Summer is the perfect time of year to get out and take in the sights and sounds of the city.
If you’re looking for a great way to take in some entertainment this New Brunswick Day long weekend, the inaugural edition of the Codiac Music Festival might be right up your alley.
Boasting a lineup of folk, blues, rock and indie rock bands, attendees are bound to find something that will appeal to them.
The seeds for the Codiac Music Festival were planted in a casual conversation between local music industry personnel and Musik Central president and Codiac Music Fest organizer, Xavier Leger. Inspired by the number of live performances than ran concurrently during East Coast Music Week, held in Moncton in April, 2012, Leger realized that there was in fact a distinct lack of music festivals held in Metro Moncton.
“The idea behind the Codiac Music Fest really started as a conversation between friends on Facebook and evolved from there,” Xavier says. “That initial conversation turned into the idea of putting together a Moncton-based music festival. (It) really gained momentum after the idea was pitched in a public forum. We then created Musik Central especially for the purpose of making this music festival a reality. We were very lucky to then find a group of people as passionate about cultural events and live music as we were that were willing to spend the necessary time developing the concept for the festival.”
The region has proven that it is able to sustain many music festivals over the course of the year with the ongoing success of Fredericton’s Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival, Sackville’s SappyFest as well as the Halifax Pop Explosion.
While the idea of adding another festival into the annual mix in the region might not have come to fruition in the past, Xavier feels the timing is right. “Music is very subjective, and I like to think that we’ve got a bit of a different vision from other festivals in the region. For one, we’re not genre specific, which means we won’t be focusing on one specific brand of music. We are actually going to be looking to attract different markets of music lovers while holding an emphasis on quality live entertainment.
“We also have a long-term vision to become an international festival destination. To us, that means that we will be looking to attract bigger bands as we grow, although we’ll always have room for underground and emerging artists. Looking at bringing in mainstream and internationally renowned acts is definitely on the horizon, however. We have definitely seen that Moncton has the appetite for it,” Xavier says.
Although there is only so much money to go around these days, Xavier says that the organizers of the Codiac Music Fest have received nothing but absolute support from other festivals in the region despite the fact that they may be considered competition.
“From day one, we have been getting a lot of positive reinforcement and support from various sources,” he says. “The amount of resources which we had immediate access to proved to us that this project was very plausible. We have also had the chance to meet with many industry veterans through various events such as Music New Brunswick Week and the East Coast Music Awards, who offered all of the advice that we were after. Some even offered as much as mentorship experiences and potential for collaboration projects.
“Most people in this industry are passionate about their events and they realize the importance of helping each other out through various means. They all started somewhere and most of them base their models on already existing events. The collaboration factor has been very positive so far and we can only hope for it to grow from here. At a certain point you become established enough to help others reach their goals. We hope to be able to return the favour one day.”
In the first year for the festival, one notable factor for the Codiac Music Festival is the number of free events being offered to the public. In fact, of the five events offered, only two are restricted to licensed audiences and are paid events. While the availability of free programming may dwindle in the years ahead, it was an important step for the festival to take this year.
“There is no denying that providing free programming works in our favour in terms of getting the word out on the festival, but the importance and ultimately the main goal of these shows is to make the Codiac Music Festival as accessible as possible for the community. As the event grows, we will maintain the free component as a way to develop more community-based events and activities surrounding the live music component.”
Article published in the August 2, 2013 edition of the Times & Transcript
Friday August 2
City Hall Plaza – Downtown Moncton – Noon – Free
Robinson Court – Downtown Moncton – 5:00 p.m. – Free
Joey Robin Hache
Saturday August 3
Plan B Lounge – 212 St. George St. – 11:00 p.m. – $8 adv / $10 at the door – 19+
After Party Acid People
Tide & Boar Gastropub – 700 Main St – 11:00 p.m. – $8 adv / $10 at the door – 19+
Les Jeunes d’Asteure
Sunday August 4
Moncton’s Farmers Market – Westmorland St. – 6:00 p.m. – Free
Old Man Luedecke