2017 Gil’s Hootenanny a Great Success

A rainy May Day 2017 did not dampen the enthusiasm at Gil’s Hootenanny.

Bringing together a wide range of talented musicians and an enthusiastic audience that likes to “sing along” made for a fine evening of “songs of hope & protest.” Video below by Andrew Hall:

Thanks to Jake Morrison for a fine album of images to remember the 2017 Gil’s Hootenanny. There are more posted on his website…

Moonfruits | What the Future Holds

Ste-Quequepart Tour Poster

Ste-Quequepart Tour Poster

Gil’s Hootananny might be one of the last opportunities to see Moonfruits in person, as 2017 is looking to be a busy year for them.

Shortly after headlining Gil’s Hootenanny, Moonfruits – Kaitlin Milroy and Alex Milliare – will be releasing their first French-language album, Ste-Quequepart, which they describe as a “folk concept album that plays like a short film soundtrack.” After the mid-May album release, Moonfruits will be heading out on a Canadian tour to promote the album, which likely means they will be on the road for much of the year. The tour will give the band the opportunity to focus on the things they enjoy: writing and performing music. Continue reading…

Moonfruits | Singing and Social Activism

When asked to pinpoint performances that left a lasting impression on them, Moonfruits – Kaitlin Milroy and Alex Milliare – have a myriad of meaningful personal and professional experiences to draw upon. From singing and playing banjo during a protest in -20 degree weather, to a show with The Peptides that culminated in an 11-person finale of “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?”, Moonfruits bring their dedication to social justice to each of their performances. Continue reading…

Christine Graves Wins Gil’s Hootenanny 2017 Songwriting Contest

Gil’s Hootenanny is delighted to announce that Christine Graves has won the 2017 “Songs of Hope and Protest” Sing-Along Songwriting Contest for her inspirational song “Rise Above”.

All finalists performed their original songs at the Ottawa Grassroots Festival on Saturday, April 22. According to contest judges Tony Turner, Mark Evenchick and Marty Hamer, “this year’s contest featured a number of strong song submissions and it was difficult to narrow the field to the five finalists”, who were (songs and songwriters): Continue reading…

Songwriting Contest Finalists To Perform At OTTAWA GRASSROOTS FESTIVAL

Come cheer on the five finalists for the annual Gil’s Hootenanny “Songs of Hope and Protest” Sing-Along Songwriting Contest as they perform their original songs at the Ottawa Grassroots Festival on Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 4pm, in Room 7 (The Parlour) at Southminster United Church, 15 Aylmer Avenue, Ottawa, ON.

The five finalists (songs and songwriters) are:

  • We Are the One : Harmony Siu
  • Your Wall Will Come Down : Jan Bentham
  • The Baby KingDavid Mayerovitch
  • Race to the BottomTom Clairmont
  • Rise AboveChristine Graves

Continue reading…

Tony Turner & His Life-Changing “Hootenanny” Hit

One of Ottawa finest singer-songwriter’s life and career were forever changed by his participation in Gil’s Hootenanny, after his song won the 2015 song-writing contest.

Image of Tony Turner

Tony Turner

Tony Turner’s winning composition about then Prime Minister Stephen Harper, “Harperman”, thrust him into a media spotlight that few could have anticipated. After officials got wind of a video of the upbeat song by Ottawa filmmaker Andrew Hall, the federal government suspended Tony from his job at Environment Canada. Much to Tony’s surprise, his suspension alarmed many Canadians and “Harperman” took on a life of its own. Millions of people viewed the video, and Tony became an unintentional, international public crusader for freedom of expression. Continue reading…


It Started with Family

Image of Moonfruits

Moonfruits – Kaitlin Milroy and Alex Milliare

As is the case for so many musicians, family encouragement was crucial for Moonfruits’ Kaitlin Milroy and Alex Milliare in nurturing their talent and inspiring them to pursue careers in music.

Family lore has it that Kaitlin’s first musical experience occurred “in the womb during a Clarkson Music Theatre production of Flower Drum Song”. Those early stirrings were cultivated in Kaitlin’s family, as she and her brother played in concert and jazz bands in high school, and were known for putting on – with the help of their cats – their own “shows” for family and friends. Continue reading…

Mark Evenchick | Passion, Talent & Perseverance

Mark Evenchick

Mark Evenchick

Singer-songwriter Mark Evenchick will be one of the featured performers at Gil’s Hootenanny 2017. He is expected to perform a new song, It’s Not Funny Anymore, about the political situation south of the Canadian border.

The winner of the 2016 Hootenanny songwriting contest, Mark’s love of music started when he was 13 and learned three chords on his sister’s guitar. Those few chords led Mark on a decades-long musical voyage that includes performing, songwriting & recording. Continue reading…