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Songwriter's Studio with Lawrie Ingles & Performers

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Lawrie Ingles (keyboard/piano)

Lawrie Ingles
Lawrie Ingles is one busy musician, singing, playing keys, guitar, bass or drums in any number of bands at a time. When he's not playing he's out supporting live music, taking in more live shows than anyone I know. He's also a talented songwriter, and his wordplay-laden lyrics offer a taunting glimpse into his emotional and intellectual depth.

More About Lawrie Ingles

Peter Boyd & Noah Zacharin

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Peter Boyd (guitar/voice), Noah Zacharin (guitar/voice)

Peter Boyd
Peter Boyd has been a songwriter for over thirty years. Drawing on gospel and blues from Chicago all the way back to the Delta and re-invented upside-down-and-backwards, Peter's songs are a sepia-tinged glimpse into his messy, not-fully-developed soul where faith has as much a chance as folly to send you careening into the abyss.

Peter's new CD 'Beulahland' is garnering great reviews, most recently a rave from Greg Quill in the Toronto Star - "stunning and powerful blues-rooted original songs and astonishing guitar wizardry. Among the best of the year's roots/blues crop."

Noah Zacharin
Noah Zacharin was born in Montreal and resides in Toronto. He was given his first guitar at age 9, wrote his first song at 13, began performing at 14, and is happy to say that he still loves playing music. He has been called "a wonderful songwriter and performer, and stunning guitarist" (Paul Mills, Borealis Records, Producer (Stan Rogers, Oscar Peterson), a "wonderful, adventurous guitarist" (Blues Bytes), "a poet, a songwriter, a singer we have been waiting for" (Penny Lang), "a great guitarist/singer/songwriter...a wonderfully musical player" (Randy Finney, President and Founder Toronto Fingerstyle Guitarist's Association), "in a league of his own" (Brian Gladstone, AD Winterfolk Festival), "one of the best songwriters this country has produced" (the late great Rick Fielding, recording artist, radio host) and "deserving to be mentioned in the same breath with names such as James Taylor and David Wilcox" (Minor 7th).

Zacharin's recordings have garnered praise from fans and critics alike. silence spoken here (1997) was called "an understated classic...musical versatility and lyrical depth" (Xpress-Ottawa); Scene Roots and Blues dubbed aLIVE! (2000) "a real gem"; and a review of crow dark wind (2001) in Minor 7th elicited the following: "like Bruce Cockburn, Ry Cooder, and Bonnie Raitt, Noah Zacharin possesses a virtuoso command of the songwriting."

Facebook Event | More About Peter Boyd | More About Noah Zacharin

Thursday, February 23rd

Thursday, February 23rd


Music for Violin and Cello

Gallery 345 (345 Sorauren Avenue)
Sarah Fraser Raff (violin), Bryan Holt (cello), Jeremy Bellaviti (compositions)

An evening of new music for violin and cello composed by Jeremy Bellaviti featuring Sarah Fraser Raff, violin and Bryan Holt, cello.

Sarah Fraser Raff
Sarah received her formative musical training in Japan. Studying under Koichiro Harada, who was a founding member and first violinist of the internationally acclaimed Tokyo String Quartet, she gained a Bachelorʼs degree in Music Performance from the prestigious Toho Gakuen Music School in Tokyo. She moved to Canada to continue her studies with the late Lorand Fenyves. She went on to attain a Master of Music in Performance from Toronto University and an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory.

Sarahʼs chamber music experience includes frequent concerts, workshops, recordings, and TV and radio broadcasts in North America, Europe, and Asia as a founding member of the Madawaska String Quartet and principal violinist of CONTACT contemporary music ensemble.

As an active and versatile freelancer she has played with the Toronto Symphony, Canadian Opera Company, Esprit Orchestra, orchestra of the National Ballet of Canada, Tapestry New Opera, Arraymusic Ensemble, and Soundstreams Canada. Sarah is currently on the faculty of the Royal Conservatory, Toronto.

