Sound Seekers by Fateema Sayani is published weekly at OttawaMagazine.com. Read Fateema Sayani’s culture column in Ottawa Magazine.
You’ll kick yourself if you heard about this show after the fact. Kelly Joe Phelps has traversed many styles over eight albums and 15 years. He has moved through country, folk, and jazz, but made the most eloquent noise as a player of haunting acoustic blues. The Portland, Oregon based musician has a voice that can quiet a crowd with its stirring weariness. He was a Bluesfest favourite in years past; his current stop is a chance to see to see him in a small venue. He’ll play with musical partner Corinne West. It’s a mutual admiration society — Phelps played in West’s touring band on her recent CD release tour. The two discovered a shared love for pared-down music that’s stripped of pretension yet has brain-searing impact.
With opener James Farr. Friday, Aug. 19. 9:30 p.m. $20 adv. Irene’s Pub, 885 Bank St. www.irenespub.ca
WHERE ELSE TO BE THIS WEEKEND
Take in some good old-fashioned country tunes when Lefty McRighty (aka Greg Harris) brings his band The Sinister Six to the stage to unleash fast favourites such as “There’s No Cold Beer in Hell” and “Too Late to Quit Drinkin’ Now.”
With guests Lee Mellor and Huntley Slim. Friday, Aug. 19. 10 p.m. $10. The Rainbow, 76 Murray St. www.therainbow.ca
Landon Coleman just released his debut full-length album, documenting a state of mind. The album, called Landon A.R. Coleman’s Single Life, has Ottawa stamped all over it. It was recorded by Dave Draves at Ottawa’s Little Bullhorn Studios by fellow cap-city songwriter and musician Leif Vollebekk. Glebe-ite Coleman performs Thursday night at the little gazebo on Parliament Hill (near the feral cats, just west of Centre Block) at 7:30 p.m. It’s a sweet spot for a show. If you’ve never done the tourist-in-your-own-town thing, now’s a great time to take a stroll to la colline for the music, the view and the sweet mews of friendly, mangy kitties.