Canadian Music Week and Festival preview


by Joe Thomson | photos by Brian Patterson

With the promises of better weather begins festival season. Although most of the world might think it all starts with Coachella but here in the colder corners of the continent we kick it off with Canadian Music Week (March 19-24): over 100 performances spread across 60+venues over 6 nights not counting award shows, comedy, film, conferences, and summits.

We’re not going to hold your hand through the planning of it, there is an app for that, but we will share our list of worthy performances.

March 20
* CHVRCHES with Diana [Mod Club 9PM]
* Crunchy Frog Label showcase highlighted by the Apparart Organ Quartet [12AM] and Foam Lake [Garrison 9PM].

March 21
* Nightlands with Efterklang [Mod Club 9PM/10PM]
* Monster Energy Cult 45 showcase with Diamond D, DJ Mat the Alien, and others [Wrongbar doors 8:30PM]
* Wildlife [The Great Hall 12AM]
* The Zolas [The Rivoli 10PM]
* Portgate and Main [Czehoski 10PM]

March 22
* The Indie Awards featuring Cadence Weapon and Metric [Kool House 8PM on]
* Protest the Hero with Waster and Machines [Hoxton 8:30 on]
Coalition Music Showcase Featuring Ben Caplan, Incura and others [Rivoli doors 8PM on]
* Groenland [Concierge Lounge, Marriott Hotel 10:15PM]
* Portgate and Main [El Mocambo, Downstairs 12AM]
* The Zolas [The Horseshoe Tavern 8:30PM]
* The Official SiriusXM Indies After Party highlighted by Diamond Rings DJ and Dirty Radio [Wrongbar doors 8:30PM]

March 23
* Buzz Factor Series featuring SUUNS, Lioness, Savages and many more [Lee’s Palace 9PM on]
* Boats [Rancho Relaxo 12AM]
* Groenland [Dundas West 9PM FREE show & El Mocambo, Upstairs 12AM]
* Fine Times [Sneaky Dee’s 2AM] and many others

March 24
* Pick a Piper [Rancho Relaxo 11PM]

Full week wristband: $60, access to the CMF showcases, Comedy festival and Film festival screenings. Tickets are available for each show separately as well.  Keep in mind entrance into the shows is subject to capacity so we recommend having a back up plan.

There is also a Comedy Festival (March 20-24) and a Film Festival (March 21-23), because what would a Music Festival be without a Comedy and Film Festival leeching off its healthy body like the pilot fish that they are! Just kidding they both are very cool and showcase a lot of talented people. For general tips on how to survive a festival hit up the Festival Survival Guide.

Comedy Festival highlights: Jon Dore, Dave Foley, and Sandra Bernhard

Film Festival highlights: “Spring Breakers,” “The Last Pogo Jumps Again” and “Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me“.

The 3 day Music Summit (March 21-23) is a chance for inside information you won’t be able to get anywhere else. Each day focuses on a different aspect of the current music industry. Day one features panels and discussions regarding social media and the industry, day two will focus on live touring, and day three  will cover songwriting and publishing. The summit is mostly designed to bring those working in different facets of the industry together, but a lot of the talks and panels will also be fascinating to music aficionados.

For the more serious crowd there is also the Digital Media Summit (March 19-20),  featuring the likes of Amber Mac, Cindy Gallop, Layla Selick from Shaw Media, Dana Lira from Warner Home Video Inc, Ipsa Desai from YouTube and many more.

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