Bryan Holt
Known for his versatility, cellist Bryan Holt has performed throughout North America and abroad. Mr. Holt has appeared with Art of Time Ensemble, Continuum Contemporary Music, Soundstreams,Thin Edge New Music Collective, Pocket Concerts, Tapestry Opera, and has played in cello sections of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Canadian Opera Company Orchestra, and Esprit Orchestra. Bryan is co-founder of the multi-genre cello duo "VC2" and is a member of Matt Haimovitz's Grammy-nominated ensemble "Uccello." He is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Music in Cello Performance at the University of Toronto, researching distance learning strategies for the transmission of modern cello pedagogy. Bryan maintains a private teaching studio in downtown Toronto and gives workshops and coachings at several schools in the Greater Toronto Area.

Jeremy Bellaviti
Jeremy is a Toronto based cellist, guitarist and composer. Born in Calgary in 1977, he grew up in Italy and later moved to Canada where he attended the Humber College Jazz Program, majoring in guitar. He continued to study privately with renowned musicians Rob Piltch (guitar) and Shauna Rolston (cello). Immersed in composition for over 15 years, he has also studied with University of Toronto Professor Chan Ka Nin. Jeremy's recent commission, Submerge for solo cello and choir was performed in June 2015 by Toronto's Jubilate Singers, featuring cellist Wendy Solomon.


The Billy B Jam

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)

Friday, February 24th

Friday, February 24th


Emma Cava Band

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Emma Cava (voice)

To York University alumna Emma Cava, no enclave of jazz is off-limits. Her clear, precise voice navigates bebop and contemporary pieces as effortlessly as it does classic standards and the blues. Not even pop or rock tunes are safe from this budding arranger. Listen to Emma sing for five minutes and you'll hear the influence of Sheila Jordan, Blossom Dearie, and other instrumentally-minded vocalists.

Emma Cava
To York University alumna Emma Cava, no enclave of jazz is off-limits. Her clear, precise voice navigates bebop and contemporary pieces as effortlessly as it does classic standards and the blues. Not even pop or rock tunes are safe from this budding arranger. Listen to Emma sing for five minutes and you'll hear the influence of Sheila Jordan, Blossom Dearie, and other instrumentally-minded vocalists.

More About Emma Cava

Saturday, February 25th

Saturday, February 25th


Dr. B's Acoustic Medicine Show

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Brian Gladstone (voice/guitar)

Join us for an intimate afternoon of great acoustic music, every Saturday.

We want to create a place for artists, friends, and fans to hang out.

Players Wanted Sign Up starts at 2:00

Come Out to Hear The Great Music

Come out to Meet Your Friends

Come Out to Play Some Tunes

Brian Gladstone
Brian Gladstone has been involved in the Canadian roots music scene for almost thirty-five years as an artist, producer, festival director, and activist – thus brings experience and expertise from all sides of the stage. Growing up during the late 60’s roots revival helped to shape his morals and perspective on life.

More Info | More About Brian Gladstone

Catherine Thompson CD Release

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Catherine M Thompson (voice/guitar)

Allister Bradley (keyboard)

Jazz Money, Jared Goldman (drums), Malcolm Connor (bass), Christopher Weatherstone (flute/saxophone/voice/guitar)

Chris Birkett (guitar/voice), Jeremy Edwardes (clarinet), Nathan Hiltz (guitar), Shannon Roszell (voice/guitar), Erin Norah Thompson (voice)

Catherine M Thompson
I am an a Capella singer/songwriter. The songs I write are composed in my head with lyrics and melody coming together. percolating away in there until ready to be vocalized. I am not a prolific writer but I do have more than 20 songs that I have kept over the years. I have performed them during my years as a storyteller, from time to time during my career in arts education and school administration. Now retired, I am focusing on bringing my songs and other writing together as well as developing opportunities to do more collaborations. Although I write in many genres, those who hear me sing at open mics and poetry events often hear my songs as Celtic in nature.

