Here is our growing collection of concert recaps – read through and add to your own concert wishlist.  Where will Team GDW be next?  See our roll call of upcoming concerts.

The Sheepdogs: Retro Rockers Make a Triumphant Return to Niagara

Team GDW were very excited last year when The Sheepdogs were announced as one of the events on the annual Jackson-Triggs summer concert series calendar.  As one of our concert-going highlights in 2017, we were amazed at the live experience… Continue Reading →

Friday Night Music at Yonge-Dundas Square, Toronto

When given the opportunity for a long weekend (the latter half of the US Independence Day holiday), Team GDW jumped into the car and ventured north across the Peace Bridge and into southern Ontario.  Armed with the knowledge that three… Continue Reading →

The Marrieds: Live at The Painted Lady

It was during our previous visit to The Painted Lady in Toronto, for a matinee performance with Melanie Brulee, that we received word from The Marrieds that they would be playing at this venue later this summer.  Naturally, the date… Continue Reading →

Highlights from The Sound of Music Festival, Burlington, ON

Having enjoyed catching up with The Once during their Friday evening performance at the Sound Of Music Festival, Team GDW took delight in seeing plenty of artists over the course of the weekend.  What we found particularly impressive about the… Continue Reading →

Catching Up With The Once in Burlington, ON

As we officially welcomed the arrival of summer, Team GDW hit the road once again to sample our first taste of the annual “Sound Of Music” festival in Burlington, ON. Taking place along the shores of Lake Ontario, we naturally… Continue Reading →

Review: The Savilles, “Something Strange”

We recently attended the “Grilled Cheese Challenge” in western Toronto and randomly encountered some great live music from The Savilles, a four-piece local indie-rock band that quickly caught my attention. Virtually impossible to not notice the band in their very… Continue Reading →

Terra Lightfoot: Live in Harrisburg, PA

Whenever one of our favorite Canadian artists tours in PA, we try our best to get to the show when the venue is a little closer to home than Pittsburgh or Philadelphia.  Living here in the PA mid-state, we have… Continue Reading →

Tom Wilson: A Literary Recital in Grimsby, ON

We recently started a new recurring feature here at Great Dark Wonder titled “Doors at 8, Show at 9,” which focuses solely on smaller music venues that are ideal for concerts of a much more intimate nature.  Our debut feature… Continue Reading →

Stephen Stanley: Live Music With Grilled Cheese on the Side

Team GDW recently reviewed and very much enjoyed “Jimmy and the Moon,” the latest full-length album from The Stephen Stanley Band.  Hoping to one day have the opportunity to catch a live set from Stephen, L very recently discovered the… Continue Reading →

Trent Severn: Matinee Performance in Kitchener

After our Saturday evening in Toronto for a show with Steel Rail and Over The Moon, our travels took us to The Registry Theatre in Kitchener on Sunday afternoon, for a matinee show with Trent Severn.  Indeed, the concept of… Continue Reading →

Steel Rail & Over The Moon: Live in Toronto

In just the short space of two weeks, Team GDW would embark once more on a road trip to Canada that offered up plenty of déjà vu.  Not only retracing our travels to the same eastern side of Toronto, we… Continue Reading →

Madison Violet: Live in Toronto

Since catching a live set by Madison Violet last summer at the Home County Music and Art Festival in London, ON, we knew that a future full show by this duo was an absolute must for us.  Fast forward to… Continue Reading →

Melanie Brulée: Live at The Painted Lady

After spending a couple of seasons south of the Canadian border in Nashville, TN, singer-songwriter Melanie Brulée recently returned to her current home city of Toronto armed with plenty of new music to share.  Following our recent conversation with Melanie… Continue Reading →

Oh Susanna & The Sunparlour Players: Live in Stratford, ON

Nothing beats starting the weekend a little early, taking a Friday as a vacation day from work, and heading up to Canada once again for some great live music.  Add in some great spring (almost summer, even) weather, and the… Continue Reading →

Justin Rutledge: Intimate House Concert in Toronto

Every now and then, a unique opportunity presents itself that proves impossible to resist.  Take, for example, the recent announcement of an intimate house concert taking place in Toronto and featuring one of our favorite artists, Justin Rutledge (who has… Continue Reading →

Partaking in the “Bitches Brew”

