Nova Scotian Live Music - During the Daylight!
It's really hard sometimes when you want to see live music, but you don't want to stay up until midnight to hear your favourite band. And where can you take your kids?
Well, have no fear - there are plenty of options in Halifax - and beyond. This is not an exhaustive list, but it will certainly get you started!
Music Nova Scotia is promoting its biggest event of the year - Nova Scotia Music Week - by having some of its top artists busk on the streets of Halifax on Tuesday, August 10. We're really excited to do this and we're hoping the public will come out and see Singer-Songwriters: Christina Martin, Ryan MacGrath, Ria Mae and Tanya Davis; Hip-Hop: Three Sheet; Rock: Glory Glory Man United, The Town Heroes; Gypsy-Jazz: Gypsophilia; and Celtic: Anna Ludlow - all during the lunch hour around the Halifax peninsula. Go here for the exact schedule of where and when everyone will be performing.
The Carleton Bar and Grill houses the Music Nova Scotia Songs and Stories Open Mic every Saturday from 1-4 p.m., with a feature performer beginning at 3 p.m. This is on hiatus for the summer, but starts again with a full schedule on September 11 with soul/pop star Chelsea Nisbett. Check out the facebook page
The Carleton also has relatively early shows throughout the week - usually top touring artists play this incredibly gorgeous sounding room for a sit-down, listening audience. Check their listings.
The Company House on Gottingen (yay, North End!) also is committed to starting gigs early - sometimes by 8 p.m. - and has some wonderful local and touring artists coming through. They also do matinees - starting again in the fall.
The Old Triangle - at Prince and Bedford Row - is well known for its live Celtic Music (the place is owned by legendary Celtic duo Evans and Doherty) and has gigs starting at 5 on Saturdays. See the full calendar.
The Celtic Corner, across the bridge on the Dartmouth waterfront, often has live music (mostly Celtic) early in the day - matinees and nights starting at 5.
The Lower Deck is your friendly tourist Halifax Waterfront joint - famous for its now discontinued weekend matinees with Tony Quinn. Now it has great sing-along matinees Fridays from 5:30 - 8:30.
If it's blues you're after, check out Bearly's House of Blues on Barrington for their Saturday and Sunday matinees. Saturday 4:30-8:30 is usually a bluegrass mix and Sunday 3:30 - 6:30 is Roger Howse and Brenda Stone.
Just Us Cafe on Spring Garden Road is currently expanding their beautiful old house location to accommodate a stage for live music! Check out their music listings. They generally schedule sets between 7 and 9 p.m.
The Coburg Coffee House on Coburg Road has Open Mics Tuesdays at 7 with Breagh Potter, starting again in September.
Clay Cafe is not just a place to make pottery, you can check out musical acts at 6:30 pm on Saturdays. They have a 'Live at Clay Cafe' facebook group.
Outside of Halifax:
Union Street Cafe in Berwick, the beautiful Annapolis Valley, has early shows, mostly starting at 8:30, with some matinees. Mostly singer-songwriters, check out their listings here.
The Celtic Music Interpretive Centre in Judique on the west side of Cape Breton Island (Route 19) has a traditional (and I mean, there's at least three square sets danced) celidh every Sunday from 3-6:30. You have to go very early for a seat (some go at 2) and you'll never know who will play (like the former premier Rodney MacDonald or Natalie McMaster).