Chris Birkett
Chris Birkett has been involved in producing, engineering, writing and playing music since the 1970s. His collaborations have sold more than 100 million records world-wide over the last 30 years. He started his musical career as a guitarist for well-known Memphis artists: Rufus Thomas, Ann Peebles, Gene Knight and King Floyd... He then signed a major deal as an artist with Tony Visconti's Good Earth records. His career has since expanded to include the production, engineering and mixing of many UK and international hits. Working with A&R Legend Nigel Grainge of Ensign Records, (Bob Geldof,Sinead O Connor,The Water boys,Thin Lizzy), led Chris to Producing Sinead O Connor, Buffy Saint Marie and Laurie Freelove. His first solo artist single "Where do we go from here", was included on the Polygram album One Voice One Love alongside other artists U2, Peter Gabriel, Dire Straits, Bob Marley, Tears for fears and Queen. The royalties for this song were donated to raise money for the CARE international charity for Africa. Chris is also the founder member of Cry Sisco (Affro Dizzi Act).

Jazz Money
Jazz Money took to the streets in the summer of 2013 with a simple idea: Play anything like it's jazz, and do it to make people happy. It attracted tons of positive attention and the band recorded their first EP "Jazz Money Presents Jazz Money" at Dream House Studios in May 2013. Jazz Money is currently working on their second album, a Hip-Hop collaboration with some of Canada's best MCs.

More About Catherine M Thompson

Django Futuro

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Django Futuro

Django Futuro
Django Futuro is a collective of professional musicians in Toronto, passionate about the exciting and intoxicating world of gypsy swing music and dancing. Made up of a diverse group of musicians, dancers and actors, Django Futuro strives to take you fully back in time, when the rhythm of the guitar was unceasing and the magic charm of the dance club was commonplace.

Facebook Event | More About Django Futuro

Sunday, February 26th

Sunday, February 26th


Jewish Brunch Buffet with Gloria Valentine & Nina Shapilsky

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Gloria Valentine (voice), Nina Shapilsky (piano)

Live music as part of the "Bella did you eat" Sunday brunch.
1st seating - Reserve between 10:30 – 11am, music at 11:45
2nd seating - Reserve at 1:15pm Club (1:00 Bistro), music at 1:45

Buffet includes over 50 Homemade Items - Potato latkes, blintzes, lox eggs & onions, challah, french toast, sour cream, apple sauce, bagels, lox & cream cheese mix, salmon patties, gelfilte fish, cheese, salads galore, fresh fruit, cheeses, cakes, sweets, tea, coffee and much more! Children 12 and under 1/2 price, 3 and under free.

Gloria Valentine
Gloria is a multi-faceted actress and singer specializing in Yiddish songs who has been entertaining audiences for many years. She has performed across Canada, in the US and in Israel, in concert, in clubs and in cabaret shows. Gloria has acted in TV, film and theatre. Selected credits include Kojak on television, The Children's Hour on stage and Tony and Tina's Wedding for six and a half years for The Second City. She performs her cabaret show, Bella Did Ya Eat, once a month at Free Times Café as well as other venues.

Nina Shapilsky
Nina Shapilsky is an award-winning concert pianist and composer. A talented and versatile musician and composer with improvisations from classical through folk to pop and jazz.


Wind Song: The captivating sounds of Eastern Europe

Gallery 345 (345 Sorauren Avenue)
Izabella Budai (flute), Maria Dolnycky (piano), Heath Bartel (performance painter)

Live painting to the music by artist Heath Bartel

Each ticket is a chance to win the painting in a draw at the end of the concert. $5. From each purchase will go to the charity "You 2 Child" – giving the gift of music and art to special needs children in Ukraine and Canada.

