IMOO #114 – Sunday, January 25: Rakestar Arkestra


Rakestar Arkestra presents: Ra Sugar
Rake-star is an Ottawa collective of adventuresome musicians who gather periodically to plumb the songbook of the great Sun Ra. The newest edition of Rake-star is set for launch as a nine-piece ensemble featuring saxes, keyboards and percussion.  For this inaugural outing, and to honour the free spirit of Mr. Ra, the music will be especially unplanned and far-reaching.
The personnel on this occasion, in alpha-beta order:
David Broscoe
Don Cummings
John Sobol
Linsey Wellman
Mike Essoudry
Rob Frayne
Rory Magill
Scott Warren

Special presentation – Linsey Wellman’s live recording

IMOO co-founder Linsey Wellman is recording a live album over two evenings in late January, and would love for you to be in the audience!  Here are the details:

Tuesday and Wednesday, January 27 and 28
doors: 7pm, music: 7:30
Daimon (78 Hanson – Old Hull)
Entry is free!

Note: this is a live recording, so please come on time so as to avoid the sound of opening and closing doors on the album.

IMOO #113 – Sunday, January 11: Say Spirit

say spirit by heartsong

  • James Annett – viola
  • Josh Cole – bass
  • Colin Fisher – drums, guitar
Say Spirit is the pan-Canadian co-operative trio of Colin Fisher, James Annett and Josh Cole. Now primarily based on Toronto and Montreal, each musician is vital contributor to the improvised and creative music community. They are individually known as flexible and stylistically-eclectic collaborators in the music world at large. The music they make together is at times lyrical, at times fiery and passionate. It is guided by an openness of spirit, a sensitivity to listen as one unit and the desire to move beyond individual capabilities.

Sunday, December 21: IMOO #112 – A Very Ayler Christmas!

disc front(300dpi)Join us for a holiday tradition.  It’s the antidote for any of you who have been unfortunate enough to set foot in a mall this holiday season.  The music of Albert Ayler and holiday classics make strange, but compelling bedfellows.

Saxophonist/accordionist Bernard Stepien leads his merry band of elves on a journey you are unlikely to forget!

  • Bernard Stepien – saxophone, accordion
  • David Broscoe – saxophones
  • Jennifer Giles – keyboards
  • Scott Warren – drums, tape loops
  • Linsey Wellman – saxophone, bass clarinet

IMOO #111: Phil Minton

Sunday, December 7: IMOO #111 – Phil Minton

We’re super excited to be welcoming legendary vocalist Phil Minton to IMOO!

photo: Francesca Pfeffer

photo: Francesca Pfeffer

  • Phil Minton – voice
  • David Jackson – guitar
  • Ian Birse – electronics
  • Laura Kavanaugh – electronics
  • Mark Molnar – cello
  • David Broscoe – woodwinds
  • LInsey Wellman – woodwinds

One of the world’s great improvising singers, Phil Minton has worked in jazz (Mike Westbrook Band), rock-in-opposition (News from Babel, Roof) and avant-garde cabaret (his duo with Veryan Weston). In a long and ceaselessly developing career, Minton has pioneered an astonishing array of extended vocal techniques. Several composers have written music designed for Minton’s vocalization. A native of Devon, Minton now resides in London.

IMOO #110: Shawn Mativetsky and Payton MacDonald

Sunday, November 30: IMOO #110 – Shawn Mativetsky and Payton MacDonald
*SPECIAL LOCATION: Black Squirrel Books – 1073 Bank St in Old Ottawa South*
Same time as always (7-9pm)

PaytonMacDonald ShawnMativetsky

  • Shawn Mativetsky – tabla
  • Payton MacDonald – voice

Exponent of the Benares gharana, and disciple of the legendary Pandit Sharda SahaiShawn Mativetsky is a highly sought-after tabla performer and educator. He is active in the promotion of the tabla and North Indian classical music through lectures, workshops, and performances across Canada and internationally. Based in Montreal, Shawn teaches tabla and percussion at McGill University. His solo CD, Payton MacDonald: Works for Tabla, was released in 2007, and Cycles, his new CD of Canadian compositions for tabla, was released in the fall of 2011.

