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Free music in Ottawa this weekend. See Westfest Website for details.

WESTFEST Main Stage Saturday, June 9, 2007


Big Stone Drummers and Alden Pompana 10 am to 10:45 am

WESTFESTLIT 11 am to 12:15 pm

The Old Youth 12:30 to 1:15 pm

Graveyard Dogs 1:30 pm to 2:15 pm

Hunter Valentine 2:30 pm to 3:15 pm

Andy Swan 3:30 pm – 4:15 pm

NUKARIIK 4:25 pm – 4:45 pm

Golden Dogs 5 pm – 5:45 pm

Angela Desveaux 6 pm – 6:45 pm

Jason Collett 7 pm – 7:45 pm

Lily Frost 8 pm – 8:45 pm

Lindsay Ferguson 9:10 pm – 9:30 pm

Kathleen Edwards 9:30 pm – 11 pm

WESTFEST Main Stage, Sunday, June 10, 2007


WESTFEST Theatre 9 am - 10:30 am

WESTFESTSPOKENWORD 10:45 am – 11:45 am

Ana Muira 12 pm – 12:45 pm

Marie-Josée Houle 1 pm – 1:45 pm

Jupiter Ray Project 2 pm – 2:45 pm

Slo' Tom 3 pm – 3:45 pm

The John Henry’s 4 pm – 4:45 pm

Mckenzie McBride 5 pm – 5:45 pm

Eric Vieweg 6 pm – 6:45 pm

Crowded Skies 7 pm – 7:45 pm

Camp Radio 8 pm – 8:45 pm

Juliana Pulford 9 pm – 9:20 pm

Fifty Men 9:30 pm – 11:00 pm

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fun times at westfest. only saw half of the golden dogs, kathleen edwards and fifty men, but still had a great time. kathleen edwards was fantastic as a trio, and the new songs were great. huuuuuge crowd for that show. a little bit sparse last night for fifty men but they still did a great set.

another highlight saturday was seeing the girl from golden dogs walking around afterwards. she's real purdy.

great festival, next year will be year 5 and they have 'big things' planned.

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You were there last night AD? I was down for the whole 50men set. Pretty good stuff......

I thought you had socks to wash or I would have called.

Jason Collett on Saturday was extremely dissapointing. The sound was all vocals and no guitar- and I like him with a band much better. I was very surprised with all of the families and children around that he sung the "cock sucking faggot" line. Come on Jason, you aren't Jim Morrison.

What a great event, and the weather could not have cooperated any more than 26 and sunny skies all weekend.

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Looks like mattm got a small mention in the Citizen today (Saxberg):

When Ottawa's beloved country-rockers the Fiftymen ventured into psychedelic musical territory during their meaty mainstage set at Westfest Sunday, eyebrows went up and heads spun at the unexpected shift in sound.

We've always counted on the band to crank out uncomplicated country songs that go down easy, like a cold beer on a hot day. But on this beautiful night, there were textures and dynamics unlike any previous Fiftymen gig.

More like the Sadies, come to think of it.

The individual members of Fiftymen tend to be laid back, unassuming and perfectly content to keep the band going on a casual basis. However, on Sunday, they dug in as a unit, and took the responsibility of closing out Westfest pretty seriously.

The music started with the crowd pleaser Whiskey and Lulu and ran through a series of Fiftymen staples before getting all weird on us.

On a big stage with arena-rock sound levels in front of a crowd of 3,000 or so, it was a landmark performance for the lads, who appeared focused and well-rehearsed for the occasion.

They were joined by special guest keyboardist Dave Draves (the noted Ottawa producer also played with his band, Camp Radio, earlier in the evening Sunday).

In the crowd, people with sunburned faces warmed to the new material, and one dancing dude was inspired to step up the expressiveness of his wavy-armed, loose-hipped choreography.

Still, the experimentation threw me for a loop. I nearly choked on a grilled shrimp and sprayed apricot beer all over my fellow VIPs in the VIP area, which was bustling with artists, media types, business owners and other lucky guests.

That was the place to be throughout the weekend, by the way. With free beverages and free gourmet food by Dish Catering, the party had been going strong for three days by the time I arrived on closing night. Unfortunately, the only beer left by the time Fiftymen took the stage was the apricot concoction.

Except for this minor quibble, artists sure appreciated the royal treatment. "We never get treated like this," confided Wakefield singer-songwriter Lindsay Ferguson, glass of white wine in hand. "It kinda makes it all worthwhile."

Kathleen Edwards, the Ottawa native who headlined the festival on Saturday night, came back to hang out Sunday, and said it was her best experience playing in Ottawa. Ever.

And Fiftymen singer J. J. Hardill obviously considered it an honour to close out a day-long program of all-Ottawa talent. "What a fantastic party these people throw," he said on stage, remarking on the "chi-chi" nature of Westboro to make the point that its increasing trendiness is putting it out of the reach of struggling artists. Rents are a lot more reasonable in Hintonburg, the working-class neighbourhood a little farther east along Wellington Street. "But thanks for inviting us uptown," J. J. said.

Once I got over my initial surprise at his band's trippy new direction, I was able to relax. It's always nice to see a band you thought you knew stretch out. The two new songs in the set were I Always Get What I Want (It's Just Not Always What I Need) and That Look On Your Face, which J. J. says is the band's first "sexy" song.

After the show, you should have seen him blush when producer Elaina Martin approached him backstage with an outburst of gratitude and a bear hug. "Thanks for doing this," she blustered. "I love you guys."

Upon spotting Hammerheads singer Tim DeVries, who had snuck into the VIP area, she declared more love for the legendary Ottawa party band, and promised them the closing-out slot next year.

Sounds like a great idea, but may I suggest booking a dancing band like Hammerheads on Saturday night. Towards the back of the crowd, some fans felt that a stripped-down, folkie set like Edwards performed might have been better suited for Sunday night, while a rocking-out Fiftymen would have livened up the crowd on Saturday night. Edwards played to a crowd of about 10,000 on Saturday.

They have a point. And to add my two cents to the plan for next year, which marks Westfest's fifth anniversary: I hope they order a less fruity beer.

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was just going to point out that article.

i've seen many a fifty men gig and they didn't sound all that different to me. and 3000 people for fifty men? cmon. no way did that crowd top even 1000.

great festival, hope next year is great too, despite what the article says about the Hammerheads. ug.

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