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NLFB 2024 lineup to include: July Talk, The Rural Alberta Advantage, Jully Black, Tim Baker, DJ Shub, Shred Kelly, Andrew Hyatt and more

The time has come: Sudbury’s Northern Lights Festival is releasing its full lineup. Ever since the outdoor music festival formed in 1972, it has been a staple of Northern Ontario’s music & arts scene. The festival has become internationally known for its diverse programming and unique atmosphere, and being a destination for musical discovery.The festival celebrates a range of musical styles, from emerging Northern Ontario talent, to international superstars. The festival is thrilled to announce a diverse lineup of over 40 acts, in over 75 shows, over 4 days. The roster of artists includes: indie rock superstars July Talk; soul, R&B icon Jully Black; celebrated indie-rock-folk institution The Rural Alberta Advantage, and buzzed-about singer-songwriter Tim Baker. The event is scheduled for July 4-7, in Sudbury’s Bell Park and satellite venues. Weekend Passes and All-Day Passes are now on sale at www.nlfb.ca/tickets. To mark the launch of our lineup, our Full Festival Passes will be $100 instead of $135 for adults and $65 instead of $100 for youth from April 4 to April 11 only!

Northern Lights offers festival-goers 4 days of non-stop music, art, activities and fun! Northern Lights is all about the music, with 7+ stages/venues planned this year, and a lineup that includes: folk, rock, R&B, hip-hop, pop, country, indie, roots, and beyond. This is complemented by an assortment of demonstrating visual artists, artisan and food vendors, community booths, arts activities, beer gardens and more. 2024 promises to be an edition to go down in festival history.  “Northern Lights is truly a community of its own and a tradition that continues to endure,” says NLFB Executive Director Tessa Balaz, “The 2024 edition is shaping up to be the best yet, channeling that support into a high quality, dynamic and diverse celebration.” 

Day 1 – July 4: Northern Lights starts with headliner artist and Canadian Icon Jully Black performing on the Main Stage. Named as one of ‘The 25 Greatest Canadian Singers Ever’, (CBC Music) she has been dubbed ‘Canada’s Queen of R&B Soul’ by fans and industry leaders alike. As a platinum selling recording artist, her music career has yielded multiple singles reaching the Top 10 pop, R&B and dance music charts. She has taken home Juno and Gemini Awards, earned innumerable industry accolades, was hand selected to sing for the Queen of England and inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2021 (PILLARS OF EXCELLENCE – Arts & Entertainment). With her powerhouse vocals, hilarious personality and love of people, Jully Black truly is everyone, and unlike anyone. Her passion for philanthropy has taken her from the shantytowns of Bangladesh to the villages of South Africa and all across Canada.

Day 2 – July 5: The second day will be a Rock ‘n’ roll party like no other, while the energy of  July Talk unfurls and explodes. The group is composed of: two front people, Leah Fay Goldstein and Peter Dreimanis, surrounded by whiplashing guitarists Ian Docherty and Josh Warburton, and double drummers Danny Miles and Dani Nash. What goes on between these bodies, in that kinetic, staticky, sticky space, is where the truth of July Talk takes shape. Things get weird, occasionally grotesque, always enthralling. Even in the stark orderliness of black and white, July Talk has always been a work in progress. More accurately, it’s a work of progress, a communal pursuit of limitlessness as a mode of being. For a decade, July Talk has continued in its relentless project to know itself, a fundamental baseline from which to access raw ecstasy and agony. With their current release, Remember Never Before, the band returns – changed – to where they began. 

Day 3 – July 6: As the not-to-miss Saturday headliner,  Northern Lights is proud to present the folk rock trio from Toronto, The Rural Alberta Advantage. Founded in 2005, the trio is pleased to announce that its fifth album, The Rise & The Fall, will be released on October 6. This first album in six years marks the return of Amy Cole (bass, keyboards and vocals) to the band led by Alberta-born singer Nils Edenloff (guitar and keyboards) and propelled by Paul Banwatt (drums). The Rise & The Fall is also a testament to the difficulties the band experienced as a result of the pandemic and its aftermath: writing songs in Zoom meetings, collaborating online on demos, rehearsing remotely in borrowed warehouses, but never giving up hope that the day would come when the band could finally perform new songs together on stage. 

Day 4 – July 7: Closing out a magical weekend of sun, soul and celebration, will be singer-songwriter Tim Baker.  Tim Baker has launched a successful and inspiring solo career. Formerly, Tim Baker was best known as the writer and front man of Hey Rosetta!, a Juno-nominated, Polaris-shortlisted, and multi award-winning band based in St. John’s, Newfoundland. With over 15 years of performing their high-energy spectacle in stadiums, clubs, theaters and major festivals all over the world, Hey Rosetta! called it quits in 2017. Baker has since transitioned from being the leader and songwriter of a major indie rock band, and ascended to a profound solo artist. His solo LP, Forever Overhead (Arts and Crafts), garnered him a Juno nomination for Songwriter of the Year, three East Coast Music Awards), and a Polaris longlist. Baker’s latest full-length, The Festival is a polychromatic album of redemption, joy, release, and intrinsic connection.

Another artist Northern Lights is beyond excited to present is DJ Shub. Social activism and a feverish dance party make a tantalizing combination and 2022 JUNO winner for Contemporary Indigenous Artist of the Year, Dan “DJ Shub” General is the grand marshal we nominate to lead this jubilant parade. Shub is a true original: a title-holding battle DJ/producer, a joyful collaborator and a non-stop creator who skillfully weaves craft, message and heritage. Since exiting A Tribe Called Red, Shub has continued adding jewels to his “Godfather of PowWowStep” crown. 

