Paul Weber
<i>Paul Weber</i>

Paul Weber

Listen to "Circus Parade", a song about the days when the circus used to come to town.

Next Show: Friday, October 21st, Red Bird Live, Ode to Gerry Barber CD release

Buy the album!

Inspired by a fire and born during a pandemic, Paul Weber's new album “Ode to Gerry Barber” is full of stuff that doesn't always make it into the history books. This is a heartfelt album about Ottawa area communities, stories past and present. Song subjects range from a famous local bouncer, the collapse of the Heron Road Bridge, the building of the Rideau Canal, Ottawa's first train, homeless people on Murray Street, why Ottawa isn't "Ottawa”, growing up in Vanier/Eastview, the days of the circus parade, the Great Fire of 1870, what it’s like to live in an Ottawa rooming house, and how to mansplain.

Also, if you’re stuck in front of a screen looking for something local to watch, check out Paul’s series of walks through Ottawa, several of which include songs from the new album. Here’s the latest Ottawa walk, In Search of Gerry Barber.

Buy the Album
Some folk have asked why should they buy a CD, especially if they don’t have a CD player. Well one reason is that the CD comes with a 12-page booklet about the songs, not available with the digital version. Also, if you buy the CD you also get a free digital download of the album. Here’s how you can buy the recording:

  • If you want your CD (including a coupon for the digital version) mailed to you, you can purchase one here with PayPal:
    Ode to Gerry Barber Albums
  • Or just send me an email at and I’ll tell you how you can buy it directly from me (best option for the artist) using Interac, cheque, or cash.
  • You can buy the digital CD or individual songs in digital form from Bandcamp. You can find they lyrics for the songs on Bandcamp as well.


  • In December 2021, one of Paul's songs was selected by the City of Ottawa to be part of a City's Soundcloud Playist. Check it out here.
  • In June 2021 Paul’s videos were profiled on the Jane’s Walk web page. Check it out here.
  • In May 2021 one of Paul’s songs was selected by the City of Ottawa from many applicants for their Music on Hold program.
  • In January 2020 the song “Dans un mile carré” won Paul a L'Assemblée de la francophonie de l'Ontario (AFO) award for contributions to Francophone culture by an Anglophone.
  • The song “The Great Fire (of 1870)” has a video that was filmed in the Burnt Lands in Almonte where the fire once raged.
  • The song, "Ode to Gerry Barber" includes a special guest appearance by Gerry Barber Junior saying the words his dad once spoke.

The Story
The album was born by a chance encounter with a book. A few years ago Paul Weber's band broke up and he was looking for a new musical direction. By coincidence he stumbled across a book about the Ottawa valley's “Great Fire of 1870” by Terrence Currie. The book inspired a song that grew into an album. The album is named “Ode to Gerry Barber” because Gerry wanted it that way and we weren't going to argue with him.

Screen Shot 2020-09-06 at 8.15.22 PM
Paul Weber is a Canadian singer, songwriter, guitarist, storyteller and video documentary maker and who has performed across Canada in various incarnations. Paul believes we need to tell our own stories; stories that sometimes don't get told. Paul has been kicking around Ottawa since the early 1970s when his parents fled the U.S. in search of a calmer place to raise kids. Paul has worked sweeping stairs, waiting tables, working in a homeless shelter, trouble-shooting rooming house issues for the City of Ottawa, and for the last decade paying the bills by working for the federal government. He has successfully led, performed in and managed several groups, including Cheza (1991 - 2012) and the Main Street Market Band (2013-2018). He has performed at festivals such as the Montreal Jazz Festival, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Dawson City Music Festival, the Hamilton Festival of Friends, the Ottawa Folk Festival and Toronto's Harbour-front, to name a few.

Paul is also an amateur video maker and he’s been making some short videos about various historical locations in Ottawa.
You can find the series here.
If you're interested in attending a show and want to be notified, either "like" Paul on Facebook or send him an email or subscribe to his mailing list (below under Contact).

Upcoming 2022

  • June 18 - House concert - details to come
  • October 21 - Red Bird, Ode to Gerry Barber, CD Release!

