NS Music Awards

Well, wow! Music In Communities is thrilled to announce we won Community Presenter of the Year at the Nova Scotia Music Awards! This acknowledgement from our peers is heart-warming and huge. Enormous thanks to everyone involved over the past two years of our fledgling operation. Almost since the beginning, we have had to try to keep the music alive in our community through Covid. It has been a crazy challenge and also incredibly rewarding to bring people together safely when we needed it the most.

We’re grateful to collaborate with other fantastic community organizations. Thanks to the Deep Roots Music Cooperative, Acadia Performing Arts Series, Wolfville, Kentville and Canning Recreation Departments, the Alexander Society for Inclusive Arts, and Ross Creek Centre for the Arts.

In our efforts to bring music to the margins, we’ve hosted improvising session for folks with learning disabilities; after-school ukulele clubs; outdoor singalongs and pop-up choirs; trans- and queer-friendly sessions; a Black History Month series and more.

Some of the real “THIS IS WHY WE DO THIS” moments have included:

Maisie Gilbert on drum kit with her School of Rock girl-group at the Canning Legion;

Sarah McInnis conducting a masked, socially distanced pop-up choir singing In the Bleak Midwinter in Clock Park in December;

T. Thomason inspiring a trans kid to sing after hormone treatments had altered his voice;

Measha Brueggergosman’s version of Sinner Man at the Church Brewery;

Reuben Gilbert jamming with the local old-timers in the gazebo at the Canning Kitchen Party;

Ken Shorley and Sahara Jane improvising together at the Jam Dances;

And so many other little moments that made me cry, and make it really easy to do this work, because the results are tangible. i keep seeing ways we can do more.

The Music In Communities team is growing all the time so if I miss anyone, my apologies. Here are some of the people who have run our programs, run sound, volunteered at the door, hosted workshops, made posters, filmed us, and helped me keep my head from exploding. Thank you: Sarah McInnis, Peter Williams, Amelia Robitaille, Michael Langiewitz, Laura Billington, Reuben Gilbert, Maisie Gilbert, Bethan Delorme, Matt Delorme, Kimberly Smith, Kathleen Purdy, Phil Dennis, Zakary Miller, Mark Riley, Fisher Akao, Terra Spencer, Rebecca Fairless, Sam Wilson, Jah’Mila, Sarah Levy, Brandon MacGregor, Wendy LaPierre, Donna Lynn Holmes, Ken Shorley, Sahara Jane, Mairi Chaimbeul, Ananda Kavanagh, T. Thomason, Eli Dunlap, Brian Borcherdt, Katy Hopkins, the Dearlies, and all the amazing musicians who have played for us.

xo Kim Barlow, Director


(Photo l-r: Sarah McInnis, Reuben Gilbert, Maisie Gilbert, Kim Barlow, Frieden Gilbert, Terra Spencer) 

Upcoming Events

We respectfully acknowledge that these events take place in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People.

Previous events

Quilting & DJ HBJB

The Old Catholic Church , 2182 Sheffield Rd. (Hwy 358) , Canning

Quilting is opening our Friday session for a Halloween party, Friday Oct 29th. Make the trip to Canning for spooky improvised music with Sahara Jane - sarangi, voice & jaw harp; Kim Barlow - banjo and guitar; Mairi Chaimbeul - harp and Brian Borcherdt - electronics. DJ HBJB aka Brian Borcherdt (Holy F***, Dusted) is gonna play some evil records tooooo. The Old Catholic Church, Canning NS 2182 Sheffield Rd (Hwy 358) Doors 7:30, show at 8pm $15/pwyc at the door masks & proof of vaccination required byo snax/bev

Canning Kitchen Party

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Bruce Spicer Park, Main Street , Canning

Canning Kitchen Party 2021 line-up:

