Attn: serious music fans!  Do not miss this show.


Doug Paisley, live at The Townhouse

Saturday, August 27, 9pm.

Tickets are $15 in advance, and on sale now. Drop by to pick yours up now, or call 863-2248 to pay over the phone.


The remarkable and much revered Canadian songwriter Doug Paisley will be playing a very special show on Saturday, August 27, 9pm.

His last few albums – beautiful, understated, and somehow instantly familiar – have garnered stellar reviews from Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, Mojo, Spin, Uncut, & The Globe & Mail. He’s toured & recorded with his friend Will Oldham (aka Bonnie Prince Billy), and recent albums have appearances from Garth Hudson (The Band) Mary Margaret O’Hara, Feist, Jennifer Castle & Simone Schmidt (Fiver, $100). We’re incredibly lucky that Paisley has a connection to our small town and will be performing at The Townhouse for a second time this August.

For more information and links to recordings, videos, etc. see:
Doug Paisley at No Quarter Records

Tickets are on sale now, $15 at The Townhouse. Please drop by or call 902-863-2248 to buy yours now. There is a good chance the show will sell out. Don’t be disappointed by your own procrastination.

Facebook event here : Doug Paisley at The Townhouse 


“An anti-star is born.” – Mojo Magazine …read on


“one of 2010’s best singer-songwriter albums” – Rolling Stone …read on


“…a quiet wonder” – The New Yorker …read on


American Songwriter interview  …read on



Happy Birthday to us (and Canada)!



We’re so excited to say we’re celebrating our 4th birthday this coming weekend!

Hard to believe, but Terry and I first opened The Townhouse doors 4 years ago, the first week of July, 2012. We opened it because we wanted a place to enjoy local food, craft beer and a cozy pub atmosphere like you might find in the UK or Ireland. We did it with the help of this very community – through the SUDS Club (a really cool Community Supported Restaurant funding model), community lenders, and the local credit union. The following year we launched the Upstairs brewery – the smallest commercial brewery in NS, and the only one making exclusively cask conditioned ales. The business has grown to be much bigger than we ever anticipated, we can’t believe we now have 24 awesome employees! And we plan to continue to grow – we hope to expand the brewery and our cooking/prep space in the fall in the hopes of eventually opening for lunches and adding additional taps of Terry’s ales.

We want to thank all of you for being part of this young business – as SUDS Club members, as regulars, as suppliers, as entertainers, our family and friends – you have all contributed and made it a better place through those contributions. And in supporting us, you’ve also been supporting over 30 other small, independent Nova Scotian businesses – breweries, farmers, fishers, butchers, including:
Vacheresse Meats (Antigonish), Knoydart Farms organic cheeses (Antigonish), Platinum Seafoods (Antigonish), Seabright Gardens (Antigonish), MacLennan’s Glen (Antigonish), Bethany Market Gardens (Antigonish), Quinn Farms (Antigonish), Calvin Venedam (Antigonish), Casey VanDeSande (Antigonish), Our Food Store (Antigonish), Havre Boucher Oysters (Antigonish), Cornect Family Farms honey (Antigonish), Haveracre’s maple syrup (Antigonish), Wild & Blue Farms blue berries (Antigonish), Ebbett’s Meadow Brook Meat Market (Tatamagouche), The Pork Shop (Westville), Sam’s Point Mabou Oysters (Mabou), Dave Tellum (pork farmer, Antigonish), Advocate Harbour Seafood, Sustainable Blue Seafood, Fisherman’s Market (Halifax), Uncle Leo’s Brewery (Lyon’s Brook), Granite Brewery, Propeller, Garrison (all Halifax), Big Spruce (Nyanza), Boxing Rock (Shelburne), Breton Brewing (Sydney), Jost Vineyards (now Devonian Coast, Malagash), Shipbuilder’s Cider (Lunenburg), Stutz Cider (Annapolis Valley), Bulwark Cider (Annapolis Valley), Bishops Cellar (Halifax), and more!  

So, as a thank you to all of you, we invite you to join us to celebrate this weekend – how else – but with local food and craft beer!


Canada Day – we will be open regular hours!

Happy Hour all night long!

