Ottawa’s First Ever MEGAPHONO Showcase Festival!

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a part of this exciting new event in Ottawa — MEGAPHONO! It’s first showcase festival is taking place February 3-5, 2015. There are 34 local and 6 regional bands, playing in 10 venues, from the Mercury Lounge to Raw Sugar to the Diefenbunker! Add in some industry gurus from across Canada and the U.S., some great panels, and the release of an Ottawa music sector profile called Connecting Ottawa Music, and you’ve got an exciting three days to get your heart, mind, and soul all fired up! Check out the full release below, join our Facebook events, and spread the word!



MEGAPHONO has released the full artist lineup and schedule for its inaugural music showcase festival in Ottawa, happening February 3rd to 5th, 2015. The 40-artist fest will feature local & regional favourites, including Last Ex, Jeremy Fisher, HILOTRONS, Evening Hymns, Boyhood, Jim Bryson, Amanda Rheaume, FLO, The Yips, Jill Zmud, and Steve Adamyk Band, as well as out-of-towners Socalled, Heat, U.S. Girls, Michael Rault, and Crosss.

The showcase festival will host music industry guest delegates from the US and Canada including record labels, publishers, booking agents and music supervisors from LA to NYC and Toronto to Montreal. Ottawa artists and music entrepreneurs will have the chance to connect one-on-one with these guests with the hopes of finding new opportunities for Ottawa-area music outside of our city’s borders.

All participants will enjoy a tightly-scheduled three-day musical adventure around the city, including performances from 34 local artists and 6 out-of-towners. Venues include the cold war-built Diefenbunker, where bands will play in a Bank of Canada vault meant to protect the country’s riches in case of nuclear war; legendary drinking hole The Dominion Tavern; new favourite House of Targ, and the cozy St. Alban’s Church. Afternoon showcases will see artists in the Elmdale Oyster House, Record Centre, Raw Sugar, and Pressed.

MEGAPHONO kicks off Tuesday February 3rd at 12PM for THE MEGAPHONO LAUNCH LUNCH, which includes a 2″ TAPE CUTTING CEREMONY, followed by the release and discussion of the recently-completed Ottawa music industries profile Connecting Ottawa Music. The event is free of charge and open to the public.

Funded by the Ontario Music Fund (OMDC) and compiling responses from over 800 local musicians and 50 music businesses, Connecting Ottawa Music profiles the local music ecosystem, identifying recommendations for ways to move forward as an industry and help to build Ottawa as a musical hub.

Daytime panels are aimed at helping local artists and music entrepreneurs increase their knowledge, gain insight to help them make career decisions, and network with local, regional, national, and international festival attendees.

A TRIBE CALLED RED: A look at the tremendous rise of Ottawa’s greatest musical export since Alanis. This Juno-award winning DJ collective and their core team discuss their successes and how they built a musical mammoth out of Ottawa. Panelists: Guillaume Decouflet (ATCR manager), Dee Jay NDN (ATCR); Adam Countryman (ATCR booking agent- The Agency Group)

WEARING ALL THE HATS: Local artist entrepreneurs discuss the ins and outs of grinding out a career as a musician in the Ottawa area. From studio engineering to composition to production to live sound, this group wears a lot of hats. Our panelists will talk about how they balance all of their different musical roles and make it work. Panelists: Lynn Miles, Jim Bryson, Mike Dubue (HILOTRONS), Matt Ouimet

IF WE ONLY HAD AN AGENT: One of the most important pain points for today’s up-and-coming artists is convincing an agent to sign you. Our panel of booking agents will help you decipher the mystery of how they find and sign new acts, and what it takes to put pen to paper. Panelists: Adam Countryman (Agency Group), Nicole Rochefort (AIM Booking), Josh Iden (Panache)

JUST THE SIZE OF MONTREAL: Too big or too small? For a lot of Ottawa-based artists, Montreal’s live music market has always been a tough nut to crack. Hear from some of that city’s key music players on the particular challenges of building an audience in Montreal, the differences between its Franco and Anglo scenes, and tips on what you can do to improve your chances of success in everyone’s favourite weekend party destination. Panelists: Dan Seligman (Pop Montreal), Andre Guerette (Guerette Agency), Michaël Bardier (Heavy Trip)

Local artists and music entrepreneurs will also have the opportunity to connect one-on-one with guest delegates in a series of speed meetings: 7-minute meetups to pitch their wares and make new connections.

Tickets and festival passes are now on sale at; full delegate passes (available exclusively to artists and music entrepreneurs) for the week including all shows, panels and networking activities are a steal at $75; individual day passes and show tickets range from PWYC (pay what you can) to $40.

Paper tickets go on sale Friday January 16th at Vertigo Records (193 Rideau) and Compact Music locations (206 Bank & 785 Bank).


Want to get involved? We are looking for:
– sponsors
– community partners
– and, of course…VOLUNTEERS!

Jon Bartlett or Lesley Marshall

A special thank you to our sponsors:
The Audio Recording Academy TARA / APCM (Association des professionnels de la chanson et de la musique) / Downtown Rideau BIA & Chill Factor / Scotiabank / Novotel / Beau’s / Algonquin College: Music Industry Arts / Uber

And our co-presenters:
CKCU / CHUO / E-Tron Rec. / Arboretum Festival / Ottawa Showbox / Small Talk / Ottawa Explosion