Ottawa Folk Fest Day 3: Old School Soul and The Modern Age

Fall has definitely made it’s way to the Ottawa Region, and as the cold snap continues there was no warmer place to be than the Ottawa Folk Festival on Day 3.

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Old-school soul singer Lee Fields

Kicking things off on the Eh! Mainstage was authentic old-school soul man Lee Fields & his tremendous band The Expressions, “bringing it” to the park with a solid showcase of timeless authentic soul.

With a career spanning 43 years, the North Carolina native has toured with a who’s-who of soul legends, and is often compared to the Godfather himself, James Brown, in terms of his deep rich tones and gritty yet powerful phrasing.

His set included a string of timeless and powerful selections from his latest release “Faithful Man” that only exemplifies the fact that vintage soul is still alive and well in today’s modern world.


North Carolina singer J. Cole at the Ottawa Folk Festival

Next up, Another North Carolina native, J.Cole on the RavenLaw stage, contrasted by Ottawa’s favourite avant-garde pop noir band The PepTides on the Hill Stage, Black Prairie on the Valley Stage, with Chrissy Crowley followed by the Sprag Sessions in the Craft Beer House.

The National_04

Matt Berninger, singer for The National, at the Ottawa Folk Festival

The evening was capped off at the Eh! Mainstage with Brooklyn’s indie rock sensation ‘The National’ lead by frontman and songwriter Matt Berninger.

Opening up with “Don’t Swallow the Cap” from their critically acclaimed 2013 release “Trouble Will Find Me” the band continued through their catalogue with a series of melodic yet introspective, and often world-weary contemplations on love, self-destruction and the monotony of urban paradigm.

Bryce Dressner, guitarist for The National, at the Ottawa Folk Festival

Bryce Dressner, guitarist for The National, at the Ottawa Folk Festival

Themes accentuated by the dark baritone vocals (notably reminiscent of musical precursors like that of late Joy Division singer Ian Curtis) complimented the bands lush tones against a tepid backdrop of illumination on stage. Finishing up the set with “Mr.November”, ‘Terrible Love” and the always effervescent “Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks”

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