As a practitioner of Indian classical music, Shawn regularly gives solo tabla performances, as well as accompanying kathak dance, voice, bansuri, sarod, santoor, sarangi, and sitar artists. He performs often with Duo Samskaraand Sitaria. Since 2003, Shawn has been affiliated with the Pandit Ram Sahai Foundation (UK/India), and in the summers of 2006 and 2008, hosted tabla maestro Pandit Sharda Sahai’s annual summer tabla workshop. Since 2011, Shawn has been hosting his own annual summer tabla workshop at McGill University. In recent years, he has worked closely with kathak dancer Sudeshna Maulik for her performances of Crossroads, Mehfil, Soul of Ganges, and Hands and Feet.

Shawn has performed numerous solo recitals, spanning Canada, the United States, the UK, and India and has been featured in series such as the Windsor Canadian Music Festival, Pontio / Music @ Bangor, New Music in New Spaces, Groundswell, Festival Montréal Baroque, Jusqu’aux Oreilles, Evolutions, Voyages: Montréal-New York, Festival International du Domaine Forget, New Works Calgary, Music Toronto, and the Percussive Arts Society International Convention. As an ensemble musician, Shawn Mativetsky performs regularly with violinist Parmela Attariwala’s cross-cultural Attar Project, Indo-fusion group Ragleela, Indian-folk group Galitcha, and the improv trio Of Sound, Mind and Body, with Tim Brady and Helmut Lipsky. A versatile studio musician, Shawn has appeared on albums by Yann Perreau, Elephant Stone, Suzie Leblanc, Ramachandra Borcar, and Daniel Lavoie. Regular performances with Galitcha have led to concerts across Canada and the US, as well as tours to France and Tunisia, the chance to play with guest musicians such as Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt, Salil Bhatt, Harry Manx, and Yves Lambert, as well as a performance for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, during their visit to Canada.‎

Payton MacDonald (b. 1974, Idaho Falls, Idaho) is a composer, improviser, percussionist, singer, and educator. He has created a unique body of work that draws upon his extensive experience with East Indian tabla drumming and Dhrupad singing, Jazz, European classical music, and the American experimental tradition. He works across multiple musical genres, often at the same time. Several recordings of MacDonald’s music exist, including the critically acclaimed Payton MacDonald: Works for Tabla on the ATMA label.

The New York Times described him as an “energetic soloist.” The Los Angeles Times described him as an “. . . inventive, stylistically omnivorous composer and gifted performer . . .” His music has also been described as “hypnotically beautiful” (The New York Times and “. . . engaging and utterly beautiful.” (Sequenza 21) MacDonald has been a featured performer of his own music on festivals in Montreal (Voyages) and Minneapolis (Electric Eyes).

As a composer numerous ensembles have performed his music around the world, including Alarm Will Sound, Los Angeles Philharmonic, JACK Quartet, So Percussion, To Hit Duo, Young Voices of Colorado, Quintet Mont Royal, Classical Jam, guitarists Mak Grgic and Eliot Fisk, and tabla soloist Shawn Mativetsky. He has received grants and awards from Fulbright Foundation, ASCAP, Meet the Composer, American Music Center, American Institute of Indian Studies, as well as fellowships from Yaddo and Ragdale. He has also composed music for the Silken Dance Company.

As an improviser MacDonald tours as a marimba soloist with Super Marimba. With Super Marimba MacDonald performs his own music using looping machines and delay pedals. He also performs with other collaborators, including Elliott Sharp, Aakash Mittal, Peter Evans, Tim Feeney, Todd Sickafoose, Theo Metz, and many others. MacDonald recently performed with the Aakash Mittal Quintet on the Kolkata Jazz Festival.

