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Thread: Live Music Venues in Edmonton

  1. #1

    Default Live Music Venues in Edmonton

    The live music scene in Edmonton is constantly evolving, so I'd like to get people's opinion on what licensed venues they like or dislike, and why.

    There are a few tiers of venues, depending on how deep the pockets are of the venue backers, the size of the venue, the quality of artists it hosts, etc, etc....

    Just off the top of my head, to get things rolling...

    The Artery, Bohemia, Wunderbar, DV8, etc. are smaller venues in older, cheaper rent buildings where you can see a wide range of emerging artists. What they lack in amenities they make up for in tons of character.

    Some bars have live music but have no real stage and not much, if anything, in the way of a sound system or lighting. Places like JR's Grill and Bar, Bo Diddly's in MillWoods, etc. This isn't to say that these places can't have a great vibe though. Depending on the layout of the place, where the band can set up, and what kind of gear (and ability) the band brings with them, these bars can be great places for a night of music. For example, JRs has a great Thursday night jam, which has been going for years.

    There are several bars that are more "established" that have stages and sound systems of varying quality. Some of the ones that immediately jump to mind are The O2s chain of bars, The Leaf Bar and Grill, Brixx, Big Al's House of Blues, The Rose and Crown, Richard's Pub, Rendezvous Pub. Depending on the bar, some are great experiences, and some need work.

    In my opinion, we don't have enough "A" rooms for live music in this city, considering our size and number of great musicians here. The passing of The Sidetrack Cafe leaves a void in our music scene that I still feel to this day.

    An incomplete list:
    Blues on Whyte
    Starlite
    Pawn Shop
    The Draft (used to be Fandango's) has potential, but they have some issues
    ...

    I personally like blues / blues rock, so Blues on Whyte rarely disappoints. Love the history, character (and characters!), consistently good acts, good sound... The site lines suck though!
    Last edited by lat; 11-11-2014 at 12:57 PM. Reason: Added mention of The Sidetrack. Added links to venues.

  2. #2

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    The Mercury Room has been around a while but lately has become much more active, and better acts are booking there. I think a new fella has taken over.

    On The Rocks has live music multiple days a week. (I've never been)

    The Denizen just opened. It's a pretty good space.

    As for pubs with good bones for live music - The Crown and Anchor in Castle Downs is fantastic. Black Dog is great for Hair of the Dog. The Buckingham and Filthy Mcnasty's are good spots to catch a band. I can't put my finger on what I don't like about Brittany's.

    Sight lines at The Commercial are just fine as a far as I'm concerned. Sight lines are a real problem for Rusty's/Big Al's/whatever it is now. But whoever is booking acts at Blues on Whyte has gotten into a real rut in the last 18 months.

    I don't care for the Starlight or Pawn Shop. The Artery is far and away my favourite venue in town. The Yardbird Suite is on my list.

  3. #3

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    Yeah, The Mercury Room used to be run by Jimmy Whiffen, I believe... I had heard who took it over, but I can't recall off-hand. Feel bad that I didn't go check it out when Jimmy was running it...
    I've heard that OTR is a good venue, but I have yet to go while a band is playing.
    Will have to check out Denizen Hall.
    As long as you're on the right side of the pillars at The Commie, no prob, but the other side of the room just has those strips of seats where you can peer through the spaces between them... Annoying...
    I agree that Starlight and The Pawn Shop can be better.
    Yardbird Suite is great!
    Last edited by lat; 11-11-2014 at 05:37 PM.

  4. #4

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    Eventually, we'll be able to add the Needle to that list, which sounds like a really promising place. But yeah, I miss the SideTrack too.
    “It’s so beautiful. What sort of bird is that?”

  5. #5

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    Really like the starlight, seen some of my fav bands there! Lately they have been booking a lot of DJ stuff( I'm not into that). The union is booking a shitonne of great international acts, it's a reasonable venue but the location stinks!!!!

    If a venue wants to get a big following they need the international bands that sell tickets for events equivalent to starlight/ old reds/union hall/ or even the shaw( but by bands choice wanting an intimate show) so what is this 1500-2000 people? Having local Djs and bands for fillers.
    Also other bars nearby so after the show ( which most big acts end before midnite) people can continue to have a good experience. I hope a good venue can open up in the downtown or starlight stRts booking good acts again.

