Bluesfest locals: Nambi & The Rhythm

July 6th, 2022 by  |  Published in Bluesfest locals, Features, Interviews, News

Nambi & The Rhythm - promo

Nambi & The Rhythm. Photo credit: Scott Doubt

The Bluesfest locals series will introduce you to the talented music makers from the Ottawa area performing at this year’s RBC Bluesfest. Come on out early to Bluesfest and discover some great new music!

Nambi & The Rhythm

Friday, July 8
6pm to 7pm
RBC Stage


Ottawa-born singer-songwriter NAMBI (formerly known as Rita Carter) has become one of her city’s most darling and well-respected voices. NAMBI’s reputation as a sincere and talented performer is a testament to her creative ability and faith in music, as a source of personal and communal revelation. Her strong vocal presence and soulful, acoustic, RnB street folk style, have made her a sought-after and much-admired performer, as evidenced by her appearances at festivals such as House of Paint (2014 & 2017), MEGAPHONO (2018 & 2019), Westfest (2018), Soul City Music Fest (2018), RBC Bluesfest (2018 & 2020), and at world renown venues like the National Arts Centre (2018 & 2020). NAMBI’s notoriety and acclaim have also helped to take her soulful music on stages overseas, while touring in Europe and East Africa.

After releasing two singles (“ShotAnothaDown” & “HeyBlackMan”) in 2020, NAMBI decided to take a break during the pandemic to have her third son. Now with the help of FACTOR Canada, NAMBI is back again performing with her undeniably talented band, The Rhythm, and working on her third studio album, “ALL OF WE”, set to be released this year. To NAMBI, music is a weapon, a peace offering, and an expression of deep humanity, humility and strength!

The Talent

Nambi – Guitar, Main vocal
Paula – Background vocals
Patrice – Violin, Background vocals
Lyan – Bass guitar
Karl – Drums, Percussion


What was your reaction to the news you’d be a part of Bluesfest and who was the first person you told?
I cried. It’s been a rough couple of years. I told my Maama first.

Please describe your sound.
“Soul Street Folk” music with a hint of Funk, Blues, & Afro-Reggae. Our sound has been described as: Tracy Chapman meets Bob Marley & The Wailers meets Lauryn Hill.

How did you get started on your musical journey?
Been singing and writing since I was a kid. I was in Bluesfest’s BITS program for their first year. Asked my dad for a guitar. Kept writing. Went to Canterbury Performing Arts High school, so daily art exposure was a guarantee. Did showcase talent show at Carleton U during my first year undergrad and won! The rest is history!

What can music fans expect from your show? Will you be playing any new music at Bluesfest and/or releasing new music ahead of your performance?
Fans should expect to hear a mix of older and newer tracks reflecting my recent cultural name reclamation and the celebration of our Blackness.

What artists are you hoping to catch during this year’s Bluesfest?
Alannis, Bone Thugz & TLC for sure! Legendary!

Connect with Nambi & The Rhythm:

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