6 Music Festivals to Check Out in Vancouver This Summer

Written by Carly Whetter 

Every season is festival season in Vancouver, but in the summer there’s no shortage of live music festivals to choose from. If you’re into jazz, R&B, hip-hop, fusion, or funk—or anything in between—there’s a festival in the city for you:


Breakout Festival | June 9 – 10, 2018
Breakout is Vancouver’s first all hip-hop and R&B outdoor music festival, new in 2018. Taking place this summer over two days at Vancouver’s historic PNE Amphitheatre, festival tickets will include access to the concert area and Playland with over 35 rides. Additional festival attractions include a VIP section, a food truck area, 19+ bars, an alcohol-free zone, a merch area and more. Tickets include Playland ride passes! Visit www.pne.ca for more information.

Vancouver International Jazz Festival | June 22 – July 1, 2018
British Columbia’s biggest music and arts event, the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival, takes over the city for 10 days in late June and early July each year, attracting over 500,000 jazz fans. Acts like Macy Gray, Bonobo, and Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters share the stage with a line-up of the world’s best jazz, funk, Latin, fusion, and world music artists. The Festival brings together hundreds for 300 concerts in 35 venues, indoor and outdoor, around the city. The event is accessible to all, with 150 free concerts that will see you tapping your toes down at the Vancouver Art Gallery, celebrating at Granville Island on Canada Day, or getting your groove on at David Lam Park over the festival’s closing weekend. For music lovers, this festival will be a highlight of your time in Vancouver.

Khatsahlano Street Party | July 7, 2018
Paying homage to Chief August Khatsahlano, this festival takes over West 4th from Burrard Street to Macdonald Street for a full day of food, entertainment, and day of creativity every summer. Each year the festival brings over 50 bands (from Yukon Blonde to the Zolas) and over 100 merchants and vendors. Visit khatsahlano.com for the full itinerary.

Vancouver Folk Music Festival | July 13-15, 2018
This July you’ll find Vancouverites heading down to Jericho Beach for the Vancouver Folk Musical Festival, a major event on the world folk and roots music circuit. Both local talents and big-name international performers (the 2018 lineup includes Ry Cooder and Neko Case!) take to the eight outdoor stages for three days of soulful performance. Along with the stages, the festival also features a large street food selection, a crafts market, and the Festival Community Village where you can learn about local community-building organizations and businesses. The festival attracts a diverse crowd, including families who head straight for the Little Folks Village, an area for craft-making, song-singing, face-painting and story-telling. For more info visit thefestival.bc.ca

SKOOKUM Festival | September 7-9, 2018
Launching September 7th-9th in iconic Stanley Park, SKOOKUM will feature four stages of contemporary music with performances by some of the world’s most renowned artists, including notable International headliners: The Killers and Florence + the Machine. The three-day event will feature over 50 stage performances, live and multimedia art installations; gourmet culinary experiences from some of Vancouver’s most acclaimed restaurants; pop-up and roaming entertainment throughout the weekend and tasting areas showcasing some of the best BC wines, locally brewed craft beer as well as select offerings from local area craft distilleries. For more information and tickets, visit skookumfestival.com.

Westward Music Festival | September 13 – 16, 2018
Celebrating the spirit of Vancouver and it’s world-class music scene, Westward Music Festival will take over multiple downtown Vancouver music venues featuring over 100 artists this September. Westward Fest attendees will take advantage of Vancouver’s hospitable September weather and widespread bike paths throughout the city, and will support Vancouver’s push towards being a world-leading green city. The lineup includes: Blood Orange, Kali Uchis, Metz, We Are The City and many more. For more information and tickets please visit westwardfest.com

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