    Amon Amarth cam to town October 5th and I have no problem driving down to Calgary for a better venue. Great excuse for a trip out of town but I'd rather edmonton have better venues for some dhows

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Idealistic Pragmatist View Post
    Eventually, we'll be able to add the Needle to that list, which sounds like a really promising place. But yeah, I miss the SideTrack too.
    Yes, I remember reading that article. That will be very cool to check out. Speaking of which, I have to check out Rocky Mountain Icehouse too.

  7. #7

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    I remember Union Hall as Goose Loonies, back in the day... Looks like that could rate as an A room, but the location does suck!

    EDIT: Looks like the venue itself sucks too, based on these reviews... Swill, what do you think about the venue and are these reviews accurate?
    Last edited by lat; 11-11-2014 at 01:54 PM.

  8. #8

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    The reviews I'm seeing are typical for most venues easy to find typical complaints generic as those.i never had a problem with weak drinks.

    Come to think of it I'm going there on the 17th for a gwar show, I'll post a review of services afterwards.

    Number 1 complaint I have is location, #2 not a great set up( that's what u get with crap retrofits)# 3 it's pretty grimy, ( nothing wrong with having a dive bar but how the building is maintained,managed, and presented goes a long wAy.) #4 staff, can't compare unprofessional thug 18yr old bouncers who have something to prove vs red carpet service like the shaw conference( and they could really improve themselves in some respects)

  9. #9

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    Is it worth mentioning where our big international and loxal DJ live-band acts are? Guys seem to ve shy on DJ's but I can rip the lid off if you want.
    Live and love... your neighbourhood.

  10. #10

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    ^ I'd say go for it. If they have room for a DJ and his/her table to set up, they could probably host a 2-3 piece live band.
    Last edited by lat; 11-11-2014 at 05:38 PM.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    I can't put my finger on what I don't like about Brittany's
    I generally like Brittany's, but the stage is in an awkward spot... Being a long, narrow place, the sight lines are poor for a large number of seats...

  12. #12

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    Rocky Mountain Icehouse has the capability to be a live music venue but so far they haven't done much booking. Time will tell.
    www.decl.org

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenSPACE View Post
    Rocky Mountain Icehouse has the capability to be a live music venue but so far they haven't done much booking. Time will tell.
    They have a thing on Tuesday nights...

    https://www.facebook.com/tapstuesday...nf&pnref=story

  14. #14

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    While we're in the neighbourhood I saw that Cask and Barrel has a regular garage band thing happening on Saturday afternoon.

  15. #15

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    Cool, I've been looking for another Saturday afternoon music spot. Didn't realize The Cask and Barrel had music.
    Last edited by lat; 14-11-2014 at 10:26 AM.

  16. #16

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    Think we'll check out the renovations and the open stage at O2's West on Saturday, then pop into The Cask and Barrel to see what they've got going...
    Last edited by lat; 14-11-2014 at 10:29 AM.

  17. #17

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    The Common does CD release parties and many live local and international acts, along with The Bower and Tower on Jasper with can bring some heavy international talent which regularly do for 10 times our prices here for a show. Normals Welcome has set up a new space next to the Artery which is to get some big DJs, and there is Refuge, a cool collection of local and talent that does events at Black Dog on Thursdays upstairs, and host cool events around downtown in excellent unused spaces outdoors. Latitude 53 is still a biggie and does some great work beyond just music. However, word on the street is still a lack of consistent and well-run venues, and a lack of appropriate venues.
    Live and love... your neighbourhood.

  18. #18

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    O2's West was good. It was a good jam with a nice renovation to the place. Sightlines are much better than they used to be.

    Cask and Barrel was ok. just a 2 piece that played for about 90 minutes. No stage or lights, so it was very basic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    In my opinion, we don't have enough "A" rooms for live music in this city, considering our size and number of great musicians here. The passing of The Sidetrack Cafe leaves a void in our music scene that I still feel to this day.
    Not sure what the status of it all is now, but I at one point heard that a new music venue of a high calibre was a real possibility for the arena district.

  20. #20

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    ^ hmm... that would be cool... hadn't heard of that!

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    I thought the folks who ran Haven on Stony Plain Rd were opening a new downtown venue?
    Also, new venue is likely a given for the Galleria.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  22. #22

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    ^ I had heard rumblings about The Haven getting new digs at one point too... Can't remember the details though... Stupid brain...