Past Events

  • May 21, Oat Couture, with Lynn Miles and Mark J. Nyvlt
  • May 12, Live on Elgin, with Mark Audet
  • April 21, Moose McGuire's, Paul Weber Trio

  • One Song - One Story - One Video - Summer 2021 - Series of online shows, details here
  • Facebook Live show - The Ottawa Lament, February 20th at 8 PM, details here

  • September 19, Facebook Live launch of album, Ode to Gerry Barber
  • September 19, CKCU interview, Canadian Spaces (at 55 minute mark)
  • August 17, release of Great Fire (of 1870) video
  • February 29, Vimy Brewing Company
  • February 23, Historical Society of Ottawa
  • February 20, AFCO Gala Dinner - Somehow I won an award as an ally of French culture in Ottawa!
  • February 3 - 13, Recording CD at Gallery Studios
  • November 30, Pressed
  • September 21, Moose McGuire’s, Live on CKCU
  • Saturday, October 5, House Concert
  • June 23, Britannia Coffeehouse
  • Vanier Performance (private)
  • May 11, House Concert with Graven
  • April 13, Co-hosting Canadian Spaces on CKCU
  • April 13, The Great Canadian Song Along
  • April 13, Benefit show
  • February 23, House Concert, JL Productions
  • January 26, Opening act for From Away house concert

  • December 8, Christmas House concert with Slo Tom
  • October 20, Moose McGuire’s, Tune’s Afternoon
  • October 20, Pressed
  • September 27, United Way Fundraiser
  • September 22, Benefit for ALSO Adult Literacy
  • September 22, Main Street Farmer’s Market
  • August 6, Colonel By Day, Bytown Museum
  • May 22, House Concert
Interview on CKCU The Guest List - Joe Reilley and Paul talk about the songs, where they came from and why they are in the order they are!

Interview on CKCU Wednesday Special Blend - A chat with Tic about finishing a CD during COVID, the songs, the people, the communities.

Interview on CKCU Canadian Spaces - A chat with the human dynamo Chris White about Ode to Gerry Barber and its inspirations.

Singer-storyteller’s new album paints a picture of Ottawa, then and now - Ottawa Life Magazine, Natasha Bulowski, September 2020
“As we find ourselves in the grips of a pandemic, perhaps there’s no better time to hear raw, local stories to rekindle a sense of community and shared experiences.”

Musician marks Great Fire Anniversary - West Carleton Online, Jake Davies, September 2020
“I find to bring these stories to life, you have to connect on an emotional level,” Weber said. “There are still some old houses with beams in them that have burn marks. We have our own stories here in the Ottawa area and I think we don’t need to import ones from abroad.”

Perspectives Vanier - March 2020
”Paul Weber et sa chanson « Dans un mille carré » inspirée de plusieurs conversations avec Paul Crête et Jean Ouellet a remporté le Laurier allié de la francophonie de l’année. Lors de l’acceptation de son prix, il s’est excla-mé « Vive Vanier libre! ».

Drummond Street Cohousing Concert A Hit - Ottawa Mainstreeter, Daniel Miranda, Winter 2019
“Paul Weber shared his exciting new project entitled, “Ode to Gerry Barber” This collection, written by Weber, chronicles stories inspired by both historical events from Ottawa’s past and Weber’s personal memories of our government town.

Songs in the Key of "O": Musician Paul Weber finds in Muse in Local History - Ottawa Citizen - Bruce Deachman, June 29, 2018
“I wrote this song about Gerry Barber, this bouncer at the Chaudière Club in the ’70s and ’80s, and the reaction was overwhelming. The stories I heard from people and the emails I was getting — from people in the Northwest Territories, even — and people sharing the video everywhere. And I started noticing that it was being shared by people with the last name of Barber, and it turned out they were all Barber family members — descendants or siblings of Gerry Barber, and I’ve had several conversations with his son, his daughter, other cousins, grandkids. That meant a lot to me, to get that kind of reaction. It was really touching."

Local History Gets Musical with Paul Weber's Ottawa Song Project - Ottawa Life - Andre Gagne, January 16, 2018
"With that stronger want to tell stories through his lyrics in mind, he’s embarked on what he’s called The Ottawa Song Project. While many musicians may want to chase their dreams in other pastures, Weber has been content digging in his roots where he was first planted. Ottawa, he has discovered, has many tales to tell. "

Great Fire (of 1870) - In 1870 a giant fire ravaged the Ottawa Valley destroying much of the land and leaving thousands homeless. This is a song about that time.

Ode to Gerry Barber - This video is an ode to the famous bouncer Gerry Barber, who ruled the door at the Chaudiere Club (the "Chaud"), in Aylmer, Quebec, for many years. (

The Streets of Montreal 
- This song is a travelogue tribute to Leonard Cohen, following him through the streets of Montreal; his haunts, his songs, his history.

For more videos, check out my YouTube Channel.

You can reach Paul at, or via Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, or Instagram