Ottawa festival harvests local talent for virtual concert series

CityFolk/Marvest festival organizers, in partnership with the Glebe BIA, today announced that this year’s Glebe music festival is going virtual – with 15 online concerts from 15 of the region’s most exciting artists.

The virtual edition of Marvest will run from Wednesday, October 14 to Friday, November 27 with two live concerts streaming each week.

These performance videos will be released throughout the October/November time frame on the CityFolk YouTube channel every Wednesday and Friday at noon; with an added bonus concert during the final week, on Monday, November 23, at noon.

For the past five years, Marvest has celebrated the bounty of talent that has taken root and flourished in the Ottawa region—all in the name of great music and honouring the abundance that characterizes a fall harvest. Typically, the sights and sounds of Marvest have spilled out of dozens of venues along Bank Street, in the form of free concerts. For 2020, Marvest will provide a safe alternative for music fans to continue to enjoy some great local acts—free virtual concerts by a variety of talented musicians who have contributed to making Ottawa’s music scene so vibrant.

“Marvest has been beneficial to both emerging and established local artists, so it means a lot to us to offer them this platform; especially during a time when so many acts have had to curtail most of their gigs because of the pandemic,” says Marvest programming manager, Emma Francis. “We also feel it’s important to deliver this program to the community—even during these challenging times—while providing opportunities for local talent to showcase their music in a safe and responsible manner.”

Featured performances include:

  • Wed, October 14 – Andrew Waines: Ottawa singer-songwriter Andrew Waines burst onto the scene with his crafty covers of pop songs from the likes of Ed Sheeran and Shawn Mendes. Waines is now writing his own tunes and recorded his first track “Loving Carefully” in Nashville in 2017. The singer-songwriter now has a suite of original tunes that touch on pop, soul and R&B.
  • Fri, October 16 – Children of Indigo: Children of Indigo craft calm, compelling folk music with thoughtful lyrics layered seamlessly over comforting, complex string work. Their deep sound can be compared to that of Emmy-Lou Harris with a sprinkle of Neil Young.
  • Wed, October 21 – Chris Page: Those of you who attended Marvest in 2017 may remember Chris Page, the compelling front man for Expanda Fuzz who rocked the Clocktower into oblivion. Chris is back with a solo performance, bringing his cosmic vibe to the stage for an evening of Americana-style songs. Enjoy this special performance by Chris Page at Marvest!
  • Fri, October 23 – The Lionyls: If you’re a fan of funk fusion, then you know just how cool The Lionyls are. This four-piece rock and funk band do it all: play, sing, dance and bring the funk. Silky lyrics, buttery baselines and deafening horns are on deck for Marvest 2020. Let’s party.
  • Wed, October 28 – Neha Sin: Neha brings her hazy croon and soulful folksy guitar work to our stage for a warm night in at Marvest. Compelling lyrics, thoughtful songwriting and catchy vibes will have you buzzing along. Cozy up and enjoy the show.
  • Fri, October 30 – Hopper: Hopper is one of the region’s most exciting indie rock outfits with their raw, catchy tunes that have a bit of grit as well as a refined, indie rock polish. Think Modest Mouse meets Young Empires. These energetic rockers will bring it down tonight for a stripped-down acoustic jam
  • Wed, November 4 – Jonathan Pearce of Winchester Warm: The Winchester Warm Duo, featuring Jonathan Pearce and Matthew Godin blend together their warm harmonies and sometimes raucous indie rock jams into a sound that is curious, experimental, and fun. One-part folk, one-part pop, and four parts fun, these cats pack enough punch to send you spiraling down the rabbit hole.
  • Fri, November 6 – Jeff & the Falcons: If you’ve been following Ottawa music scene over the past five years, chances are you’ve heard the name Jeff deValk. The guitarist, singer, band leader and vinyl DJ has been painting Ottawa with his sonic paintbrush that touches on rock, soul and everything in between. When he’s not playing in his seven-piece soul band the Hornettes, Jeff can be found rocking out solo, or with his Falcons trio, which is what we get at Marvest. It’s time to get down with Jeff and the Falcons.
  • Wed, November 11 – Crystalena: The Crystalena trio is no stranger to Marvest, having jammed out at multiple venues during the fest in 2018, this dark alt rock band wowed audiences with their cerebral tunes reminiscent of 90s garage bands like garbage and the Cranberries. Turn this one up loud and let Crystalena take you on a sonic trip through the grungy alternative.
  • Fri, November 13 – Mia Kelly: Mia Kelly burst onto the scene with her impressive range, heart-breaking croon and her showstopping voice that sounds like a mix of a young Joni Mitchell and Florence Welch. Expect big things from this artist and remember that you saw her here first, at Marvest.
  • Wed, November 18 – Monkey Rock Music: Grab the kids and pack the living room for a fun, dance-a-long concert with Monkey Rock Music. Sing along to the fun, entertaining and interactive sounds that will get your whole family rocking out to this fun-filled jam. Monkey Rock Music is ready to rock!
  • Fri, November 20 – Jumpin’ Joel Flash: When Jumpin’ Joel Flash says they don’t take themselves too seriously, they truly mean it. The indie folk/musical theatre/rock opera trio will be hitting it all at Marvest this year, with their bouncy rhythms, happy harmonies and hilarious antics that will have you singing, laughing, and dancing along. Let’s stomp it out with Jumpin’ Joel Flash right here at Marvest.
  • Mon, November 23 – Tara Shannon: Tara Shannon knows how to connect with her audiences and it’s not just through her music. It’s through the stories she weaves through her sonic voice. They’re tales that listeners can connect with, relate to and understand. The multi-award-winning artists is an important name in the Canadian sonic landscape and we’re thrilled to have her as a part of Marvest this year.
  • Wed, November 25 – Dan Kelly: Ottawa singer-songwriter Dan Kelly, graduate of Algonquin College’s Music Industry Arts Program, has been touring the east coast for the past several years, bringing his soft croon and signature picking to stages in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and PEI. Now, he brings that same sweet sound to your living room for the virtual edition of Marvest.
  • Fri, November 27 – The North Woods: Marvest goes a bit country with a compelling performance by the North Woods, Ottawa’s rock-folk-country quartet comprised of Dave Morrow, Sunil Achia and Shelley Worsley. Blending folk with alt-country and dusty rock draws out a unique sound that is hard to ignore. Not quite country, not full rock and a bit deeper than folk, the North Woods have a truly unique sound.

The overall event forges connections between artists, businesses, community associations, and a diverse group of music fans from Ottawa and beyond.

“This is a great opportunity for the CityFolk organization to promote the Ottawa music scene by working in cooperation with the Glebe BIA,” says CityFolk executive director Mark Monahan. “It also gives musicians a boost by helping them develop their audiences,”

Glebe businesses have been essential to this initiative since its inception—working with Marvest planners, both creatively and logistically.

“Our merchants have been champions of this festival since the very beginning,” says Glebe BIA Communications Specialist Trevor Greenway. “While it’s disappointing that we can’t celebrate inside our shops and venues this year, we must recognize the contributions they make to our quality of life, the community, and Ottawa’s ever-important local music and entertainment scene.”

Check out cityfolkfestival.com for additional details.

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