A couple of weeks ago, we were privileged to post an interview with jazz musicians Aline Homzy and Emma Smith about their April 28 event at the Canadian Music Centre in Toronto, “Bitches Brew.”  We had already planned to travel… Continue Reading →

Stars: Live in Tarrytown, NY

Wrapping up our third consecutive night of live music from Canadian artists on tour here in the US, Team GDW left PA on Saturday morning and took a scenic drive across northern New Jersey into New York.  Crossing the Hudson… Continue Reading →

Whitehorse: Live at The Sanctuary

With plans to head to Southern Ontario this past weekend, the last minute announcement of severe ice storms making their way to the province would not keep us away.  It would impact a show on the following evening, which fortunately… Continue Reading →

Current Swell: Much Anticipated Return to VA

After spending a Saturday evening recently at “Jammin’ Java” for an evening of live music from The Weather Station, Team GDW would return to this wonderful venue just 48 hours later to experience another Canadian band live in concert.  Currently… Continue Reading →

The Weather Station: Live at Jammin’ Java

With her most recent 2017 self-titled album, Tamara Lindeman (The Weather Station) has received plenty of well-deserved attention on both sides of the Canadian border, including an invitation to NPR’s prestigious “Tiny Desk Concert” here in the US just a… Continue Reading →

Matthew Byrne: Winter Tour Finale in London, ON

Following our recent Sunday afternoon matinee “EcoFolk” benefit concert at The Aeolian Hall, we made our way to downtown London for an evening performance from “Newfoundland Traditional Singer, Guitarist and Storyteller,” Matthew Byrne.  Team GDW reviewed Matthew’s most recent “Horizon… Continue Reading →

EcoFolk 2018: Promoting Environmentalism Through Music

Team GDW returned to London, ON recently to attend the third annual “EcoFolk” benefit concert held at The Aeolian Hall (one of our favorite music venues).  Partnering with the Thames Talbot Land Trust to promote and support local environmental concerns… Continue Reading →

Saturday Night With The Mercenaries

It has already been firmly established that Team GDW are fans of all things Blue Rodeo, and this extends beyond the music of co-founders Jim Cuddy and Greg Keelor.  So when finding ourselves with some free time in downtown Toronto… Continue Reading →

Steel City Rovers: Live in Maryland

Following our recent interview with The Steel City Rovers (SCR), we had been eagerly counting down the days until this Hamilton based band visited our neighboring state for their inaugural Maryland performance.  Team GDW made our ‘short’ one hour drive… Continue Reading →

Jim Cuddy Band – Constellation Tour, Hamilton, ON

Following our wonderful Saturday evening in Belleville, we headed west on Highway 401 the next morning for the second show in consecutive nights.  Arriving in downtown Hamilton, ON, it was hard to not smile knowing that being in Hamilton during… Continue Reading →

Elliott BROOD: Live in Pittsburgh

Team GDW spent another evening in Pittsburgh last Thursday, returning to Club Café  for an eagerly awaited night of live music with Elliott BROOD.  Having last seen the trio of Mark Sasso, Casey Laforet and Stephen Pitkin just after the… Continue Reading →

Sam Polley & The Old Tomorrows Live

Our first encounter with Sam Polley took place last year at The Sawdust City Music and Arts festival, in which he formed part of the Jim Cuddy Family band during the Saturday night headline event.  With his share of lead… Continue Reading →

The Fugitives: Live at the Sanderson Centre

Just 24 hours after The Fugitives officially released their new album “The Promise Of Strangers,” Team GDW returned to the Sanderson Centre in Brantford, ON to spend an evening with the band during one of the stops on their January… Continue Reading →

Ron Hawkins: Live at the Mule Spinner

Hitting the road to Southern Ontario for our first concert weekend north of the border this year, our journey was accompanied by clear skies, no snow, and unseasonably warm temperatures for late January. Encountering no delays with our Canadian crossing,… Continue Reading →

Ben Caplan and Harrow Fair: Live in Pittsburgh, PA

With our scaled down travel schedule through December, we were definitely fighting the effects of ‘cabin fever’ (also known as ‘no live music’), and eager to greet the arrival of a New Year and new concert schedule.  In 2017, we… Continue Reading →

