The weekend short list: Soothing sights and sounds for the art lover's soul

1 / 2
The weekend short list: Soothing sights and sounds for the art lover's soul

If you're feeling a bit green around the gills after St. Patrick's Day, the weekend ahead is like a soothing day-after brunch for the art lover's soul. On the menu: visual art from some of the biggest names in Canadian music, contemplative sounds from Ottawa's Muslim community and an acoustic performance at a cozy record store.

The art of music

When Juno Award-winning musicians Sarah McLachlan, Buffy Sainte-Marie and Chantal Kreviazuk aren't on stage, chances are they're turning their talents to canvas and paper.

Trading their musical instruments for paintbrushes, pencils and cameras not only allows them to explore new facets of their creativity, it also provides a reprieve from the demands of the music business.

Art is Art, a new exhibition at the Ottawa Art Gallery Annex, features a broad range of visual work from abstract to fantasy to photography, by a range of Canadian musicians including Leonard Cohen,  Serena Ryder and Kevin Drew of Toronto indie collective Broken Social Scene.

Art is Art was commissioned by the Juno Awards.

Where: OAG Annex at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Ave. W.

When:  Runs until April 16.

Cost: Free.

Songs of Muslim women

Songwriter Audrey Saparno sings about growing up Muslim in Ottawa. She's one of the organizers of Songs of Muslim Women, a showcase for female performers looking to share their culture, stories and faith with a wider audience through music.  

"There are people I knew, people from our culture who weren't really represented in our Canadian music landscape," said Saparno.

She recalls hearing one concert goer say they'd never seen a Muslim woman play guitar.

"I think it was nice for them to see that, because it's nice to share something beautiful with people." said Saparno.

Expect traditional Arabic instruments and rhythms as well as contemporary folk, a cappella harmonies and spoken word performances.

Where:  Centrepointe Studio Theatre, 101 Centrepointe Dr.

When: Saturday, March 18, 8 p.m.

Cost: Tickets are $12 and can be purchased here.

Deep in the groove

With its stacks upon stacks of new and used records, The Record Centre is a vinyl lovers paradise. But the little shop in Hintonburg is also a major booster of the local music scene.

Over the past four years, The Record Centre has hosted more than 200 concerts, ranging from jazz to indie pop to folk to rock. The atmosphere is cozy, with the audience pulling up available stools or standing among the rows of records.

Cape Breton fiddle and pipe duo Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald stop in for a casual concert this Sunday afternoon.

Where: The Record Centre, 1099 Wellington St. W.

When: Sunday from 2 p.m to 3 p.m.

Cost:  Admission is free, but a top hat is passed around to help pay the musicians for the gig.​