Vancouver is a fabulous place for music in the summer, with free concerts everywhere. Music genres include rock, classical, country, jazz, folk and more.
Free Summer Music Concerts
Below are some of the best places to find live outdoor music in the summer, with most if not all of the venues being free.
Free Summer Music in Vancouver
Vancouver has a number of great summer festivals which feature free outdoor live music, including the following:
- Carnaval del Sol – a Latin carnival in Vancouver on the second weekend in July that features live bands from throughout Latin America. In 2018 the event takes place on July 7th and 8th.
- Pacific National Exhibition (PNE) – Vancouver’s premier fair from late August until the Labour Day long weekend features amazing live music. 2018 dates are August 18th to September 3rd. The concert lineup for this year is the following:
- August 18, 2018 – Boyz II Men
- August 19, 2018 – Air Supply
- August 21, 2018 – Dean Brody
- August 22, 2018 – Goo Goo Dolls
- August 23, 2018 – I love the 90’s Tour
- August 24, 2018 – Wilson Phillips
- August 25, 2018 – Marianas Trench
- August 26, 2018 – Lost 80’s Live
- August 28, 2018 – 112 Featuring Slim
- August 29, 2018 – Kool & the Gang
- August 30, 2018 – Jann Arden
- August 31, 2018 – Burton Cummings
- September 1, 2018 – Chicago
- September 2, 2018 – Village People
- September 3, 2018 – Cyndi Lauper
- TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival – free and ticketed concerts throughout Metro Vancouver from late June until the first weekend in July. In 2018 the concerts run from June 22nd until July 1st.
- Honda Celebration of Light – a Fireworks festival in English Bay near Stanley Park’s Second Beach on two Saturdays and one Wednesday in late July and/or the beginning of August. The festivities include live entertainment for much of the day, with headliner bands in the evenings. 2018 fireworks nights are July 28th and August 1st and 4th.
- Canada Day Celebrations – July 1st is also a great time to find free outdoor concerts, including at Canada Place, Granville Island and other venues throughout the Lower Mainland.
- Khatsahlano Street Party – a major street party on West 4th Avenue, billing itself as “Vancouver’s largest free music and arts festival” in mid-July. In 2018 the event takes place on Saturday July 7th.
- Trout Lake Summer Concert Series – free weekly concerts outside the Trout Lake Community Centre at 3360 Victoria Drive on Wednesdays in the evening.
- Brahm’s Tam Drum Circle – informal drumming sessions take place at Third Beach in Stanley Park on sunny Tuesday evenings from May until September. They aren’t “concerts,” but they are free, musical and entertaining! If it’s a sunny evening, there will be drummers (plus lots of people).
- CBC Musical Nooners – a free concert at noon every weekday outside the CBC building at 700 Hamilton Street from the second week in July until mid-August. In 2018 they run from July 10th until August 16th.
Free Concerts in Burnaby
The premier free music event in Burnaby each summer is a one-day event involving the Lower Mainland’s finest classical music.
- Symphony in the Park – a free outdoor concert by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra at Deer Lake Park in early July. In 2018 the entertainment takes place on Sunday, July 8th.
- Summer Sundays Concert Series – free live music outside Burnaby’s Bob Prittie Library – Metrotown Branch on Sundays from the second weekend in July until late August (except for on the BC Day Long Weekend).
Free Summer Music in Coquitlam
- Summer Concert Series – free live music from 7 to 9 pm at Town Centre Park Plaza at 1299 Pinetree Way on a couple of Fridays in the summer. Concert dates in 2018 are July 13th, August 3rd and September 7th.
Free Concerts in Maple Ridge
- Music on the Wharf – a series of outdoor concerts on the Port Haney Wharf at 22360 River Road in Maple Ridge every couple of Mondays in July and August (by donation). Concert dates in 2018 are July 16th, July 30th, August 13th and August 27th.
Free Concerts in New Westminster
New Westminster has a couple of major festivals that feature free live music in August.
- Uptown Live – a giant street party and Indie music festival in New Westminster )August 21, 2018).
- Columbia Street Food Truck Fest – a food truck street festival from one end of Columbia Street to the other in heart of the old town (July 28, 2018).
Free Music in North Vancouver
North Vancouver is one of the best places in the Lower Mainland for free live outdoor music, with multiple concerts each week at the following venues:
- North Vancouver Summer Concert Series – now called the Live & Local Concerts & Culture Series, free outdoor concerts take place in North Vancouver’s Lynn Valley Village, Deep Cove and Edgemont Village on Friday evenings from 7 to 9 pm in July and August. Here’s the lineup for 2018:
- July 6, 2018 – Cayla Brooke playing Jazz and Blues at Deep Cove’s Panorama Park and Deanna Knight & The Hot Club of Mars playing Swing and Jive at Lynn Valley Village.
- July 13, 2018 – Big City Soul playing R&B and Soul at Deep Cove’s Panorama Park and En Karma playing Bhangra at Lynn Valley Village.
- July 20, 2018 – Mostly Marley playing Reggae at Deep Cove’s Panorama Park and Terminal Station playing a mix of Blues and Rock at Lynn Valley Village.
- July 27, 2018 – Copper Crow Blues Band playing Chicago Blues at Deep Cove’s Panorama Park and Gary Comeau and the Voodoo Allstars playing a mix of New Orleans Roots and Blues at Lynn Valley Village.
- August 3, 2018 – Smith and Jones playing Classic Rock at Deep Cove’s Panorama Park, A Tribute to Aretha Franklin performance in Edgemont Village and Sam Spades playing Rockabilly at Lynn Valley Village.
- August 10, 2018 – Platform Soul playing Disco Funk in Edgemont Village and R&B Conspiracy Classic R&B at Lynn Valley Village.