2017 Year-End Roundup: 10 Memorable Live Moments

Around this time last year I compiled 10 tracks that were experienced live that stood out for me personally and gave a stronger appreciation to a particular song/artist.  Having seen many artists in a live setting again over the last… Continue Reading →

Lily & Madeleine: Live in Vienna, VA

While we remain dedicated to promoting the wonderful Canadian music scene to a much wider audience, sometimes we also want to share other artists with our Canadian friends too.  With our occasional “Commonwealth Connections” features, we look at non-Canadian artists… Continue Reading →

A Saturday Night With Matt Mays and The Arkells in London, ON

Continuing our series of the ‘Thanksgiving Weekend 3 concerts in 3 nights,’ we found ourselves in London, ON for the third consecutive evening of live music.  And in contrast to the intimate shows spent with both Emm Gryner and The… Continue Reading →

The Fortunate Ones: An Intimate Evening at The Sanderson Centre

It is well known that Team GDW has a strong bond with The Sanderson Centre in Brantford, ON.  Retuning once again to this wonderful venue, we chose to spend our Black Friday in the company of the Newfoundland folk duo,… Continue Reading →

Emm Gryner: Live in Forest, ON

One of the wonderful things about the US Thanksgiving Holiday is that it gives Team GDW a great opportunity to savor one last ‘long’ weekend in Southern Ontario before the close of the year.  Always happy to venture up north… Continue Reading →

Le Vent du Nord: Live in Pennsylvania

We are incredibly fortunate to have a wonderful folk music society here in Central Pennsylvania that has an uncanny knack for bringing traditional Canadian musicians to our part of the world.  Indeed, over the last couple of years, the Susquehanna… Continue Reading →

David Myles Brings Real Love to The Sanctuary

We have been fans of David Myles for a long time now, and naturally become very excited when we see him announce tour dates in and around PA.  Earlier this summer David was part of a show in State College,… Continue Reading →

Trent Severn: Live at the Burlington PAC

Having been fans of Trent Severn since their debut self-titled 2012 album release, it would take several years before we had an opportunity to see them live.  Indeed, it was on a whim last year when Trent Severn announced their… Continue Reading →

The Karpinka Brothers Live in Kingston

There have been many instances in our blog articles about how important it is to support live music, and to get out and attend shows when your favorite artists are playing nearby.  Being strong advocates of practicing what we preach,… Continue Reading →

An Enjoyable Midweek Evening With Whitehorse

It is amazing, given the frequency of our visits to the GTA, how there are a handful of well-established musical acts from that part of the province that we have not yet been fortunate enough to experience live.  Household names… Continue Reading →

Elliott BROOD: Live at Avening Hall

Team GDW were incredibly eager to hit the road once again during the final weekend of October, armed with a pair of tickets to the sold-out Elliott BROOD concert taking place at The Avening Hall in Creemore, ON.  We secured… Continue Reading →

Julian Taylor Band: Live at Mills Hardware

Having enjoyed a handful of great Canadian music festivals over the summer, Team GDW became exposed to several new artists previously unknown to us.  It was at the inaugural Sawdust City Music Festival last August when we first encountered The… Continue Reading →

Commonwealth Connections: Bastille in Philadelphia

Not only is this a new entry in our Commonwealth Connections series, but it’s our first post by a guest writer!  Martina Keogan brings us her recap of British band Bastille’s recent performance in Philadelphia. Energetic and appreciative, British alt… Continue Reading →

Canadian Artists Impress at the Celtic Classic in Bethlehem

The historic city of Bethlehem, PA held the annual ‘Celtic Classic Highland Games and Festival’ during the first official autumn weekend of the year.  Although this would be the 30th consecutive year for this festival, it was an event with… Continue Reading →

Starting a New Adventure: Kensington Market Jazz Festival, Toronto

Wanting to enjoy yet another later summer weekend in southern Ontario, we had the good fortune of spending some quality time on Saturday afternoon/evening in the heart of Kensington Market to experience our first true taste of the Toronto jazz… Continue Reading →

Shawn William Clarke: Album Release Party

As we approach the first birthday of Great Dark Wonder, one of the founding principles upon which we based this blog was to connect ‘new’ Canadian music and artists with a much wider audience.  We have been incredibly fortunate (in… Continue Reading →

