Every year, Canadian Music Week invades Toronto, letting 800 bands take over 55 different venues over five nights. It’s really fun chaos. This year’s fest starts on Wednesday, March 9th. So as you’re unlikely to go buy a $75 wristband at this point, it’s in Dork Shelf’s best and wonderfully cheap interests to tell you about the great, free portions of the festival.
If you’re interested in who to see at night though, I made up a list and check out the schedule.
Live Near Bellwoods: The Living Room Sessions
The Toronto Institute for the Enjoyment of Music is pairing up with the Musebox, Spinner, Humble Empire and Ta2 Sound & Music to bring us three full days of daytime music. There will be 6-7 bands Thursday, Friday and Saturday in a fake living room on Queen Street West for 30 minutes each. Some highlights include Allie Hughes and Rich Aucoin on Thursday, Olenka and the Autumn Lovers, Hooded Fang and Aidan Knight and the Wilderness of Manitoba on Friday.
Visit the Facebook event page here.
Sonic Boom’s In-store Performances
A few of our local record shops do in-stores on a regular basis, but festivals kick up the oomph a notch. Sonic Boom clearly does it the best (and not just because they have a built-in stage and equipment in the basement), they’ve been able to snag the big names (probably because of the $25 gift card), can fit the most people, offer custom-made posters for a $1 donation and have a food bank donation box. They’ve announced some big names for the in-stores Thursday, Friday and Saturday, including The Most Serene Republic, J Mascis and Karkwa respectively.
Check out the full lineup poster here.
Indie Love Radio’s VIP Lounge Performances and Interviews
Melissa DiMarco, known to most Canadians as Degrassi: TNG’s Principal Hatzilakos, is a big fan of doing celebrity interviews. She has a television show on CityTV for it, Out There with Melissa DiMarco, and now she’s paired with Indie Love Radio for Canadian Music Week interviews for the second year. The pairing will broadcast some interesting interviews and short performances at the Royal York’s VIP Lounge from Wednesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to midnight. Guests this year include Amos the Transparent, D-Sisive, The Ruby Spirit, Charlotte Cornfield and more.
Read more and listen in on Indie Love.
You can see more of my CMW predictions and general music fascinations on RoundLetters, and my excited live tweeting of the festival @roundletters.