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Montreal Burlesque Festival

I tend to view burlesque as a chance to see beautiful, half-naked women without getting in trouble with your girlfriend. But then again, I’m a bit of a philistine. But Montreal’s 1st annual Burlesque Festival, taking place from September 17th-20th, intends to showcase, for philistines and devotees alike, how much more goes into this unique art form…

Pop Montreal and Montreal

In a city flush with festivals, Pop Montreal is, by a long shot, my favourite. Not simply because the music they’ve bringing to the city since 2002 is right up my alley (one year I caught almost 40 different acts ), but because they continue to expose people to some of Montreal’s best-kept secrets…

Party on St-Laurent in Montreal

If you want to party in Montreal, St-Laurent is one street that you can’t miss. Known locally as The Main, St-Laurent stretches from Montreal’s Chinatown to Little Italy. In this space, it manages to intersect several very different pockets of Montreal’s nightlife scene….

Stereo Nightclub Reopens in Montreal

One of the best nightclubs in the world, Stereo, reopens in Montreal on Labor Day Weekend, Thursday September 3-7. This 5-day party is a Montreal nightlife celebration of dancing that is not to be missed…

French Music In Montreal

With the Quebec Folk Festival (the Internationale de Musique Folk de Quebec) in full swing and culminating with some great shows this weekend, this seems as good a time as any to tell you where to find traditional Quebecois music in Montreal…

Piano bars in Montreal

When you think of a piano bar, the line “Play it Again, Sam” comes immediately to mind. You think of guys in tuxedos and gals in cocktail dresses, martinis and cigarettes in hand, serving up requests to the dapper man tickling the keys for dollar tips placed in an over-sized snifter. Given that this wonderful nightlife image comes from decades ago, the piano bar is much harder to find these days. But there are still a couple places in Montreal where you can spend a couple hours going back in time…

Music Videos and more at the MACM

The MACM, or Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montréal, is normally the domain of my colleague Daviel, whose knowledge of the Montreal art scene towers over my “that’s a pretty picture” style approach to art criticism. There are, however, occasions when the MACM crosses over into the dark realm of nightlife…

Live Music in Montreal

Montreal has been a musical mecca since the 1920s, when its famed burlesque and jazz clubs offered audiences something that couldn’t be found anywhere else. Given that this coincided with U.S. prohibition, that “something” may in large part have been “booze”. But the cities’ attachment to live music has never waned and its jazz scene eventually begat the Montreal International Jazz Festival, the largest of its kind in the world. Fast-forward to the present and, internationally, the city has become known for its electronic music (Mutek is the local fest devoted to the genre) and an indie music scene that has delivered Arcade Fire, Wolf Parade, Malajube and more to the world’s ears. Many of which have played Pop Montreal, the indie fest that has expanded to include a bit of everything. Again the city itself plays some role in this phenomenon: low rent attracts musicians and artists from all over, and the creative bonhomie keeps them here and collaborating. Or maybe it’s just all the attractive women. Montreal is a city that likes to go out, to eat, drink, see and be seen, so you could do worse than wandering around without a plan. But if you’re looking for… / Read More →

Osheaga + MEG = Awesome

If you’re in town for Osheaga, Montreal has more than enough nightlife stuff going on to keep you dancing before, during and after the massive two-day concert at Parc Jean-Drapeau. From Thursday straight through to Sunday, be it in the city, in a park or even on a boat, Montreal is having tons of fun… A big part of the reason that Osheaga has taken commanding control of the first weekend in August is their partnership with MEG (Montreal Electronic Groove). Now in their 11th year, this 4-night electronic-of-all-types festival features its own stage at Osheaga, club events, live music showcases, some 5-a-7s and one not-to-be missed party on a boat – a great way to get to know Montreal while having a blast. From late afternoon to early, early in the morning, read on for the run-down…

Montreal and Osheaga: Coldplay, Beastie Boys…

If you haven’t noticed yet, Montreal is a city that loves its festivals. From the huge (like the Montreal Jazz Festival) to a bit more off the radar (like Les Nuits D’Afriques). So, when a new fest comes to town it needs to a way to stand out. Enter Osheaga, the music festival that launched in 2006, which is happening on August 1st and 2nd. It has two major wildcards up its sleeve: it brings musical acts like Coldplay and the Beastie Boys to Montreal and it’s hosted on Parc Jean-Drapeau, a beautiful outdoor space that seems to have been designed with this very fest in mind…