Lowest Of The Low: Album Release Show

Team GDW have learned of many new artists over the last year, some truly ‘new’, and others quite firmly established.  We have been incredibly fortunate to experience some of these artists live in concert during this time, and as any… Continue Reading →

Last Minute Live Music Events (Jane’s Party, The Sadies, NQ Arbuckle)

Having enjoyed our previous evening in Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON with Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, Team GDW had originally planned to have a day of leisure in and around the GTA.  But, as time drew closer to the weekend, the seeming… Continue Reading →

Blackie and the Rodeo Kings: Live at Jackson-Triggs

Concert season has been in full swing this summer for Team GDW.  With our previous weekend taking in The Sheepdogs at Jackson-Triggs and Blue Rodeo et al. at Budweiser Stage, and then the quick stop with Ian Foster and Harrow… Continue Reading →

Harrow Fair and Ian Foster: Live in Exton, PA

We wrote recently about our wonderful experience at The Sawdust City Music Festival in Gravenhurst, ON.  During this all-weekend event, we had the opportunity to spend time with both Miranda Mulholland and Andrew Penner from Harrow Fair.  Whilst aware that… Continue Reading →

Blue Rodeo and Friends: Live at Budweiser Stage

Within the Blue Rodeo community, the annual summer concert in Toronto is an absolute must for those in and around the GTA.  Having not yet experienced this for ourselves, we happened to be in town this particular weekend, and thus… Continue Reading →

The Sheepdogs: Live at Jackson-Triggs Winery

Team GDW tend to get a little excited when the Jackson-Triggs summer concert series is formally announced each April.  This venue has a solid reputation for bringing in top class Canadian music to their wonderful outdoor amphitheatre, and with limited… Continue Reading →

Sawdust City Music Festival 2017: The Jim Cuddy Family Band

Having outlined our appreciation of the public events at the inaugural Sawdust City Music Festival in Gravenhurst, ON, our attention is now focused on the Saturday evening entertainment held in the historic Opera House.  The Jim Cuddy Family Band would… Continue Reading →

Sawdust City Music Festival 2017: Public Events

Earlier this year, we learned that the first Sawdust City Music Festival would take place over the first August weekend in the town of Gravenhurst, ON.  With a determined effort to execute her vision of bringing a festival to the… Continue Reading →

Home County Music and Art Festival: The Main Stage

For this final article recounting our experience at the Home County Music and Art Festival in London, ON, we focus on the artists whom we had the pleasure of seeing perform on the Main Stage over the course of the… Continue Reading →

Home County Music and Art Festival: The Sunday Workshops and Performances

Team GDW returned early to Victoria Park on Sunday for another day of live music at the Home County Music and Art Festival.  There were two workshops in particular that we had bookmarked for the day, along with a couple… Continue Reading →

Home County Music and Art Festival: The Saturday Workshops

The city of London, Ontario, recently held its 44th annual Home County Music and Art Festival on the grounds of Victoria Park in the heart of the city.  Forty-four years of music and arts, and completely unknown to us until… Continue Reading →

Commonwealth Connections: The Mae Trio

Although the focus of this blog has been, and remains, dedicated to the Canadian music scene, there is just too much good music that stretch beyond these borders.  Team GDW have been contemplating for several months now on whether we… Continue Reading →

Canada 150: Historic Homecoming Concert at Niagara-on-the-Lake

With the buzz and anticipation for the Canadian 150 year celebration this past weekend, Team GDW were not likely to miss out on the festivities taking place around this milestone anniversary.  Indeed, it was several months ago, when the “Historic… Continue Reading →

Kathleen Edwards: Live at The Birchmere

Team GDW were both shocked and thrilled when Kathleen Edwards announced her plans to perform in the USA last month.  Shocked because she so seldom comes out to share her wonderful brand of music, and thrilled because of all the… Continue Reading →

Summer Solstice With The Jim Cuddy Band (and Other Impromptu Entertainment)

After returning from an extended weekend in Montreal, Team GDW would once again head back north just one week later.  We learned last year that The Jim Cuddy Band performs annually at Tawse Winery in Vineland, ON for their “Summer… Continue Reading →

Harrow Fair: An Impromptu Stop in Virginia

As mentioned in my previous concert review, we spent time last Saturday in VA to enjoy Leif Vollebekk perform at Jammin’ Java.  Sitting outside in the parking lot prior to the show, L was browsing through our Twitter feed when she… Continue Reading →

Leif Vollebekk: Live in a Town Near Us!