- August 17, 2018 – The Fab Fourever playing Beatles tunes in Edgemont Village and Big Easy Funk Ensemble playing New Orleans Funk at Lynn Valley Village.
- August 24, 2018 – Mazacote playing Latin Dance music in Edgemont Village and the Adam Woodall Band playing Folk Rock at Lynn Valley Village.
- Shipyard Night Market – a slightly upscale summer night market in North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale neighborhood that features great live bands on Friday nights. Bands scheduled to perform this summer include the following:
- June 1, 2018 – Dino Di Nicolo and 5 Star Motel.
- June 8, 2018 – GD/BC (a Grateful Dead tribute band).
- June 15, 2018 – Buddy and the Scarecrow and Platform Soul.
- June 22, 2018 – Scott Riddell.
- June 29, 2018 – Free Empire and Mostly Marley.
- July 6, 2018 – Slamming Jack.
- July 13, 2018 – Jay Trio.
- July 20, 2018 – The Heels.
- July 27, 2018 – Jay Trio and Red Eye Empire.
- August 3, 2018 – Funkdelicious.
- August 10, 2018 – Wichita Trip.
- August 17, 2018 – Gonch Messiah.
- August 24, 2018 – Werewolves.
- August 31, 2018 – R & B Conspiracy.
- Shipyards Summer Sessions Concerts – also taking place at Shipbuilders’ Square, these live performances are on Saturdays in July and August from 5 to 10 pm. Below is the 2018 lineup.
- Cates Park Summer Concerts – free concerts all afternoon starting at 2 pm on Saturdays from mid-July until the end of August at Cates Park at 4131 Dollarton Highway.
- Shipped Waterfront Festival – a free day of concerts at North Vancouver’s Shipyards in North Vancouver. Bands include Humans, Manatee Commune, Leisure Club, Sam the Astronaut, Tonye Aganaba, Colin Bullock, DJ Flipout and others.
Free Concerts in Port Moody
- Summer Sundays – free concerts at Rocky Point Park in Port Moody on Sundays in July and August at 2 pm. There’s a different band each week and the music ranges from Blues to Soul, R&B, Funk, and Reggae. On sunny days between 1000 and 2000 people attend. Concerts in 2018 include the following bands:
- July 8, 2018 – Groove & Tonic
- July 15, 2018 – Mr. Boogie Woogie
- July 29, 2018 – David Gogo
- August 5, 2018 – Nigel Mack & The Blues Attack (at 2 pm) and The R&B Allstars (at 4;30 pm)
- August 12, 2018 – Eagle Eyes
- August 19, 2018 – Steelin’ In The Years
- August 26, 2018 – Brickhouse
- September 2, 2018 – Big City Soul
Free Summer Music in Surrey
Surrey offers the following free outdoor concerts every week:
- Sounds of Summer Music Series – free outdoor live music at Surrey parks on Wednesday evenings (and the occasional Friday afternoon) during the summer. The 2018 concert season runs from July 4th until August 22nd and includes the following bands and locations:
- July 4, 2018 – at Glades Garden Park with Caviar & Lace.
- July 11, 2018 – at Fleetwood Park with the Celtic band Tiller’s Folly.
- July 13, 2018 – at Darts Hill Garden Park with the Razz MaJazz Trio Jazz.
- July 18, 2018 – at Bear Creek Park with the Folk & Blues group Cannery Row.
- July 25, 2018 – at Darts Hill Garden Park with the Bluegrass Rusty Rails.
- August 1, 2018 – at Holland Park with the band Top City.
- August 8, 2018 – at the Sullivan Park with Roots & Blues music by David Sinclair and Keith Bennett
- August 15, 2018 – at the Surrey Nature Centre with Folk and Pop music by Flint & Feather.
- August 17, 2018 – at Francis Park with the Peter, Paul and Mary tribute band the True North Troubadours.
- August 22, 2018 – at Stewart Farm with Folk Fusion group Wheat in the Barley.
- Newton Days – a Kids’ Fun Zone, food trucks, farmers market vendors and live entertainment on Saturdays in July from noon until 4 pm. Takes place at Newton Grove by the Newton Rec Centre at 13730 72nd Avenue.
The following Surrey festival is also a great place to find free live music:
- Surrey Fusion Festival – a festival at Surrey’s Holland Park in mid-July each year. 2018 dates for the event are July 21st and 22nd.
Free Summer Music in Richmond
Richmond offers the following two venues for great outdoor summer music:
- Music at the Cannery – concerts take place Friday evenings in the summer in Steveston Village at 6:30 pm outside the Gulf of Georgia Cannery at 12138 Fourth Avenue. (Note: admission to this event used to be by donation, but this year there will likely be a fee).
- Concerts in the Park – free concerts, face painting and crafts at Garden City Community Park at 6620 Garden City Road on Wednesdays from early July to mid-August (to be confirmed for 2018).
Concerts in West Vancouver
West Vancouver offers its free outdoor live music concerts in early August and early September at the following festivals:
- Harmony Arts Festival – a popular week long community festival in West Vancouver in early August that features live music and free evening movies. In 2018 the festival runs from August 3rd to August 12th.
- Coho Festival – a festival in early September celebrating salmon in West Vancouver. In 2018 it takes place on September 9th.
Free Concerts in White Rock
- TD Concerts at the Pier – White Rock’s free concert series takes place on a few Saturdays and Thursdays in July and August.
Free Summer Music in Whistler
Whistler is always having events with music in the summer. One of the best opportunities for a free concert is the following:
- Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in Whistler – outdoor concerts in Whistler during the Canada Day long weekend. In 2018 the concerts take place on June 30th and July 1st.
For more ideas on things to do in July and August, check out our Events Calendar.