Canadian Music Week: Torontette’s Friday March 11

A continuation of my last post on Thursday March 10 of Canadian Music Week. And what a great week it was.

4:15pm: Had my mother (yes, my mother) drive me to Ideal Cafe @ 162 Ossington for my interview with Imaginary Cities, where she proceeded to tell me as we got closer that ‘this really looked like an unsafe area’. I’ll remember never to mention to her how many 3am nights I’ve had walking that strip.

4:40pm: Interview with Rusty and Marti from Imaginary Cities @ Ideal Cafe, where my idol Jeffrey Remedios (Arts&Crafts president and co-founder) was sitting two tables down

5:45pm: TAXI #5 I.C.’s publicist Julie picked me up in a cab and we drove to The Bait Shop @ 358 Dufferin Street for my interview with Freedom or Death, from Toronto

6:10pm: After a wild goose chase with Julie to find the entrance of The Bait Shop – down a back alley might I add – I sit down with Fernandez from Freedom or Death, to be enlightened on making music rogue-style

6:30pm: Walked over to House of Poutini’s on Queen for a quick and savory bite on the run

7:00pm: Arrived at the Great Hall for the second time in two days, excitedly awaiting my interview with Irish artist James Vincent McMorrow

7:10pm: While JVM sits on the piano bench, I sit across from him and begin the interview, trying not to just focus on his luscious Irish accent. This is easily the highlight of my Canadian Music Week. He is humble, well-spoken, mesmerizing in talent, impossible not to love, and makes long days and late nights writing Torontette absolutely worth it.

7:30pm: Strolled over to The Gladstone for a little music infusion

7:40pm: Arrived just in time to see Sierra Noble take the stage. A little on Sierra: She is a young starlet from Winnipeg with killer violin skills, who plays pure yet modern folk music with her own personal flair. I had never heard of her before, but she will definitely be on my radar from now moving forward.

8:10pm: In an effort to avoid my tech faux pas from the day before of a dead iPhone (not ideal when I’m trying to tweet, and text and map all night) I handed my iPhone plus charger reluctantly over to the front desk babe to charge and hoping that he won’t see my screen for any inappropriate texts buzzing through. Kidding. Sort of.

8:20pm: Met by my dear friend Kylie, and have a quick catch up while we wait for Kim Churchill to do his thing on stage

8:30pm: Guitar in hand, harmonica gingerly strapped on and bass drum at his feet, Kim Churchill begins playing with gusto. This performance is the second highlight of my Canadian Music Week. Having heard his music before, and after my interview with him the day before, I knew I love his live performance but he blew my expectations out of the water. And he had quite the little huddle of male groupies bouncing away to every song. Do I hear fan club?

9:00pm: Kylie and I book it over to The Bait Shop to catch Freedom or Death perform

9:10pm: First beer of the night – embracing my Toronto-ness with a Steam Whistle – while saying hello to Fernandez before the show

9:30pm: Freedom or Death takes the stage, above the store’s halfpipe and makes the crowd go wild

10:00pm: TAXI #6: We head to Sneaky Dee’s and as we pull up, I hear my friends Bravestation playing upstairs, from the street

10:10pm: After impossibly too much guacamole and chips are consumed, Kylie and I make our way over to the stage to see the spellbinding Allie Hughes perform. She’s strange but in oh such a good way

11:30pm: After a fun couple hours at Sneaky’s (everyone needs their fix) it’s time to leave and meet friends and no, not another music venue but another favourite haunt on Ossington

11:45pm: TAXI #7: Arrived and consumed some much needed libations until the wee morning hours


  • 4 taxis
  • 3 interviews
  • 4 beers
  • 2 tequila shots
  • 4 performances
  • 4 venues
  • 1 bar
  • 0 dead iPhone
  • plenty of great friends

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