Bluesfest 2017: The good, the bad, and the bluesy

The RBC Ottawa Bluesfest was back at Lebreton Flats from July 6 to 16 with a series of fantastic and memorable performances from world-class headliners and smaller-scale performers alike. Overall, the festival was a positive experience for most people. However, weather, security issues, and health problems cast a shadow over a few of the acts. BLUESFEST’S TOP 10 ACTS 10. High Valley: From the small Northern Alberta town of La Crete, brothers Brad and Curtis Rempel brought their fresh style to the Claridge Homes Stage in what was perhaps the most outstanding country performance of the festival. 9. Death From Above 1979: For a two-person band, Death From Above 1979 showed they can produce a big and full sound. The […]

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Bluesfest Day 10: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers rock the festival’s final night

On the final night of Bluesfest, many great artists took to the stage, but only one name stood out high above them all: Tom Petty. After solid performances by classic rocker Peter Wolf and Canadian country star Tim Hicks, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers brought their 40th anniversary tour to the City Stage in front of a massive crowd that extended nearly three-quarters of the way down the main lawn on Lebreton Flats. To say that Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers have had a great career would be an understatement. Originally from Gainesville, Fla., the band has sold tens of millions of albums, headlined the Super Bowl halftime show in 2008, and have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall […]

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Bluesfest Day Eight: The Glorious Sons, Anderson .Paak, and a lightning storm

Following a miserable evening featuring mobs and numerous medical emergencies, the eighth night of Bluesfest was back with a much more promising and exciting line up until rain forced the later parts of the evening to be cancelled. Before the first concerts began and the major crowds had arrived, festivalgoers shared their stories about what they witnessed the night before. “Last night was definitely the worst experience at not even just Bluesfest, but any concert [or] festival I’ve ever been a part of,” said Matt Morgan, a fan who had arrived much earlier the night before to get a good spot for Migos. Despite what happened the night before, Morgan was back and feeling more optimistic. “I feel like the […]

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Bluesfest Day Six: Fevers, The Shins, and LCD Soundsystem

On a cold Wednesday evening, Bluesfest continued for a sixth night with an electric lineup. At the beginning of the evening, a group of keen local music supporters welcomed Fevers to the Claridge Homes Stage. Led by the melodic vocals of Sarah Bradley, the electro-indie-rock band from Ottawa is coming hot off the recent release of their new album, Apologia. For their third concert at Bluesfest, Fevers performed a fair mix of dark, pleasant-sounding, and upbeat songs, and created a pleasing and ambient tone throughout the crowd. Immediately after on the City Stage was a somewhat stylistically similar performance by Phantogram. The duo from Saragota Springs, N.Y. performed numerous loud and upbeat songs, fully delivering their heavy and intense sound. The filtered […]

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