The Halifax Jazz Festival Expands For 2017




(Halifax, NS) The TD Halifax Jazz Festival presents a diverse musical lineup of world-class entertainers for 2017 that is certain to please a broad range of musical tastes. This year marks the 31st annual TD Halifax Jazz Festival, to take place July 12 through 16, 2017, with stages in and around Halifax.

The Main Stage on the Halifax Waterfront is the heart of the festival and hosts music nightly, beginning Wednesday, July 12 to Sunday, July 16. Main Stage artists this year include Grammy nominee Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, Canadian icons Blue Rodeo, Reggae Night with Jo Mersa Marley and Jesse Royal, and a free Sunday evening closing show featuring Halifax music staples The Mellotones and Gypsophilia. New this year to the festival is The Carleton Groove Stage and more Creative Music Workshop Series Shows, curated by Jerry Granelli. 

Main Stage entertainment leads off with Reggae Night on Wednesday, July 12 featuring Jamaican-American reggae artist Jo Mersa Marley, grandson of reggae legend Bob Marley, and fellow Jamaican Jesse Royal. Show ticket is $30.

Friday, July 14 promises a fantastic evening of music with Blue Rodeo. Canadian Music Hall of Fame members Blue Rodeo have been thrilling audiences world-wide for more than 30 years, selling millions of albums and picking up practically every major music award and honour Canada offers! Show ticket is $55 and is presented in association with Sonic Concerts.

Hip Hop sensation Anderson .Paak & the Free Nationals take the stage Saturday, July 15. Nova Scotia native, multi award winner singer/pianist Reeny Smith will open for Anderson .Paak. Tickets for this show are $60.

Both celebrating big milestones, two of the best bands Halifax has ever seen – The Mellotones and Gypsophilia – will co-headline the Main Stage on Sunday, July 16. Gypsophilia will play their final Halifax Jazz Festival Performance and The Mellotones celebrate 20 years of funk. To celebrate the career of these two acts, this show will be free.

After 13 amazing years, Gypsophilia are calling it a career! For the past 13 years Gypsophilia have become known for  their high-energy, eclectic, and original music. Their first-ever performance was at the Halifax Jazz Festival in 2004, since then, they’ve become a touring and composing juggernaut. This is the band’s last year together and they are celebrating with one final coast-to-coast Canadian tour, capped by this, their final Halifax Jazz Festival performance ever. Come see them bring it back to where it all started!

The Mellotones are celebrating their 20th Anniversary.  Well-known to audiences throughout Halifax and beyond for their perfectly executed funk, Soul, R&B sounds, The Mellotones are sure to get everyone out on the dance floor.



Award winning venue The Carleton Music Bar & Grill, a mainstay of the region’s live music scene, hosts eclectic Late Night stages every night of the jazz festival from July 12 through July 15, shows start at 11:15pm. Tickets to late night stages are $15.

NEW this year is the Carleton Groove Stage, featuring  funk, soul and groove music nightly starting Thursday, July 13, 8pm – 10pm, running through Saturday, July 15. Featuring popular local bands The Brood, Thursday, July 13, The Zim Gars Friday, July 14 and TALEA Saturday, July 15. All shows are $10.

Late Night Stages at The Carleton tickets are $15 and start Wednesday, July 12 with Fredericton blues wonder Keith Hallett. Hallett’s howlin’, growlin’ vocals and soulful, impressive guitar licks and slides have made him a staple of the East Coast blues community.

Nova Scotia native Kirstin Olivia is set to take the stage on Thursday July 13. Kirsten’s unique sound can be described as a cross between Neo soul and Experimental R&B; bringing genres together in a fusion that’s familiar yet stretching creative boundaries.

Willem Paynter Hardbop Collective, known for their heavy-swinging sound and tight arrangements, play Friday, July 14.  Willem Paynter Hardbop Collective, awarded Gold for Best Jazz Artist of 2016 by The Coast, brings together bebop, blues, and broadway for a unique musical experience.

Local favorites Roxy & The Underground Soul take to the Late Night Stage at The Carleton on Saturday, July 15. Inspired by the sweet sounds of Motown, Southern Soul, R’n’B, and Funk, “Roxy and the Underground Soul Sound” create original soul music that harks back to the “good ol’ days” yet maintains a youthful and current edginess.