As a classical percussion performer he is a founding member of Alarm Will Sound, a new-music chamber orchestra. Alarm Will Sound is currently regarded as one of the foremost new music ensembles in the country and they have made five recordings, on the Nonesuch and Cantaloupe labels. The New York Times wrote that they are “the future of classical music.” Alarm Will Sound has performed in the finest concert halls all over the world. MacDonald has commissioned many works from other composers, including Charles Wuorinen, Robert Morris, Caleb Burhans, Don Freund, Peter Jarvis, Elliott Sharp, David Saperstein, Michael Udow, and Stuart Saunders Smith. From 1994-2004 MacDonald performed with Verederos, a flute and percussion duo. Verederos recorded two CDs under the Equilibrium label. He has also appeared as a soloist in England and Croatia, performed with Present Music and the New Jersey Percussion Ensemble, toured Japan with Keiko Abe and the Galaxy percussion group, and performed and recorded with acclaimed singer/songwriter Noe Venable.

MacDonald is also a singer and is currently studying Dhrupad vocal with the famous Gundecha Brothers. In 2012 MacDonald made his singing debut with Alarm Will Sound, singing John Cage’s “Raga Music” at the River to River festival in New York City, the Musikgebouw in Holland, and the Cork Opera House in Cork, Ireland. In spring 2013 he was awarded a Senior Fulbright-Nehru Fellowship to spend the 2013-2014 academic year in India continuing his vocal studies with the Gundecha Brothers. He has performed many times as a classical Dhrupad singer, including his official debut at Bharat Bhavan in Bhopal, M.P., India. His performance was covered by many major news outlets, including The Hitaveda, who wrote “Dr. Payton MacDonald with his melodious voice spread the beauty of Dhrupad, its subtle finer points and the way he sang seemed to be spiritualistic. His solo Dhrupad performance was encouraging and not less than any young Indian Dhrupad singer.”

Sunday, November 16: IMOO #109 – Goodbye Mr Pedersen

Set one:
Solo trumpet

Set two:
Molnar/Pedersen duo.

Set three:


As many of you know, IMOO co-founder Craig Pedersen took a bit of a step back this fall from organizing IMOO events, focussing on IMOOfest 2014 as his last main task.  Well, IMOOfest has come and gone, and he’s ready to retire from his duties, and focus on life in his new home of Montreal.  Let’s take this chance to celebrate a good friend, a great player, and a wonderful coordinator.  We’ll miss him!

Rest assured – we’ll make sure we get to see and hear plenty of Craig in the future.

Sunday November 2: Yves Charuest and Ellwood Epps Present La Passe


Ontario-Québec tour in support of ”La Passe”, their debut recording on Small Scale Music.

Yves Charuest and Ellwood Epps represent an ongoing story of improvised music in Montréal. Ellwood arrived in Montréal in 2005 and promptly set to work becoming one of the city’s busiest creative musicians, concert presenters, and teachers. Yves was heavily involved in the scene during the 80’s and 90’s, and was one of the few players to branch out onto the world stage. During the period of Epps’ arrival and leading up to about 2011, Charuest was on a long sabatical, and so when they met in Nicolas Caloia’s Ratchet Orchestra, they were both new to each other, despite both having paid their dues for many years on the Montreal and international scenes.

Finding a common ground in energy and spirit, and with a great respect for the history of creative music in America, Canada, and Montréal, Yves and Ellwood decided to explore the possibilities of working together as a duet. They gave performances at several of Montréal’s fertile loft venues over a couple years, while continuing their work together in the Ratchet Orchestra, Epss’ group Rosasharn’s Dream, and other formations.

As a duet, the chemisty is immediate enough that prearranged material didn’t seem to be necessary. Rather, the two musicians find material in the immediate surroundings (place, time, people, energy), and arrange, develop, and transform it as any composer works with their own musical materials. In the summer of 2014 they felt ready to document their work together, and responded eagerly to the offer of bassist Raphael Foisy-Couture’s offer to record and release their music on his new Small Scale Music label.

