Discovering Vancouver’s Karaoke Scene

Hip Hop Karaoke Photo Credit: Mark Gutknecht

Hip Hop Karaoke Photo Credit: Mark Gutknecht

Sooner or later, everyone— even the most reserved of us— is overrun with the compulsion to go to a bar, pick up a microphone, and rattle the eardrums of a room full of strangers. I’m talking, of course, about karaoke.

I was struck by this urge not long after my September move to Vancouver. One might expect that after embarrassing myself with a rendition of Justin Bieber’s Boyfriend in Beijing, China (a story for another time), I might never take the stage again. But as I settled into my new life on Canada’s West Coast, my vocal chords once again began to hunger for a decibel range unacceptable for anywhere but a karaoke night. Tom Taylor’s inner rock star, to the chagrin of everybody in a one hundred kilometer radius, was getting antsy. And so began my exploration of Vancouver’s thriving karaoke scene.

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Discovering Vancouver’s Karaoke Scene

Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Loads of community block parties and music events this Friday through Sunday!  Start planning with our top picks for things to do in Vancouver this weekend… and aye, don’t forget it’s International Talk Like A Pirate Day on Friday!

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Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Canadian Rock Legends Coming to Burnaby Blues Fest, Aug. 9

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Blues legends are in Burnaby this Saturday, Aug. 9, for the annual Blues + Roots Festival at Deer Lake Park.  Headlining the show is the incomparable Big Sugar: the Canadian blues-rock-reggae band have inspired acts like The Black Crowes over their illustrious 20-year career.  Opening acts include Matt Andersen, the blues artist from New Brunswick known for his impassioned vocals and guitar playing, as well as Bettye LeVette, the Motown legend who toured with Otis Redding and James Brown.

The venue for the day-long festival, which features a dozen acts in total is Burnaby’s Deer Lake Park.  Located just off Highway 1 in Burnaby, the park is a unique natural oasis in the middle of the city.  Walking trails wind around the lake and through acres of parkland.  Musicians will be performing on three separate stages throughout the day, starting at 1 p.m. with the local acts and finishing up with Big Sugar on the main stage at 8:30 p.m.

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Big Sugar

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Canadian Rock Legends Coming to Burnaby Blues Fest, Aug. 9

50 Free Bands + 40 Food Trucks: Khatsahlano Street Party Returns to Vancouver

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Photo credit: Rick Chung | Flickr

Vancouver’s biggest free music and arts fest is back.

The Khatsahlano Street Party is set to transform West 4th Avenue into 10 blocks of live music, beer gardens and outdoor art on Saturday, July 12.  Now in its fourth year, the festival is expected to attract more than 100,000 revellers to the Kitsilano neighbourhood, from Burrard to MacDonald Streets on West 4th Avenue.

Khatsahlano has earned a well deserved reputation for great live music.  This year, more than 50 bands with local roots will perform on eight different stages.  Headliners include The Poppy Family Experience, who emerged from Kitsilano’s counterculture scene in the 1960s and went on to international fame, as well as The Grapes of Wrath, the Kelowna-based rockers known for their hit record These Days who recently reunited after an 18-year hiatus.  A complete lineup is available on the festival website.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a street party without street food.   Continue reading:
50 Free Bands + 40 Food Trucks: Khatsahlano Street Party Returns to Vancouver

Full Celebration of Light concert lineup announced

The Sheepdogs at the Commodore Ballroom, Dec 20 2011. Jade Dempsey photo.

The Sheepdogs at the Commodore Ballroom, Dec 20 2011. Jade Dempsey photo.

This year’s Celebration of Light takes place July 26 (USA), July 30 (France) and Aug 2 (Japan).

Each evening will also feature concerts with bands performing in two locations – on the Bathhouse Roof at English Bay and the Rogue Stage at Sunset Beach Park. The full roster of talent has just been announced.

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Full Celebration of Light concert lineup announced