Vancouver Walking Tours: A New Way to Explore Vancouver Culture

Some of the best ways for people to learn about culture, history and art may not be from a museum. It is also true that some people may find it hard to learn about Vancouvers culture from the view of a laptop or phone.

So with the anticipation of Halloween, I thought it would be fun to talk about a different way to explore the culture in the city we call home. So in comes  Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours. They are walking tours (obviously) that cover the unknown history of Vancouver from the late 19th to early 20th century. From the dark to the unexpected to the downright salacious these tours are made for curious people. And yes, although they are open past Halloween, some tours are made more fun from the spookiness of the season!

Tour guides are dressed up and made out to be people living in this time, in order to immerse you in the history of Vancouver in a new and exciting way.

Some tours have been put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the ones that have remained open are those that can be completely outdoors to a bide by social distancing protocols. These tours include, The Dark Secrets of Stanley Park, The Lost Souls of Gastown, and (the one that is now on my personal bucket list) The Really Gay History Tour.

Jack-O’-Lantern…the term originated in 17th-century Britain, where it was used to refer to a man with a lantern or to…

Posted by Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours on Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours/ Facebook

With Halloween fast approaching The Lost Souls of Gastown tour is available every night until the end of the month with multiple times to insure smaller groups.

This experience is perfect for people that want to explore the other side of Vancouver’s history (the side that you may not have learned in history class) and is a cool, new way to explore Vancouver even if you have lived here your whole life.

So go and be a tourist this Halloween! Tickets are $29 per tour and to find details about the specific one you had in mind, click here.

Bill Reid Art Gallery New Exhibit: Resurgence: Indigequeer Indentities

Is going to events actually making a comeback during this pandemic? Well slowly, and only for some things including a new art exhibit that will open up on October 21.

This new gallery, Resurgence: Indigequeer Identities will be hitting the Vancouver art scene tomorrow and will highlight the work of four up and coming 2Spirit artists. The exhibit is on display at The Bill Reid Gallery from October 21- January 24.

The artwork on display delves into themes of what it is like to be Indigenous and queer explored from the personal stories and view points of four Indigequeer artists all from different tribes and communities in the Northwest Coast region.

The four artists on display are, Levi Nelson (Lil’wat First Nation), Jaz Whitford (Secwepemc), Morgan Whitehead (Plains Cree) and Raven John (Coast Salish/Sto:lo). Their artwork reflects how they see themselves and how they identify within their community in a raw and personal way. It explores the challenges they face, the resilience they have and ultimately the love and life they experience.

Their pieces are in multiple mediums including, portraits, jewelry, clothing and many others for an array of things to explore.

The Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art was created in 2008 to celebrate the art and culture of the extremely diverse groups of indigenous people within Northwest Coast. It continues to shed light on indigenous culture by bringing  forms of art from these communities to the general public.

The gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday from 11-5 and tickets are available here! If you are of indigenous decent this exhibit is completely free but don’t worry prices are low and come at an even more discounted rate for students!

Check out other exhibits or learn more about Bill Reid Gallery by clicking here.

Bill Reid Gallery/ Facebook

BC Cultural Days: Chinese Canadian Food & Family

Posted by BC Culture Days | Fête de la culture on Tuesday, May 19, 2020

BC Culture Days/ Facebook

BC Culture Days continues tomorrow with their Online Speaker Series entitled, “The Fecundity of Food & Family: A Natural Niche for Chinese Canadians in Burnaby”. This free livestream begins tomorrow, October 20 at 7 pm PT and is in partnership with Burnaby Village Museum and UBC students who have studied Chineses Canadian history.

This discussion focuses on the Chinese Canadian culture through the lens of food and farming in Burnaby’s history specifically. The event will be a reflection of what UBC students (who have studied Chinese Canadian immigration/ history and had interned at Burnaby Village Museum) had discovered from their research.

Along with the discussion panel there is also two podcasts and one video available online right now that highlights the specific histories they researched, including the brief history of the dish chop suey and the Chinese Canadian restaurant The Dragon Inn.

BC Cultural Days have been on a months long run that began on September 25. The organization promotes art and culture to the general public, giving access to local art and history to those that may not have known it existed. They highlight different communities throughout British Columbia and the history, art and culture behind them.

Although this year looks very different because of the effects of COVID-19, they have managed to create new ways around the social distancing barriers through a more online approach, including virtual tours, live-streaming, digital recordings and few limited seating live events.

