10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston This June

By Jordan Whitehouse

Summer finally arrives this month, and live music lovers know what that means: bands big and small are hitting the road again. This June in Kingston take your pick from travelling troubadours like Spencer Burton, up-and-coming pop stars like Scott Helman, the most legendary singer-songwriter of all time (hint: the answer may be blowin’ in the wind), and more.

Miss Emily Sings Kingston

Photo via Lisa MacIntosh.

Friday, June 2, 7:30pm
Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts
As The Tragically Hip’s Rob Baker put it, Emily Fennell has “an angelic voice with just a hint of sultry devilishness. This gal is a rocket ready to take off.” And he’d know, since he and fellow Hip-mate Gord Sinclair have played on two albums with her. Her performances move from rhythm and blues to jazz to rock and back again. At this one, expect a foot-stomping good time featuring songs written by Emily and her favourite Kingston artists, some of whom will join her onstage.
$24
theisabel.ca


Road Apples

Photo via Road Apples Facebook.

Saturday, June 3, 10pm
The Merchant Tap House
The next best thing to seeing The Tragically Hip live is getting down with this iconic tribute band. From Kingston themselves, Road Apples formed in 1992 and quickly became the busiest and most sought after Hip tribute band in the country. This show will bring the fab Kingston’s five’s now iconic rock songs back to where they were first heard: a low-ceilinged, beer-stained bar packed with locals just needing a little a little liquid courage to keep going.
merchanttaphouse.com


Fluffy Little Cowboys

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Fluffy Little Cowboys.

Thursday, June 8, 8pm
Musiikki Café
The name Fluffy Little Cowboys is more than a little tongue in cheek for this alt-Americana female trio from PEI. They aren’t fluffy, they aren’t cowboys and their sound isn’t little. Think country, roots, folk and blues with spoken word and punk rock mixed in. They recently debuted their LP No Angel, and now Shelley, Maureen and Keelin are hitting the road, making a stop at this gem of a tiny whiskey bar on Brock Street.
musiikkicafe.com


YGK Craft Beer Fest

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Kasador.

Saturday, June 10, 12pm – 8pm
Fort Henry
The fresh, local suds may be what draws you to the YGK Craft Beer Fest, but the full day of live music should keep you there. Bands are still being added to the lineup, but so far The Stares, Ambush and five-piece indie rock band Kasador are set to play. Kasador (pictured) released their self-titled debut just last year, but already they’ve appeared on the same bill as Canadian greats like Arkells, July Talk, Lights and Wintersleep. Catch what could be the next big Kingston band on the outdoor stage overlooking Lake Ontario.
$15
forthenry.com


Spencer Burton

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Spencer Burton Facebook.

Saturday, June 10, 5pm – 7:30pm
The Mansion
Southern Ontario singer-songwriter Spencer Burton first made his mark with Attack in Black and City and Colour before going solo in 2014. He brought the goods on his acoustic-driven LP Don’t Let the World See Your Love, and now he’s stepping up his game. His latest, Songs Of, was cut in Nashville and given the full-band treatment. It’s a sweeping follow-up that moves effortlessly between country-gospel weepers, gentle rustic odes and string-filled haunters. The Mansion’s Living Room should be the perfect soundstage for Burton’s deep resonant vocals.
$10
mansion.rocks


Supernatural Buffalo

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Supernatural Buffalo Facebook.

Saturday, June 10, 8pm
Musiikki Café
When I first heard the song “Dime a Dozen” from this psychedelic four-piece, I thought instant summer jam. The layered, groovy dreamscape it creates — like many of Supernatural Buffalo’s tunes — is probably best enjoyed on your back on a dock. Or on a beach, watching the surf roll in. The band itself was formed in the town of Crystal Beach on the shores of Lake Erie and today plays across the country. Their promise: to “take you on a musical trip somewhere between earth and ethereal, grit and grace.”
musiikkicafe.com


The Pick Brothers Band

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via The Pick Brothers Band Facebook.

Wednesday, June 14, 8pm
The Mansion
The Pick Brothers are known as one of the hardest-working indie rock bands going, so it’s not surprising they’re finally getting the buzz they deserve. The three bros are from Toronto, but since 2013 they’ve been criss-crossing the country with, as they put it, a “familiar yet strange blend of high energy rocking with introspective creativity.” They’ve opened for The Sam Roberts Band, The Arkells, Houndmouth and others, and are now headlining their own shows with ease.
$10
mansion.rocks


Neon Dreams

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Wiki Creative Commons.

Saturday, June 17, 9pm
The Mansion
This Halifax band has been one of the most successful fully independent Canadian acts in recent memory. Last year, their track “Marching Bands,” made with Kardinal Offishall, hit number 15 on the Canadian top 40 chart, and to date their EP To You has been streamed over 5 million times. You’ll definitely want to get up and move at this show if you’re any fan of electronic pop, especially if you like your EDM mixed with live instrumentation.
mansion.rocks


Scott Helman

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Scott Helman Facebook.

Saturday, June 24, 7pm
The Mansion
Singer-songwriter Scott Helman is only 21, but he’s already an industry vet. When he was 15, he blew away a room full of Warner Music Canada executives. Four years later he had his first platinum-certified single with “Bungalow.” He went on to earn two Juno nominations, tour the U.S. and Europe, and play the 2015 MMVAs and 2016 Junos. His sound is rooted in guitar-driven pop and classic alternative rock.
$15
mansion.rocks


Bob Dylan and His Band Live

10 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston, Ontario This June
Photo via Marcello Linzalone FlickrCC

Tuesday, June 27, 8pm
Rogers K-Rock Centre
What can you say about an artist who has influenced music more than The Beatles? Who has won a Nobel Prize for Literature? Who has remained an original for over 50 years? Who never stops touring? Book loads, it turns out. So just go see him. You’ll hear new hits and classics like “Highway 61 Revisited” and “Tangled Up in Blue” — but probably not how you know them. Dylan plays what he wants how he wants, and that’s always changing. Thankfully that’s also always electrifying to watch.
$55 – $85
rogersk-rockcentre.com


Five weekly concert series also begin this month. Here are the details:

  1. Music in the Park
    Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, 12:30pm – 1:30pm
    Confederation Park
    downtownkingston.ca
  2. Country Music in the Park
    Thursdays, 7pm – 8pm
    Confederation Park
    downtownkingston.ca
  3. Big Band Friday
    Fridays, 7pm – 8pm
    Courtyard in Market Square
    downtownkingston.ca
  4. Sounds on Sydenham
    Saturdays, 1:30 – 2:30pm
    Sydenham Street (between Menchies & Balzacs)
    downtownkingston.ca
  5. St. George’s Cathedral Summer Concerts
    Thursdays
    St. George’s Cathedral
    stgeorgescathedral.ca