Roots and Blues Comes of Age

moon and main stage
Turning 21 is a milestone to be celebrated, especially when it comes to a festival. So many festivals in BC’s interior have come and gone – Merritt Mountain Fest, Nakusp’s Saddle Mountain High, Komasket, Kelowna’s Blues Fest – there has been a string of festivals that for one reason or another, just couldn’t make a go of it. But Roots and Blues just keeps on going.

This year’s line up is packed with headliners and favourite bands such as Bruce Cockburn, City and Colour, Ben Waters, Daniel Lanois, Harry Manx, Five Alarm Funk, Jason Collett and Sherman Doucette. But for those who know the festival, it’s always the bands you’ve never heard of before that you discover while you’re there that makes the festival so memorable.

Catching up with Hugo Rampen, the artistic director of the festival, he seems pleased with ticket sales so far this year, with just a week to go before the gates open. While they’re not expecting the 34,000 crowd they got the year K’naan, Bedouin Soundclash and Michael Franti took over the stages, they should be close to last year’s 24,000 over the course of the three days.

With Cockburn as one of the highlights, it’s no wonder seniors ticket sales are the highest on record over the past several years. It may also have to do with the fact that for many, the festival has become a ritual holiday and after 21 years, they’re finally old enough to qualify for Senior’s tickets!

But on the opposite end of the spectrum, Rampen noted that that this year’s youth tickets are also at a recent high.

Ticekts are on sale for day passes, day and evening passes and full weekend passes at their website,


About artseenokanagan

Freelance writer and photographer in Kelowna, specializing in the Arts.
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