Barnstorm 19 to rock rural Finch farm this evening

Members of The Reverb Syndicate are shown during a previous performance at Barnstorm. The surfer-music band returns as one of the Finch festival's featured acts (at 10:30 p.m.) this evening.

Show at Michael ‘tic’ Houston’s place includes The Bush Pilots, The Reverb Syndicate, Slo’ Tom and the Handsome Devils … and more

FINCH — An eclectic mix of top-quality local pop and rock bands are slated to hit the stage at the ‘Odditorium’ in rural North Stormont later this evening.

That’s the affectionate name Michael ‘tic’ Houston has dubbed his 150-year-old barn — a rustic space on Concession Rd. 3-4  transformed annually into a laser-light-enhanced cool concert and party venue on a surrounding farmstead bedecked with plenty of additional curiosities and vibes to experience. It’s a labour of love for the Finch-area resident, who spends months preparing for each edition of Barnstorm — held almost every year over the past two decades.

A long-time CKCU volunteer radio host, the retired Ottawa Police Service Civilian Imaging Services Unit Manager (Forensic Identification, Criminal Investigations Branch) has curated a selection of six bands from Ottawa and surrounding area — including the Bush Pilots and the surf-and-spy-guitar-music virtuosos on The Reverb Syndicate — plus guest DJ Elorious Cain.

Big guitar sound
Michael ‘tic’ Houston poses with a prop that debuted at the Barnstorm venue, his rural backyard off Conc. 3-4 in North Stormont, in 2017. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News


Above, the layout of Houston’s rural property, venue for this evening’s festival.

An important fundraiser for tic’s radio show, the event typically draws a peaceful crowd of about 200 friendly souls — drawn to a place where “city meets country” immersed in a mix of live music and retro visuals. Many of the visiting urbanites camp overnight.

Tickets are still available ($40 each, cash only) at the gate this evening, Sat., Aug. 25.

Gates open at noon, while the barn doors open three hours later.

The first performer, KJ Thomas — fresh off an appearance at Bluesfest this year — takes the The Odditorium stage 5:30 p.m. with her backup band to serve up a blend of blues, country-folk, and rockabilly in a tight tango. See her video for ‘Dandelions,’ below.


Area Resident features CBC Ottawa journalist Doug Hemptead at 6:45 p.m. (video below).

Retired roots-rockers Evil Farm Children are reuniting for one evening only at Barnstorm 19, at 8 p.m. (video below).


 One of Ottawa’s most enduring bands, Bluesfest veterans The Bushpilots, hit the Odditorium stage at 9:15 p.m. (video below).

Once the spy-and-surf instrumentalists with The Reverb syndicate (in video at top of article) complete their wave on the Odditorium stage, Slo’ Tom and the Handsome Devils will make their Odditorium appearance at 11:45 p.m.

Check out a sample of Slo’ Tom and the Handsome Devils in their video ‘No One Waits for Me,’ below.
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