As May gave way to June, and the weekend rolled around, Team GDW had tickets in hand to our first concert of the new month.  Heading out on a glorious sunny Saturday afternoon, we defied convention and pointed the car… Continue Reading →

Cassie and Maggie: Spring US Tour Finale in Corning, NY

Team GDW were unfortunately out of town and committed to another event when sisters Cassie and Maggie MacDonald performed in our part of Pennsylvania last autumn.  After kicking ourselves for this missed opportunity, once the sisters announced their most recent… Continue Reading →

The Wilderness of Manitoba: Live in St. Catharines, ON

Our most recent stop in Ontario was for the Matthew and Jill Barber concert in Oakville, as reviewed earlier this week.  The original plan was to head back home the following morning, but just a few weeks ago, we learned… Continue Reading →

The Writes of Spring: Music, Conversation, and Comedy

We have mentioned several times lately that no matter who we’ve seen live, we have been fortunate to find new artists to explore simply due to hearing their music as an opening act on any given show. In the last… Continue Reading →

Hanging on Hunter St. With Ron Hawkins

Many references have been made previously about the Blue Rodeo concert last September in Brantford, ON, and how the show became an inspiration for the creation of this blog.  And I fondly recall the announcement of an opening act by… Continue Reading →

CMW 2017: Provincial Showcases

If you’re lucky enough to be heading to CMW 2017 (Canadian Music Week) in Toronto, you’ll have the opportunity to hear some of the best and brightest artists from across Canada.  Here are links to several of the provincial showcases…. Continue Reading →

Bill & Joel Plaskett Bring Solidarity to Hamilton

Fresh off our return journey from London, ON, the prior weekend, Team GDW were back on the road  last Friday in anticipation of a wonderful evening with Joel Plaskett at The Studio in Hamilton, ON.  Shortly after the inception of… Continue Reading →

A Riveting Evening With Ben Caplan and The Casual Smokers

As we bid farewell to March and welcomed April, Team GDW once again packed up the car and headed north of the border for an evening of great live music.  With tickets in hand to see Ben Caplan and The… Continue Reading →

Alan Doyle Celebrates St. Patrick’s Day With a Kitchen Party in Pennsylvania

Whenever Alan Doyle and The Beautiful Gypsies come to town (or in this case, our home state), you know that the band will bring an energy unrivaled by anybody else out there. When you bring forth that energy on the… Continue Reading →

The Sadies: Album Release Party at Toronto’s Royal Cinema

Team GDW have been following the Canadian music scene for several years now, yet every once in a while it seems to take forever for a ‘major’ artist/band to jump onto our radar.  One such band are The Sadies, who… Continue Reading →

Matt Andersen: A Night of Maritimes-Inspired Blues

Team GDW bid farewell to Southern Ontario on a snowy Thursday morning, made a quick stop to feed the feline members of the team, then continued south for an evening with blues singer-songwriter Matt Andersen at the Weinberg Center in… Continue Reading →

Blue Rodeo Hold Nothing Back in Kitchener

Having performed numerous shows across Canada over the last two months, Blue Rodeo wound up their current tour with a ‘make-up’ date (previously postponed show) in Kitchener, ON, and Team GDW were there to share the experience.  With a sold-out… Continue Reading →

Hometown Heroes: Laura Cole and Tomi Swick, Live and Loud

Having spent considerable time in “concert hibernation,” Team GDW were certainly ready and willing to grab the passports, load up the car, and enjoy a weekend getaway in southern Ontario for our first taste of live music in 2017.   We returned… Continue Reading →

2016 Concerts: Looking Back at 10 Memorable Live Tracks

Given that Team GDW have enjoyed a decent volume of live concert material throughout 2016, I wanted to share some of the performances that stood out from the crowd and gave me a stronger appreciation for a particular artist/song based… Continue Reading →

Wintersleep Show No Signs of Hibernation at Guelph Concert Theatre

After our wonderful experience in London, ON, with Elliott Brood and the Great Lake Swimmers, the next evening found us travelling to Guelph for a concert featuring Hannah Georgas and Wintersleep.  Having been a fan of Hannah for a few… Continue Reading →

