SUMMER MUSIC PREVIEW: Stones lead action-packed summer concert season in T.O.

Rolling Stones, No Filter Tour, hits the stage at Burl's Creek in Ore-Medonte, Ont., on June 29, 2019. (Photo by Dave Hogan)

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Start them up!

Now that the Rolling Stones have confirmed they will honour their previously announced June 29 date at Burl’s Creek in Ore-Medonte, Ont. — post-Mick Jagger’s heart surgery — here are the rest of the highlights in my live summer music preview as the May long weekend officially starts outdoor concert season:

COOL KIDS
The Strokes, May 20, Budweiser Stage
Florence And The Machine, May 26, Budweiser Stage
Vampire Weekend, June 5, RBC Echo Beach
Death Cab for Cutie, June 20, RBC Echo Beach
The National, June 22, Pier 8, Hamilton, Ont.
Churches, July 7, Rebel
Belle and Sebastian, July 16, The Danforth Music Hall
Kurt Vile & The Violators Aug. 1, Sony Centre
Beck and Cage The Elephant, Aug. 11, Budweiser Stage
The Raconteurs (Jack White), Sept. 12, Sony Centre
Massive Attack, Sept. 17-18, Sony Centre
Lizzo, Sept. 19, Budweiser Stage

Beck leads of with “Devil’s Haircut” rolled into Toronto supporting his 2014 album release Morningphaseat the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto, Ont. on Saturday, June 28, 2014. (Jack Boland/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

HIP HOP
Snoop Dog, May 20, Rebel
Nav, June 10, RBC Echo Beach
Public Enemy Radio (No Flava Flav), July 26, Bandshell Stage, Toronto Festival Of Beer
Khalid, Aug. 6-7, Scotiabank Arena
Mary J Blige & Nas, Sept. 10, Budweiser Stage

Snoop Dogg performs onstage during the 2018 Essence Festival presented By Coca-Cola – Day 1 at Louisiana Superdome on July 6, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for Essence)

BOYZ II MEN
Corey Hart, June 14, Budweiser Stage
NKOTB w/ Salt N Pepa, Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, Naughty By Nature, June 19, Scotiabank Arena
Backstreet Boys, July 17, Scotiabank Arena
Jonas Brothers, Aug. 23-24, Scotiabank Arena

Canadian Music Hall of Fame recipient Corey Hart performs “I wear my sunglasses” during the Juno Music Awards at Budweiser Gardens in London, Ont., on March 17, 2019. (LARS HAGBERG/AFP/Getty Images)

POP STARS
Twenty One Pilots, May 28-29, Scotiabank Arena
Billie Eilish, June 11, RBC Echo Beach
David Gray, June 7, Sony Centre
Dido, June 15, The Danforth Music Hall
Arkells, June 22, Budweiser Stage
One Republic, July 25-26, Fallsview Casino
Lights, July 27, The Danforth Music Hall (Skin & Earth Acoustic Tour)
Pink, Aug.18-19, Scotiabank Arena
Blue Rodeo w/ Sam Roberts Band, Aug. 24, Budweiser Stage
Hootie & The Blowfish and Barenaked Ladies, Aug. 29, Budweiser Stage
Shawn Mendes, Sept. 6, Rogers Centre

Pink brought her Truth About Love tour to the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ont. on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013. (Jack Boland/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

ROCKERS (NEW AND OLD)
Greta Van Fleet, May 28-29, RBC Echo Beach
The Cult, June 2, Casino Rama
The 1975, June 3, Budweiser Stage
Alexisonfire, June 15-16, Budweiser Stage
Bryan Adams, July 4, Budweiser Stage
Little Steven and The Disciples Of Soul, July 10, Phoenix
Heart w/ Sheryl Crow, Elle King, July 14, Budweiser Stage
Tame Impala, July 26, Budweiser Stage
Queen & Adam Lambert, July 28, Scotiabank Arena
Slash w/ Myles Kennedy & the Conspirators, July 29, Rebel
Sum 41, Aug. 8, RBC EchoBeach
Iron Maiden, Aug. 9-10, Budweiser Stage
The Smashing Pumpkins & Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Aug. 13, Budweiser Stage
Korn and Alice in Chains, Aug. 14, Budweiser Stage
KISS, Aug. 17, Scotiabank Arena
Foreigner, Aug. 29-30, Casino Rama
The Who, Sept. 3 , Scotiabank Arena
Lenny Kravitz, Sept 4, Budweiser Stage

Singer-bassist Gene Simmons (left) and singer-guitarist Paul Stanley of Kiss perform during The Final Tour Ever at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ont. on Wednesday, March 20, 2019. (Ernest Doroszuk/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

DIVAS AND SEASONED VETS
Diana Ross, June 24, Sony Centre
Hugh Jackman, June 25, Scotiabank Arena
Ariana Grande, June 26, Scotiabank Arena
Lionel Richie, June 27, Budweiser Stage
Jennifer Lopez, July 7-8, Scotiabank Arena
Jimmy Buffett, July 13, Budweiser Stage
Jeff Lynne’s ELO, July 18, Scotiabank Arena
Michael Buble, July 26-27, Scotiabank Arena
Bryan Ferry, July 30, Sony Centre, Live Nation
Santana w/ The Doobie Brothers, Aug. 6, Budweiser Stage
Mark Knopfler, Aug. 25, Sony Centre