Activities like these are a fun and informative way to learn about the history of places and things you see/ do everyday and there is still much fun to be had throughout this coming week!

Click here to find an event that would most suit your interests.

To participate in this specific event click here or find it on the Burnaby Village Museum website.

Leather Aprons Revival: Concert Live Stream

Kimberly native band Leather Aprons Revival will be hosted on the Online Fall Live Stream Concert Series on October 24 at 7 pm PT.

This free event is second in a line up of local musicians that will run until November 21.

It is hosted by the Kimberly Arts Council at Studio 64 and although the centre is back to being open to the public the concert will only be available online in order to a bide by social distancing protocols. The series will be available on both the studios Zoom and Youtube accounts respectively or on the bands Facebook and Instagram page, meaning that even from our hub of Vancouver we can still enjoy and rock out with this band.

This series is in an effort to bring great music to the comfort of peoples homes while the COVID-19 pandemic continues to collapse the live music scene. Encouraging people to still find and support local musicians.

The band, Leather Aprons Revival is a three part rock band made up of Lennan Delaney as the lead singer as well as being on guitar and fiddle and his bandmates Grady Pasiechnyk on base, guitar and background vocals and Jeff Rees with drums, percussion and background vocals. The band takes pride in being authentic, no autotune or computerized music, just

Posted by Leather Apron Revival on Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Leather Apron Revival/ Facebook

instruments and men ready to rock, the band describing themselves having “ a Molten Metal Motif”. They have previously finished recording a new album back in July with a release date that is yet to be announced. 

Known as being a cultural hub in British Columbia, Kimberly and the Kimberly Arts council is committed to bring art in its many forms to people and with new and creative ways during the pandemic. 

To learn more or take part in this event click here.

A New Way To Enjoy Vancouver Music: Pandemic Porch Sessions

Starting tomorrow evening will be the first in a line up of “Pandemic Porch Sessions”, which are live streamed concerts from the porches of Vancouver to living rooms anywhere! Sessions will be taking place between October to March.

The event starts October 17 at 7 PT and tickets are available with varied options depending on what you can afford. Starting with “Under / Unemployed” tickets for 11.62 to “The Feeling Generous” Tickets for 22.23.

The event is organized by Anna Whelan and will be streamed live from her porch. It was created in an effort to bring more people together virtually during the harsh winter months we will inevitably face as COVID continues to keep everyone physically a part. She is joined by Jessica Benini a Vancouver singer-songwriter who is known for blending genres such as folk and pop. As well as musical and artist Byron Hanson who has been a part of some BC choirs and has played the cello for the rock band Ten Suns.

Posted by Pandemic Porch Sessions on Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Pandemic Porch Sessions/ Facebook

This livestream event is funded by Showcase BC, a grant program that came about admits the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic as a way to support BC musicians. Musicians were some of the most immediately affected people by the pandemic, losing live concerts meant the majority of their income in a short period of time was gone. This grant program is funded by the Province of British Columbia to help both established and up and coming BC artists.

The event is meant to be casual and fun a way to tell stories and play songs in an intimate environment. To be connected with others while still remaining safe in your homes. If you are able to join, check out this rad event and purchase tickets here.

To see if you yourself are applicable for a Showcase BC music grant click here.

Bill Henderson Live at Massey Theatre

British Columbian rock legend Bill Henderson will be performing live again as he announces concert dates for late next month. All shows will be held at the Massey Theatre in New Westminster.

The concert will take place on four separate nights in order to abide by social distancing protocols. In simpler terms this means only 50 seats of the 1200 within the venue will be sold per show so tickets will be going quick! Show times will run between November 26 to 29 starting at 7:30.

Posted by Massey Theatre on Friday, October 9, 2020

Massey Theatre/ Facebook

The Vancouver native, 73 year old has an extensive career in Canadian music that expands over five decades and is known for his work both on and off the stage. He is best known for his work as the lead guitarist and singer in the band Chilliwack. (What a loyal British Columbian!) Also he is known as a member in the bands UHF and The Collectors. Behind the scenes he has been a record producer, composer and musical director. Most recently he performs solo shows where he can showcase his amazing guitarist and singing skills.

The legendary musician has been inducted in the BC Hall of Fame in 1994 and more recently the band Chilliwack was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2019.