    The Galleria would likely be an auditorium of some kind, which would be great. I am thinking more of licensed bars / clubs that host live music... Less formal and more fun, imho... Who knows, maybe a music based club would set up in the area as well...

  23. #23

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    Found it.

    If all goes according to plan, Leder won't be absent from Edmonton's music scene for long. Along with two partners, he's working on a much bigger, more ambitious project for the downtown core.
    http://www2.canada.com/edmontonjourn...9-2bef57531edd

  24. #24

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    A neighbour of mine, Stephanie Harpe (of the Stephanie Harpe Experience on FB, they're a great blues rock band) says the Sands Hotel lounge has been renovated. They have live bands Sat. nights and a jam Sunday aft.

    I think I'll check it out this weekend.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Found it.

    If all goes according to plan, Leder won't be absent from Edmonton's music scene for long. Along with two partners, he's working on a much bigger, more ambitious project for the downtown core.
    http://www2.canada.com/edmontonjourn...9-2bef57531edd
    There was later news that they would be moving into the main floor of the old CKUA building. Here it is:400 Seats

  26. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    A neighbour of mine, Stephanie Harpe (of the Stephanie Harpe Experience on FB, they're a great blues rock band) says the Sands Hotel lounge has been renovated. They have live bands Sat. nights and a jam Sunday aft.

    I think I'll check it out this weekend.
    I've met Stephanie. She's got a good, strong voice and a good band backing her up. Saw her at the Terry Evans Sunday jam at The Draft a few weeks back.

    Michael Will hosts the Sunday Jam at the Sands, as well as the Saturday Jam at O2s West... The renos at The Sands were fairly extensive. The place looks pretty good now! Really good space for live music, just too far east for me, most times...
    Last edited by lat; 20-11-2014 at 02:18 PM.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Found it.

    If all goes according to plan, Leder won't be absent from Edmonton's music scene for long. Along with two partners, he's working on a much bigger, more ambitious project for the downtown core.
    http://www2.canada.com/edmontonjourn...9-2bef57531edd
    There was later news that they would be moving into the main floor of the old CKUA building. Here it is:400 Seats
    Cool. I was thinking that might be the same group, but I hadn't heard positive confirmation... That'll be a great addition to downtown.

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    I'm bummed that nothing ever materialized from the closing of Ed's. I specifically remember reading an article that mentioned/hinted at a move downtown.

    Also, there were rumours about a House of Blues opening up in the AED at one point, but that might have just been speculation and high hopes.

  29. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Found it.

    If all goes according to plan, Leder won't be absent from Edmonton's music scene for long. Along with two partners, he's working on a much bigger, more ambitious project for the downtown core.
    http://www2.canada.com/edmontonjourn...9-2bef57531edd
    There was later news that they would be moving into the main floor of the old CKUA building. Here it is:400 Seats
    Cool. I was thinking that might be the same group, but I hadn't heard positive confirmation... That'll be a great addition to downtown.
    Wellll...I did mention it (with an Edmonton Journal article link) in post #4 above.
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  30. #30

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    Did that article mention that they were formerly behind The Haven? If so, then I totally missed that!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex.L View Post
    Also, there were rumours about a House of Blues opening up in the AED at one point, but that might have just been speculation and high hopes.
    I think that one may have been more than just speculation...

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    I like the sound of that

  33. #33

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    Checking out an acoustic set at the Mercury Room tonight. Never been.
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  34. #34

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    ^^ X2

    ^ I know Colin Close from Edmontunes. Apparently he's playing with some other folks. Let us know how it went!

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    The rooms with the biggest acts seem to be the casinos.
    aka Jim Good; "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up." - Steven Wright

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    I went to the Century Casino last Friday to see Darkroom. It was pretty decent.

  37. #37

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    How was the band? That sounded really interesting from an Edmonton musical archaeology angle. Darkroom last weekend, the Omniplex tonight -- it appears there is a real nostalgia trip happening in town these days.

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    After seeing Jim at the Kirby benefit I was a little concerned but they were fantastic.

    Went to the Bailey Theatre in Camrose the night after and it is quite impressive with a huge stage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    The rooms with the biggest acts seem to be the casinos.
    You mean like Nazareth and April Wine?
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  40. #40

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    There will be no speaking ill of April Wine.

  41. #41

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    Anyone have a favourite church venue? I've been to a few but none outside downtown/old strathcona.

