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Québec Rocks: Festival d’été de Québec

Neil Young and band

By Bill Triplett

Quick, what do the Rolling Stones, Foo Fighters, Keith Urban, Lady Gaga, Billy Joel, Bryan Adams, Stevie Wonder, Bruno Mars, Bon Jovi, the Black Keys, Metallica, Iron Maiden, Sting, Charles Aznavour, Elton John and a ton of other musical heavyweights have in common? At one point or another, they’ve all played the Festival d’été de Québec, an 11-day extravaganza that rocks, jazzes, hip-hops, folks (and more) the historic district of Québec City every July.

Cyndi Lauper

This year it runs July 5 – 15, and one of its brightest stars will be none other than local-boy-made-good, Neil Young. Also putting in appearances will be Jethro Tull, the War on Drugs, Shawn Mendes, Sebastian Bach, Kurt Vile and the Violators, the Soul Rebels, and many more along with Foo Fighters, who’ll be coming back for a return engagement.

Fela Kuti

If the past is any indication, it promises to be a big party – maybe the big party – north of the border this summer. It’s also being billed as family-friendly, complete with a “Family Fun Zone” that will feature everything from dancing to martial arts workshops. Street performers are slated to be among the crowds, too.

 

Could be a special way to take in massive amounts of music while experiencing the charm of the Québecois, whose culture and history are as magique as it gets. And it might be one of the last great deals out there: The all-inclusive 11-day pass will set you back $100 CD – a whopping $77 US. Try seeing Neil alone for that anywhere else.

Details, including the full line-up of music: http://www.infofestival.com/en/

William Triplett is the former DC bureau chief for Variety. Triplett has written about various destinations, from Scotland’s Inverness and Paris’s Pere Lachaise Cemetery to Shakespeare’s Stratford-upon-Avon and the Beatles’ old haunts in Hamburg. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, The Baltimore Sun,and Capital Style.

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