It ain’t U2 but Elevation will give the CNE pizazz tonight | 150902We Shows for Wednesday, September 02, 2021


I wonder how many readers are old enough to remember when the Canadian National Exhibition used to feature world-class acts on the Grandstand stage in the old Exhibition Stadium during its annual run —performances by then-current Rock stars that ranked with any to be found anywhere.

Some examples: in 1969, when they were at the height of their fame, acts like The Monkees, Buck Owens, Glen Campbell, Tammy Wynette and Sergio Mendez; in 1970: Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, The Temptations, Skeeter Davis; in ’71: Guess Who (who went on to perform for five more consecutive years) and The Jackson Five.  Many other truly certified current chart toppers resonated through the ‘70s: Chicago, The Beach Boys, Helen Reddy, BTO, April Wine, John Denver, The Four Seasons, Kansas, Bay City Rollers, Foreigner, Trooper, Styx, Englebert Humperdinck, Kenny Rogers, Diana Ross to name only some.

The parade of legends continued all through the 1980s with Aerosmith, Bob Dylan, Hall & Oates, Willy Nelson, The Bee Gees and Bryan Ferry and into the mid-90s with Paul Simon, Neil Young, Elton John, Moody Blues, Van Morrison and, arguably the pinnacle in 1994, The Rolling Stones.

Of course these days there are few real Rock stars anymore (at least not under the age of 60) and the grand old dame of fairs has resorted to populating its “Bandshell Stage” with a few fading legends and a wide assortment of other acts that may indeed put on a creditable performance but aren’t what you’d call “event of the summer” material.

Elevation U2 tribute -Facebook

Wouldn’t it be something if you could get an act like, say, U2 to do a show at the CNE?  Well, don’t your breath. But know this: if you’re a fan of Bono and his gang you can indeed get the next best thing tonight when Shawn Brady and his internationally acclaimed U2 tribute Elevation perform at the “Ex”.

They’re not on the bandshell stage but, rather, from 7:30-11, appear on the smaller but still very impressive Midway Stage next to all the thrills and chills of the rides, which won’t be the only source of screams of delight this night.

Brady and co. have been performing at festivals, arenas, fanfests, corporate events and destination venues, as well as live tv appearances, for 13 years now. The band has done shows, its website understandably trumpets, in 187 cities in 12 countries on four continents —and keeps getting asked back for more.

One upside to them doing tonight’s three sets on the Midway Stage rather than in the bandshell is that you don’t have to pay any extra cover to see them —and after 5 p.m. nightly, these days, admission to the CNE is just $6 for adults!

-Gary 17,

SHOW LISTINGS for Wednesday, September 02, 2021

Listings are organized by area in which the shows occur and within each area field shows are listed chronologically.

Listings preceded by an asterisk (*) are repeating weekly events. (Double asterisk indicates repeating event with different hosts/guest/etc.) Admission prices followed by a slash and minus (/-) after the amount indicates door charge with availability of cheaper rates for some purchases. /+ indicates stated price is minimum.

Names of subscribers appear in bold and underlined and, where applicable, include a live link to their websites. Advertisers’ listings are in larger, highlighted type, include live link to website and also have ad icon included in listings.

416 – Toronto Central

6> Lonesome Ace with Kristine Schmitt @ Cameron House (front), 408 Queen St. W., TO

6:30> Richard Whiteman Group @ The Rex, 194 Queen St. W., TO ~Jazz

7> Sean Meredith-Jones @ Monarchs Pub (Eaton Chelsea Hotel), 33 Gerrard St. W., TO ~Jazz

7:30> Troubleshooting plus special guests @ Tranzac Club (Southern Cross), 292 Brunswick Ave. TO

*8-1> open jam with Wednesday’s Child feat. Johnny Bootz Hutt @ Lola, 40 Kensington Ave., TO

8> Evan Malach @ Musideum, 401 Richmond St. W., #133, TO ~songwriter; $20

8> Reveal Me Burlesque @ Rivoli, 334 Queen St. W., TO ~$10

8:30> Wordspell @ Free Times Cafe, 320 College St., TO ~spoken word; $6

*8:30> Crazy Strings host High Lonesome Wednesdays with opening acoustic act @ Silver Dollar 486 Spadina Ave., TO ~Bluegrass

8:30> J.D. McPherson; Nicole Atkins @ Horseshoe Tavern, 370 Queen St. W., TO; $20

*8:45> Bradley & The Bouncers @ Reservoir Lounge, 52 Wellington St. E., TO ~Jazz/Blues/R&B

*9-2> What’s Poppin’ indie jam @ Sneaky Dee’s, 431 College St., TO

9> Dylan Hennessy Music; Mike Whissell Band; Conor Gains Band; Brooklyn Doran Music @ The Paddock, 178 Bathurst St., TO ~indie showcase; $6

*9> open mic with Sean Barker @ Monarch Tavern, 12 Clinton St., TO

9:30> Oliver Pigott & Danka Scepanovic @ C’est What, 67 Front St. E., TO ~indie Pop; pwyc

9:30> Steve Amirault’s 70s Project @ The Rex, 194 Queen St. W., TO ~Jazz

10> Johnson Crook @ Cameron House (front), 408 Queen St. W., TO

10> Jim Sexton & special guests @ Tranzac Club (Southern Cross), 292 Brunswick Ave. TO

*10-2> Blues-Rock jam with Bruce Domoney @ Grossman’s, 379 Spadina Ave. TO

*10:30> The LMT Connection @ Orbit Room, 580 College St. TO ~Funk/R&B; $10

416 – Toronto East

*6-11> Rock jam with Scar-Bro Pete & Lee Van Leer @ Melange, 172 Main St., TO East

