In honour of its five-year anniversary, the King Eddy will host a five-day musical celebration with a mix of ticketed and free live shows, from June 28-July 2.
After over a decade of silence, the revitalized King Eddy re-opened as a live music venue, restaurant, and bar in 2018 as part of the National Music Centre development. Long-time Calgarians are familiar with the King Eddy story: a landmark and former hotel rising to fame as “Calgary’s Home of the Blues” throughout the 1980s-1990s. After its 2004 closure, the City of Calgary designated part of the building a Historical Resource, and the building was completely restored and repurposed to anchor the new National Music Centre facility; it eventually reopened as a full-time venue.
Since its reopening, the venue has re-established itself once again as part of Calgary’s live music scene, recognized as a hub for regional and touring Canadian artists. The King Eddy’s historic and electric vibe coupled with the adjacent National Music Centre’s rare collection and recording studio has made the venue capable of delivering recordings, as well as rare experiences for artists and audience members.
“It was a long journey to revive and re-imagine the King Eddy, one that began in 2006,” said Andrew Mosker, National Music Centre’s President and CEO. “Seeing the Eddy rise again and evolve the way it has over the past five years has been truly inspiring. It’s all and more that we imagined it could become; an authentic space with deep Calgary roots, inspiring and diverse live music, and great food, where the community feels welcome and genuine connections are made.”
“Our mission has been to build off the Eddy’s storied legacy by delivering warm hospitality, top-notch dining, and unforgettable live music experiences,” said Ryan McLeish, the King Eddy’s General Manager. “The Eddy team has worked hard to make this already special place even more extraordinary, and we’re inviting the whole community to come and celebrate this milestone with us. Stop by throughout the five-day event for drink specials, free appetizers, merch giveaways, listening party draws, and other surprises.”
The Eddy’s five-year anniversary celebration will showcase an eclectic mix of performances that represent the Eddy of today. A selection of jazz acts will kick-start the week. Presented in partnership with JazzYYC, the legendary Eddy stage will host JUNO Award-winning Canadian vocalist Caity Gyorgy (June 28), Gentiane MG Trio and Aline’s étoile magique (June 29), and Efajemue Etoroma Jr. and VOLK (June 30). Tickets for all shows in partnership with JazzYYC are on sale now at kingeddy.ca/whats-on.
But it wouldn’t be a proper anniversary bash without the return of a few western-style regulars on the bill. And so, resident honky tonk crooner Matt Masters will put a little extra “happy” into his popular Happy Hour series on June 30, from 4:30 pm-6:30 pm. Also on June 30, country outfit The Dungarees will headline a free rooftop concert that’s in salute to the country music community for making the venue a home for country music in Calgary.
Then, on July 1, the National Music Centre will host a free, family-friendly Canada Day bash with live performances across the Eddy’s main floor and rooftop. From daytime to dusk, music fans can soak up an assortment of local favourites. Six-piece country and roots dynamos Tom Phillips and The D.T.s, country artist Robert Adam, alt-roots band Cold Little Crow, and bilingual indie/folk-rock duo Post Script will heat up the main floor, while old-time banjoist and songwriter Amy Nelson, indie-folk singer-songwriter Bennett Mitchell, country artist Mariya Stokes, and country duo The Rural Routes serenade rooftop revelers.
Songsmith Sundays with Carter Felker on the main floor will close out the weekend festivities on July 2 from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. Felker and friends will also play an extra no-cover set on the rooftop on July 2 from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm, as part of the Eddy’s new Rooftop BBQ Party series that was previously announced. The rooftop will feature fun party games (from ping-pong and foosball to Jenga, cornhole, and more), and it’s open to all including families.
And, of course, the King Eddy kitchen will be serving up worldly delights from its recently updated menu, so music fans are encouraged to come hungry – and thirsty. A selection of local brews and new whiskey-centric cocktails that give a tip of the hat to the Eddy’s rich history along Whiskey Row will also be on tap to fuel up visitors.
For more information, the week’s full schedule, and to have a look at the Eddy’s brunch, lunch, dinner, and rooftop menus, visit kingeddy.ca.