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Toronto’s 18th Annual Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival Sets the Stage for 2020

Announces Three Showcase Events in Addition to Wristband-Accessed Shows.


February is here, the countdown for Toronto’s Winterfolk XVIII is officially on, and tickets for the annual festival’s three separately billeted shows are available now!

All held at the Tranzac Club, these exclusively ticketed events will feature a bevy of multi-award winners like Ken Whiteley, The Layrite Boys, Chris Whiteley, Diana Braithwaite, James Gordon, Jon Brooks, Lynn Miles, and a double daytime bill from Jack de Keyzer. Wristbands for these shows are not necessary; separately purchased tickets are required for entry and tend to sell-out pre-show.

It’s all in a weekend for what’s long become one of Toronto’s most anticipated music festivals. Set to celebrate its 18th year this February 21st – 23rd, the annual Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival sends a clear signal that folk, roots and blues are among the city’s most beloved and sought-after genres. After all, what else but one of Canadian music’s most continuously growing genre sets could inspire fans of all ages to flock to the heart of the city in the midst of a true-blue Canadian winter? 18 years and running?

Juno and multi-Canadian Folk Music award winner Lynn Miles, Juno Award-winning blues artist Jack de Keyzer, authentic Cajun/Zydeco band Swamperella, multi-award winning guitarist Wendell Ferguson — and many more — are among the headliners set to take one of five stages between the Festival’s two new venues: The Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Ave) and The Annex Hotel (296 Brunswick Ave).

As for the additional performers, their combined stacks of accolades are too tall to tally. The rest of the weekend will feature Alfie Smith & Nicole Christian, Barbara Lynch, Ben Sures, Bill Heffernan, Brian Blain, Clela Errington, D’Arcy Wickham & Son, Dan McVeigh, Danny Marks, David McLachlan, David Storey, Diana Braithwaite & Chris Whiteley, Donné Roberts, Faith Nolan, Gathering Sparks, Glen Hornblast, Heather Luckhart, Howard Gladstone, Isaak Bonk, James Gordon, Jerome Tucker Band, Jon Brooks & The Outskirts of Approval, Kevin Breit, Kyp Harness, Laura Fernandez, Lynn Harrison, Lynn Miles, Meg Tennant, Melanie Peterson, Mike McKenna, Mr. Rick, Noah Zacharin, Ori Dagan, Q&A – Zoey Adams & Tony Quarrington, Saije, Sam Broverman, Sebastian Agnello, Soozi Schlanger, Sue & Dwight, Suzanne Jarvie, Taylor Abrahamse, Terry Jones, The Layrite Boys, Vivienne Wilder, Wayne Neon, and more.

The Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival was founded by Festival Director Brian Gladstone, and is a division of The Association of Artists for a Better World, a registered non-profit organization. “This year, we’re celebrating Winterfolk’s 18th birthday and its move west to two new venues in Toronto’s historic Annex neighbourhood,” says Gladstone. “We’re thrilled that Winterfolk XVIII will feature stages in such culturally significant, warmly intimate, and welcoming, inviting venues. This year’s combined celebration has affirmed what we in Toronto have long-recognized: this city has an unwavering commitment to musical excellence.”

Advanced wristband sales for Winterfolk XVIII are now closed, but will be available for purchase at the door on festival weekend. Wristbands allows entry to more than 90 performances and the ability to avoid lineups at the door; there are three additional and separate ticketed events. Winterfolk gratefully acknowledges the generous support of the Department of Canadian Heritage, its media partner Toronto Blues Society, and it’s envoy of dedicated volunteers; those available for volunteer opportunities can visit here.

Winterfolk XVIII Blues and Roots Festival

Friday, February 21st — 7:00pm – 1:00am
Saturday, February 22nd — 1:00pm – 1:00am
Sunday, February 23rd — 1:00pm – 10:00pm
The Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Ave)
The Annex Hotel (296 Brunswick Ave)
Wristbands Available at the Door (While Supplies Last)

Winterfolk XVIII — Blues and Bluegrass
Separate Ticketed Event feat. Ken Whiteley, The Layrite Boys, Chris Whiteley & Diana Braithwaite
Friday, February 21st, 7:00 pm @ the Tranzac Club
292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto ON
$15 in Advance / $25 @ the Door

Winterfolk XVIII — They Put The Folk in Winterfolk
Separate Ticketed Event feat. James Gordon, Jon Brooks & Lynn Miles
Saturday, February 22nd, 7:00 pm @ the Tranzac Club
292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto ON
$15 in Advance / $25 @ the Door

Winterfolk XVIII — Jack de Keyzer Double Bill
Separate Ticketed Event feat. Evolution of Blues Guitar & Blues Guitar Jam
Sunday, February 23rd, 1:00 pm @ the Tranzac Club
292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto ON
$15 in Advance / $25 @ the Door