Come check out our new summer menu (on your way down to see the fireworks, or pop in afterwards for a few celebratory cold ones.


4-6 PM

– BREWERY TOURS – come check out Terry’s Tiny Brewery on brew day!

– ‘Appy Hour! Oyster Bar and Stout & Tidal Bay Sampling

Our Chef Jacob Buckley will be shucking away at our first ever oyster bar! Oysters & stout are a classic pairing – come try a variety of delicious, fresh NS oysters and wash them down with one of 3 great NS stouts – Terry’s Dry Irish Stout, Granite Brewery Keefe’s Irish Stout, and the brand new brewery Sobre Island’s Oyster Stout! Get 3 oysters on the half shell, 3 stout samples, 1 pint of stout of your choice for only $13!

For those of you who prefer wine, we’ll also be sampling a new classic oyster pairing – 3 examples of NS Tidal Bay wines. Tidal Bay is a NS appellation, this means the wines must be made according to particular guidelines, of 100% Nova Scotian grapes & are judged before receiving the designation. These wines are designed to showcase the very best of Nova Scotia  – bright, crisp green fruit, lively acidity & minerality – and to pair with NS seafood. Try 3 oysters, 3 samples of Tidal Bay, and 1 glass of the Tidal Bay of your choice for $13.

For those not yet seduced by the slippery oysters, we will also be offering tasty Chinese Pulled Pork Buns, Lani’s Filipino Ceviché, and we’ll be sharing a great big (free) Stout & Ginger birthday cake!

After 6pm

– Happy Hour all night! $5 pints of craft beer and glasses of Tidal Bay! 

– Vinyl Night!

Terry & Rose will be playing records from their own collections all night. Come down and select an album, or better yet, bring on of your own and we’ll play it for you!

4-6 PM

Extra Happy Hour – free Birthday cake! Pairs well with stout!

6:30 PM

Irish Traditional Music Session and Sunday Roast

Prime Rib with Yorkshire Pudding!


While you’re here…. great music coming up:


Mary Beth Carty & Gillian Boucher 9pm, $10

Hot off their sold-out European tour of Austria, Switzerland and Italy, Gillian Boucher & Mary Beth Carty are back and ready to ceilidh! Join the virtuoso Cape Breton-Irish-Acadian fiddler and singer-guitarist-accordionist Mary Beth Carty for a high energy evening of tunes and songs!


Ben Miller & Anita MacDonald, 9PM $10

Combining fiery Scottish Border pipes with the Cape Breton fiddle, Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald play music that marries traditional influences from Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island, & the Highlands and Islands of Scotland.


And finally – one more note:

Our Food Store – Season Launch!

Online Local Food Grocery Store/Community CSA

fresh-food-bag-subscript-01-250x230It is my great pleasure to invite you all to participate in a really exciting local food project that I have been part for the past several years. It helps you access great local produce, meats, cheeses, & more and directly supports local producers!

Our Food Store opens for orders on June 30th and has new purchasing options available this year! The first bag of local produce will be delivered to our customers on July 6th! You can buy a subscription for the season, buy store credit or order a bag weekly! We are working with more producers than ever before and have a great season planned to help our customers purchase local fresh food! Visit our website at

Thanks again to everyone who has supported us through these first 4 years!

– Rose & Terry

Summer Menu launch, retro rock ‘n roll with Lew Phillips!


Summer Menu Launches Saturday!

Summer is officially here – the patio is open, Pimm’ #1 Cup is back, and tonight, Friday, is the last night for some of our winter menu favourites – get your fix of Fisherman’s Pie, Bangers & Mash, and the Roasted Squash salad, because tomorrow we launch the Summer Menu! You can look forward to some brand new winners – a Cribbon’s Point Lobster Roll (while the season lasts), a Cheeseburger with bacon jam, Grilled Halibut Niçoise, and some lighter faves from past seasons – Lani’s Filipino Ceviché, Bacon wrapped scallops, and the catch of the day.


Live Music: Lew Phillips (Montreal, QC)
60s-inspired Rock ‘n Roll
Tuesday, June 28, 9pm, $10 at door

Sorry -this gig has been postponed – look for Lew in September!

