In the News

Let the holiday shopping begin Nov. 22 —with a creative twist!

Let the holiday shopping begin Nov. 22 —with a creative twist!

\ TORONTO EAST \ We’re coming up to near one month to go until Christmas Day, the hallmark still generally regarded —despite the wonderful multiplicity of other cultural celebrations also observed in Toronto this time of year— as the central occasion of the “holiday” and gift-giving season. No matter your cultural or religious background, once the snow starts coming it’s hard to avoid getting...

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This month’s talented ‘Nashville Bound’ troupe really is!

This month’s talented ‘Nashville Bound’ troupe really is!

\TORONTO DOWNTOWN\TorontoMoonMagazine On the fourth Sunday of each month for the past nearly half-year, elegant Folk songwriter and genial host Glen Hornblast has been shepherding a stellar showcase series that brings together several talented Roots/Country artists to each do a set as part of his Nashville Bound series at Free Times Café. What sets tonight’s show apart from the previous editions...

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Musicians raising funds to help kids who stutter enjoy summer camp

Musicians raising funds to help kids who stutter enjoy summer camp

/TORONTO EAST/-Gary 17, www.torontomoon.ca In addition to its social benefits, music not only “has charms to sooth a savage breast,” as the playwright William Congreve observed in the early 1700s, it also, researchers are finding, appears to have a number of other physical, cognitive and health benefits. The special combination of left-brain and right-brain activity that we undergo when we not...

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Pete Otis Presents – “Pied Piper” Jay Douglas being honoured by fellow artists

Pete Otis Presents – “Pied Piper” Jay Douglas being honoured by fellow artists

/TORONTO NORTH/-Gary 17, www.torontomoon.ca Since the scandals surrounding Mayor Rob Ford became public last year it has not been easy to get the mayor and his council to agree on anything, or even to engage in civilized conversation. But veteran singer and bandleader Jay Douglas was not only able to help convince Ford and the council to support a Toronto Music Industry Advisory Council with a...

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Pete Otis Presents – SpringFest will be a mixed garden of budding and perennial creative talents

Pete Otis Presents – SpringFest will be a mixed garden of budding and perennial creative talents

SpringFest 2014-Gary 17 His shows may not generate millions of dollars in tourist money and he has no government grant to lose, but the events that TO promoter and impresario Pete Otis stages with local talents through his SongTown enterprise are always a grass roots gathering point for members of the city’s creative community. That will be the case again this Friday, March 28 when Otis, teamed...

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It takes a lot of talent to replace Pete Otis

It takes a lot of talent to replace Pete Otis

Although he won’t be able to be there to perform, songwriter and organizer Pete Otis, who’s recovering in hospital from a heart episode over the weekend, will be able to rest and relax knowing that the Purple Onion Reunion event he’s organized for this coming Sat. night, May 4, at El Mocambo is going to be yet another hugely successful and memorable show. Otis, who’s been...

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Pete Otis’ SongTown plans to end 2013 with even bigger bang than it started

Pete Otis’ SongTown plans to end 2013 with even bigger bang than it started

-Gary 17 – I’ve told you on several occasions this year about some of the memorable shows put on by Toronto promoter/impresario Pete Otis, who’s mined the city’s rich talent pool to both help promote up-and-coming artists as well as given a few shots of adrenalin to the careers of some of its iconic veterans. Beginning with a 2012-13 New Year’s Eve show at Black Swan Tavern (154 Danforth...

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Pete Otis Presents Words and music reunited for the holiday season

Pete Otis Presents Words and music reunited for the holiday season

by Gary 17 – I’ve never really understood the divide between songwriters and poets. After all, poetry (at least good poetry) rests on meter and beat as much as on rhyme or even the actual words employed, while songs are little more than forgettable sonic fragments without words that stick to the psychic ribs. Yet for some reason in the popular arena shows are geared towards one or the...

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Vintage acts defy diminishing attendance trend with reunion shows

Vintage acts defy diminishing attendance trend with reunion shows

At a time when many original acts are struggling to survive and attendance at club shows is dwindling for many genres, that trend is being defied by a group of Toronto Rock and Folk artists who, when it comes to packing rooms, have already been there and done that. And now they’re doing it all over again. A case in point is the ongoing series of Purple Onion reunion-style concerts being staged...

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Little rest for impresario Otis as next big show at Elmo May 4 less than two weeks away

Little rest for impresario Otis as next big show at Elmo May 4 less than two weeks away

From TorontoMoon Magazine – You’d think that after the tremendous amount of effort that it took SongTown showsmeister and musician enabler Pete Otis to make Sunday’s Honouring Our Own tribute such a huge success [see also Seen On The Scene photos from today] that he’d be sleeping for a week. Instead, he tells me he’ll out attending meetings tonight then plans to check out the weekly show...

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