Yves’ and Ellwood’s differences (in age, mother tongue, so-called ‘generation’…) are easily overcome in their willingness to participate immediately in the musical moment, to rejoice in belonging to the continuum of a musical becoming. Their first tour is sure to be full of exciting times, transformative adventures, and soulful music.

Sunday September 14: IMOO #106 [Return to ‘moo Mountain]

Join us Sunday September 14th as we launch our Fall series of concerts in our new home Raw Sugar Cafe! (692 Somerset St W) We are so excited for our new digs and invite you to join us for improvised music, tasty local tap beers, chili, and snacks.

The cast of players will include Ian Birse, Laura Kavanaugh, Mark Molnar, Rory Magill, Linsey Wellman, David Jackson and others TBA.

Concert starts at 7PM

10 dollar suggested donation or PWYC. No one turned away for lack of funds.

Sunday Sept 21: IMOO #107 – The Muted Note

  • Susanna Hood – voice, dance
  • Scott Thomson – trombone, composition

NEW LOCATION: Raw Sugar Café (692 Somerset St W)
TIME: 7pm-9pm
COST: $10/$5/PWYC

=The Muted Note
is a suite of songs composed by Scott Thomson, settings of poems by P.K. Page, for Susanna Hood’s singing voice. As a duo, Susanna, in addition to singing the lyrics, improvises on the songs both vocally and in dance, a synthesis for which she is singularly acclaimed in Canada. Scott, on trombone, both underpins Susanna and solos on the songs in a wide-ranging style that reflects his broad experience as an improviser. Throughout, P.K. Page’s stellar poems are at the core of the work and, in both dance and music, Scott and Susanna seek to animate and activate the verse as they play. Their extensive Canadian tour this autumn will help to promote their new duo disc on &records.

Susanna Hood is a compelling and virtuosic performer in dance and music. She began her career with Toronto Dance Theatre, 1991-95. Independently, she has performed the works of various Toronto choreographers; created singing/dancing roles with Autumn Leaf Productions; acted on film for filmmaker Philip Barker; created music for the dance works of Louis Laberge Coté, Rebecca Todd, and Eryn Dace Trudell; collaborated extensively with composers John Oswald and Nilan Perera; and performed widely as an improviser in dance and music. Her collaborative projects as well as her own choreography and music compositions have been presented throughout Toronto, nationally, and internationally on stage and film since 1991. She has won the K.M. Hunter Emerging Artist Award and the Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance.


Scott Thomson is a trombonist and composer who lives in Montréal, having moved from Toronto in 2010. He plays in established groups in many styles, and prizes ad hoc improvising as a way to meet many creative people. He has studied with Roswell Rudd, Jean Derome, Eddie Prévost, and John Oswald. Scott is one of the founders of the Association of Improvising Musicians in Toronto (AIMToronto), and co-directs the AIMToronto Orchestra, which was formed for a project with Anthony Braxton in September 2007. While in Toronto, Scott was the artistic director of Somewhere There, a venue for live creative music that he founded in 2007. Scott has composed a series of site-specific pieces that he calls ‘cartographic compositions’ for mobile musicians and audiences in unconventional performance contexts, including works for the galleries and corridors of the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario.

Susanna and Scott’s principal project, currently, is a multi-faceted collaboration to perform Scott’s suite of songs based on poetry by P.K. Page, one of Canada’s most celebrated literary figures. For this project, The Muted Note, Scott and Susanna perform the suite as a duo; with Scott’s quintet, The Disguises (with Nicolas Caloia, Yves Charuest, and Pierre Tanguay); and as a full stage work featuring Susanna’s choreography on three other dancers (Ellen Furey, Alanna Kraaijeveld, and Bernard Martin) with live music by The Disguises.