The Five Canadian Music Festivals You Don’t Want To Miss

It’s the soundtrack to your summer ☀️

It’s time to dig out the pop-up tent, cooler box and bucket hat – festival season is upon us.  

But if you can’t decide where to go for that unique blend of cool music and warm beer, we’re here to help.  From hip hop to indie, EDM to blues (and everything in between), these are the places to get down – and get lifted – this summer. 

Festival d’été de Québec, July 4-14, 2019

If it’s big you’re after, then you’d be hard pressed to beat FEQ’s 11-day, 300-show marathon of music.  

This year, over a million people are expected to descend on Quebec to see Grammy winners mixing it with the latest new talent.  And as you’d expect, there’s something to suit all musical tastes.

But let’s just say, if you’re a fan of both Slipknot and Mariah Carey, you’re in for a particular treat….

Osheaga, August 2-4, Montreal

If FEQ is ‘The Big One’, then Osheaga is surely ‘The Big Name One’.  

We could fill a whole post just listing the global superstars appearing on the festival’s six stages. But if we tell you that Logic, Janelle Monae and Childish Gambino are among those headlining, you’ll get the picture. 

What’s more, with the festival being set in Montreal’s stunning Parc Jean-Drapeau, it’s not just your ears that are in for a treat.

Ottawa Bluesfest, July 4-14, Ottawa

2019 sees Bluesfest turn 25, with some 300,000 people expected to converge on downtown Ottawa.  

The days when the festival was just about blues are long gone, but with a line-up featuring the likes of Alt J, The Killers, and The Psychedelic Furs, we’ll forgive the rather misleading name.

And for the Blues diehards out there, we have two words:  Buddy.  Guy.

Squamish Constellation Festival, July 26-28, Squamish

Located on the Sea to Sky Highway, one of the most world’s most scenic coastal roads, Squamish Constellation is the perfect choice for those wanting to escape to the great outdoors for their live music fix. 

Musically, the festival keeps things homegrown, with a 100% Canadian roster of artists.  But there’s still plenty to please all musical tastes, including Jessie Reyez (fresh from being the only good thing about Eminem’s new album), Powwow-Step pioneers, A Tribe Called Red, and indie rockers Half Moon Run

Astral Harvest July 4-7, Lesser Slave Lake North

Those craving a more spiritual festival experience may want to program their satnavs to Lesser Slave Lake, Alberta. 

Now in its 12th year, Astral Harvest promises to be more than a music festival, combining some of the best electronica and dance acts around with visual and performance art, workshops and even yoga.

What will be the soundtrack to your summer?