First and Third Sunday of every month 2pm-5pm

Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren

Join us for a little taste of Cape Breton in the heart of the Nation's Capital!

Photo by Lois Siegel

East Coast Kitchen Party

About the Music

Facebook Group

The aim of Ottawa Cape Breton Session is to share the music and culture of Cape Breton Island with the National Capital area. The Sunday Pub sessions are open to anyone who enjoys the music. Sessions are primarily for the musicians to share the experience of traditional music, are open to anyone who can play the common tunes of the tradition, and are great way to learn new tunes and meet new people. Want to join in? You can! To get familiar with the Cape Breton repertoire we have practice sessions every other Sunday from 2-5pm at various locations. If you already know some of the tunes join in the first and third Sunday of each month at the Royal Oak Pub (318 Bank St. at MacLaren.) Sessions are led by Aylene her know if you have some tunes you'd like to share.





CBFA Newsletter

Cape Breton Fiddler's Association Website

CBFA Registration Form

Sep 10—CIG Ceilidh and Dance: 7pm-9pm Music and dancing with Colin Grant, Chrissy Crowley and Darren McMullen. All ages welcome. Tickets at the door $5.  Thanks to the Bluesfest School of Music and Art for making this wonderful opportunity available! For more information: Alan at or 819-319-3518. Location: 
Festival House (formerly Westboro United Church) at 450 Churchill Ave. N. Note that there is a lot of road construction in the area, Churchill is temporarily one-way northbound. It is best to approach Festival House from a side street. Parking on the neighboorhoos streets or in public school lot across the street.  Google Map 

Sep 10-14 —Ottawa Folk Festival Check out these great Cape Breton artists at the 2014 Ottawa Folk Festival:

CIG ("Ko-ig". Gaelic for '5') is one of Cape Breton’s most captivating young bands. They're an exciting ensemble consisting of five solo acts. Originally coming together for a promotional tour for the Celtic Colours Festival, the formation proved to be something special, and the group decided to continue to tour together as a band. Proving to be a serious force to be reckoned with in the traditional music scene with their driving tunes, haunting songs and infectious energy, Cig is a treat for the ears of every audience they meet. COIG are: Fiddlers Chrissy Crowley, Rachel Davis and Colin Grant; multi-instrumentalist Darren McMullen; and Jason Roach on piano.

Chrissy Crowley is a Canadian fiddler with a firm foundation in the traditional music of Cape Breton. She has performed throughout Canada, the United States, the UK, as well as Ireland, France, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic, captivating audiences with a talent that belies her youth. Her music explores a new direction; a path of fearless innovation that has earned Chrissy a 2013 Canadian Folk Music Award, a Top 20 Under 20 in Canada award, and numerous East Coast Music Association and Music Nova Scotia nominations.Chrissy’s new release is titled “Last Night’s Fun.” 

Sprag Session - Lingering somewhere amidst the rich, soulful roots of traditional Cape Breton music and the grooves of a thousand branches of rock and funk, Sprag Session has developed a unique style and repertoire of music with a dynamic and thoughtful mingling of beats and melodies from an extensive host of musical influences. Far from the awkward malaise of mohawked bagpipers and kilted punks, Sprag Session has created a kind of Celtic fusion that is as much Bla Fleck and the Flecktones and Frank Zappa as it is Ashley MacIsaac.

September 13 —CANCELLED -Concert and Dance: 7:30pm-10:30pm - Cape Breton fiddler and stepdancer, Allie Mombourquette from L'Ardoise, will be performing in Hudson, Quebec on Saturday, September 13th from 7:30 pm to 10:30 pm at the Hudson Community Centre on Main Road (next to the Hudson Legion).  NOTE THAT THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELLED DUE TO UNFORSEEN CIRCUMSTANCES

Sep 14 —House Session: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Volunteers needed!

Sep 21—Pub Session: 2pm-5pm Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren. 

Sep 28 —House Session: Volunteers needed!

Sep 28 —Reel Slooow Jam: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Gary Palmer at 138 Chimo Dr. Kanata. Queensway 417 to Kanata, exit at Castlefrank on left at the light. Turn left on Katimavik. Turn right on Chimo, 2nd driveway on the left. Park in driveway or next door at 140 Chimo. Google Map  Phone: 613-591-0919  BYOB   The Reel Slooow Jam is aimed at those who are new to playing fiddle (or piano or guitar) and who would like to learn Cape Breton tunes. We'll focus on tunes such as airs and waltzes, as well as playing jigs and reels from the session repertoire but at a slower learning pace with more time for those who don't read music to learn by ear.  Check the Tunes page for the list of tunes often played at the slow jam. If the weather is nice we'll play outside on the deck.

Oct 5—Pub Session: 2pm-5pm Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren. 

Oct 12—House Session: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Volunteers needed!

