Harvest Jazz & Blues FestivalFredericton, Canada
There is something to be said about stumbling into a small uni town in the middle of Atlantic Canada with a thirst for craft beer and jazz and blues. Every September, New Brunswick's capital Fredericton comes alive for five days of music and mayhem as some of the world's best bluesmen, jazz masters and the odd thundering rock group set up camp among the tented stages and turn this picturesque town on the banks of the St John River into party central.
It is low key and cool, so much so, you might very well find yourself wandering past a barefoot Michael Franti, yoga mat under one arm, on his way to the park to meditate before headlining that evening.
Entertainment is everywhere and you'll more often than not find yourself in a local pub with an extraordinary blues player jamming with friends all afternoon. It is very easy to settle in, especially with the excellent craft beer on hand. Picaroons and Grimross are hard to top.
When the sun goes down the big guns come out and the larger venues start to reverberate. The choices are vast, from the Cox & Palmer Blues Court to the loud and wild Mouse Light Blues Tent.
Sleep in late and don’t go too hard early as the Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival is definitely one for stayers!
- It is an amazingly casual festival
- Craft beer galore
- The locals are incredibly friendly
- There is something for everyone, from small bars to big venues
- The local market on Sunday afternoon is a must
- The tented venues (although that is part of the charm)
- The number of acts is almost overwhelming
Air Canada has regular flights nationally and internationally into Fredericton International Airport.
We highly recommend the Deep Blues Experience. It’s part of the Canadian Tourism Commission’s Signature Experience Collection, which recognises the country’s top tourism experiences. This package allows entry into all four tents – the Moose Light Blues Tent, TD Mojo Tent, Cox & Palmer Blues Court and the Stingray Music Barracks Tent – from Wednesday to Saturday, and access to a couple of special events during the festival. The pass costs about US$235, which also includes an escort backstage and dinner with one of the artists.