Published May 01, 2003There's one in every city and town, an offering for every taste and trend. They range from the largest scale of the punk'n'skate Vans Warped Tour to the eccentric specificity of two different Elvis festivals. Some have reputations of international renown, like the Montreal Jazz Festival, others are as intimate as the St. Catherines indie Scene Festival. Some of the biggest festivals are continuing the trend that's dominated the last few years, expanding their purview into loosely-connected realms. Many folk festivals have broadened their definitions in a return to true "folk" people's music to include roots musicians from around the world. Those acoustic guitar-dominated stages are now as likely to see a kodo drummer or African dance troupe as they are a Maritime crooner living in the shadow of Stan Rogers. Blues festival attendees will certainly get their dose of Koko Taylor and Buddy Guy, but might also cotton on to the jamming sensibilities of Ben Harper. The active interest in jazz history by myriad sample-based musicians has not gone unnoticed by the bookers of this country's most prominent jazz festivals. One is as likely to see a line-up that includes Amon Tobin, K-OS or Kid Koala as they are jazz stalwarts like Charlie Haden or Joe Henderson. But as bigger festivals seek to expand their scope, sometimes it goes the other way too a slew of independent-minded festivals are finding their core audience by the very specific nature of their festival. Events like Toronto's Take Out The Trash festival likes their garage kept nice and sloppy, Ottawa has its own Organ Festival featuring, well, organ music, and Vancouver's Early Music festival keeps things distinctly pre-rock'n'roll. From bluegrass to barbershop, there's something here that caters to nearly every specific taste. And some are sure to deliver on exactly what they promise we'll see you at Kitchener's Blues, Brews and Barbecues festival when the August heat just gets too much to bear. James Keast British Columbia New Music West, Vans Warped Tour, Victoria Skafest and more! Prairies Calgary Folk Festival, Sasktel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, Rock'n The Valley Fest and more! Ontario North By Northeast, Hillside Festival, Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival and more! Quebec Mutek Festival, Pop Montreal Festival, Le Festival International de Jazz de Montreal and more! Maritimes Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival, Stan Rogers Folk Festival, Festival 500 Sharing The Voices and more!