There’s nothing like being with a crowd of fans as your favourite band plays late into a summer evening in your home city. Every summer, RBC helps put on epic music festivals throughout Canada. Not only are these amazing festivals, but they also provide opportunities for up-and-coming RBCxMusic artists to perform.
Fancy seeing the Foo Fighters playing live on an island in Ontario? Or you’re more into singing along with country music stars on warm P.E.I. beaches? There’s something for every music lover at this summer’s top music festivals.
1. Lavender Wild Festival (RBC Echo Beach, Toronto, ON)
June 4, 2023
Just as when Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix played to crowds at Woodstock in 1969 — a new generation is working to create a world where people can celebrate and express themselves just as they are. Lavender Wild Festival celebrates the queer community and boasts a top 2SLGBTQI+ lineup of national and international talent. Hayley Kiyoko, one of NPR’s “Most Influential Women Musicians” of the 21st century, plays to crowds on the Sun Stage. Also performing is Norway’s Marie Ulven, who’s known for singing impossibly stunning, personal tunes about sexuality and mental health with her band, girl in red. You can expect colourful events involving drag queens and artists empowering community and togetherness this June at Toronto’s RBC Echo Beach.
2. RBC Bluesfest (LeBreton Flats Park, Ottawa, ON)
July 6-16, 2023
There are big festivals, and then there’s RBC Bluesfest. This award-winning event is easily the nation’s largest music festival.
It’s a week-long party where 300,000 festival-goers can see more than 200 acts perform in what Billboard Magazine calls one of the “10 most successful outdoor music festivals on earth.”
On the RBC Stage this year, expect to see Canadian international headliners Shania Twain, Tegan and Sara, Deathcab for Cutie, Pitbull, Weezer, and the Foo Fighters. Known for putting on mind-blowing live performances, Foo frontman Dave Grohl described the electricity of playing to huge crowds as one that induces a kind of collective maelstrom of emotion: “You can sing a song to 85,000 people, and they’ll sing it back for 85,000 different reasons.”
3. Cavendish Beach Music Festival (Cavendish, PEI)
July 6-8, 2023
A festival on a warm P.E.I. beach is just a whole other vibe. The red-gold sands of Cavendish Beach make the Cavendish Beach Music Festival one of the most picturesque.
A two-time winner of the Canadian Country Music Association award for Festival/Event of the Year, this is the biggest multi-day outdoor music festival in Atlantic Canada. Gorgeous voices mix with the sounds of 60,000+ partiers and beautiful, rolling Atlantic waves. This year’s acts include Delaware’s Jamie Allen and Alberta’s Tenille Townes, as well as big-name favourites Kane Brown, Chris Stapleton, and Jake Owen. And check out the RBC Emerging Artists Stage, where ticket-holders can discover the next generation of up-and-coming national acts. In other words, this year’s line-up is an epic one.
4. RBC Rock the Park (Harris Park, London, ON)
July 12-15, 2023
Different music genres for different days are just part that makes RBC Rock the Park unique.
One of the top music festivals of 2023 and a mainstay of London’s summer festival scene, on opening night, you can expect folky mega-acts like Mumford and Sons and Vance Joy to create a blissful festival atmosphere. Friday night, you’ll get amped up with Ludacris, Ja Rule, Ashanti, and the Ying Yang Twins. Closing night on Saturday was made for rock-loving fans of Billy Talent and Alexisonfire.
5. ÎleSoniq (Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montreal, QC)
August 12-13, 2023
Speaking of epic 2023 music festivals, this August, the hypnotic beats of international acts like Alesso, Above & Beyond, and The Chainsmokers are set to electrify one epic August weekend in Montreal; Canada’s own Deadmau5 will be playing Québec’s biggest party.
Now in its eighth year, ÎleSoniq is one of Canada’s biggest and most hedonistic electronic music festivals, with crowds of 30,000 and massive light shows to match the surging performances.
Good news for EDM fans: This year, for the first time, the festival’s most requested act Dutch DJ and Martin Garrix will be headlining the mega-stage.
6. Burnaby Blues + Roots Festival (Deer Lake Park, Burnaby, BC)
August 12, 2023
Burnaby Blues + Roots Festival is a joyful, family-friendly festival that makes spending summertime in the city a joy. And this year, for the first time, this lakeside party is free. There’s no better time to gather your crew beneath the cherry and maple trees of Burnaby’s Deer Lake Park. You can create memories and enjoy hearing local and international blues, folk, and roots artists play to B.C.’s relaxed crowds.
This article is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. Information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates.