Sweet sounds under the sun at the Montréal Folk Fest

Robyn Fadden

Listen to folk, roots and bluegrass, eat great food and groove with music fans at the Montréal Folk Festival on the Canal. This June, the family-friendly festival offers a full weekend of free outdoor shows set alongside the picturesque Lachine Canal.

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The community-minded Montréal Folk Festival on the Canal celebrates its 10th year June 14 to 18, adding its own style to Montréal's renowned summer festival programming. From Friday night through Sunday, make your way past the Atwater Market in the neighbourhood of St-Henri to find the outdoor site, replete with live music, plenty of food and drink options, local artisanal creations, activities for kids, and more.

Open-air tunes

Sit back on a blanket and take it easy as talented local and visiting musicians play on three outdoor stages. Among the many main stage acts from Québec, Canada, the U.S. and Europe, check out the soulful Birds of Chicago and the poetic songs of Donovan Woods on Friday night, Saturday afternoon tunes with Camille Delean followed later on by singer-songwriter Ian Kelly and John Jacob Magistery, and on Sunday stay late for the much-loved indie-folk sounds of Sarah Harmer.

Tributes to folk greats

Two excellent multi-artist shows open the festival at indoor venues on Thursday night: A Tribute to Penny Lang, Montreal’s Queen of Folk, at the Maison de la culture Marie-Uguay, featuring artists Annabelle Chvostek, Eve Goldberg, Durham County Poets, Michael Jerome Browne and many more solo and group interpretations of Penny Lang's music; and Always on My Mind, the Songs of Willie Nelson, at Théâtre Paradoxe, with local greats Joe Grass, Jim Bryson, Li’l Andy, Katie Moore, Andrew Horton, Sin and Swoon, Thus Owls and more.


Family time

Along with seeing the festival’s main stage acts, the Folk Fest's family zone offers activities and programming to delight and amuse every kid, from children's music to games, inflatable structures and face painting. And be sure to drop by the Lhasa de Sela Youth Stage to discover emerging artists honing their craft and inspiring young musicians.

For tickets and all the details, see the Montréal Folk Festival on the Canal program.



Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden, blogger

Robyn Fadden is a Montréal-based writer and editor who searches out city secrets, new bands, life-changing art and things to do with her perpetually active kid. Robyn has covered major events for HOUR, MUTEK, ARTINFO, CKUT 90.3FM and more.

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