We’re really excited to have Quebequois singer/songwriter Lew Phillips and his band come to town Tuesday, June 28. Lew plays retro inspired pop-rock in the vein of Buddy Holly or Frankie Valli. Fans of nostalgic charmer Jonathan Richman or the rockabilly revival will get a kick out of Lew and his crew. It’s the perfect show to kick off the summer! Show starts at 9pm, $10 at the door.

Check out his music here.

Happy Birthday to us!
Don’t forget! The Townhouse turns 4 years old next weekend! We’ll be hosting multiple celebrations, including an oyster bar and drink and dinner specials so stay tuned for details!



JUNE: Live music, open Mondays, SUDS Club update

Kim & Veda1. ALERT: EXCELLENT SHOW TONIGHT! We have some SUPER-HIGH CALIBRE  musicians coming through town tonight (JUNE 6)! KIM BARLOW & VEDA HILLE  – don’t miss these 2 Canadian folk legends, playing a double bill at The Townhouse tonight! 8pm start time, $10 at the door!


AL TUCK – Tuesday, June 14, 9pm, $10 at the door. One of our very favourite songwriters of all time, the quixotic PEI troubadour is in town for his annual visit. Come see why so many Canadian musicians consider him an unsung hero!
“I feel like we have our own living legend. And he’s alive, he’s out on tour… everyone in their right mind should just go sit and listen. He weaves slow stories from the infinite wide range of things that usually stick in the rest of our throats. We’re lucky he’s got the words and he’s sharing them.” – Feist

THE BOXCAR BOYS – Thursday, June 16, 9pm, $10 at the door. This awesome group are back for a second visit  – 

The Boxcar Boys create their distinct and energetic sound by weaving together a captivating bevy of folk traditions, Dixieland jazz and Klezmer, all performed with a good time New Orleans spirit. Their shows are joyous acoustic celebrations featuring 6 inimitable musicians on clarinet, tuba, fiddle, trombone, accordion and washboard. Their debut album “Don’t Be Blue” placed them on the EJazzNews list of Best Canadian Jazz Bands and their sophomore release “Rye Whiskey” earned them a nomination for Instrumental Group of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards (2013).Their diverse and innovative sound has brought the band to a wide variety of venues and festivals including The WayHome Festival, The Toronto Jazz Festival, The Deep Roots Festival, Blissfest, The Blue Skies Folk Festival and The Ashkenaz Klezmer Festival. 

The band’s third album, Cicada Ball, was recorded in Ken Whiteley’s studio in Toronto, and launched in September 2015 to a sold out crowd at The Burdock Hall. The band supported the album with a successful tour of the East Coast, receiving national airplay on CBC and topping campus radio charts for folk and jazz.  The Boxcar Boys continue to bring their lively show to audiences of all ages across the country and abroad.

3. NOW OPEN MONDAYS / 7 DAYS A WEEK FROM 4PM. Tonight’s excellent show kicks off our summer season, we’re back to 7 days a week, trying out new summer menu items, and getting ready to put the patio up!

4. SUDS CLUB UPDATE: As you may know, The Townhouse got off the ground with the help of a Community Supported Restaurant (CSR) funding model. It has been very successful from our point of view, and we have been asked to speak about this innovative crowd funding model at several conferences and events over the years. The SUDs Club is our name for the group of really fantastic people who came together to help us start The Townhouse, way back in early 2012, by purchasing “subscriptions”  – basically buying their meals in advance to help us come up with the start-up capital to launch the pub. They have been cashing in these subscriptions at a rate of $25/month for the last 4 years. This month, June 2016, marks the last month of SUDS Club subscriptions! However, we are granting an extra 2 months to use up any spare coupons – you can bring in any un-used coupons throughout July & August. Max of 2 or $50 redeemed per visit.

We’re working on plans for a major SUDS Club celebration & Thank You party/Townhouse birthday party at the end of the month/first week of July. And, we are hoping to launch a 2nd SUDS Club campaign this fall – another series of subscription sales to help launch the next phase of The Townhouse – including an expansion of the brewery!!! We already have a few tweaks to the structure in mind and several valuable lessons learned, but we’ll be reaching out to all of you who participated in the first round for your feedback on how you feel the model worked for you.  Thank you, and stay tuned!