With news like this it is hard not to get excited that live music is slowly on a steady upward slope, but all of this is conditioned on the fact that British Columbia maintains stable corona virus case numbers moving into the near future. The Massey Theatre has previously held other shows since the loosening COVID restrictions and has introduced new event procedures to make sure that audiences and workers are safe.

Tickets are 55 dollars and available now for purchase at Massey Theatres website. Click the link to grab your tickets before they are sold out.

Stone Temple Pilots Live Stream Concert

Stone Temple Pilots, classic alternative rock band will be performing a streaming concert live tomorrow night, October 16 at 5 pm PT. The band members will be revisiting their studio album “Purple” to be played in its entirety. The album launched them into rock and roll fame back in 1994 with multiple hits including “Interstate Love Song”, “Vasoline” and “Big Empty”.

“Purple” was the bands second studio album and by far its most popular granting them general acclaim in the rock world and selling over six million copies.

We hope you all plan to join us one week from tonight for our live performance of Purple! ⁣If you haven’t already, purchase your pass and exclusive merch here:

Posted by Stone Temple Pilots on Friday, October 9, 2020

Stone Temple Pilots/ Facebook

The band seems to be on a roll of performing previous albums during this quarantine shut down as they previously hosted another livestream concert earlier this year playing their 1992 album “Core”.

The band has had a long career in rock and roll music that has expanded over the past four decades. While the band will be sticking to their hits from the 90’s they have recently come out with a new studio album entitled “Perdida”. The album was released early 2020 and takes the band away from their rock roots and more into an acoustic direction.

For those looking for an interesting BC connection, the American band was in Abbotsford back in 2013 to play a concert when they showed up two hours late and playing a shortened set of songs. They released a statement the following day saying their lead singer at the time Scoot Weiland was to be on vocal rest for 48 hours. He was fired a couple months later.

The concert will be streamed through the bands website with tickets being sold at the same web address.  costing 14 dollars. There is an option to upgrade to a ticket bundle that will include a concert t-shirt of the original albums cover for 46 dollars. The link to purchase tickets is available here.

Jim Beam Talent Search: Vancouver Highlights

The Jim Beam Talent Search continues tonight and I have all the highlights from yesterday evenings Vancouver performances, so keep on reading! If you are looking for a chance to participate and cast your vote but were unable to watch last nights show, each episode is prerecorded and still available for viewing (and voting right now).

The first band up was Redwoods who originally formed in high school. They described themselves as a definite rock band drawing inspiration from 70’s, 80’s and 90’s rock. They performed their song “Tidal Wave” which lead singer and guitarist Devon said is about “going after what you love”. The electric guitar was the star of the show with not one but two solos within the song.

Next was the band Small Town Artillery, who performed their song “The Birds Up North Are Braver”. Their sound was more eclectic, with their song pulling from some jazz elements including saxophone and trumpet. For being a band on the relatively bigger side (having six members) I felt as though each one of the members got to shine and had small solos throughout the song. (Which I wholesomely respect).

Gnarfunkel was up next, and my first thought when I heard their band name, was how has no one come up with this name before? I found it effortlessly cool. Anyways, the band described their style as “gnarly to the funky extreme” with ties in other genres such as Latin, reggae and psychedelic rock. Their song was entitled “I’m a Sailor” felt reminiscent of a Beach Boys song but more rock and roll. This had me craving warmer weather (but could have also been because they were wearing Hawaiian shirts).

The next act to perform was the band Raincity, who originally started out as jazz performers before finding their own sound in what they have described as “rage funk”. Their unique sound, style and costumes made them extremely entertaining to watch as they performed their song “Sweat”.

Maddie King, the only solo act of the night was last to perform. She had a very different sound from the rest of the acts, with more of a pop influence and being the only singer was refreshing to watch at the end, she also had a beautiful voice and soulful lyrics to her song “We Always Fall Down”.

Watch and cast your vote here and don’t forget to follow the next cities round of musicians, as the spotlight will be on Edmonton tomorrow night.

Mariana Trench “Live” at The Commodore Ballroom

Vancouver native band Mariana’s Trench will be performing live at The Commodore Ballroom for a new streaming event happening tomorrow, on October 15. The band will be hosting two concerts in one day. The first one beginning at 11 am for their European audience base, and the other for North American audiences from 6-7 pm PST.

