 PM 

The bill for the evening might only reference vocalist Gregory Porter as the performer for the evening, that might understate the fact that he will be backed by a full band loaded up with horns.  This performance will help wrap up sunday night's edition of the OLG tent and could very well be that extra piece of soul cake you were looking for.