    Forgot how much I like the Provincial Museum theatre. Cold Specks there tonight.

  42. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    There will be no speaking ill of April Wine.
    Love those guys...



    Will be going to O2's West again this aft...

  43. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    The rooms with the biggest acts seem to be the casinos.
    Not a big fan of the casino atmosphere, but I hear that Century has a pretty good room... haven't been yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    Anyone have a favourite church venue? I've been to a few but none outside downtown/old strathcona.

    Forgot how much I like the Provincial Museum theatre. Cold Specks there tonight.
    I have a hard time relaxing in a church atmosphere, but that's just me... lol

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    If you guys like April Wine, I think they play at River Cree or Century Casino once a month or so if you wanna fill your boots! Me? 40 years of radio oversaturation of "Roller" and "I Like to Rock" tuned me out long ago, sorry.

    Anyone know if New City is still around? Last I knew, they were in a basement next to Hudson's on Whyte.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  45. #45

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    I believe New City is now the new location for DV8.

  46. #46

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    I saw a sign for a jam session at the Blind Pig pub in St. Albert, though i passed by too quickly to note a day and time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    The rooms with the biggest acts seem to be the casinos.
    You mean like Nazareth and April Wine?
    I've seen both sell out an arena, so yeah, I guess.

    The River Cree get quite a few bigger acts. I think it's a SL Feldman room, but maybe not.

    My favourite place to catch a live show is in a 200-400 capacity room. Of course the set up is everything, but I prefer smaller rooms at this stage (no pun intended).

    One thing about the smaller casinos that have the lounge/venue in the same room as the gambling - the #1 issue is volume. Sometimes as a player it was hard for me to feel the music because the volume had to be set so low it wouldn't be heard in the gambling area, which isn't separated and is 30 feet away. I don't play loud (anymore), but it was like listening to a radio, and didn't really suit the R&B and Blues we were playing. I ended up using an amp modeller so I could sound like I was playing through an amp.

    I haven't been to a casino except to play music, and I gave that up awhile ago, but I know some people who play there, so it must be better now. I hope it is.
    Last edited by Jimbo; 01-12-2014 at 10:39 AM.
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  48. #48

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    Kelly's Pub is starting up an open stage on Monday nights...

  49. #49

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    Aaannnd another Monday night open stage. This time at Sideliners Pub and Pantry

    EDIT: The Icehouse has a band playing tonight, gonna go check it out.
    Last edited by lat; 02-12-2014 at 07:47 PM.

  50. #50

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    Checked out The Icehouse last night. I like it! Nice decor, beer was 2 bucks off per pint.

    The stage was an OK size, very minimal lighting though. A column was in the way right at the front of the stage. But, from my vantage point at the sharp corner at the end of the bar, it didn't bug me, but then the sound there wasn't as good as directly in front of the stage, where there weren't any seats available. The crowd was polite and appreciative of the music. The house band did a nice eclectic mix. Started out with country, did some originals that were more indie in style, for lack of a better term. The second set had a funk band up for a while. They were great.

    All in all, a pleasant experience! I'd go back.

  51. #51

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    Interesting....
    http://t5jdowntownnews.wordpress.com...ipation-rises/

    The Needle Tavern plans to bring live music, a full kitchen and bar to the old home of CKUA on Jasper Avenue seven nights a week. While a lot of the venue is still in the works, there are plans for two floors, one with two stages for shows ranging from 150 to 450 people and another with traditional bar games like billiards and darts. Of course vinyl will be spinning from open to close between live acts.

  52. #52

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    Informative article in Vue about renovations at The Mercury Room

  53. #53

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    Checked out Denizen Hall on Saturday. Fun place, lots of room, house band entertained all. How can you not like arcade games while drinking and watching a band?!
    www.decl.org

  54. #54

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    Gotta check that place out soon... Keep on saying that, but still need to make it happen!

  55. #55

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    Went to the open stage at Kelly's Pub last night. Draft on special, good sized crowd, lots of different players, some of whom were VERY talented. A good night, all around!

  56. #56

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    Thanks for the Kelly's update lat.

    Apparently Big Al has moved his House of Blues to a newly renovated Yellowhead Inn (must have been a trailer).

    So that spot on 118 ave is vacant again? Gypsy curse? Haunted? What's the trouble there?

  57. #57

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    Yep, Big Al's HOB is set to open this week I think? I'm itching to check that out. Supposed to be about triple the size of the old place, I believe.

