British Columbia

Top Indigenous artists coming to Vancouver for Drum is Calling Festival

Buffy Sainte-Marie, Tanya Tagaq and others will be playing at Larwill Park for nine days beginning July 22.

On The Coast music columnist gives her picks for the 9-day event

Tanya Tagaq will be one of the most high-profile artists at the Drum is Calling Festival in Vancouver.

Some of Canada's top Indigenous artists are on their way to Vancouver for a nine-day festival of arts, music and culture.

The Drum is Calling Festival starts this Saturday at Larwill Park and will feature a nightly concert series featuring musicians like Buffy Sainte-Marie and Tanya Tagaq.

While those artists will attract the lion's share of attention, On The Coast music columnist Andrea Warner is shining the spotlight on a few other artists worth checking out.

"William Prince won the contemporary roots album Juno this year, and he's great," she told On The Coast guest host Gloria Macarenko.

Prince performs on July 23.

Another artist Warner recommends is The Jerry Cans from Iqaluit.

"They sing in Inuktitut and English, and they combine throat singing, folk, alt-country and a little bit of reggae," she said. "They also started their own record label last year to help support northern artists."

They play July 27 at 7:30 p.m.

Warner says anyone checking out Tanya Tagaq on July 24 is going to want to catch opening act Amanda Rheaume.

"She is a great singer-songwriter, Warner said. "She did a song that features Chantal Kreviazuk, who will be performing at the festival on Friday. It's in support of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls and the Red Dress project."

Finally, Warner recommends Leela Gilday who is performing on the final night, July 30, at 7:20p.m., on a bill with Leonard Sumner and Shane Koyzcan and the Short Story Long.

"Leela's a Juno Award winner, too, and she's such a force on stage."

Almost everything at the Drum is Calling Festival is free, but registration is required for a few events.

You can find more information and a complete listing of events here.

With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast