Moonshine Café ‘leader’ mourned by Oakville family and friends


Published July 25, 2023 at 11:46 am

Moonshine Cafe leader John Marlatt has died, his wife announced. MOONLIGHT CAFE PHOTO

John Martlatt, the “fearless leader” behind Oakville’s Moonshine Café, has died.

His wife, Jane, made the  announcement on social media Monday (July 25).

“As some of you know by now, we lost our fearless leader in the wee hours this morning,” she said. “My beloved husband, John Martlatt, passed away during an emergency surgery to remove a large aneurism found in his stomach.”

Marlatt, explained his wife, had suffered a variety of ailments over the past two months, leaving him quite weak and extremely tired.

“John was a larger than life character with an extremely quick wit that kept our Moonshine patrons constantly entertained,” said his wife. “I want to thank all of your for reaching out to me with your kind words and love.

“I am overwhelmed with pride with how respected and loved my Johnny was.”

Jane said he will be missed dearly and daily by everyone who knew him.

“The Moonshine will never be the same without our Johnny Boy.”

The intimate live entertainment venue located on Kerr St. has been home to numerous artists and performers over the years.

“The Moonshine is an intimate venue (capacity 60) that artists, performers, and their friends and friends can feel at home,” said the cafe’s website.

Tributes to Marlatt on social media have begun pouring in.

“We are deeply saddened to learn that John Marlatt longtime owner of the Moonshine Cafe has suddenly passed away,” said the Kerr Village BIA. “John was an original member of the Kerr Village BIA Board of Directors. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this difficult time.”

Oakville native and Hockey Night in Canada host Ron MacLean praised Marlatt and his wife for all they have done for the local music scene.

“Incredibly lucky to have this duo create a nest for music and all of us,” MacLean said on Twitter. “She began to cry when you said goodbye And sank into your dreams” – Townes Van Zandt – Pancho and Lefty.

“Jane so sorry for your loss.”

Oakville North-Burlington MP Pam Damoff was hit hard by the news.

“Devastating news,” she said on Twitter. “John Marlatt was a legend who brought live music, home-style hospitality and fun night after night to @MoonshineCafe Oakville.

“My deepest sympathy to Jane and family. Such a huge loss.”

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