Saxberg jazz picks: From Blue Rodeo to Ghost-Note


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Punch Brothers
June 24, 9 p.m., TD Main Stage

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The latest album by the inventive Grammy-winning bluegrass band led by mandolinist Chris Thile is a re-imagining of the 1983 album by the late, great guitarist Tony Rice that includes a must-hear cover of a Canadian classic, Gordon Lightfoot’s Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald. 

Blue Rodeo
June 26, 9 p.m., TD Main Stage

OTTAWA – June 20, 2022 – Blue Rodeo, photo by Dustin Rabin. The band plays the 2022 Ottawa Jazz Festival, photo provided by the festival
OTTAWA – June 20, 2022 – Blue Rodeo, photo by Dustin Rabin. The band plays the 2022 Ottawa Jazz Festival, photo provided by the festival Photo by DUSTIN RABIN /jpg

It just wouldn’t be summer in Ottawa without Blue Rodeo. The veteran country-rockers are festival favourites, having appeared at Bluesfest countless times over the years and prompting a massive campfire-like singalong every time. This show marks their first Ottawa jazz-festival appearance. 

Cha Wa
June 27, 10:30 p.m., OLG Stage

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This New Orleans party band combines a big, brassy marching-band style with Mardi Gras Indian culture to deliver a funk-laced, sousaphone-soaked twist on the music of the Big Easy. A hit at the 2019 festival, they’re back to give us more late-night fun on the dance floor.

Les Filles de Illighadad
June 29, 7:30 p.m. OLG Stage

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The Tuareg people of the Sahara have a long musical tradition but it’s not usually the women bringing it to the rest of the world. Electric guitarist Fatou Seidi Ghali is one of the few, leading a quartet that blends the ancient chants with desert blues to come up with a captivating sonic landscape. 

Ghost-Note
July 3, 10:30 pm, OLG Stage

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Here’s an extraordinary band that nudges funk into the future, thanks to the rhythmic anchor of Snarky Puppy’s percussion duo (Robert Sput Searight and Nate Werth), plus a roster of top-notch players who refined their chops with the likes of Prince, Snoop Dogg, Justin Timberlake, Kendrick Lamar and more. 

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