Get an early start to this year’s festival by catching shows from The Creative Music Workshop Series: In the Moment, Curated by Jerry Granelli. The CMW series begins Tuesday July 11, with nightly shows through Saturday July 15, and features some of the most exciting names in jazz both from Canada and internationally. All CMW Series shows are all ages and take place at 1313 Hollis. Tickets are $20, $15 with student ID.

This year, noted saxophonist and composer Michael Blake returns to CMW as special guest faculty member, joining core faculty members Jerry Granelli (drums, Halifax), J. Anthony Granelli (electric bass, New York), Christian Kogel (guitar, Berlin), Susanne Chui (Dance/Movement – Halifax), Peggy Lee (Cellist – Vancouver) and Doug Cameron (drums, Halifax).

The Creative Music Workshop Series kicks off with BADABOOM on Tuesday July 11 with Halifax legend, jazz percussionist Jerry Granelli with Doug Cameron. STRINGS features Peggy Lee, Christina Kogle and J. Anthony Granelli on-stage, Wednesday, July 12. On Thursday, July 13 be sure to check out I LOVE HORNS with Michael Blake, Andrew Jackson, Andrew Mackelvie and Nick Dourado. The CMW Series continues on Friday, July 13, WHERE DANCE AND MUSIC MEET with Michael Blake, Peggy Lee, J. Anthony Granelli, Christian Kogel, Susanne Chui, Doug Cameron and Tim Crofts and continues Saturday, July 15 with The Globe Blues Band – DANCE HALL with Michael Blake, Christian Kogle, J.Anthony Granelli and Ross Burns.

The Creative Music Workshop Series concludes Sunday, July 16 with a free finale show at the Halifax Central Library.  Join us to hear the results of the 2017 CMW participants creativity, collaboration and risk-taking at the free concert, open to all ages, 2pm start.

ALL Tickets for announced shows go on sale at 10:30am AST, Thursday, June 1, 2017

2017 TD Halifax Jazz Festival Standard PASSES are on sale now but are very limited. Purchase Standard Pass for $129 online at and at etixnow.comThe Fusion Pass for 2017 are SOLD OUT. The Standard Pass provides access to all shows at the festival, subject to capacity. (Please note, Standard Pass does not guarantee entry; venues are subject to capacity and first, come first served.)

TICKETS for Main Stage shows, Jo Mersa Marley and Jesse Royal, Blue Rodeo, Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals, the Late Night Stages, Carleton Groove Stage, Creative Music Workshop Series, along with the St. Matthew’s Church series shows are on sale beginning today, Thursday, June 1, 2017 @ 10am AST. Tickets will be available for purchase at the etixnow kiosks in the Halifax Forum (2901 Windsor Street) and Music Nova Scotia (2169 Gottingen Street) and online, and  

All Main Stage evening and The Carleton Music Bar & Grill shows are 19+. St. Matthews Church shows, 1313 Hollis and the CMW finale show at Halifax Public Library are all ages.

Support for the TD Halifax Jazz Festival is provided by numerous corporate and community partners including TD, Waterfront Development and Westin Halifax.

Apply to volunteer at the 2017 TD Halifax Jazz Festival HERE today! Volunteer opportunities exist for all skill levels and at locations all around Halifax. With so many ways to help out and be part of the excitement, from Box Office to Bar, Security to Social Media, Photography to Production, the festival invites  individuals to check out the volunteer opportunities page for descriptions of  volunteer positions.

About the Halifax Jazz Festival:Since 1987 the non-profit organization the Halifax Jazz Festival has presented a diverse range of musical and educational activities including the 2017 TD Halifax Jazz Festival, which takes place July 12-16 . For more information visit, or follow Halifax Jazz Festival on twitter and instagram @HFXJazzFest or “like” on facebook.

You can head on over to the festivals site, to stay on top of all things Jazz Fest.  Tickets for the event can be purchased at the following link, and volunteer applications can be found here:

About the author


Jeff is one-fourth of the group that makes up HAFILAX. His usual ramblings can be read right here on the website. If reading isn't your thing, he also hosts the Basement Tapes podcast.