POP-UP SHOP Tuesday, May 24 & MUSEUM PIECES, Saturday, May 28

Come see Carin off!

H&C Tickle Trunk Emporium Pop-Up Shop
at The Townhouse
Tuesday, May 24 from 6pm

By now you probably have all heard/noticed that Carin Goldsberry, one of our best loved and longest serving staff members, is no longer serving at The Townhouse. She will still be supplying us with wonderful MacLennan’s Glen vegetables, duck and rabbit, but she will no longer greet you at the door with her incredible smile, give you the day’s specials with her irrepressible flair, or crack ridiculous jokes as she delivers your food. So if you’d like to help us wish her all the best with her new (and multiple!) endeavours (including cheesecake at the market!) please drop by this Tuesday night around 6pm.

As her last shifts with us were during the STFX grad weekend madness, we’ve invited Carin and her partner in fab fashions, Heather Polson, to set up a “pop-up shop” tomorrow night (Tuesday). We are inviting all our regulars to drop in to say “Goodbye” and “Good Luck” and to check out some of what Carin is up to now. They will be showing (and selling) their incredible one-of-a-kind, re-purposed & re-imagined creations – coats, boots, bags, hats, clothes, & more!  Anyway, we hope some of you can join us – she’ll be thrilled (and probably a bit surprised) to see you all!  

Facebook event here.

Saturday, May 28, 9pm
MUSEUM PIECES, live music, $8

The Museum Pieces are helmed by singer-songwriter Tyler Messick. I first heard Tyler’s songs in 1998 when we were both attending King’s College in Halifax. Already, at 18 or 19, his songs had surprising depth and subtlety (I realize that the approval of another 18 year old, almost 20 years ago, may not seem the most compelling recommendation, but I assure you, recent re-listening to his early albums confirm my youthful judgment!). His fascination with early British folk and psychedelia sent his sound in very different directions, and made it stand well apart from what else we were hearing around town. He recorded two full length albums in the early 2000s, Grain Sales of 1840 and Philadelphia, and eventually moved to Montreal, where he ended up taking a break from his own music career hit the road as a guitar tech with the likes of Arcade Fire and Edward Sharp & The Magnetic Zeroes. Messick recently moved back to Maritimes and is recording a new Museum Pieces album with Joel Plaskett at New Scotland Yard. In the years since I dropped out of King’s, it would appear since his songwriting has only gotten more interesting, check some newer stuff out here – I Wish I WAs a Fool For You and Colour of Jade stand out for me. Here’s what some others have to say:

“His friends call him a time-traveler. His passion for uncovering archaic ballades of the British Isles and rural America have informed his unique style of orchestrated psych-rock. He grew up in the bowels of archives and museums in America, Canada and the Middle East – while his academic parents curated galleries and resurrected ancient texts for academia.

He was displaced to rural Nova Scotia at 14, and there became the obsessive kid in the front row at Plasket, Sloan and Al Tuck shows. He has since formed his own unique sound branch – taking his lessons from these local legends.”
– from!/artists/Museum-Pieces!/artists/Tyler-Messick

“Messick’s influences range from regional heroes like Joel Plaskett and Stan Rogers to the “Pentagle British folk stuff” of Bert Jansch, to Nic Jones and Richard Thompson and especially country & gospel king, George Jones. These influences all make sense when you explore Messick’s catalogue. His own influence on the Maritime scene is lightly traceable through bands like Cousins, Crosss’ and Jon McKiel.
“The songs I’m playing on Saturday have a pretty 60s-pop vibe, I think it’s something that Halifax bands are good at and it’s a good way to reintroduce myself as well, because that Brit-pop thing is part of me, too,” he says. He explains all the various connections between American and British folk artists he adored while growing up in Pennsylvania before moving to Halifax, and the extent to which it all stayed with him: “I love that troubadour tradition, you know, the ballad tradition that was going on long before guitar, basically troubadours going castle to castle bringing stories, I carry heavily from that.”
– the

Facebook event here.

Townhouse Session Players launch debut CD!

Saturday, May 14 – The Townhouse Session Players Official CD Release Party, 8pm, no cover. The brand new CD recorded live at The Townhouse, “A Sunday Session,” will be available for sale. Minimum donation of $15/cd, all proceeds go to the Antigonish Foodbank.