- Vasile Jianu: Autumn Pastel
- L. van Beethoven: Variations on a Ukrainian Folksong, Op. 107
- Leo Ornstein: A Poem
- Pierre Csillag: "Aphorismes" (2006)
- Franz Doppler: Hungarian Pastoral Fantasy, Op. 26
- Fikret Amirov: Three Pieces in Azeri themes
- Aivars Kalejs: Wind Song
- Dimitri Tchesnokov: "Sonatine" (2010)
- Taras Yachshenko: Yalta Spring (on Pontic Greek themes)

Maria Dolnycky
Native Montrealer Maria Dolnycky earned both Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at McGill University under the tutelage of Ljerka Wollmarker-Blume. A recipient of the Alban Berg Foundation Scholarship, she went on to study in Vienna, Austria, under the guidance of Leonid Brumberg and at the Hochschule für Musik in the class of Walter Fleischmann. She is a laureate of the Debut competition, and her recitals have been broadcast on CBC Radio and the French-language Radio-Canada.

Maria is a member of the College of Examiners at the Royal Conservatory of Music and teaches privately in addition to her busy schedule as accompanist and collaborative artist. She has released two solo CDs: Poetic Moods which features rare music from Ukraine, including two world premieres by Yuri Ishchenko, and Lullaby for a Snowy Night, a mosaic of holiday music. Poetic Moods has enjoyed favourable reviews in several publications such as the American Record Guide. A fascination with visual art inspired her to create the "Music on Canvas" concert series – a fusion of music with other art forms.

Heath Bartel
Heath Bartel is a versatile and sought-after artist and educator based out of Buffalo, New York. He received a Master of Fine Arts degree in painting from the University at Buffalo and a Bachelor of Art degree from Buffalo State College. Heath has been creating art for three decades and has exhibited in Toronto, New York City, Buffalo, Nashville, Oregon and Oklahoma. As a descendant of the Seneca First Nation, he has a special interest in Native art and is presently working on a series of drawings and paintings of First Nations chiefs and warriors of the United States and Canada. He has lectured at many colleges and universities in the Western NY area and was invited on several occasions to serve as panelist and advisor for the New York Foundation of the Arts (NYFA). Heath loves his current position as Art Facilitator with Aspire of Western New York, where he mentors and teaches art to a talented group of adults with intellectual and physical disabilities.

More About Izabella Budai

Monk's Music

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Michael Davidson (vibraphone)

Michael Davidson
Michael Davidson is a Toronto-based vibraphonist in the improvised, jazz, and creative music scene.

He works with many of the active jazz and improvised music players in Toronto including: David Occhipinti, Nick Fraser, Brodie West, Ryan Driver, Rob Clutton, David French, Harley Card, Andrew Downing, Alex Goodman, Jim Vivian, Darren Sigesmund, Ethan Ardelli, Fabio Ragnelli, Felicity Williams, Dan Fortin, Jon Maharaj, Allison Au, Rebecca Hennessy, David Braid, and Michael Herring.

Michael leads a chamber jazz septet with cello, voice, bass clarinet, vibraphone, alto sax, double bass, and drums, which is his main compositional outlet.

He also co-leads the chamber jazz quartet Hobson's Choice, who in the words of CBC's The Signal host Laurie Brown,

"...has made a unique contribution to the Canadian scene with their debut album (of the waves). Just when I think I have the sound pegged, they switch things up."

Michael approaches improvising with passion and stunning sensitivity, as well as Monk-like wit. He is an active composer in the realm of jazz, and his inventive compositions are featured in The Michael Davidson Septet, and Hobson's Choice.

He has been composing seriously since 2001 and has received funding from The TAC, The OAC, and The CCFTA for his original projects. Recently, Michael composed and recorded a film score for the BravoFact film, "She Sings for Me."

His compositions have received praise from esteemed Canadian jazz drummer/ composer Barry Elmes,

"Not only are his songs creative and well crafted, each one has a story to tell."

Michael is also a devoted educator through his work at Humber College in the jazz program.

You can hear Michael playing around Toronto with The Michael Davidson Septet, Hobson's Choice, Pocket Camera, Monk's Music, The Dan Fortin Quartet, Bedroom, df md df trio, Ben Gunning, and Ryan Driver. These ensembles represent the diversity of Michael's musical interests, spanning from contemporary jazz to chamber to improvised. Both his original material and his interpretation of standard repertoire are evocative and communicative with the intensity of someone who, while madly in love with the tradition, has something new to say.


