Off the Couch Blog

Welcome to our blog! This is where you'll find longer previews and profiles on upcoming or ongoing events in and around Ottawa. We've got fresh tips on what's new and exciting in town, as well as interviews with local movers, shakers and party makers. If you're into it, you too could join our team of volunteer bloggers!
By — Wednesday, August 19, 2015 - 9:51pm
This Thursday night three local songstresses are teaming up to raise funds for the Sexual Support Centre of Ottawa (SASC) and you are invited to join them. The event, Six Ovaries, One Microphone, will feature acoustic sets by Danielle Allard, Tina Wallace and Jessica Pearson. More than just a benefit concert, there will also be glitter tattoos by Sparkling Expressions, nail art by Rhiana Chinapen and the chance to win some great prizes including packages from NAC Presents and Yuk Yuk's Ottawa. I got in touch with Danielle Allard who is also organizing the event to learn more. Though the Sexual Assault Support Centre isn’t the most public of organizations, they’re certainly a worthy cause, providing essential services to victims of sexual assault day in and day out. SASC Ottawa runs a... Read More
By — Wednesday, August 19, 2015 - 9:26pm
“Sometimes the longest way around is the shortest way home.” - Ryan Holiday Not everything can work out exactly as we plan.  With all our best intentions, planning and hard work, we are bound to run into obstacles, criticism and delays. In these situations, our best course of action is to shift our perspective on these issues and see them for what they could be: potential opportunities. We can complain, recoil or we could learn from challenges and act accordingly with a strong will to succeed and create something which we had not originally planned. I’ve been pondering this concept a lot lately and I had it in the back of my mind while speaking with creative director of the Arboretum Festival, Rolf Klausener on... Read More
By — Friday, August 7, 2015 - 3:14pm
Ottawa has festivals in every season but most of them happen in the summer when the weather is warm and everyone wants to enjoy the sunshine. While the bigger festivals like the Jazz festival, Bluesfest and City Folk get a lot of recognition, some of the smaller festivals, like the Festival of India, are gems just waiting to be discovered.  Now in its fourth year, this festival is a 3-day family friendly event that showcases culture and heritage of India.   From August 7 to 9 in Marion Dewar Plaza at Ottawa City Hall, the Festival of India promises fully immerse you in Indian culture, music and food.  There will be a variety of workshops to introduce you to Yoga, cricket, Indian cooking, classical, folk, fusion and Bollywood dancing, Henna hand painting and the art of... Read More
By — Thursday, August 6, 2015 - 6:56am
Every once in a while you hear a record that stops you in your tracks, a record where everything just feels right and you wonder where did this come from? How can something sound so ripe? This was my reaction when I heard “Together Ensemble”, the latest work from Ottawa singer-songwriter Megan Jerome. Megan’s fifth to date, the album marks a turn in her musical career –new band, new songs, new approach to songwriting, and an overall new sound. Megan Jerome has always been an interesting artist, her piano-based compositions quirky and eclectic yet soulful with a knack for capturing the emotional tone of a situation. On the new record, her work is in bloom. At a gig one time, someone asked Fred Guignon (Together Ensemble guitarist), “if I like Megan’s music what else might I like?” and Fred... Read More
By — Wednesday, July 22, 2015 - 5:38pm
They say all good things must come to an end. Well they must be talking about the 2015 RBC Ottawa Bluesfest. After 11 days of jam-packed music, a lot of us need a vacation. Or a giant nap. Or maybe that's just me. Regardless, I took a few days to digest all the music I experienced at this year's Bluesfest. Here are some of my highlights of week two: FET.NAT. Definitely in my top 5 favourite local acts. These guys don't play shows often enough (in my opinion) so it's always fun to catch them live. They put on a great show at the Canadian stage. Frontman Mononc Jayno was up to his usual shenanigans, as we've come to expect! Pony Girl. So great to see these guys perform again, especially in an intimate venue like the Barney Danson Theatre, where the sound is fantastic. It was lovely seeing... Read More
By — Tuesday, July 14, 2015 - 5:39pm
Well, folks. The first week of RBC Ottawa Bluesfest is officially done! It was definitely eventful and I, like many of you, was able to catch some great live music and enjoy some nice (hot) sunny weather. Here are some of my highlights: BlakDenim. Blakdenim - one word, no c. Ottawa's very own hip hop/soul/funk/everything band put on a great performance on the River Canadian stage Thursday night. Although it wasn't packed, the crowd seemed to really enjoy discovering this local gem. Charles Bradley and His Extraordinaires. Wow. Bradley, also known as the Screaming Eagle of Soul, gives it his all on stage. And you can sense the love he feels for the crowd. The talented singer started out as a James Brown impersonator but he definitely has enough soul to stand on his own and leave his own... Read More
By — Tuesday, July 7, 2015 - 2:49pm
In case you haven't noticed, Ottawa's artistic scene is jam-packed with talented people. Sometimes promoting our city’s talent is where the challenge lies. Enter Studio La Mouche. Lucie B, a local artist, started the project. Born and raised in Ottawa, she has been involved in the artistic community through her circle of friends, especially in the music scene. Having studied in chemistry, Lucie has no formal training in visual art. She shared that she was working on her Masters' degree when she acquired a silk-screening machine. She got the idea to start Studio La Mouche after realizing that some of her drawings would look good on t-shirts. "I decided to silk-screen my own stuff. Then I started noticing other artists around me and thought that their designs would work well on t-shirts too... Read More
By — Friday, June 19, 2015 - 9:14am
Get ready, Ottawa! Festival season is here! I've been to my fair share of music festivals. I'm not saying I'm an expert by any means, but my schedule pretty much revolves around music festivals and live shows, especially in the summer. From my experience, there are many factors that affect one's experience at a music festival. Here are a few tips to keep in mind in order to maximize your festival-going experience. Dress appropriately. Pick your outfit based on your surroundings and based on weather predictions. If you’re going to be standing in a field in the middle of nowhere for an entire day, wearing comfortable footwear would be a wise idea. If the weather is going to be rainy and cold, be sure to bring a warm sweater or jacket. Once you're on site, you don't want to be... Read More
By — Monday, June 15, 2015 - 1:46pm
The TD Ottawa Jazz Festival, a household name among the National Capital Region's music scene, is back once again and this year, the action is happening from June 20 to July 1. The 35th edition of this annual gathering of music enthusiasts will once again be held at Confederation Park as well as the National Arts Centre and a few other near-by locations. This year’s format will be similar to last year’s, complete with different series geared to please various crowds. There sure are lots of talented artists to check out over the next two weeks, so to help guide your choices, I've put together my top 10 list of must-see bands that should be included on your list of performances to check out. Here are my picks in no particular order: The Roots  The Roots is certainly a must-see when it... Read More
By — Wednesday, June 10, 2015 - 3:46pm
We are all students of this life. We are the sum of the people we meet, the art we consume, experiences we brave and heroes we revere. We must soak these things in so that they teach us something about ourselves, informing the things we then expel out into the vast well of content, art and expression. Go ahead kids, be a super fan! Gush over the things you love and let them wash over you and shake you up like a torrential thunderstorm. You never know what you yourself can make of it. Colter Wall of Saskatoon has released his debut EP Imaginary Appalachia on June 2nd and will be performing at the Daily Grind on Thursday, June 11th. At 19 years old, Colter has produced an album that is haunted by the ghosts of Delta Blues singers and Traditional Americana performers while... Read More

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