    EDIT: Confirmed March 13th opening... Jimmy and the Sleepers play the opening weekend.

    https://www.facebook.com/events/1555620474699526/
    Last edited by lat; 10-03-2015 at 11:44 PM.

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  59. #59

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    haha! If you want to call it that.. lol.. Apparently they already have plans to upgrade the temp shelter and also construct a permanent one... So this is a bump in the road. Hopefully it doesn't send the band bus into the ditch...

  60. #60

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    There's a story in the Gateway about Dewey's losing a tonne of cash for UofA SU. The reason I post it here is because I think the closing of the Power Plant is the most shameful waste of a stage in town. I saw some great acts at PP. It would really fill a hole in terms of venues of a certain size.

    Also, going through the live music offerings for the weekend one glaring omission is The Denizen. I haven't seen a band advertised there in ages. Apparently their commitment to live music is a mile wide and an inch deep.

  61. #61

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    Yeah, the Power Plant is a good sized room. I remember seeing a few acts there back in the '80s... I have been to The Denizen, but not when the stage has been active. Still want to see how the space works with a band. Its got a weird layout.

  62. #62

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    ^It works well if you don't mind a stage in a bar. Cool digs with live music and a bar are a win win for me
    Live and love... your neighbourhood.

  63. #63

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    The L shape makes it difficult for sightlines, but for those that want more quiet, it may actually be a good thing. The large pillars in front of the stage are what have me concerned, since I like to see the band playing...

  64. #64

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    We're really sucking at the small-medium venues these days. Only way to get less known acts is at festivals, which not everyone can afford, nor does everyone enjoy. Intimate shows with up and coming artists at Starlite are awesome.

    And I know I sound like a broken record, but do I ever miss Suburbs... they brought in so many cool acts in genres that most other promoters don't follow.

    Oddly enough, I also really miss King's Knight/Jet - saw a few decent bands in those spaces too, and the spaces weren't replaced when it closed.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

  65. #65

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    One bright note... (see what I did there?)

    ABOUT THE NEEDLE VINYL TAVERN

    “NVT integrates live music and food to create a unique atmosphere that allows people to socialize in the presence of art.” James Leder, Co-Owner. Scheduled to open in the spring of 2015, The Needle aims to be recognized as one of Edmonton’s premier Live Venues and to carve a reputation in the culture of Canada’s thriving music scene. The Needle views itself as the home away from home for Canada’s thriving independent music scene and the hub of Edmonton’s burgeoning music & arts movement. NVT will house live music seven days a week along with other art forms such as DJs and visual artists. Serving lunch, dinner, and weekend brunches, The Needle will provide high quality cuisine to hungry artists and to patrons of the arts alike. The Needle is also proud to re-release some recipes from the legendary Pharos Pizza to go along with our creative menu of music inspired selections.
    http://www.theneedle.ca/

  66. #66

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    Waahooo!
    Live and love... your neighbourhood.

  67. #67

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    While I question The Denizen's commitment to live music, Fionn MacCools at City Centre has regularly been hosting live bands since it opened. Bands playing all weekend long. I've been a couple times and the service is just brutal but kudos for the live tunes.

  68. #68

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    I wonder if the disappearance of The Artery will be a boon for Bohemia. There's a couple of shows this weekend at Bohemia that smell like they would typically have been hosted by The Artery.

  69. #69

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    Yeah, I could see it helping them... I like the grungy vibe there. They need a larger space though...

  70. #70

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    Friends have been telling me about Studio 96 for a little while now. Looking forward to checking it out. Great location for the Boyle Street/Macauley crowd.

  71. #71

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    Heard the Artery should have new digs by next week, fingers crossed
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chmilz View Post
    We're really sucking at the small-medium venues these days. Only way to get less known acts is at festivals, which not everyone can afford, nor does everyone enjoy. Intimate shows with up and coming artists at Starlite are awesome.

    And I know I sound like a broken record, but do I ever miss Suburbs... they brought in so many cool acts in genres that most other promoters don't follow.

    Oddly enough, I also really miss King's Knight/Jet - saw a few decent bands in those spaces too, and the spaces weren't replaced when it closed.
    It's tough to compete for acts with the festivals and taxpayer subsidized soft seater venues, or casinos. Often festivals will include a clause in the contract forbidding acts from playing in the area for a period before and after the festival.