Ariana Grande performs at the 2014 Much Music Video Awards in Toronto, Ont. on Sunday, June 15, 2014. (Ernest Doroszuk/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

COUNTRY STARS
Carrie Underwood, June 9, Scotiabank Arena
Outlaw Music Festival with Willie Nelson, The Avett Brothers, Alison Krauss, June 21, Budweiser Stage
Thomas Rhett w/ Dustin Lynch, July 11, Budweiser Stage
An Evening with Lyle Lovett and his Large Band, July 27, Fallsview Casino
Chris Stapleton, Aug. 17, Budweiser Stage
Luke Bryan, September 5, Budweiser Stage
Kacey Musgraves, Sept. 9, Sony Centre
Dean Brody, and Dallas Smith, Sept. 21, Budweiser Stage

Carrie Underwood performs at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ont. on Saturday, May 28, 2016. (Dave Abel/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

BLASTS FROM THE PAST
Chicago, June 13-14, Casino Rama
The Specials, June 18-19, Danforth Music Hall
Yes w/ Asia w/ Steve Howe , John Lodge of The Moody Blues, and Carl Palmer w/ guest vocals by Arthur Brown, June 24, Budweiser Stage
Psychedelic Furs, & James, July 5, Rebel
Earth Wind & Fire, July 12-13, Casino Rama
KC & The Sunshine Band, Aug. 22-23, Fallsview Casino
UB40 featuring Ali and Astro & Shaggy, Aug. 28, Rebel
Nile Rodgers & CHIC, Aug, 29-30, Fallsview Casino
The B-52s 40th Anniversary Tour w/ OMD and Berlin, Sept. 13, Sony Centre
King Crimson, Sept. 14, Budweiser Stage
Steve Hackett w/ Selling England By The Pound, Sept. 20, The Danforth Music Hall

A 2010 file photo of The Specials frontman Terry Hall at the Sound Academy in Toronto. (Jack Boland /Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

A NEW FEST ON THE BLOCK

Summer music festivals have taken a beating in recent years in the Toronto area with such newbies as WayHome and Bestival not lasting, Edgefest and Virgin Music Festival long gone, and Field Trip taking a time out this summer.

Still, the indie-oriented NXNE (June 7-16), the TD Toronto Jazz Festival (June 21-July 1) and the country-themed Boots and Hearts Festival (Aug. 8-11, Burl’s Creek) are still going strong as are such electronic-heavy festivals as VELD (Aug. 3-4, Downsview Park) and Bud Light Dreams (June 29-30, RBC Echo Beach -East Island, Ontario Place.) Now along comes Roxodus, a four-day classic rock festival at the Edenvale, Ont., airport in Clearview Township about two hours northwest of T.O.

From July 11-14, Aerosmith, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Kid Rock, and Nickelback will headline and other performers include Alice Cooper, Cheap Trick, Peter Frampton (in his last Canadian performance), Billy Idol, Blondie, Matthew Good and many more.

Aerosmith brought their “Cocked, Locked, Ready To Rock” tour to the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on Tues, Aug. 17, 2010. (Jack Boland/Toronto Sun/Postmedia Network)

So why does Roxodus co-founder Mike Dunphy, who has previously organized the Wasaga Beach Motorcyle Rally (75,000 people) and Heroes Festival (25,000), think his festival will succeed where others have failed?

“The idea came from me going to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally (in South Dakota) and seeing 75,000 people seeing Kid Rock and saying, ‘Hey, nothing like that is going on up here. We should do something,’” said Dunphy, a Torontonian with a construction background who now lives in Wasaga Beach.

He says the expanded lineup came about because of “begging, money” and Edenvale Airport will be closed down for the duration of the festival .

“It’s a field experience surrounded by taxiways and runways,” said Dunphy.

Dunphy and Roxodus co-founder Fab Loranger (together they are MF Live) have also purchased 200 acres of property to improve the grounds with a view to making the festival, which boasts a production director from Coachella and Desert Trip, an annual event.

Dunphy wouldn’t say how many tickets they had sold but says all of the powered RV camping had sold out (4,000 people), and camping (6,000 people) will sell out.

There’s everything from day passes (GA for $129 to VIP for $299) to four-day passes (GA for $399 to VIP GA for $599) to five-star glamping with private parking, washroom and showers ($10,000 for the four days).

Dunphy’s conservatively estimates 25,000 people will attend Thursday, 30,000 on Friday and Saturday and 40,000 on Sunday.

“We’re not in this for one and out,” said Dunphy. “That’s why we stuck to that 35-plus (demographic) that has the disposable income, over the younger crowd that has saved up for the whole year. We’re already planning for year two.”

jstevenson@postmedia.com

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