Oct 18—Special Event: All Day Ceilidh and Boiled Dinner RCMP Campsite, Long Island Locks, Manotick, ON.Google Map A full day of Cape Breton activity! Ceilidh in the evening with Ernie Fraser and Friends. Bring your dancing shoes for some square sets and cards and crib boards. BYOB, plastic cups available or bring your own crystal stemware if you prefer! Volunteers needed to help with preparing the supper, and cleaning up afterwards. The facility is open all afternoon and evening so come down with your family anytime and enjoy the lovely riverside setting with lots of outdoor playspace. Contact Brent MacDonald to reserve your supper, to volunteer or for more information.

Oct 19—Pub Session: 2pm-5pm Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren. 

Oct 26—House Session: 2pm-5pm  Hosted by Beth MacGillivray at 7661 Settlers Way, south of North Gower and north of Kemptville. Google Map Call 613-258-0153 if you get lost on the way. BYOB

Nov 2—Pub Session: 2pm-5pm Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren. 

Nov 9 —House Session: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Volunteers needed!

Nov 9 —Reel Slooow Jam: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Helen Barkley at 1143 Agincourt Road, Ottawa. 613-723-0262. Queensway to Maitland southbound, right on Agincourt Rd.  Please RSVP by email or phone.

Nov 14—House Concert: Kenneth and Calum MacKenzie (fiddle, pipes and piano) Hosted by Graham and Suzanne at145 Central Park Drive, Ottawa $20 -- Seating is limited – All proceeds go directly to the artists. To reserve your seats, email Graham at Light refreshment will be available during intermission BYOB.

Nov 15—Fiddle, Piano and Piping Workshops: Details TBA

Nov 15
 Ceilidh and Square Dance: 7:30pm  Kenneth and Calum MacKenzie of Mabou. Montgomery Legion Hall 330 Kent St. at MacLaren.  Square set instruction 7:30pm, dancing and other entertainment 8pm to midnight. Join us for a wonderful evening of Cape Breton fun with the Cape Breton Club of Ottawa. Tickets will go on sale mid-October $10 advance or $15 at the door. Available at the Ottawa Folklore Centre, from Brent MacDonald 613-233-3047 or Beth MacGillivray or at any Sunday pub or house session. Also available online via Interac email money transfer to

Nov 16—Pub Session: 2pm-5pm Royal Oak Pub 318 Bank St. at MacLaren. 

Nov 23 —House Session: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Volunteers needed!

Nov 30—House Session: 2pm-5pm - Hosted by Volunteers needed!

How to Host a House Session
All you need is a space big enough to put 6-8 fiddlers in, some chairs without arms, and a willingness to listen to the same tune played over and over again as we practice. If you have a piano let us know, otherwise we'll bring our own keyboard. We can also bring folding chairs. Sessions are BYOB but usually the hosts provide some non-alcoholic beverages and a little something for snack time. Interested? Talk to Aylene or Beth or send an email to


The Gaelic Hour Music from the Glen

K-LEE Radio, like it's name suggests, plays the sort of music you'd hear in the kitchen. The vast majority of the artists are Cape Bretoners—about the only place on the Internet where one can find nearly non-stop mostly traditional music from Cape Breton. More about it here. Listen to it at

MISSING HOME? There are several Cape Breton radio stations that stream to the Internet so you can listen just as if you were home! "The Giant" FM (Sydney River); "The Hawk" (Port Hawkesbury); "Max FM" (Sydney); CJCB 1270AM; "X-FM" (Antigonish and Inverness); "The Eagle" (Sydney) as well as good ole' CBC radio all broadcast over the Internet so you can stay in touch wherever you are. Check HERE for a listing of all 
available stations.

CBCO Membership Form

Join the Club!

Click below for the best source of musical information in Cape Breton. Listings for who is playing where and when - an indispensible vacation planner!

Music Cape Breton

Cape Breton Post


iTunes podcast of Nov. 17, 2013 show featuring Cape Breton music


Looking for something more Irish? Everything you need to find Irish music and culture as well as Ottawa Valley and other Celtic music in Ottawa is at

Listen to Irish/Celtic music from Ottawa online at the Gaelic Hour on CHIN 97.9fm-Ottawa

Both sites contain links to various Celtic happenings in the Ottawa area. Irish Music Ottawa also has links to genealogy resources, local music teachers, instrument sales/repair, also links to tune archives.


More Information

Application Form

The Cape Breton Club of Ottawa invites you to make a membership commitment to keep our club vibrant, so that we can enjoy the many aspects of the unique Cape Breton way of life, a home away from home.  Our club is a place to enjoy, share, and promote the best that Cape Breton Island has to offer: lively gatherings; traditional music; down-home food; delightful stories; and friendly people having lots and lots of good times together.    Want to join in the Cape Breton fun? Candidates for new membership may fall into one or more of the following categories: Born on “the home of our hearts” Cape Breton Island; married or (friends with) a Cape Bretoner; or having a burning desire to be a Cape Bretoner  (A Cape Bretoner in “spirit")