2019 Overview

6th Annual
June 20 – 23, 2019
The Rock on Locke
— Church of St. John the Evangelist
(320 Charlton Ave. W., Hamilton – Ticketed Events)
+ Whitehern House & Garden
(41 Jackson St. W., Hamilton – Free/ By Donation Event)

Passes: $125 regular (up to $190 value) OR
$100 (up to $170 value) student, senior, artworker, underwaged

[for all 6 x (3-4 bills each) events]


Advance Tickets: (Thursday-Saturday, each 4-bill event) $25
(Sunday, each 3-bill event) $20




Door Tickets: (Thursday-Saturday each event) $35 reg., $30 disc.
(Sunday each event) $25

Indigenous Mind (Hamid Drake, Jason Adasiewicz, Joshua Abrams)
Don Byron photo by Dave Welland

2019 SOMETHING ELSE! Festival features a rare appearance from Czech virtuoso violinist/ vocalist Iva Bittová. In addition to dynamic solo performances, she’ll also join revered drummer Hamid Drake to reinvigorate their storied duet synergy. Drake’s trio Indigenous Mind with Joshua Abrams (Town and Country, Natural Information Society) and Jason Adasiewicz (Sun Rooms, Living by Lanterns) filters the legacies of Alice Coltrane and Pharaoh Sanders through three of Chicago’s most vibrant musical imaginations. Genre-busting clarinet giant Don Byron will be featured alone and in ensemble contexts this year, promising fresh, divergent perspectives on jazz you will not want to miss.

William Hooker

William Hooker shares Hamid Drake’s legendary status behind the kit and offers both solo and festival- exclusive ensemble engagements. Harris Eisenstadt visits from NYC to lead a quartet and big band (assembled expressly for Something Else!) through some of his Poschiavo 50 compositions. Polish pianist Joanna Duda brings her signature mixture of angularity and improvisatory perspicacity with an electronics-augmented solo show, while eclectic American soprano sax specialist Sam Newsome showcases his enviable vocabulary in solo and curated group-improv settings.

Joanna Duda photo by Patrycja Płanik

Something Else’s exciting Canadian offerings illustrate the same deep commitment to exploratory sonics. Combining leading Québecois artists Jason Sharp (bass saxophone), Susanna Hood (voice/ movement), with French guests Fredéric B Briet (double bass) and Christophe Rocher (clarinets), No Silenz posits a polymorphous aural universe spanning low-end instrumental heft to abstract theatrics. The enigmatic songcraft of Picastro sits adjacent to Brodie West‘s buoyant, polyrhythmic octet Eucalyptus. Glen Hall leads the cheekily named EAR-CAM on winds and electronics alongside an all-star cast of Christine Duncan (voice), Tomasz Krakowiak (percussion) and John Oswald (alto saxophone).

Prodigious Québec saxophonist Yves Charuest appears in solo and ensemble configurations, while the multi-dimensional Géraldine Eguiluz brings her eponymous trio and breaks new collaborative ground in encounters employing her voice, and numerous instruments. The subtly explosive Toronto trio of pianist Bill Gilliam, drummer Ambrose Pottie, and saxophonist Kayla Milmine is also slated to perform, reprising appearances at last year’s Toronto Jazz Festival and Zula’s own concert season. Hamilton’s own Sourpussy folds perverse humour and poignancy into immersive, volatile performances. Connor Bennett (of Eschaton and Haolin Munk infamy) offers solo sax project

Earth Wind & Choir

Tidal Pool alongside wayward local choristers Earth, Wind and Choir.  As scheduling solidifies, more details and exciting combinations will be announced!

Amidst these diverse timbres and textures, the festival fnds cohesion in community. Hamilton has long been home to multiple rich and fiercely independent artistic communities. Paralleling Something Else’s growth, recent years have seen Hamilton’s various artistic factions coalescing into numerous entities visible from well outside city limits. In addition to its integration into the local ecosystem, the festival’s ambitious, idiosyncratic blend of new and returning artists, from a spectrum of locales both near and far-fung, situate it as an essential and unusual contribution to the broader community of radical music-making.

Since its inception, Something Else! has hosted such luminaries as : Mary Margaret O’Hara, William Parker, Han Bennink, Michael Snow, Ken Vandermark, Gordon Grdina, Tatsuya Nakatani, Ingrid Laubrock, Susan Alcorn, Satoko Fuiji, Eugene Chadbourne, Nicole Mitchell, Joe McPhee, Tashi Dorji…

Harnessing the emergent energy of a new festival, the sheer power of intimate venues, artistic director Cem Zafir’s longstanding investment in this music, and ZULA PRESENTS‘ diverse collective insights, Something Else! delivers a distinctive experience that lives up to its name.

$125 regular (up to $190 value) OR $100 students, seniors, under-waged for all 6 ticketed events at 3-4 bills each, a total of 26 sets (4 free) over the weekend 




No one will be refused entry for genuine lack of funds


Ticketed Events Venue

(all events except Friday afternoon Free/PWYC)

The Rock on Locke
Church of St. John the Evangelist
320 Charlton Ave. W., Hamilton


FREE/PWYC Event Venue

Whitehern House & Garden
41 Jackson St. W., Hamilton

Cem Zafir

Program and poster graphic design by