Music and More in March 2012

In this newsletter:

  • News from the president
  • The Next Stage, March 4
  • The Great Canadian Song-along 20th Anniversary, March 9 &10
  • Intellectual Property Workshop for Songwiters, March 10
  • Spirit of Rasputins Second Annual General Meeting, March 18
  • Rasputin’s Bluegrass Jam, March 18
  • Rasputin’s Beard, March 24
  • Open Stage, every Monday, Folk-along Jam, every Tuesday

News from the president

After a pause where many of our key organizers, including yours truly, traveled to sunny and warmer climes, we are all back and hitting the ground running. In addition to a robust schedule of musical events, we have a workshop for songwriters and the second AGM of members.

Several events take advantage of our new relationship with Le Michel-Ange Coffee Roasting Warehouse and Cafe at 35 Laurel Street. And…drum roll here…we have a new sponsor. The Public Service Alliance of Canada (National Capital Region) has agreed to cover all hall rental expenses for the next four Rasputin’s Beard charity events. For those who didn’t already know, the SoR board of directors decided to remit 100% of all Rasputin’s Beard’s pass-the-hat funds to local charities. This month’s charity is the local Stop the Bullying program.

The Next Stage

Where: Whispers Pub (upstairs), 249 Richmond Road
When: 7:30pm Sunday March 4th
Who: John Casselman and Julie Element
This is a pass-the-hat event.
NOTE the start time is 30 minutes later than usual with two performers instead of three.

John says, “I began writing songs in 2001 after my guitar teacher encouraged me to perform at Rasputin’s Open Stage. It was at Rasputin’s that I learned how limitations could bring freedom: I didn’t have a manager, a producer, or a band; but I could still make cds that were worth serious consideration. In 2005 I recorded my first rock opera, ‘The Hosta Family’. ‘The Jasper Hand’ (the backstory to ‘Hosta’) was recorded in 2008. Through rock opera I see where it is that I tend to abdicate my ideals. I then try to move my characters’ strength, knowledge, and power out of the household into the street.”

Julie is a true folky with experience performing, composing, and hosting other folk events both live and on radio (CKCU). Referred to by Lynn Saxburg as “a witty Brit”, Julie writes “slightly wacky songs about trains and buses, and delivers them with gusto.”

The Great Canadian Song-along **20th Anniversary**

Where: Le Michel-Ange Coffee Roasting Cafe, 35 Laurel St
When: Two nights, 7pm Fri/Sat the 9th and 10th
Who: Many performers, hosted by Tony Turner and Greg Kelly
This is a pass-the-hat event.

It’s hard to believe but the Great Canadian Song-Along is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Song-Along is Ottawa’s annual songwriting and performance event. The event is co-produced by Writers’ Bloc and the Spirit of Rasputin’s Arts Society. This is the first concert event we are producing at Le Michel-Ange. If you haven’t been there before, it’s a little tricky to find at 35 Laurel St (north of Gladstone, west of Breezehill) so here’s a map.

There’s a lot of more info on the Writers’ Bloc website (http://writersbloc including the song topics and how to signup. If you are not a songwriter, this is still a terrific evening of entertainment…and the coffee and hot chocolate are amazing.

Intellectual Property Workshop for Songwiters

Where: Le Michel-Ange Coffee Roasting Cafe, 35 Laurel St
When: 3pm Saturday the 10th
Who: Gilles Daigle, copyright expert and Partner with the law firm Gowlings
Free for SoR members. $5 for non-members.

Copyright, licencing, SOCAN, CRIA, YouTube, performance royalties, recording royalties, neighbouring rights, right of first performance… What does all this mean for you as a songwriter in the digital age? This workshop aims to equip songwriters with greater understanding about the shifting sands under our feet.

Spirit of Rasputins Annual General Meeting

Where: Le Michel-Ange Coffee Roasting Cafe, 35 Laurel St
When: 2-5pm Sunday the 18th
Who: SoR Members. Memberships will be sold at the meeting.

We are growing. We now have 92 members. A few days from now all members will receive copies of proposed resolutions and the slate of candidates running for the board of directors (three positions are available). If you are a member, we need your voice to help chart the future of this vibrant folk community. If you are not a member yet, come to the AGM and join.

Rasputin’s Bluegrass Jam

Where: Le Michel-Ange Coffee Roasting Cafe, 35 Laurel St
When: 5pm Sunday March 18th
Who: Hosted by Garry Greenland
Free. Just bring your axe of choice. This is a welcoming format to learn and perfect bluegrass styles and licks. For this date only, the Jam starts at 5pm and follows the Spirit of Rasputins Annual General Meeting.

Rasputin’s Beard “Band Showcase” and Charity Event

Where: The Westboro Masonic Hall, 430 Churchill at Byron
When: 8pm Saturday the 24th
Who: Sarah Drader & Friends, Three Little Birds, Tower of Song, SPECIAL GUEST: Maria Hawkins

This is a pass-the-hat charity event in support of Maria Hawkins “Stop the Bullying Program”. Thanks to PSAC National Capital Region for sponsoring this event. More information about this event will be sent out in the next newsletter.

Open Stage, every Monday; Folk-along Jam, every Tuesday

Whether you are a “closet performer” or experienced picker, these may be just right for you. The Open Stage upstairs at Whispers is usually well attended and quite entertaining. However several of our regular participants are also checking out several other open mics that have recently sprouted up around the area. As the saying goes, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If you have been thinking about starting to perform in front of an audience, this is the perfect time and place for you. The Rasputins Open Stage is the oldest continuously running open stage in Ottawa and remains the most welcoming and supportive in the area of both novice and experienced performers. More info…

And if you just want to play along to with other musicians, try the Folk-along Jam at The GeorgeTown Pub. More info…

Sorry for the length of this missive. I’ll try to be more succinct in future.

Hollis Morgan
President, Spirit of Rasputins Arts Society

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