Posted by Z99 on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Z99 / Facebook

The concert is part of a series called“Live From Inside” in which Live Nation Canada and The Commodore Ballroom (along with other venues) have partnered up to showcase Canadian bands and singers. It is all a part of a reimagined way to enjoy live music from the comfort of your home while social distancing is still plagues our ability to see live concerts . Each concert will include the same production elements as a regular show, including lighting and sound. Making it feel like a real concert experience and not that you are watching bands from their homes. Marianas Trench is their fourth act to be showcased.

Marianas Trench is no stranger to the Vancouver spotlight and one of the most recognizable bands to come out of British Columbia. Their eclectic blend of sound have made this band enticing to listen to but hard to completely sign a genre to, mixing the forms of punk, pop and rock. They are best known for their songs “Fall Out”, “Stutter”, and “Who Do You Love”. They have recently come out with their latest album Phantoms back in 2019, with a new sound approach which the band describes as “ghostly” and like “the haunting of a former lover”.

Posted by The Commodore Ballroom on Monday, August 10, 2020

The Commodore Ballroom/ Facebook

The Commodore Ballroom has been a staple of Vancouver for over 90 years bringing music and nightlife to this beautiful city since 1929.

Tickets are available for purchase now and cost 16.44 with one dollar from every ticket purchase going to the charity at Unison. The link to purchase is available here.

You don’t wanna miss out on this extremely Vancouver show!

Support BC Music Scene

During these times it might be weird to think that there are more ways to support your favourite musicians than just listening to them on the radio, but there are tons of ways to help support local musicians, singers and venues. Here are some ways to help.

The first thing you can do to help support local artists (if your bank account can financially support it) is to purchase band/singer merchandise, songs and albums. Recently, a Chilliwack studio, Rosewood Studios produced an album called Artists in Isolation and it is full of local bands and singers in the folk rock genre. The first album was published back in May and the second in September. The album is 10 dollars and all proceeds of the album will go straight to the artists on the album. You can purchase the second volume here.

Share your favourite musicians on social media. This is a perfect way for you to show your support of the bands you love without it costing you any money. This could be done by posting about their new song that just came out, a live-streaming event that you are going to take part of and want others to join, or simply liking their page can help show your support during these times. It could lead to bigger exposer for them and a more likely future concert to happen for you.

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In a performance based industry we also have to remember the venues (that would normally host your favourite bands) are suffering too. Amazing, local venues such as The Roxy, The Orpheum and The Commodore have either been completely shut down since COVID originally hit or have severely groomed back the amount of people they have, and the events that should take place. The Biltmore Cabaret a music and event venue in Vancouver suggests purchasing gift cards for future shows and they will throw in a drink at the bar or a burger maybe. Purchase your gift card here.

Keep the BC music scene and musicians dreams going by supporting them.

Jim Beam Talent Search Starts Today in Vancouver


So it begins, tonight marks the start of the virtual Jim Beam National Talent Search. Where the best of the best in up and coming Indie music have been selected to compete for a chance to perform at the Canadian Music Week Indie Awards next year. Canadian Music Week (CMW) has been discovering and showcasing new talent in Indie music for almost 40 years and although this year might be different it is definitely more accessible for us at home!

As audience members we get to decide the fate of the acts performing by voting every night who our favourite act from each city was. (I’m having flashback’s to Canadian Idol days). As a self proclaimed couch potatoes and fan of all things singing competition related I’m excited to watch (and vote) every evening.

Here is how the process works, everyday for the next eight days a new episode will be live (at Each episode will highlight the five selected bands from eight cities across Canada including, Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Calgary and of course our beautiful city of Vancouver.

Posted by Canadian Music Week on Thursday, February 27, 2020

Canada Music Week/ Facebook

So who spearheads this competition? Well, Vancouver is first to set the stage tonight at 7 pm local time with the first bunch of five. The musical acts competing are, Small Town Artillery,

Raincity, Gnarfunkel, Redwoods and singer Maddie King. Of course I will be back tomorrow with all the highlights from this exciting evening.

This event is a response to the shutting down of music venues everywhere and almost the complete dismantle of live music all over Canada due to the ongoing pandemic. But this event is making sure to keep it safe and cleanly, with sanitation stations everywhere, the masking of musicians when not performing and making sure social distancing procedures are being followed by spacing out the acts.

The event is free so get those keyboards out and ready to vote tonight and lets hear some good music!