Home Feature Don Ross is touring Ontario (and Montreal) with Japanese up-and-comer Kent Nishimura

Don Ross is touring Ontario (and Montreal) with Japanese up-and-comer Kent Nishimura


Get ready for a crash course in the miracles two hands can accomplish. Fingerstyle guitar legend Don Ross is embarking on a tour of Ontario and Quebec that will have jaws dropping at the sounds one man can make when there’s nothing but strings and frets to come between him and his vision.

Twelve concerts across the provinces will bring audiences into direct orbit with Don’s almost supernatural skills, which made him the first two-time winner of the prestigious U.S. National Fingerpick Guitar Championship. In his 36 years as a recording artist and performer, he’s become widely recognized as one of the all-time greats in his field, possessing an uncanny ability to slap out percussive backbeats while speeding through a dizzying cascade of melodic runs. Styles from new age to Americana to jazz to pop to folk all fall effortlessly into the repertoire he’s performed on stages across the globe—on his way to picking up the Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts, administered by the Canada Council for the Arts.

Don will be playing material from his most recent album, 2023’s Water, which yielded the singles “Seabright” and “Three Views of a Secret” (a rendition of the Jaco Pastorius classic). His 17th solo release—not counting numerous collaborations with other artists—Water was inspired by the aquatic vistas that surround Don’s home in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. The 10-song collection is a thoroughly modern version of a Don Ross album, blending solo guitar music with instrumental and vocal touches from pedigreed collaborators like Bruce Cockburn, Brooke Miller, Sean Hall, Atlantic String Machine and The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra.

The opening act on the new tour is Kent Nishimura, the 21-year-old Japanese fingerstyle prodigy who cites Don as a major influence. The youngest Grand Champion in the history of Japan’s Annual Fingerpicking Day competition, Kent has released five albums since 2015. He’s touring behind his most recent collection, My Favorite Songs Vol. 2, which includes renditions of Chicago’s “25 or 6 to 4,” George Michael’s “Careless Whisper” and Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes.”

See Don Ross Live:

  • April 11 – Bridgeport Fine Art Gallery, Kitchener, ON
  • April 12 – Aeolian Hall, London, ON
  • April 13 – Hugh’s Room Live, Toronto, ON
  • April 14 – La Sala Rossa, Montreal, QC
  • April 16 – Northumberland Fine Foods, Brighton, ON
  • April 18 – Music on Melrose, Ottawa, ON
  • April 19 – Anglican Church of the Ascension, Port Perry, ON
  • April 20 – The Music Room, Haliburton, ON


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