    So summer used to be "batten down the hatches", and just try to survive the summer season, which, frankly, is hard enough anyway.

    I don't know if it's changed, but it used to be the concert halls (Festival Place, Arden, etc. throughout Alberta, including hockey arenas in smaller towns) had their Alberta acts subsidized by 50%, and Canadian acts by 25%, up to a certain maximum.

    And often the venues themselves are subsidized.

    I'm not suggesting that's a bad thing at all. In fact, quite the opposite. Just that it makes it tough for a mid-large sized privately owned venue to compete for the mid-sized acts.
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  74. #74

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    According to Vue it sounds like DV8 is having some trouble. Unsurprising.

  75. #75

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    ^Ya trouble was in the works a couple months ago I think where they were pretty sure the way things were going they were going to shut down. Didn't imagine a 180 for them. New things will spring up with a high demand.
    Live and love... your neighbourhood.

  76. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Went to the open stage at Kelly's Pub last night. Draft on special, good sized crowd, lots of different players, some of whom were VERY talented. A good night, all around!
    Thanks for the great review! This is Naomi. I host it. We have been implementing a lot of tactics to get the Open Stage off the ground. It's going well, and I'm glad you enjoyed it.
    www.sixstringloaded.com

  77. #77

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    Clr. Mckeen was on CTV news last night lecturing a bunch of reporters about Edmontonians spending hundreds of dollars to see aging rockstars but not spending $20 to see "an amazing emerging local artist".

    There were no details just that the Edmonton Music Initiative wants to increase the number of stages and local musicians getting paid.

    Sounds good in theory but there appears to be a bit of wheel reinvention happening. There are plenty of stages sitting fallow around town that could use some programming.

    http://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/video?binId=1.2118565

  78. #78
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    ^ CHED story
    http://www.630ched.com/2015/06/15/a-...t-local-music/

    The City of Edmonton is calling for more investment in local musicians – - and venues for those musicians to play in.

    Still in it’s very early stages, the project is called the “Live Music Initiative” – - which would boost the local music scene in Edmonton.

    Councillor Scott McKeen, says a major issue is encouraging local talent to stay local – - or watch those musicians head to other big cities.

    “We lose musicians to Toronto and Montreal; they reach a certain point in their career, and then they’re gone.” says McKeen. “Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a scene here, where they could at least stay longer and Edmontonians could enjoy that.”

    McKeen adds that part of bolstering the Edmonton music scene is getting more venues up and running.

    Also part of the plan is developing a system that would organize an artist pay scale and booking schedule.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    Clr. Mckeen was on CTV news last night lecturing a bunch of reporters about Edmontonians spending hundreds of dollars to see aging rockstars but not spending $20 to see "an amazing emerging local artist".

    There were no details just that the Edmonton Music Initiative wants to increase the number of stages and local musicians getting paid.

    Sounds good in theory but there appears to be a bit of wheel reinvention happening. There are plenty of stages sitting fallow around town that could use some programming.

    http://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/video?binId=1.2118565
    There may be ''plenty of stages sitting fallow around town'', but the problem of most of them is that the owners of said stages don't want to pay for the entertainment. Hence the number of open stages, karaoke, etc. Open stages, the biggest con going. Rope in a bunch of hopefuls with some fake claims about being seen by somebody influential in the biz. Yeah, right. Let's be honest, Edmonton bar/club owners, you're cheap.
    Nisi Dominus Frustra

  80. #80

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    ^ Maybe. Margins are pretty thin in the local pub biz.

    My suggestion is that other community based organizations such as community leagues could be animating these stages that are otherwise sitting empty.

  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey View Post
    ^ CHED story
    http://www.630ched.com/2015/06/15/a-...t-local-music/

    The City of Edmonton is calling for more investment in local musicians – - and venues for those musicians to play in.

    Still in it’s very early stages, the project is called the “Live Music Initiative” – - which would boost the local music scene in Edmonton.

    Councillor Scott McKeen, says a major issue is encouraging local talent to stay local – - or watch those musicians head to other big cities.

    “We lose musicians to Toronto and Montreal; they reach a certain point in their career, and then they’re gone.” says McKeen. “Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a scene here, where they could at least stay longer and Edmontonians could enjoy that.”

    McKeen adds that part of bolstering the Edmonton music scene is getting more venues up and running.