July 10 Morgan Davis + Jenny Lapp

July 17 Terra Spencer + Museum Pieces

July 24 Big Turnips + Kim Lake

July 31 Sam Wilson + Gizelle de Guzman

Aug. 7 Factory Girls + Brian Passmore

Aug. 14 Guy Paul Thibault + The Jungernauts

Aug. 21 Norma MacDonald + Mohammad Sahraei & Friends

Aug. 28 Amy Lounder & Jude Pelley Stringband + Sarah McInnis

Sept. 4 The Gilberts + guests

Rebecca Fairless: Music and Imagery


In this online session, Music Therapist Rebecca Fairless will use a looper pedal to create ambient soundscapes, and guide the participants though a music and imagery meditation. Music can stimulate the mind’s eye in powerful ways. As the music unfolds, participants will be invited to relax and explore mental imagery that arises. Participants can listen with closed eyes, or draw, colour, or write. The session will close with a time for sharing, and a discussion of how we use music in our daily lives to promote calmness, creativity, and well-being. Participants will need to have paper and drawing supplies on hand. They are also encouraged to use headphones, and to find a calm space where they can sit comfortably. 7:30 - 9 pm Atlantic time BY DONATION | please email to get the link! Rebecca Fairless is an accredited Music Therapist, singer-songwriter, and church organist living in Halifax. Using music as a map, she helps clients navigate the pathways of self-expression, empathy, healing, and connection.

Jah'Mila talks: Art Vs Reality


Using her own experiences as a reggae artiste, Jah'Mila will share her views on meaningful creativity. She will use reggae as an example to explore the ways that art impacts reality and, conversely how reality impacts art. Jah'Mila will examine her personal artistry as well as those of others, to analyze various approaches to music and songwriting. Is it self-serving, or done in service of others? How are people impacted by it? Is it an instrument for social awareness, and change? In this workshop, she hope that all present can participate in deep and thought provoking discussions about how creativity influences culture and vice versa. 7:30 - 9pm Atlantic time BY DONATION please email to get the link!

End-of-Life Planning - Legacy Songs


Music Therapist Sarah McInnis and Funeral Director Terra Spencer are wonderful songwriters who have applied their skills in the context of end-of-life. They will be joined in this second workshop by Ian McCartor, a Palliative Care Nurse and Californian-based songwriter, to share & discuss the concept of legacy songs. Suggested donation $15. To register, email; Zoom link will be sent on the morning of the event.

End-of-Life Planning - Things to Know


Join Sarah McInnis and Terra Spencer in an introductory workshop on planning for the end stages of life. Topics will include Funeral Planning and preparing a Personal Directive. Folks at any age and stage of life are encouraged to attend. Suggested donation $15. To register, email; Zoom link will be sent on the morning of the event.

CANCELLED - Speed of Mercy Celebration

Main Street Station Ballroom, 325 Main Street, Kentville

We are sad to say we've had to cancel this event in light of the recent rise in Covid cases and exposures in this area. We'll try to reschedule when it's safe to do so. Stay in touch!

The Speed of Mercy captures the unbearable cost of childhood betrayal and what happens when history is suppressed, our past is forgotten — yet finding the truth can change the future. Christy Ann Conlin rips into the myths and stereotypes about older women and those on the edge of conventional society to reveal the timeless gift of mercy in this feminist tour de force.

Come celebrate this exciting new work with us in a night of mystical story-telling and music woven by powerful women with ties to the sea and song and ancient ways. Proceeds go to Music In Communities' End of Life Music Therapy Programs. Christy Ann will read from her book, between songs performed by Isle of Skye harpist Mairi Chaimbeul, Gothic Nova Scotian songwriter Terra Spencer, Kim Barlow on banjo and the Bombadils on harmonies, fiddle and mandolin. Christy Ann will share a short literary conversation with Mike Butler followed by book-signing and more music. Books will be available for purchase care of Bookmark. There will be amazing door prizes, including a "reader's delight box".

Your ticket purchase includes a delicious High Tea served by the Maritime Express kitchen, readings and Q&A, and great music. $40/person + HST, purchased by table. A portion of proceeds support Music In Communities' End of Life Music Therapy Programs.

Literary Magic & Music 7:00PM Terra Spencer & the Bombadils 8:00 - 9:00PM

$40 per person, but must be purchased by the table


The old Catholic Church , 9128 Sheffield Road (Hwy 358) , Canning

Improvising collaborators Sahara Jane, Brian Borcherdt, Kim Barlow and Mairi Chaimbeul open their jam space again, for deep-listening, meditation, napping, snacking and visiting. $15 suggested donation or pwyc, at the door.

