“Wet and wild” has become the underlying theme of media articles covering Osheaga 2017.
Torrential downpours during the Friday afternoon kick off cancelled some artist’s sets and rescheduled others. Even headliner Lorde was not spared from the rain, thanking the portion of dedicated fans who enthusiastically sang along and danced the night away right to the very end of her set.
But while the water was definitely a moment of panic for some, it was by far the defining feature of the weekend. That credit belongs to the artists who gave their all putting on incredible performances for audiences of tens of thousands. Teagan and Sara, Muse, The Weekend, Cage The Elephant, MGMT, Alabama Shakes, Vance Joy, Liam Gallagher, Pup, Justice and Hamilton darlings Arkells represent a fraction of the stacked lineup featuring musical acts of all shapes and sizes.
From international superstars to up-and-comers and everything in between, there was definitely no shortage of musical talent at Osheaga. Currently in its twelfth year and without any signs of slowing down – albeit accommodations made due to construction at Parc-Jean Trapeau scheduled to finish next year – Osheaga is an event you should not plan to miss.
Bruha was right in the middle of the action, hitting Osheaga ground zero this past weekend and enjoying the eclectic sight and sounds that the world renowned music festival has to offer. We wanted to know the thoughts and feelings of festival attendees. Getting more than we bargained for in the musings of Irishmen and chilled out Montreal natives, here are a few stories we were able to capture this weekend.
We are chilling here at Osheaga day two. We are meeting with a man with a red beard and a flowered shirt. Where are you from, my friend?
Cork, Ireland. Like the top of a wine bottle, Cork.
Why have you come to Osheaga today?
To be honest, I came to Montreal because I am doing a bit of a tour of Canada and I was in Toronto and I heard that my hero Liam Gallagher, man, was here for a few days and I said “you know what, I’ll just set my trip here for a few days” because I like the songs.
Everyone here in Montreal likes these dubstep and these genres of music that will never survive. Rock n’ roll will live forever and I want to see Liam, after Keith Richards the greatest rock n’ roll star of all time. He’s not what he was in a lot of ways but it will still be great to see him.
Other than Liam Gallagher, who else are you excited to see today?
Major Lazer OK, you know, I like their dancy kind of commercial sounding dance music. It’s really good. I might go see Muse because I hear they put on an amazing live show and I’d love to hear their guitars. This Father John Misty I’m hearing a lot about. I don’t really know his songs but everyone tells me “You gotta go to Father John Misty, man!”
Why have you decided to do a tour of Canada?
Well initial thought, I wanted to do a bit of travelling and I wanted to go to somewhere that was English speaking so they would understand me. But literally no one has understood a word I said this entire time since I got here.
Canada is probably the best country in the world, I’ve been here a month and everyone I met has been very nice.
Anthony Isaac Pierre
Where are you from?
I’m originally from Ottawa but I moved here to Montreal about a year ago.
Yeah I like it a lot. I live in the Plateau area and you know you’ve got a good scene here. The city of Montreal is mostly about culture.
Would you say that Osheaga plays a big role to the city’s culture?
Yeah, I think it does. Just look at all the people around us. People wait all year long just to come and get a ticket, just to be here for a weekend do you know what I mean? It’s a chance for people to experience music that they haven’t heard or get to see their favourite band or artist. It’s a good way to get people to come together.
Do you think the people of Montreal are a little tired of all the tourists visiting the city or do you think they are welcoming?
Very welcoming, more welcoming we need it. I feel like since I’ve been here the economy depends on tourism so that’s why there’s always things to do in Montreal. Like month after month, you can’t ever get bored.
What acts are you most excited to see this weekend?
I am interested to see Petit Biscuit, Honne. I was gonna see Salonge but she cancelled. But I’m more into listening to independent people so you know you have Majid Jordan and you know Muse. My tastes are a little out there but these are the people I’m excited to see.
What are your top tips for having the most fun at Osheaga?
Listen, you have a buddy system. Numero uno you have got to stay hydrated because it is very important. Make sure that you eat and always bring a portable phone charger with you wherever you go.
Ian Williams, Conor Duffy, Stephen Ericson
What are you guys planning to do today?
Connor: It’s my first time here. We’re here to have a great time. We heard that there would be a great lineup this year and we’d love to see a mixed group of great rap artists and also straight up rock artists.
Stephen: This might be my favourite place in the whole world. Highlight of the year, every year. Just love coming, hanging out, dancing. It’s what we live for.
Ian: Osheaga is the best time of my life!
So, where are you guys from?
All: Boston, Massachusetts.
Why do you guys travel all the way to Montreal from Boston to come here? There’s got to be festivals in the States that you can go to!
Ian: It’s not the same! Canada is the best place in the world!
Connor: We come to Canada for a couple of reasons. Mainly because Montreal is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and we like to spend time on this beautiful island and have fun.
What are your guys top tips to having the best time?
Connor: If you’re coming to Osheaga for the first time, what you’re going to want to do is dance in the fountain in the middle of the stages. It’s really fun, it will cool you off and you’ll have a good time.
Ian: I’d say just do what you want. It’s Canada, you can do anything you want in Canada. Nothing really matters. No regrets!
What are you doing today?
We’re doing a promotion today where you can win two VIP passes for next year. We also have temporary hair dye products, we have colorists spraying people’s hair for the day and we also have a tattoo parlour for flash tattoos.
Have you been here all weekend?
I’ve been here all weekend and it’s awesome!
Did you get a chance to enjoy some of the acts?
Yup! I got to see Major Lazer last night which was really awesome, a little bit of Muse. Hopefully today I’ll get to see Foster The People and Crystal Castles.
What are your top tips for people coming to enjoy the festival this weekend?
Definitely check out all the booths because you can find some really cool stuff going on and some great contests. Also, eat. Eat during the day and drink lots of water. Just enjoy the show but check out each stage. You might like them, you might not like them. It’s different all around.
Emilie Proulx & Bianca Garofalo
Today is Sunday, the last day of the festival. What have your thoughts been so far?
Emilie: It’s the first year that we have changed place and I prefer the other site. But the music was good and the general freedom is perfect as usual. Even in the pouring rain people are happy to be here.
Bianca: I would say also the freedom. Coming here with the three-day pass so I guess just coming into a different world, enjoying the music. Enjoying the company of people enjoying themselves.
What were some of your favourite acts of the whole weekend?
Bianca: I would say Muse. I’ve seen them before and they were really, really good. We saw MGMT which were also really good. Glass Animals on Friday.
Emilie: Petit Biscuit on the Bacardi Island was really good. The general idea of the island, that we were all on top of the water, is really cool.
What would your top tips be for people enjoying the festival?
Emilie: Wear closed shoes. Bring a poncho. And just be the craziest version of yourself you can be. Dress as you want and just have fun.
Are you from Montreal?
Do you enjoy having people come from all over the place visiting your city?
Bianca: It’s awesome! I mean, I think there are a lot of people from Ontario and the States. Which is pretty cool because Osheaga is pretty big in Montreal. It’s a big deal.
Rob Brown is a contributing author and proud Hamilton native. You can catch him sipping on tiny cups of coffee and listening to a mixtape you probably haven’t heard of at Bayfront Park on Sunday afternoons.