    Also part of the plan is developing a system that would organize an artist pay scale and booking schedule.
    Stfu and get on with what you were elected to do. Sure, playing pseudo impresario is so much more glamorous than real nuts and bolts council work, but guess what, that's not what you're being paid to do.

    Council sanctioned music "scenes"?... Give it a rest.
    Last edited by expat; 16-06-2015 at 04:07 PM.
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  82. #82
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    I totally agree with Concillor McKeen. I made my living for 20 years as a musician, and with the exception of the few years that taverns had live music, we left Edmonton and worked in the USA, Toronto, Montreal and Quebec City. Live local music is an integral part of local culture that brings a city to life. One of the reasons the downtown core died was the loss of The Corona Hotel Tavern and Lounge, the Embers and more. In the 70s, downtown was alive. Local musicians contributed to the vibrancy of our city.
    Fly Edmonton first. Support EIA

  83. #83
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    I always thought bands left for Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver because that's where most of this country's record labels and recording studios are.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  84. #84
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    There once was a lot of work for musicians in Edmonton. Most of the Edmonton recording groups did their recording in Clovis, New Mexico at the Norman Petty Studios (where Buddy Holly and The Fireballs, and other groups recorded.)
    Fly Edmonton first. Support EIA

  85. #85

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    In order for this to happen, there needs to be a change in how we look at music. Right now, it's primarily as a way to sell more booze. We need to appreciate music for being music. Kill the distractions during the performance. If you need a drink, get it at the intermission. If you can go to the symphony or a play without having a drink all the time, you can sit and enjoy a smaller performance as well.

    There will always be bar bands. Until we look past that though, our musicians will, for the most part, look for greener pastures.

  86. #86

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    Quote Originally Posted by 24karat View Post
    I totally agree with Concillor McKeen. I made my living for 20 years as a musician, and with the exception of the few years that taverns had live music, we left Edmonton and worked in the USA, Toronto, Montreal and Quebec City. Live local music is an integral part of local culture that brings a city to life. One of the reasons the downtown core died was the loss of The Corona Hotel Tavern and Lounge, the Embers and more. In the 70s, downtown was alive. Local musicians contributed to the vibrancy of our city.
    None of the places you talk about were owned or operated by the city.

    I want more places for musicians to play as well. If McKeen wants to kickstart a fund that supports organizations who present music then great. But what I gleaned from his comments was a more... ahem "activist" position.

  87. #87

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    Quote Originally Posted by kkozoriz View Post
    In order for this to happen, there needs to be a change in how we look at music. Right now, it's primarily as a way to sell more booze. We need to appreciate music for being music. Kill the distractions during the performance. If you need a drink, get it at the intermission. If you can go to the symphony or a play without having a drink all the time, you can sit and enjoy a smaller performance as well.

    There will always be bar bands. Until we look past that though, our musicians will, for the most part, look for greener pastures.
    Remind me when finger-wagging (yours and Clr. MicKeen's) was an effective way of altering behaviour you don't agree with?

  88. #88

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajs View Post
    Clr. Mckeen was on CTV news last night lecturing a bunch of reporters about Edmontonians spending hundreds of dollars to see aging rockstars but not spending $20 to see "an amazing emerging local artist".

    There were no details just that the Edmonton Music Initiative wants to increase the number of stages and local musicians getting paid.

    Sounds good in theory but there appears to be a bit of wheel reinvention happening. There are plenty of stages sitting fallow around town that could use some programming.

    http://edmonton.ctvnews.ca/video?binId=1.2118565
    McKeen should realize that people pay good money to see aging rock stars because the rock band usually as a history with them. They go to listen to music they listened to in their youth, they go for the atmosphere, the memories etc. McKeen should not pitch today's musicians against ageing rockers. Music is music. He should stick with keeping his face fuzz looking dapper.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  89. #89
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    Local politics, the last refuge of failed performers the world over.

    He is hoping that having a few people with musical backgrounds in provincial politics -- including jazz musician David Shepherd who is MLA for Edmonton-Centre and Rod Loyola, MLA for Edmonton-Ellerslie and member of Edmonton "raptivist" hip hop group People's Poets -- will make the provincial government more amenable to new ideas to support the local music scene.
    While the initiative is in its early stages, the city intends to send a few delegates to Austin, Texas, to see what hmakes their city successful in terms of live music.

