Recommendations: Live music in July


Canadian hip-hop artist Shad returns to the Pyramid Cabaret for the Jazz Fest this year. He’s a critical favourite and for good reason, switching between thoughtful and playful rhymes with ease. His last album, the Juno-winning TSOL, could totally be played at a party; it’s a brainy good time. You can also get a little closer to the guy at his speaking engagement the day before the show.

  • Where: St. Margaret’s Anglican Church, 160 Ethelbert Street
  • When: June 23, 7:30 p.m.
  • Cost: Free (speaking engagement)
  • Where: Pyramid Cabaret, 176 Fort Street
  • When: June 24, 10 p.m.
  • Cost: $18 in advance


If you would have told the 16-year-old me that NOFX is coming to Winnipeg I would have freaked out. Now there are plenty of people freaking out about Fat Mike and the gang coming to Manitoba, and rightfully so. Punk bands of this quality don’t typically stay together this long and if they do it’s entirely possible they re-brand themselves and start selling songs to hair care commercials.

  • When: June 27, 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Burton Cummings Theatre, 364 Smith Street
  • Cost: $19.50 – $29.50

The Black Keys

It doesn’t feel like it, but it’s been a long time since The Black Keys recorded their first studio album in the early 2000s. Last year the Akron duo released their sixth major release, entitled Brothers, and will be promoting it this summer across the Great White North. It’s incredible to witness just how much sound can come out of what is essentially a two-man band. The Black Keys should have no trouble filling the MTS Centre with that sweet electro-bluesy noise.

  • When: July 2, 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: MTS Centre, 300 Portage Avenue
  • Cost: $37 – $47

Winnipeg Folk Fest

This year’s Winnipeg Folk Fest seems a little more country oriented than most years, but there are still a host of acts that will appeal to almost any musical sensibility. Polaris nominee Dan Mangan will be performing as well as the likes of Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, Tegan and Sara, M. Ward and, of course, the intrepid Fred Penner. If you’re not into these performers maybe you just want to go and see Toots and the Maytals play “Pressure Drop”?

  • When: July 6-10
  • Where: Birds Hill Provincial Park
  • Cost: Day pass $57 – $79, Festival pass $231 – $271

The Tragically Hip w/Broken Social Scene

Many Winnipeggers have seen the Hip once or twice already, but it’s not often that Gord Downie and company play our city with an opening act as big and as acclaimed as Broken Social Scene. The two bands, along with Hey Rosetta!, will be playing at Shaw Park in what could be a very memorable outdoor concert. Let’s hope for some good weather, am I right?

  • When: July 7, 5:30 p.m.
  • Where: Shaw Park, 1 Portage Avenue E
  • Cost: $47.50 – $89.50

Handsome Furs

Less than a month after the release of their third studio album, Sound Kapital, the Montreal-based indie rock duo Handsome Furs will be performing live at the West End Cultural Centre. Although the band signed with Sub Pop records nearly five years ago, some may recognize vocalist Dan Boeckner more as one of the two driving forces behind the band Wolf Parade. Fans of Wolf Parade can go to enjoy a similar if not slightly subdued, less punchy sound. Still kinda punchy, though.

  • When: July 15, 7:15 p.m.
  • Where: West End Cultural Centre, 586 Ellice Avenue
  • Cost: $12 – $15

Steve Martin & the Steep Canyon Rangers

It’s probably fair to say a good number of people are interesting in seeing this show for the novelty of witnessing a live Steve Martin music show. Thing is, whether it’s performing comedy, writing novels or playing blue grass banjo, Martin has always shown a propensity to pull off a multitude of tasks, and with gusto! The audience here, whether they know it or not, are bound to see a real good show.

  • When: July 27, 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: Pantages Playhouse Theatre, 180 Market Avenue
  • Cost: $45 – $65