Elliott Brood & The Great Lake Swimmers Live in London, ON

As we moved into the final month of 2016, we hit the road north of the US border once again for our most recent weekend of great live music.  Arriving in London, ON (the furthest point west we’ve yet visited… Continue Reading →

Lowlands With Groenland: Album Release Party at Elora Brewing Company

On an unusually mild late November evening in Elora, ON, we made our way to the Elora Brewery Co. for the final leg of our “3 concerts in 3 nights” weekend.  This particular show was a last minute addition to… Continue Reading →

The Darcys Rocked the Casbah, Without Any Clash in Sight

The second night of our “3 concerts in 3 nights” weekend took us to The Casbah in Hamilton, ON, for an evening with The Darcys – a new, reinvented Darcys whose sound has progressed from indie-rock to a slick studio… Continue Reading →

The Franklin Electric: No One Left ‘Unsatisfied’ at Horseshoe Tavern

While most American families prepared to tuck into their turkey dinners on Thanksgiving, Team GDW hit the road and headed back to southern Ontario for a “3 concerts in 3 nights” weekend.  Reviews of all three evenings will follow, but… Continue Reading →

Already Planning for the 2017 Concert Season!

  With our 2016 concert season winding down into the last remaining weeks of the year, we are looking forward to the shows on offer for the year ahead.  Over the last few days, we have selected several shows for… Continue Reading →

Blue Rodeo Returns to the US: Ardmore Music Hall

We arrived at the Ardmore Music Hall (just outside of Philadelphia, PA) on a beautiful fall evening for the highly anticipated opening night for the Blue Rodeo 2016 US tour. Upon parking at the rear of the venue, we encountered… Continue Reading →

One Day and Counting to Blue Rodeo in Pennsylvania!

It is probably impossible for us to hide the fact that we are, and remain, devoted fans to the music of Blue Rodeo.  That wonderful “alt-country/folk/rock/blues/you name it” band fronted by Greg Keelor and Jim Cuddy provide one of the… Continue Reading →

Musings: Tokyo Police Club Have “An Awesome Day” at the Burlington PAC

A few weeks ago we noticed that we had a music-free weekend on the horizon, and needed to find a good excuse to take a road trip back to Ontario.  Finding the right show took no time at all, as… Continue Reading →

Musings: #tbt A Blast From the P.A.S.T.

Rewind back to spring 2015, when singer/songwriter Joel Plaskett released his most recent (to date) studio album “The Park Avenue Sobriety Test” (P.A.S.T.).  After hearing the debut single “On a Dime” (thanks to satellite radio here in the US), and… Continue Reading →

GDW Musings: Alan Doyle & The Beautiful Gypsies, Mississauga, 21 Oct. 2016

After whetting our appetite with a performance during the Harvest Picnic festival in August, we were excited to learn that Alan Doyle and The Beautiful Gypsies would be playing at the Living Arts Centre in Mississauga, ON, during a weekend… Continue Reading →

GDW Musings: Justin Rutledge, Hamilton, 20 Oct. 2016

Inspired by the terrific new album “East” by Justin Rutledge, we made the rainy road trip back across the Peace Bridge into Ontario to see Justin perform live at Mills Hardware in Hamilton, ON.  Arriving promptly at the “Doors Open… Continue Reading →

GDW Musings: #tbt This Canadian Music Thing: a Retrospective

It was back around 2007 when, on a whim, L picked up a copy of “Courage & Patience & Grit” by Great Big Sea, a band of obscure Newfoundlanders unknown to us, but a cover “that looked interesting.”  Until breaking… Continue Reading →

GDW Musings: Blue Rodeo, Brantford, 23 Sept. 2016

Blue Rodeo – always a great excuse for a road trip.  For the third time this year, Team GDW traveled north to hear the band live in concert.  This time, we made our first-ever pilgrimage to the historic Sanderson Centre… Continue Reading →

GDW Musings: Royal Wood at Burlington PAC, 1 Oct. 2016

Five years after his performance opening the stunning Burlington Performing Arts Centre, Royal Wood returned Saturday night to mark the facility’s anniversary.  Backed by a four-piece band, he delivered two sets of emotion-charged songs with guitar, ukulele, and haunting piano…. Continue Reading →