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2015/06/1...-local-artists
    Tax payer funded "fact finding missions", way more fun than fixing pot-holes eh?...
    "The only really positive thing one could say about Vancouver is, it’s not the rest of Canada." Oink (britishexpats.com)

  90. #90

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    I went to the Metropolis in Montreal to see Edmonton Expats Purity Ring and Born Gold. The club holds 2,300 and is a great venue. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M%C3%A..._(concert_hall)

    The sight lines are fantastic and the place is clean and well run.

    Inside
    www.wantickets.com

    Bar style seating in the balcony
    www.lapresse.ca

    Believe it or not, this is how small the frontage of this place is.



    I know Purity Ring had trouble finding a larger venue in Edmonton for their tour until Red Bull came forward and suggested an outdoor concert at WCSquare and paid for everything to make it a free concert. We need a good indoor venue in the 2000-4000 class.
    Last edited by Edmonton PRT; 17-06-2015 at 06:07 AM.
    Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.

  91. #91
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    ^ Looks very nice. Good capacity, and your pics suggest a small club atmosphere. Thanks.

  92. #92
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    Live music in Edmonton changed forever with the disco era, and the dance club scene, which was once the purlieu of live cabaret bands, has been largely dominated by DJ's since the 70's.

    Now the live music scene is like a subset. Fewer people of any generation seem to be going out. It's tough to get people out of the house, period.

    That's one reason a growing venue for live music is in people's houses. House concerts have become very popular. I'm even thinking of starting a small agency in town specializing in them. People present an artist in their home, and invite a bunch of friends who each chip in $10 or something.

    Another thing I'm seeing with some friends is live internet concerts. There's a site somewhere where the artist can live stream their concert from their own home, and people pay $5 (or whatever) to see and hear them in the comfort of their own homes.

    That more or less eliminates the main reason people go out - to relax and meet friends.

    Maybe I can talk Scott into hosting a house concert?
    aka Jim Good; "The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up." - Steven Wright

  93. #93

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    Karaoke killed the live music scene. Everybody thinks they are an entertainer.
    Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.

  94. #94

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmonton PRT View Post
    I went to the Metropolis in Montreal to see Edmonton Expats Purity Ring and Born Gold. The club holds 2,300 and is a great venue. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M%C3%A..._(concert_hall)

    The sight lines are fantastic and the place is clean and well run.

    Inside
    www.wantickets.com

    Bar style seating in the balcony
    www.lapresse.ca

    Believe it or not, this is how small the frontage of this place is.



    I know Purity Ring had trouble finding a larger venue in Edmonton for their tour until Red Bull came forward and suggested an outdoor concert at WCSquare and paid for everything to make it a free concert. We need a good indoor venue in the 2000-4000 class.
    Reminds me a bit of The Starlite, except bigger... What is the capacity of the Starlite? aound 1,000?

  95. #95

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    Quote Originally Posted by kkozoriz View Post
    In order for this to happen, there needs to be a change in how we look at music. Right now, it's primarily as a way to sell more booze. We need to appreciate music for being music. Kill the distractions during the performance. If you need a drink, get it at the intermission. If you can go to the symphony or a play without having a drink all the time, you can sit and enjoy a smaller performance as well.

    There will always be bar bands. Until we look past that though, our musicians will, for the most part, look for greener pastures.
    Keep your paws off my beer or you'll pull back a stump.

  96. #96

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    Edmontunes will be doing a live broadcast from Remedy Cafe for the Make Music Edmonton event. Hope to see you all there!

    http://makemusicedmonton.com/

  97. #97

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    Quote Originally Posted by lat View Post
    Reminds me a bit of The Starlite, except bigger... What is the capacity of the Starlite? aound 1,000?
    I don't think it's close to that. Maybe 500? And the sight lines are horrible. 1/3rd of the capacity is back by the bar with no visibility, and the stairs in the middle removes a ton of great raised viewing space since they generally enforce a no-standing rule on the stairs.

    The space above would be a dream come true here.
    "Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction" - Blaise Pascal

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    The space above is reportedly a 2,300 capacity. tThe Jube is what 2,500 and looks to be several times bigger. Maybe they don't have capacity limits in Quebec for fire safety.

  99. #99
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    Edmonton loses another music venue, with closure of Pawn Shop http://ow.ly/OL8Gx
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  100. #100

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    What a drag. Pawn Shop wasn't my favourite venue but it's closing is another hole in the scene. Something's gotta give.

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