By Will McGuirk
Yes. In just its second year, Springtide Music Festival is sold-out of its gated venue wristbands, two weeks before the festival starts. It takes place Friday Apr 26 and Saturday Apr 27.
The wristband gives the purchaser access to the main stage area featuring headliners Born Ruffians, Zeus and Birds of Bellwoods as well as the many other acts performing in the many venues throughout downtown Uxbridge. Venues include the Second Wedge Brewery, Nexus Coffee, Tin Mill Restaurant and Urban Pantry. Acts include Jim Bryson, Kalle Mattson, Rory Taillon, Matt Gunn, Lindy Vopnfjord, Future History, Goodnite Sunrise and Robyn Ottolini.
Wristbands get you in, wristbands are sold out. The weekend as well as the daily - sold-out!
Joanne Richter who co-founded the festival along with Tania Senior and Patty Ewaschuk, credits the wide appeal of the acts and venues as well as a supportive community for the success of Springtide.
“It offers a variety of high quality live music experiences, from bands like Born Ruffians on the outdoor main stage to small, intimate “listening room”-type settings, in places like a historic mill-turned-restaurant. Plus, the festival involves so many people in our community - whether they’re small business owners welcoming music into their space, local sponsors, volunteers (doing everything!) or council members lending their support. So everyone feels ownership,” she says in an email.
Although you may not own a wristband there are still multiple acoustic pop-up performances which will be open to the public. Performances over the two days include Allanah Kemp at Blue Heron Books, Raven at the Tin Mill, Brian Wride at Uxbridge Smoke House, Geoff Holt at Nexus Coffee, My Father’s Son at Bluebell Paper & Press, Rare Erth at Preston Gallery and Julien Kelland at Rutledge Jewellers.
I worked in Uxbridge at Blue Heron Books for several months last year and I witnessed the arts and music community interact and support each other in their individual and collective endeavours. From Dave Bidini reading at Second Wedge to a Ted Barris presentation of the film Dam Busters to the annual Handmade arts market, sold-out was a common phrase in that town.
While the visual and literary arts are well catered too in the town, there was a question hovering over support for the music scene. I was hearing the lack of opportunities for new music were a concern for the local bands. That venue void was also a concern for others and out of that concern rose Springtide.
“The Uxbridge music community is the heart of this festival,” says Richter. “Our aim is to celebrate the incredible amount of talent in this town, and you’ll see their names all up and down the schedule. Many of them are also volunteers. Our founding team are mainly musical artists.”
There is a rich list of acts on the Springtide Festival schedule. The festival is stacked with artists of all kinds and importantly, of all ages.
“The sweetest thing about the festival is that we feature a Young Artists Stage on the Saturday - we have the artists aged 18 and under, go through the same application process as the adults, and those who are selected get a paid performance slot that they work really hard at, in the months leading up to Springtide. You can hear them at all the open mics. The musicianship is astounding.,” says Richter.
Young Artists Stage
Bridge Boiz, Jude Veens, Reckless Youth, Carley Hope, Harmony Ker, Uxbridge (The Band), Nate Hobor