We’ve Got The Beat.
Music is the fuel of life in South Eastern Ontario and the rich local music scene is a hotbed of talent. Whether it’s live music drifting from patios or house concerts in unique homes around the region, musicians bringing new life to stages in historic community halls or podcasts featuring local artists – it’s all music to our ears. We’ve put together a list of some famously known artists from the region and sprinkled in some new talent emerging from South Eastern Ontario. Get ready to discover some new favs and rediscover some classics!
Sit back and get lost in the music with our curated playlist featuring musicians from across South Eastern Ontario.
This band needs no introduction. The rock darlings of Kingston, The Tragically Hip formed in the 1980s and became Canadian icons winning national accolades and a legion of loyal fans. The Tragically Hip was composed of the late vocalist Gord Downie, as well as guitarists Paul Langlois, Rob Baker, bassist Gord Sinclair and drummer, Johnny Fay. The Hip, as they are affectionately called, is famous for songs exploring Canadian geography and history, water and land – and unapologetically loving every nook and cranny of their country.
This Canadian Juno-winning band blends blue-collar trad rock with rootsy alt-rock – and it works. The Glorious Sons has eight consecutive top-10 rock radio hits in Canada including the No. 1 single, Everything is Alright. Jay Emmons, Andrew Young, Adam Paquette, Chris Huot, and Brett Emmons formed the Glorious Sons about 10 years ago and they’re now known for their energetic live shows.
One of the best-selling music artists of all time, Bryan Adams is a Canadian guitarist, singer, songwriter, composer and photographer hailing from Kingston. With songs like Summer of ’69, Everything I Do , and Please Forgive Me, Adams has sold more than 75 million albums worldwide. He has also written countless songs for movies and is even an accomplished photographer.
This uniquely-Canadian singer, songwriter and environmentalist is known for her effortless, yet starkly clear music. Sarah Harmer touches a range of genres throughout her career including rock, folk, roots and bluegrass.
The rising star, Miss Emily, recently earned a Juno nomination – but has captivated fans across Canada, the US, the UK and Western Europe for more than two decades with her unique combination of impassioned performances and incomparable vocals that soar to emotional heights and span the genres from soul and classic Motown, to jazz, gospel and blues. She currently holds the record for sell-outs at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts in Kingston and has gained the respect of Canadian music industry veterans like The Tragically Hip, as well as the recent national recognition by the Maple Blues Awards.
These Kingston-grown rockers have a reputation for high energy, uncompromising music and honest stage presence with lots of audience interaction. Playing tough, hard rock that has a punk influence, The Headstones were among the top artists on the Canadian alternative rock scene, earning a spot among the top 35 best-selling Canadian bands between 1996 and 2016. They were especially known for their engaging and entertaining live shows.
Ahhh, The Mahones! Canada’s premier Celtic punk party bank. They’re an institution across the nation, performing their distinctly Canadian Irish Punk sound since they were formed (fittingly) on St. Patrick’s day in 1990. Rightly regarded as pioneers on the Irish punk scene, The Mahones have performed in bars, pubs and music halls around the world. Still going strong more than 30 years later!
Makers of honest music, as authentic as it gets. The brothers have performed all over the world since they were young, earning these 20-somethings the stage presence of seasoned artists. Even so, every show is memorable, special, and marked with an explosive energy that punctuates The Abrams’ pure love for country music.
This four-piece Canadian indie rock/pop band hails from Kingston and remains independent, recently switching out vocalists and routinely selling out shows in South Eastern Ontario.
Ricky Brant (AKA Kakaow) is a psychedelic and funk-infused multi-instrumentalist with over a decade of professional music experience! He creates what he calls an Electro Psychedelifunk experience; to bend the mind and perception of what sound can be, while playing synthesizers and guitar, and not to mention: making your booty move!
READ ALSO: Check out YGK Music, an annual City of Kingston music program that showcases and promotes local music from Kingston’s homegrown talent through curated playlists.
Born in Belleville and growing up in Napanee, Lavigne reached international music stardom at an early age with original songs. Lavigne still holds the title of having the best selling album of the 21st century by a Canadian artist with her 2002 release of Let Go. She went on to release seven albums, earn nine Juno Awards, an abundance of other accolades, and even wrote Kelly Clarkson’s massive hit Breakaway. She is currently working on a movie and recently released a new album, Love Sux. She’s also known for her unique and forward fashion.
Brad Sucks has been self-recording and producing albums for almost 20 years, and also providing his “brilliantly sardonic indie rock” to the masses long before that was cool. Brad Turcotte is now an internet phenomenon for his catchy, electronic-charged music – and also provided music and vocals on the Frederator series, Bee & Puppy Cat.
This singer-songwriter and frontman for Kemptville’s largest band, The Burning Sensations, has written, performed and released three original albums. Enloe has shared stages with folk legends, Garnet Rogers and Dave Gunning, and opened for Blue Rodeo. He’s also an awarded and televised chef in Texas, San Francisco and Ontario, as well as a long-time local and organic food champion, as a founding director of the Kemptville Farmers’ Market and the General Manager of the Two Rivers Food Hub.
Your getaway doesn’t have to start when you arrive at your destination. When you travel by train or car, getting there is part of the fun and a great opportunity to dive into some local music appreciation. Settle in for some soothing sounds of your favourite local artist, or discover your new favs through our curated playlist featuring artists from our region.