Easter Monday with Measha - Livestream

Measha Brueggergosman and her incredible band will perform live at The Ballroom in Kentville, NS, with gospel and hymns to celebrate Easter. Purchase a ticket to the livestream! A portion of proceeds support Music In Communities' programs, including: after-school uke clubs, seniors programs, mentoring new artists, and music-and-movement sessions for the learning disabled.

Easter Monday with Measha - In Person

Main Street Station Ballroom , 325 Main St. , Kentville

Your Easter Monday just got a pep in its step! Powerhouse Canadian singer, Measha Brueggergosman and her incredible band will perform live at The Ballroom in Kentville, NS to bring you a program of gospel and hymns to celebrate Easter. This is not to be missed! Featuring Silvio Pupo on keys, Dave Burton on drums, Larry Bjornson on bass, and Steve Lee on guitar. Also featuring Jah'Mila and Marko Simmonds on vocals! The Ballroom at Main Street Station, 325 Main St. Kentville, NS Easter Monday, April 5, doors at 7pm, concert 7:30, $40. Cider, beer and wine will be available for purchase, served by the great team at Maritime Express Cider Co.

Jam Dance - Improvised Music & Movement

Kentville Recreation Centre , 354 Main St. , Kentville

Music and movement-based improvising, going online. Message to register and get the zoom link. Once a month, fun & inclusive. We have room for 9 in-person participants (this number includes support people that are attending with participants!).but you have to pre-register.
To register for either in person or Zoom:
Send an email to

Quilting - Improvised Music Event

The Old Catholic Church, 2182 Sheffield Rd. (Hwy 358, across from Canning Auto), Canning

“Space out, and spaaaace out”. Bring a comfy chair or something to lie on, meditate, do some deep listening, yoga, just enjoy. Limited space so please RSVP: Suggested donation $15/pwyc. Byo snax, drink. Brian Borcherdt on electronics, Mairi Chaimbeul, harp; Kim Barlow banjo & guitar; and Sahara Jane, sarangi, voice & jaw harp - improvising sometimes strange, often dreamy sounds. There will be tables and chairs. Masks required until you are in your socially distanced bubble.

Jah'Mila - Dinner + Concert

The Church Brewing Co., 329 Main Street, Wolfville, NS

Jah’Mila is an up-and-coming performer from Halifax via Jamaica, and also nominated for Emerging Artist at the African Nova Scotian Music Awards. She will be at the Church with her hot reggae band on Sunday, Feb. 28. Jah’Mila has toured as a backup singer for numerous bands including the actual Wailers of Bob Marley fame, and Black Uhuru. Now she is embarking on her own career in the service of spreading a message of love, strength and positivity with great reggae music. Tickets for this show will be available soon at .

Jah'Mila - Art vs Reality Workshop

Al Whittle Theater, 450 Main St, Wolfville

On Feb. 28 in the afternoon before her show at the Church, Jah’Mila will host a workshop at Studio Z in the Al Whittle Theatre. Her workshop is called Art Vs Reality, and was designed for a creative writing class. Anyone is welcome to attend and hear what Jah’Mila has to say about making art and how it can be used for positive change, and the benefits of creating new stories that have the power to alter our reality. Email to register.

Mark Riley & Fisher Akao Workshop

The Old Catholic Church, Hwy 358, Canning

Mark Riley comes to the old Catholic church in Canning, (hwy 358, across from Canning Auto) to talk about the history of gospel music, play a few samples and share a discussion about the songs that are such a formative part of his musical development. His bandmate Fisher Akao will join, and share a bit about the gospel and musical experience from the Solomon islands. Email info@musicincommunities to register. Space is limited!

Gospel & Jazz with Measha Brueggergosman

The Church Brewing Co., 329 Main Street, Wolfville, NS

Music In Communities, in partnership with The Church Brewing Co, is proud to celebrate Black History Month. Join us for an evening of Gospel & Jazz with Measha Brueggergosman backed by Silvio Pupo, Steve Lee and Larry Bjornson. The live show is now SOLD OUT but you can live-stream it via Side Door.



Join us on Friday August 20th for a high-summer night of great music, food and dancing, outdoors at TapRoot Farm. Fabulous funk, soul and R&B by some great Valley musicians, the Mark Riley Project know all the songs you want to dance to.

