This summer’s Rock the Shores music festival cancelled

Rock the Shores will take a leave of absence from the Vancouver Island festival scene this summer, and its future beyond that is uncertain, producer Atomique Productions of Victoria has announced.

The cancellation of the popular Colwood festival, which returned in 2018 following a one-year hiatus, was confirmed on the concert promoter’s social media feeds Saturday night.

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“We have made the difficult decision to not proceed with Rock The Shores in 2019,” the post said.

“We aren’t certain what the future holds for this event as it will depend on business conditions and talent availabilities in our region. It has been an amazing run and we will miss it this summer. To everyone who has participated over the years on both sides of the stage, thank you!”

The festival started in 2012, with the inaugural edition headlined by the Tragically Hip drawing 12,500 people. The producers decided to rest the event in 2017, citing concerns about the “business climate” and the availability of musicial acts.

Rock the Shores returned last year with a lineup that included Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys, Social Distortion, X Ambassadors and Bahamas, among others, but did not draw audiences on par with previous editions. A strong U.S. dollar and competition from other festivals in the province have been cited as reasons for the festival’s recent struggles.

Tickets for two other popular festivals produced by Atomique Productions, the Phillips Backyard Weekender (July 26-28) and Rifflandia (Sept. 12-15), have been on sale for months. Tickets for Rock the Shores did not go on sale to the public. Rock the Shores leaves behind a legacy that includes performances by acts such as The Black Keys, Weezer, Jane’s Addiction, The Cult, and July Talk, among others.

mdevlin@timescolonist.com

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