Juno what to do

Or maybe you don’t, and are awash in the tidal wave of Canadian music that is Juno Week.

Totally understandable! This may just be the busiest week of music for the city since, well, the last time the Junos were in town in 2002. Never fear. Whether you’ve just pulled into town, you’re already sick of it, or are simply looking to snap a selfie with Michael Bublé, we’ve got suggestions for places to be.

By Sarah Smellie • Illustrations by Ricky King

You know ‘em, you love ‘em, and you might want to touch ‘em. The city is sure to piled high with Canadian celebrity, and you want autographs, dammit! Or at least an opportunity point and gawk. Here are the best shows and events to do some serious star spotting.

Friday, April 16

Keep your stick on the ice at the Jack Byrne Arena for the Juno Cup hockey game, which pits Canadian hockey legends against Canadian music legends for a fundraising hockey game in support of MusiCounts. The first face-off goes down at 7:30pm. Allan Hawco versus Paul Coffey? We’re there.

Next, head on over to the Delta Ballroom to catch the all-ages, sold out Metric show, which starts at 9:15. They will be letting 100 lucky folks with JunoFest wristbands, so hope is not lost.

Then wrap up the evening at Trapper John’s, where Rex Goudie hits the stage at midnight.

Saturday, April 17

From 12am until 3pm, Juno Fan Fare is your chance to schmooze with all your favorite Candian music stars, including Alexisonfire, Carly Rae Jepsen, Classified, Danny Fernandes, Faber Drive, George Canyon, Johnny Reid, Shiloh, Stereos, Terri Clark, and The Road Hammers. You’ll barely notice the chains around their ankles securing them to their autograph stations! (Just kidding, we think!) This is an all-ages event. Venue is the Village Shopping Centre, and admission is free.

Alexisonfire starts rocking the second big Delta Ballroom show at 9:15. This show is all-ages, and, like the Metric show, is sold out, but they have 100 first-come-first-served spaces for JunoFest wristband holders.

Sunday, April 18

This is it! The red carpet! The Ben Mulroney sightings! Blue Rodeo! Teen sensation Justin Bieber! Bublé! Bublé! Bublé! The Juno Awards Broadcast gets rolling at Mile One Centre at 7:45pm, but you might want to show up early for a chance at some hobnobbing. Grab your tickets at admission.com or at the Mile One Centre box office.


No matter where you’re from, if it’s not the island of Newfoundland, it’s Away. If you’d like to get better acquainted, and see who’s really filling the bars in St. John’s, check out these shows.

April 15th-20th

From April 15th to April 20th, CBTG’s is hosting The No-Case In Your Face Festival, “No-casing a multi-genre sampling of the best of St. John’s.” Highlights include the Mudflowers, Colonel Craze and the Hunch, AE Bridger and Local Tough. Check out the event at www.bit.ly/d3xtxV for the full line-up.

Friday, April 16

Let the Pathological Lovers kick start your weekend at 10pm at The Ship. Then check out the carnival-esque Mark Bragg, the wide-eyed ringmaster of a twisted, Nick Cave-like circus. He’ll be taming the animals at The Well, beginning at midnight.

Saturday, April 17

Catch a set by the wildly popular newcomers Matthew Hornell and the Diamond Minds at 10pm at the Greensleeves Pub. Then go check out more phenomenal musicianship of a different sort—the hippest-trad-band-on-the-go sort—at the Greensleeves when the Dardanelles take the stage at midnight. Saucy, electro-pop locals Mercy, the Sexton are slated to open up for Amy Millan and Land of Talk at The Ship, starting at 10pm.


It’s actually totally cool to be a bit stoked about the whole thing, which is weird because it’s like this big-name, corporate awards show thing. But seriously, a lot of sick bands are playing.

I know, right?

Friday, April 16

The crowd at the Handsome Furs show, 10pm at Club One, will be dancing their asses off to the Furs’ signature drum-machine beat battalion and face-shredding guitar riffs. Wolf Parade yadda yadda… This is the band Dan Boeckner was made for. Then, one small, serene step away from the mighty Broken Social Scene, The Most Serene Republic bring their dense instrumentation and winding, open-heart pop epics, to The Ship at 11pm.

Saturday, April 17

Today is pretty much a hipster death match between The Ship and The Well. You might have to use Pitchfork ratings as your guide.

First up at The Well, Postdata, comprised of Wintersleep’s Paul Murphy and his brother, will break a few hearts as they strum their way through their warm and hushed collection of songs from their self-titled album, apparently recorded as a gift for their mother. Then at 11pm, Bahamas, aka Afie Jurvanen, busts out his pink Strat for a few rolling, heart-in-your-mouth-and-hands-in-your-pocket little ditties. To finish off the night, the ever-engaging Julie Doiron graces us with her fiercely delicate vocals and kickass guitar.

Over at The Ship, 11pm brings Amy Milan to the stage. Oh, she’s in Stars. She’s in Broken Social Scene. And now she’s in St. John’s, playing her low-slung and heartbroken, pedal-steel-and-Emmylou-Harris-style solo material. Next up at midnight is another Broken Social Scener’s project, Land of Talk. Elizabeth Powell fronts this one.


If it’s a high energy show with lots of dancing you’re after, there’s plenty to choose from, but here are a handful of sure-things…

Friday, April 16

Gypsophilia, a seven-piece Django-funk-klezmer outfit from Halifax are set to burn holes in the bottoms of your shoes at Dusk (10pm). On the same night, The Novaks hit the stage at The Ship (midnight.) The kids will be out to pump their fists for St. John’s own gritty little rock outfit that could.

Meanwhile, the Idlers also play a midnight show a few blocks away at The Levee. Someone’s going to try and pack the 11-piece reggae band and their rabid entourage into this little bar. We suggest you tag along. This will be the party show.

Saturday, April 17

The Good Lovelies will be sure to charm show-goers with upbeat folk tendencies… Western swing and sugar-sweet three-part harmonies at Green Sleeves (11pm).

Meanwhile, Carolyn Mark and alt-country group N.Q. Arbuckle are all set for midnight at Trapper John’s. You cannot, not ever, beat Carolyn Mark for show-womanship. She could get up and sing Bon Iver covers all night and it’d still be a raucous, kick-up-your-heels kind of night. Have fun.


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30 October 2009

  1. Elling Lien · October 30, 2009

    The performances for the Pathological Lovers and Mercy, The Sexton were switched just after press time. The correct dates and times have been changed above.

    Pathological Lovers at The Ship on April 16 at 10pm
    Mercy, The Sexton at The Ship on April 17 at 10pm

  2. Rib Roast · October 30, 2009

    I would care if Priestess were coming. But they aren’t, so I don’t.

  3. unclerodsknife · October 30, 2009

    Free All-Ages Show

    Friday the 16th

    Les Domestics
    Sherry Ryan
    Joe Belly
    Black Molly
    Ilia Nicoll

    @ Model Citizens, 3pm – 6pm

  4. danielle · October 30, 2009

    does it cost money to get onto george street tonight

  5. Bryhanna Greenough · October 30, 2009

    I don’t think so, as far as I can tell. However Sunday night is $20/$25.

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