Babo at TapRoot Farms will have the jerk pans fired up and will be serving Jamaican Jerk on a first come first serve basis prior to the performance. Cash only please.

Doors will open at 7:00 pm, and the music will be from 7:30 - 9:30. Food will be available from 7 pm. This event is happening at TapRoot's Church St. Location - 1736 Church Street, Port Williams. (Not their Canard Street location).

Tickets are $20, food & drink are separate.

There are picnic tables for you and your bubble, or bring a camp chair. 

This event is a collaboration between Music In Communities and Taproot Farm, and part of our ongoing commitment to building community through music and food, and sharing good times together.

Proceeds will go to pay the band and cover costs. Any additional funds raised will be used to run more great music programs.

Canning Kitchen Party 2021

In time with Phase 3 reopening, there will be live music at Bruce Spicer Park every Saturday at 1pm, from July 3rd to September 4th, as well as additional shows at Kingsport Beach and Taproot Farm.

MIC would like to thank this years sponsors for their support! 

We have received overwhelming support from our local businesses this year, and we're thrilled to work together to make our community lively and vibrant. 

Canning Kitchen Party 2021 line-up:

July 10 Morgan Davis + Jenny Lapp 

July 17 Terra Spencer + Museum Pieces
July 24 Big Turnips Kim Lake
July 31 Sam Wilson + Gizelle de Guzman
Aug. 7 Factory Girls + Brian Passmore
Aug. 14 Guy Paul Thibault + The Jungernauts
Aug. 21 Norma MacDonald + Mohammad Sahraei & Friends
Aug. 28 Amy Lounder & Jude Pelley Stringband + Sarah McInnis

Sept. 4 The Gilberts + guests

Kingsport kitchen party

Last year we had most of our shows at the pavilion at Kingsport Beach. It was a beautiful venue to listen to songs by the seaside, so we just had to go back.

From 1 - 3 pm on high-tide Sunday afternoons, there will be two performers sharing a show at the Kingsport Beach Pavilion

Lunch at the Tides-In Canteen, great local music, and then a swim. A perfect Sunday!

Free or by donation, all ages, social distancing required.

July 11 Kristen Martell + Graham Nicholas

July 25 Nick Maclean + Rebecca Fairless

Aug. 8 Ted Simmons + Paul Lauzon 

Aug. 22 Heather Kelday + Corey Isenor 
Sept. 5 Mike Aubé + Lindsay Misiner

teen music drop-in program!

The Music In Communities Cooperative feels more committed than ever, to making music available and accessible to everyone who can benefit from it. We’re grateful to the Canning, Wolfville and Kentville Recreation Departments for collaborating with us to put these programs into action this summer. 

Here is an incomplete list of programs you or a kid you know can participate in. 

ACTIVITIES in wolfville

  • Ages 8 - 11 Ukulele Club 
    6pm Thursdays July 8 - Aug 26 
  • Trans & Queer-Friendly Youth Music Drop-in (with many thanks to collaborators, the Deep Roots Music Cooperative) Ages 11-18 
    7:30pm Thursdays July 8 - Aug 26 
  • Pop Up Choirs 
    6:30pm Fridays July 23 & Aug 27 

For details, locations and registration, contact info is below: 
Wolfville Rec, 7 Victoria Ave, Wolfville, NS B4P 2H4. Call 902-542-3019 or email

activities IN KENTVILLE

  • All Ages Ukulele Club  
    6pm Tuesdays July 6 - Aug 10 
  • 18+ Ukulele Club 
    10am Wednesdays July 7 - Aug 11 
  • Jam Dances - improvised music and movement for all abilities 
    Saturdays July 10 & Aug 14, 1pm 
  • Big Summer Singalong 
    6:30 Aug 20 

For details, location and registration, contact info is below:
Kentville Rec, 354 Main St, Kentville, NS B4N 1K6.  Call 902-679-2540 or email 


  • Ukuleles at the Canning Rec Day Camp, July 14 & Aug. 6 
  • Community Jam Sessions, all welcome 
    Saturdays July 3 - Sept. 4  at Bruce Spicer Park, around 3pm after the Canning Kitchen Party concerts 

For details, location and registration, contact info is below:
9846 Main St, Canning, NS B0P 1H0. Call 902-582-2033 or email