March 11, 2010

Hi Folks,

Big news!  Calling all piano players! The piano that is being donated to the Spirit of Rasputin’s by Chrysalis (Missy Burgess), Writer’s Bloc (Tony Turner, Pat Moore), the Rasputin’s Refugees (Sjef Frenken) and the Ottawa Folklore Centre has arrived!  We will have it set up for the Monday, March 15th Open Stage and it’s inauguration.  Come on down on Monday and help us celebrate. Note that the piano will also be available for the Sunday concerts and the Tuesday jams.  Thanks again to Missy, Tony, Pat and Sjef.  This is a wonderful donation!

As many of you know our Sunday concerts and Monday open stages are a huge success with lots of folks coming out. But our best kept secret is the Tuesday Folk Jam – if you haven’t been out to one yet, I would encourage you to do so. It’s a lot of fun, with good music and different musicians all the time.  Contrary to what you may think, there is no “listening environment” for the Tuesday jams.  They are much more casual than that with no “Shhhh Police” in sight.  Everyone (musical talent or not) is encouraged to come out, have a beer, chat and soak in the atmosphere of this casual jam in a terrific tavern.  And if you wish, bring your instruments and join in the jam circle!

Great music continuing at the Spirit.  Sunday was the Michael Jerome Browne show with the Twin Rivers String Band.  Michael is impressive.  He did great work on 12-string guitar, a fretless gourd banjo, mandolin, fiddle and slide guitar, playing solo and with the band (Michael Ball, Jody Benjamin and Mary Gick).  The evening was opened by Michael Ball and Jody Benjamin performing some of the Ball and Chain numbers.  They had everyone singing along to The Last Cowboy in Town.  I think the performers are enjoying playing the Spirit concerts.  Michael and Jody said the especially appreciated how eager the crowd was to sing along.

Don’t forget the CKCU Weekend Wrap-Up this Sunday.  This month’s performer is J.P. Ranger.  I haven’t seen him myself, but when I told one of the staff at the Elmdale that he was coming she immediately remarked “Oh he’s good!”

Jake Morrison has re-organized his website so it’s a little easier to navigate Spirit of Rasputin‘s photos.  He’s also added new photos from the Michael Jerome Browne concert as well as a great shot of the Tuesday jammers. (http://www NULL.withflare NULL.html)

Here’s our regular reminders:

Sunday Mar 14th, 7:00 pm:  CKCU Weekend Wrap-Up – This is a mini-fundraiser for CKCU 93.1 FM – your community radio station, building community and supporting local live music!  Hosted by Pat Moore (or Steve Neale), the evening starts with Pat and a featured artist sitting down and doing a little interview before the artist performs their set.   The last set will be an open stage, so – bring your instrument, team up with others or play solo, anything goes! The $5 cover charge is split between the featured act and CKCU.  Come on out, support CKCU and local live music; it’ll be a great time. Mar 14 featured act is:  J. P. Ranger (http://www NULL.myspace The “Wrap-Up” will runs every 2nd Sunday of the month.

Sunday Mar 21st, 7:00 pm: Concert –  Chris MacLean with Fred Guignon, Stuart Watkins and special guest Beth Cahill Award winning singer/songwriter Chris MacLean paints a compelling picture of troubled landscapes filled nonetheless with hope. Her strong songwriting has earned her numerous awards including the Colleen Peterson 2008 songwriting award.  Chris was a core member of world music ensemble GALITCHA as well as FRIDA’S BROW, which was nominated as Best Vocal Group in the 2008 Canadian Folk Music Awards. She currently performs solo, often accompanied by Fred Guignion (guitars).  Chris has two solo recordings, Learn to Be Loved (2000) and Feet Be Still, (2009). Don’t miss this gorgeous performance on March 7th. Tickets are $15 available at the Elmdale and the Ottawa Folklore Centre.  For more info go to: (http://www NULL.chrismaclean

Sunday Mar 28th, 7:00 pm:  Rasputin’s Beard – A New Band Showcase – Fans of live music, uncover what’s right under your nose!  –  Bands, reveal your musical magic.  Contact Hollis at (hmorgan null@null hollismorgan to sign up.  This runs the 4th Sunday of every month.  It’s an open stage for duos or groups.  But it’s a little different than normal open stages in that bands are asked to book ahead.  Featured bands this week are: “Hurry Up & Wait”, “Hank’s Hangover”, “Shady Blue” and “One Big Smile“.  No cover.

The Spirit of Rasputin’s Open Stage runs Monday nights at the Elmdale starting at 7:00 pm.  But you may want to get there early to sign-up to perform.  Performers typically do two songs, and generally we can fit in about 16 performers each evening.  No cover charge. The Rasputin’s open stage has a history that goes back 27 years.  It is presented in a distinctive “listening environment” which performers love and the Elmdale is continuing.  Come out and listen in, or perform a song or two yourself.

The Spirit of Rasputin’s Folk Jam runs Tuesday nights at the Elmdale.   The jams have a 7:00 pm start time.   It is an acoustic jam, where musicians sit in a circle and take turns leading songs of their choice.  Musicians and singers are welcome to join in.  Note that the jam sessions are not structured as a performance per se, but anyone is always welcome to come and have a drink, chat and listen-in.


George Laing

General Manager,

Spirit of  Rasputin’s

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