*7:30-10:30> The BTBs @ Relish, 2152 Danforth Ave., TO East ~Jazz

8> Gary LaRocca hosts acoustic jam @ The Only Café, 972 Danforth Ave., TO East

8:30-10:30> blue Venus @ Castro’s, 2116 Queen St. E., TO East ~indie Pop

*9:30> open stage with Nicola Vaughan @ Black Swan (downstairs), 154 Danforth Ave., TO East

416 – Toronto Etobicoke

8-1> Marshall Dane @ Timothy’s Pub, 344 Brown’s Line, Etobicoke South ~Country Pop; $

416 – Toronto Scarborough

* 7> jam with Tommy Rocker’s Classic Rock Band @ Fox at Scarborough Junction, 646 Danforth Rd., Scarborough

*8:30> Al Reilly‘s Catalyst @ Centro Pizza, 3408 Kingston Rd., Scarborough ~classic Rock

*8:30> open mic with Jadzia Skye & Michael Oesch @ Chez Helene’s, 1437 Kingston Rd., Scarborough

416 – Toronto West

1-5> Johannes Linstead @ The Wine Garden, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~instrumental Jazz/World

1:30-5:30> Danny Scott @ Casino patio/stage Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~songwriter

3-6> Lost Patients @ CNE Midway Stage, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~Pop Rock

3-6> Jaydee Bixby @ CNE Northern Comfort Saloon, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~Country

5-9> Sultans of String @ The Wine Garden, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~Folk/World

5-8> Sheila Soares Trio @ Gate 403, 403 Roncesvalles Ave., TO West ~Jazz

6:30-10:30> Robin Benedict @ Casino patio/stage Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~songwriter

9> Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar; Liz Stringer opening @ Dakota Tavern, 249 Ossington Ave., TO West ~original Country; $10

7:30-11> Elevation featuring Shawn Brady @ CNE Midway Stage, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~

7:30-11> Kelly Prescott @ CNE Northern Comfort Saloon, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West ~Country

7:30> Brett Kissel with opener Yoan @ CNE Bandshell, Canadian National Exhibition Grounds, Lake Shore Blvd. W., TO West

*8-12> Girls Night Out Jazz singers jam with Lisa Particelli, Peter Hill et al @ Chalkers, 247 Marlee Ave., TO North-West

8:30> Karine Polwart @ Hugh’s Room, 2261 Dundas St. W., TO West ~songwriter; $27.50

9-12> Blues Night with Julian Fauth & guests @ Gate 403, 403 Roncesvalles Ave., TO West ~original Juno-winning Blues

9> Freeman Dre & The Kitchen Party @ The Local, 396 Roncesvalles Ave., TO West

9> Eli and the Strawman + guests @ Dakota Tavern, 249 Ossington Ave., TO West; $8

9:30> David Hustler; Ben Somer @ The Painted Lady, 218 Ossington Ave., TO West ~original

*10-1> Michael Keith @ The Hole In The Wall, 2867 Dundas St. W., TO West ~Blues/Rock/Jazz


*9> The Phil & John Show feat. Phil Naro @ Molly Bloom’s Waterloo, 170 University Ave., Waterloo ~acoustic Pop Rock


*7-11> open jam with Wayne Buttery Band @ The Beacon, 146 45th St., Wasaga Beach

7:30> Odd Man Rush @ Black Horse Pub, 452 George St. N., Peterborough

10> Century Thief @ The Garnet, 231 Hunter St. W., Peterborough

905 East

*8> Howard Ross & Full Count Blues hosts “Big Mojo” Blues jam with guest performer tba @ Corner Pocket, 45 Prince St., Oshawa

8-12> open mic night @ Fionn MacCool’s Ajax, 32 Kingston Rd. E. Ajax

*8-11> open mic @ Frank’s Pasta, 426 King St. E., Cobourg

*9-12> jam with Damage Control @ St. Louis Bar & Grill Ajax, 11 Harwood Ave. S., Ajax

905 North

*7> open mic night with Tanya Joy Senior @ Col. McGrady’s Pub, 44 Brock St. W., Uxbridge

*8-12> open mic with Kevin Ker @ Aw Shucks, 15230 Yonge St., Aurora

*8:45> open mic jam with Matt Zady @ Magnums, 21 McMurchy Ave. N., Brampton

*9-1> open mic jam with Whiskey Birds @ Sweetz Lounge, 5289 Hwy 7, Woodbridge-Vaughan

*9:30> open mic with The Villagers @ Main’s Mansion, 144 Main St., Markham

905 South

*7> open mic night @ Donnelley’s Pub, 54 Front St., Thorold ~Blues

*8:30> Something Country @ The Endzone, 1900 King St. E., Hamilton ~Country

**8-1> “Country Pubkin” Night with Country artists tba @ Corktown Pub, 175 Young St., Hamilton

9> Bump City @ This Ain’t Hollywood, 345 James St. N., Hamilton ~5-horn Funk a la Tower of Power

905 West

*8-12> All-ages jam with band & host Kevin Reid @ Sixth Line Pub, 1500 Sixth Line, Oakville

*8-2> Paul & Curtis @ Roc’n Doc’s, 105 Lakeshore Rd. E., Port Credit ~Rock/Pop

8-1> Kim & Frank Koren with John Allaire @ Moonshine Café, 137 Kerr St., Oakville ~songwriter/Country-Rock; $5

8:30> The Carson Freeman Diversion @ Shore Grill, 71 Lakeshore Rd. E., Port Credit ~Pop Rock

*9> open mic jam with Jack B Nimble @ Blarney’s Gate, 1151 Dundas St. W., Mississauga

*9?> jam with Michael Zane or Pat Dowds @ Shakers, 580 Kerr St., Oakville

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