Sudbury-born country music sensation Andrew Hyatt will also grace the festival stages. Hyatt spent years working as an ironworker at a nickel mine before deciding to pursue his true passion with music, and his journey is nothing short of amazing so far. Hyatt released his debut full-length “Iron & Ashes” in May of 2017 and quickly soared into the Top 10 at Country Radio with the hit single “On Me”.  Thoughtful, contemplative lyricism, peppered with country-rock riffs and smoky vocals, “Iron & Ashes” gave Hyatt a robust catalogue of hit songs to showcase during his major appearances/performances. Hyatt released his second (back to back) Top 10 hit “Do It With You” written by country superstars Thomas Rhett, Rhett Akins and Jimmy Robbins and produced by Scott Cooke in October of 2017.

BC alt. folk rock darlings Shred Kelly will join the party! With a captivating live act that leaves audiences in awe, Shred Kelly has become a mainstay in the Canadian music scene. With an impressive track record of touring across Canada, the United States, Europe, and the UK, Shred Kelly has made appearances at renowned festivals such as Kaslo Jazz, Ottawa Blues Fest, Winnipeg Folk Fest, SXSW, Reeperbahn and many more, leading to their reputation as a dynamic live act whose show is described as a joyous celebration of life.

Revered Canadian folk singer Lynn Miles will make an exciting return to Northern Lights. She is an award winning singer-songwriter, record producer, teacher, writer, and public speaker with 15 albums to her credit. She won a Juno award in 2003 for “Roots Traditional” Album of the year, and went on to be nominated in the same categories in 2006 and 2011. She is also the recipient of 6 Canadian Folk music awards including 3 for songwriter of the year. Her 2 most recent awards were given to her duo THE LYNNeS for songwriters of the year, at the 2018 Canadian Folk Music Awards. In 2016, Americana artist Clair Lynch recorded Lynn’s song “Black Flowers” on her Grammy nominated album “North By South”. Lynn estimates she’s written about 900 songs, though she’s never done an official count. 

Sarah Jane Scouten is a Canadian folk and Americana songwriter who also joins the festival roster.. Her songs pay their respects to 60s and 70s country songwriters Willie Nelson, John Prine, Bobby Gentry and weave in British folk revival elements with a continuous thread leading back to her roots in bluegrass and old time music. After a transformative four years, training as a herbalist in the hills of southwest Scotland, Sarah Jane is releasing her fifth album “Turned to Gold”. Sarah Jane offers a new depth and solidity as a songwriter. With producer Johnny Payne’s (The Shilohs) gift for modern vintage arrangement, this is destined to be your next favourite road trip album.

Having been core to the spirit of the festival since the early days, ‘Festival Boréal’ will present a selection of talented francophone and bilingual/multilingual artists from Quebec and Ontario, including: Latin/reggaeton/cumbia/hip-hop party-starter Boogát; inventive Métis singer-songwriter Willows; Toronto world-roots hurricane Moskitto Bar; Sudbury fiddle & folk duo Jacinthe Trudeau & Jeff Wiseman; plus singer-songwriters Dayv Poulin and Edouard Landry.  

Northern lights is all about helping audiences connect with artists and vice versa. In that spirit, Northern Lights is pleased to present a selection of talented, emerging Northern Ontario artists, appearing for the first time at Northern Lights Festival Boréal. Muskoka folksinger James Gray and North Bay psych-rock band Empty House were the winners of NLFB’s recent Meltdown competition, earning their spots at the festival roster. Mexican-Canadian guitarist and singer Ricardo Chavez, and electronic artist The 555, also appeared in the competition and proved they deserved a spot at the fest.

Many of the artists mentioned will appear in special workshop-style performances. For these on-of-a-kind experiences, the festival groups various artists together based on a certain theme, style, instrument or influence. These artists share a 45 min. set, performing songs and telling the stories behind them, or collaboratively jamming on each others’ material. Also, this year’s festival will include a special ‘teaser’ stage, exterior to the festival site in Bell Park. This stage will feature quick performances from festival artists, intended as an invitation to ‘come on in!’.   All in all, the festival features artists from countless musical styles and cultures, presenting a world-class program that brings together young and old in celebration of the universal language of music. 

As is tradition, the festival site will be packed with unique artisan vendors selling one-of-a-kind handmade goods. Festival-goers will also be able to stock up on food from the various vendors on site, offering a wide range of quality dishes at very affordable prices. Craft beer and other alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages will be available – with liquor licensing now covering the entirety of the festival site. Unique activities, installation  arts,  community booths, family activities, and more will make Sudbury’s Bell Park a bustling hive of activity and color. 

Northern Lights is actively recruiting volunteers to help make the festival magic happen.  Volunteering for the summer festival has a ton of perks, including the best one of all:  free access to festival shows! Depending on the role signed up for, volunteers  can take advantage of free admission to the festival (Volunteer for six hours to get an All-Day Pass, volunteer for 12 hours to get a Full Festival Pass). Volunteers also receive: provided meals and snacks, festival volunteers t-shirt, reusable water bottle, transit passes for volunteer shifts, festival merch discounts, and more.  

Northern Lights would like to extend its gratitude to the following partners for maintaining the tradition as Canada’s longest consecutively running music festival: Department of Canadian Heritage, Ontario Arts Council, City of Greater Sudbury, Ontario Arts Foundation, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, United Steelworkers Local 6500, Aaron Taxi, Delta Bingo & Gaming, La Slague, Stonehill Golf Club, and CAA Northeastern Ontario. 


Northern Lights Festival Boréal: Inventing tradition, fostering innovation, celebrating community, since 1972.