CD Cover JPG (1)This is the culmination of an amazing project and a lot of hard work by some very talented people! The Townhouse Session Players are releasing their very first CD – incredible traditional music supporting the local food bank! It began with a regular Sunday night session for people who love to play Irish music, then came an application to and grant from the Awesome Foundation Antigonish, and it should raise $15’000 over the next year or so! The CDs are going fast – so come join us for a night of incredible music and community spirit, and take some of it home with you!

See the article about the project in The Casket here.

See the Facebook event for Saturday’s show here.

<p><a href=”″>Townhouse Session Players CD-</a> from <a href=”″>Peter Murphy</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

The Session Players, as seen below:  Susie Murphy, Jed Perkins, Heather Gillis, Melissa Emmons, Hannah Krebs, Kenny Stewart, Stan Chapman, John Hanlon, Junior Fraser, John Pelerine, & Jim Cameron. The CD also features guest contributions from Miss Lilly Carty and several Sunday night regulars on back-up vocals.

Townhouse session players

ECMA nominated trad duo and the return of reggae night!

Tuesday night live:
Ben Miller & Anita MacDonald

Scottish border pipes and Cape Breton Fiddle

Tuesday, April 19, 9pm, $10 at the door


We can’t wait to welcome the ECMA nominated traditional music duo to The Townhouse tomorrow night!

Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald merge traditional influences from Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island, as well as the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. This fresh and talented duo pairs driving dance-tunes with expressive Gaelic airs and songs, bringing their listeners a powerful combination of passion and grace.

Ben is an American-born player of Scottish bagpipes, currently living in Cape Breton, NS. 

His interest in traditional music stems from his exposure to the pipes at a young age, in his hometown of Queensbury, New York, as well as his family’s strong connections to its Scottish and Irish roots, through both his American mother and Canadian father. He began studying the Highland Bagpipes around age eight, but by twelve he began to shift his focus to the bellows-blown Scottish smallpipes and Border pipes. Ben is also an academic, holding an undergraduate degree in Music, as well as a Master’s degree in Scottish Ethnology, from the University of Edinburgh’s School of Scottish Studies. His repertoire and style draw mainly on the Gaelic traditions of Western Scotland and the Canadian Maritimes, blended with a healthy dash of Irish tunes for good measure. 

Anita is an accomplished musician, dancer, and Gaelic singer from Little Narrows, Cape Breton.
She began stepdancing in the family kitchen at the tender age of four, and picked up the fiddle a few short years later, at age eight. Anita has been wowing audiences with her impeccable timing and neatly choreographed steps ever since. Anita’s fiddle playing has a distinctive sound, influenced by the deep roots of her musical family and her teachers throughout the years. Her energetic style has put her in demand as a performer and teacher, across Cape Breton and beyond. She has been a featured artist in the Celtic Colours International Festival, and has toured throughout New England with Cape Breton folk trio, The Goin’s On. Anita is also the recipient of the Frank “Big Sampie” Sampson Award, nominated by the Festival Volunteer Drive’ers Association. Following this award, Anita released her debut album, “Stepping Stone,” during the 2011 Celtic Colours International Festival.

 This new and exciting duo emerged after a chance meeting at the Celtic Colours Festival in 2013. Anita then joined Benfor his latest recording project, an EP titled “On Home Ground”, which was released only a few months later, in January 2014. In August 2015, Ben and Anita launched their full length debut album, titled “A Day at the Lake”. They are currently touring across North America, the United Kingdom, and further afield to promote this fresh, new release.

Tempering the sharp edge of the pipes and fiddle, Ben and Anita are joined by friends from the Maritimes and beyond. They perform regularly as a three or four-piece band, blending in subtle and sympathetic rhythm guitar, the lush, ethereal sounds of the Scottish harp, or the driving groove of Cape Breton-style piano accompaniment, to create a full and well rounded sound.

– from their website, check it out for music and videos



Saturday night: The Return of the Reggae!

Augy Jones brings the Won-Love Soundsystem back to the Townhouse, complete with new decks and new records! 8pm start. No cover. Come on by for some seriously good vibes…