Kristy Hagerman, Dana Ben David & Lora Ryan

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Lora Ryan (voice/guitar), Andrew Scott (keyboard/trumpet/voice)

Dana Ben David (voice)

Kristy Hagerman (voice/guitar)

Kristy Hagerman
Kristy Hagerman is a singer/songwriter whose vocals will capture your attention from the moment she opens her mouth. Her simple yet endearing guitar and piano playing will pull you right into the story of her songs. Originally from Ottawa, she is currently working in the audio field in Toronto while aspiring to be a performer in the genre of Ed Sheeran, Birdie, and James Arthur.

Dana Ben David
Dana Ben David is a Toronto-based Singer/Songwriter. Originally from Montreal, she came to the city to pursue her passion for the music industry, to write, to perform and to develop her sound. Dana gets her inspiration from a broad variety of artists such as Norah Jones, Sia, P!nk, Sara Bareilles and Amy Winehouse. Her bubbly personality and captivating sound will surely leave you wanting more.

Facebook Event | More About Kristy Hagerman

Mark Godfrey Quartet

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Mark Godfrey (bass), Allison Au (saxophone), Chris Pruden (piano), Nick Fraser (drums)

Mark Godfrey
Raised in rural Southwestern Ontario, Mark Godfrey is a graduate of the University of Toronto's Jazz Performance Program. After moving to Toronto in 2006 he began studying Canadian bassists: Jim Vivian, Rich Brown and Dave Young. A participant in the 2010 Banff Centre for the Arts Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music, Mark regularly works with a variety of Toronto-based ensembles in addition to his own group, Pram Trio. These include: Roarshaq, Ian Sinclair's "A Series of Tubes,", the Teri Parker Group, the Mackenzie Longpre Septet, the Toronto Jazz Orchestra the the Mike Butlin Band and the Yukon-based rock group Speed Control among others.

In addition to working as a freelance musician Mark also works as an educator. He currently teaches privately throughout the GTA and holds the bass instructor position at Mayfield Secondary School for the Arts in Brampton.

More About Mark Godfrey

Monday, February 27th

Monday, February 27th


Ben Duff Quartet

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Ewen Farncombe (piano), Matt Lagan (saxophone), Ben Duff (bass), Petros Anagnostakos (drums)

Wayne Neon hosts Open Stage Mondays

Free Times Café (320 College Street)
Wayne Neon (saxophone/flute)

Signup at 7pm.

Every Monday, all artists are welcomed to sign up and share their songs, poetry, prose or comedy act on Toronto's longest-running open stage; local artists, or those visiting Toronto are encouraged to attend. Here are some of the artists who started their careers at the Free Times open stage: Jason Fowler, Jory Nash, Kat Goldman, Ron Sexsmith, Emm Gryner, Laura Fernandez, Sarah Slean, Noah Zacharin, The Lemon Bucket Orkestra.

More About Wayne Neon

Graeme Stephen's Projector Trio (Scotland)

The Emmet Ray (924 College Street)
Graeme Stephen (guitar), Daniel Fortin (bass), Chris Wallace (drums)

Graeme Stephen
Graeme Stephen was born in Aberdeen, Scotland.Now residing in Edinburgh, he performs with numerous projects playing a wide array of styles from free Improvisation to folk music.

Having recorded with various groups Graeme released his first CD with his trio in 2006. This recording was funded with a grant from the Scottish Arts Council and features New York based musician Eivind Opsvik on bass and London based drummer Stuart Ritchie.

Graeme leads a sextet of Violin, Soprano Sax, Alto Sax, Guitar, Double bass and drums. This group was formed early 2005 perfoming throughout Scotland including concerts at Aberdeen Jazz Festival, Edinburgh Jazz Festival, Celidh Culture and featured broadcasts on Radio Scotland. Graemes compositions for this group take influence from the different styles of players involved, which include folk, jazz and classical disciplines.

Facebook Event | More About Graeme Stephen