World Music Festival at Hugh’s Room

Sam enjoyed Rez and Kiran in concert!

Sam enjoyed Rez and Kiran in concert!

This was a very busy week! I produced and co-hosted five nights in a row at Hugh’s Room for the first annual JAZZ.FM91 World Music Festival.

Laura Fernandez, Eric St. Laurent and the man who records radio shows for JAZZ FM, Danny Greenspoon!

Laura Fernandez, Eric St. Laurent and the man who records radio shows for JAZZ FM, Danny Greenspoon!

Every show was brilliant – it was a ginormous success, particularly because packing a club in summer takes extra effort. 521955_566007226793115_1786782153_nDavid Buchbinder’s Odessa Havana kicked things off Tuesday night. Cuban music blended with Klezmer, high level playing…this is the kind of music that makes plants grow fast.

Bruce Cassidy having a blast!

Bruce Cassidy having a blast!

Eric St. Laurent Trio blew everyone away the following night, followed by a stellar set by Eliana Cuevas and her band. Thursday was party night – Bruce Cassidy performed a tribute to Hugh Masekela and the crowd ate it up. The band seemed to enjoy themselves as much as the audience and many of the staff remarked it was their favourite show in recent memory.

Eliana!

Eliana!

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Mark Kieswetter is happy in his work!

Mark Kieswetter is happy in his work!

Water into wine? What the...?!

Water into wine? What the…?!

Friday Amy McConnell and Lynne Tremblay performed with an all star band: Mark Kieswetter (piano); Ross MacIntyre (bass); Drew Jureka (violin); Fabrice Sicco (push button accordion); and Jesse Barksdale (guitar). 1150913_568797869847384_1186895567_nJuliet Dunn, an on-air host at JAZZ.FM91 made a cameo and blew everyone away with her version of “Padum Padum”.IMG_1893

Mary brings out my inner rabbit.

Mary brings out my inner rabbit.

1151020_568805329846638_1245721113_nFinally, on Saturday we wrapped up the five-day-fest with Rez Abbasi and his trio, with a guest appearance by Kiran Ahluhwalia, his famous singing wife. Other worldly! 971300_643920665620677_1868594427_n

Finally, Sunday I chilled and went to a friends for a fancy dinner. Igor and Nadia provided a feast, far too much wine and my guest Barbra Lica and I had a lot of laughs. A perfect way to end a busy week!

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