12 Can’t-Miss Concerts in Kingston October 2019

By Jordan Whitehouse

The big-ticket shows this month include Dallas Smith and Dean Brody at Leon’s Centre, and Bruce Cockburn at The Grand. But if you want something a bit more intimate, you’ve got lots of options, from Good Lovelies at The Spire to Old Man Luedecke at The Mansion.

Dallas Smith, Dean Brody at the Leon’s Centre

Friday, October 2, 2019, 7 pm

Smith and Brody are two of the biggest names in Canadian country music right now, and this fall they’re touring the country together for the first time. It’s been a couple of years since either has stopped in Kingston, so this two-hour collaborative show should be close to a sellout. Smith’s resume includes an album with four consecutive number one singles — the only Canadian country artist to do so — while Brody (pictured) holds the title for number one selling Canadian digital track of all time (“Bring Down the House”). They’ll be joined by Chad Brownlee, Mackenzie Porter, and The Reklaws.  

Tickets $50 – $150

SOUTH NODE Dance Party at the Grad Club

Friday, October 4, 2019, 9 pm

This semi-regular Kingston dance party will feature three DJs this time around: Natividaddy, who is all about pop, R&B, and Latinx vibes; Deena, who spins soul and hip-hop; and Kilombo, who veers towards house, trap, and world music. Proceeds from each of SOUTH NODE’s events go to organizations fighting for autonomy and social justice. In this case, they’ll go to the LGBTQ folks in Hamilton who were recently charged after countering a protest at the city’s Pride festival. 

Pay what you can

Good Lovelies at the Spire

Saturday, October 5, 2019, 7:30 pm

Ten years and four studio albums after starting Good Lovelies, Kerri Ough, Sue Passmore, and Caroline Brooks are still dropping jaws with the power of their intertwined voices. Country folk has always been at their core, but they dabble in pop, roots, jazz, and hip-hop, too. Want to sing with the trio? Sign up for the choral workshop with them on the afternoon of October 5th. It’s free with the purchase of a ticket, and you’ll get to perform three pieces during the evening concert. For more info and to register, email deire@queensu.ca.

Tickets $25

Alain Lefèvre at the Isabel

Sunday, October 6, 2019, 2:30 pm

French-Canadian pianist and composer Alain Lefèvre is one of this country’s very best, having played in over 40 countries in some of the world’s top venues, including Carnegie Hall and Royal Albert Hall. He’s an Officer of the Order of Canada and has been called a “smashing performer” (Washington Post) and a “pianist who breaks the mold” (International Piano). In Kingston, he’ll play his own works as well masterworks by César Franck, Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, and Sergei Rachmaninov.

Tickets $19 – $59

Old Man Luedecke at the Mansion

Wednesday, October 9, 2019, 7 pm

Nova Scotia singer-songwriter and banjo player Chris “Old Man” Luedecke is all about narrative-driven folk songs that mix in bluegrass and pop hooks. It’s a mix that’s served him well over the past sixteen years, generating eight albums and two Junos for traditional folk album of the year. His latest album, “Easy Money”, his first since 2015, has influences from calypso, country, and of course folk. As always, the playfulness and warmth shine through in big doses. 

Tickets $20

Mauve Grove, Kiss the Fish at Musiikki Café 

Friday, October 11, 2019, 8 pm

Toronto fourpiece Mauve Grove (pictured) calls their sound “avant-funk”, which translates to a smooth party mix of funk and hip-hop, with a few jazz elements thrown in. It’s been getting people on the dance floor all over Ontario since 2016, and maybe it will in the tiny Musiikki, too. The opener, Kingston six-piece Kiss the Fish, should help. They won Queen’s famous Clark Hall Battle of the Bands last year with their catchy blend of old-school blues, classic rock, and alternative.

Pay what you can

Wild T and The Spirit at Little Texas Roadhouse Bar and Grill

Saturday, October 12, 2019, 9 pm

Tony “Wild T” Springer has been playing Jimi Hendrix songs for over 30 years all over North America and Europe. He’s also played with David Bowie, who called him “an absolute delight to work with”, and has shared the stage with Bon Jovi, Deep Purple, Grand Funk Railroad, and others. Jeff Healey once called Tony his “messiah”. No matter what club or festival Wild T and his band plays, they’re known for consistently lighting the roof on fire with Hendrix’s music and their own original songs.  

Tickets $15

PUP at the Ale House

Thursday, October 17, 2019, 8:30 pm

The name of this Toronto punk quartet stands for “Pathetic Use of Potential,” but the opposite seems to be true. They’ve released three albums since 2013, all of which have been nominated for a Polaris Prize, and they continue to get critical acclaim from Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and elsewhere. The band’s influences include Built to Spill, Weezer, Thrush Hermit, The Weakerthans, and Outkast, but their driving pop-punk and indie sound is all their own.      

Tickets $25

Daniel Wesley at the Merchant Tap House

Friday, October 18, 2019, 10 pm

This will be the first of two shows at The Merchant this weekend for Vancouver’s Daniel Wesley. Think reggae-tinged beach music here not far from a Jack Johnson. Wesley has made nine albums to date, his third, “Sing and Dance,” likely the most recognized largely for the single “Ooh Ohh.” These shows should lend a laidback vibe to the cavernous Merchant and get you dreaming of sun and sand. 

Tickets free

The Pariahs at the Toucan

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 10 pm

Formed in the mid-80s in Kingston, The Pariahs took their brand of punk and hard rock to Toronto in 1990, becoming a staple there for the next decade. Whether it’s been a grungy dive or an arena gig alongside the Ramones or The Tragically Hip, their shows are always tight, loud, and beer-soaked. Years ago, frontman Mike Farrell said that the band is “all about the rock ‘n’ roll, it’s always been about that — that and friendship. And mayhem.” Though the original band members are all well into middle age now, word has it they still bring plenty of that mayhem. 

Tickets free

Bruce Cockburn at the Grand Theatre

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 7:30 pm

The output of singer-songwriter Bruce Cockburn over the past 40 years is truly staggering: more than 300 songs, 33 albums, 1 million albums sold in Canada. He’s also won 12 Junos, been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, and is an Officer of the Order of Canada. But it’s the way Cockburn has always connected with audiences that really makes him a legend. And he’s done that by embracing a variety of styles, from folk to jazz, to worldbeat, and not being afraid of singing about the things that matter to him — human rights, the environment, romance, and spirituality. No wonder they call him “Saint”.  

Tickets $50 – $61

Jessica Mitchell at the Mansion

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 7 pm


It was only about five years ago that singer-songwriter Jessica Mitchell turned to country music, but it’s been a great fit. She’s been called country’s Adele, and like the English star, she has a strong, genre-bending voice that lends itself well to lyrics about pain and loss. Mitchell honed her sound in Nashville and Toronto over the past several years and went on to open for artists like Ron Sexsmith, Terri Clark, and Bonnie Raitt. Last year, she released her first album, “Heart of Glass”, a mature, powerful debut showcasing rich storytelling chops. 

Tickets $12