NXNE Port Lands with Schoolboy Q at NXNE 2016


We get a lot of questions about a lot of things at NXNE. Hopefully you can find the answer below, but if you’re still scratching your head please a) check for lice; b) send an email to info@nxne.com and we’ll help you out.




IMG_3047What is North by Northeast / NXNE?
NXNE is a raging annual 10-day summer festival and conference, mostly centered around our collective love for music that we think you’ll love, too. The U.K. Guardian says “NXNE has crowned itself Toronto’s leading music event.” Visual art, comedy and film are also part of this packed cultural explosion. NXNE also features an Interactive conference that explores how music and emerging technologies connect, challenge and thrive. Celebrating our 22nd year in 2016, we take over Toronto with showcases, screenings, panels, parties, installations, and lots more. From free shows at YDS to extended last calls at your favourite sweaty club/bar/pop up venue, NXNE is the premier destination for bands, filmmakers, innovators, funny people, artists, and most importantly: fans of all of the above. We are partners with our friends in Austin, Texas at SXSW and yes, we are still getting great ideas from them — as well as a few of our own. NXNE was founded in 1995 and when you get to know us better you can call us Northby.

When was NXNE 2016?
We’re glad you asked. June 13-19, 2016. Next one is in June 2017.

Schoolboy Q schools NXNE Port Lands fans.

Schoolboy Q schools NXNE Port Lands fans.

Where is NXNE?
Toronto, Ontario, Canada, one of the leading live music cities in the world.  We take over the best downtown venues, clubs, places, parks, boats, airports, and pretty much everywhere else. We take over Toronto’s Times Square, Yonge Dundas Square for live music, live video gaming, E-sports and cool installations. And our new festival venue NXNE Port Lands (51 Commissioners St.) had amazing shows June 17-18.

What have you done lately?

Presented dozens of bands across Toronto, launched a new outdoor live music venue in the Port Lands, has a kick-ass conference at Ryerson University about gaming and music and how they intersect and had video games and live music for three days in Yonge Dundas Square.

I want to volunteer. How can I go about it?

What a lovely idea. You’ll have fun, make new friends, make important connections in the music industry and get free stuff. Please contact our awesome Volunteer Coordinator, Patrick McCormack (patrick@nxne.com) and he’ll set you up. Thanks.

I want to work at NXNE. How can I go about it?
Watch this space, NXNE advertises job opportunities through all of our social media outlets and this website. We also run ads in NOW Magazine and at nowtoronto.com. Volunteering is also a good start — and fun. We sometimes source staff from our pool of awesome volunteers.

I want to advertise on your website/in your gig guide. What do I do?
This is something smart people say. Please check out the information over here, then get in touch with nxne@milkamili.com.



Who’s played?

Ghostface Killah killed it at NXNE Port Lands 2016.

Ghostface Killah killed it at NXNE Port Lands 2016.

Acts at our new new NXNE Port Lands festival site June 17 -18 were: Friday, June 17 – Schoolboy Q, Ghostface Killah, Daniel Caesar, Shamir, Tiken Jah Fakoly, and Tasha the Amazon. Saturday, June 18 Port Lands features: Father John Misty, Mother, Mother, Dan Mangan, Born Ruffians, Land of Talk, The Zolas, HIGHS and Devin Cuddy Band with a very Special Guest Jim Cuddy.


This new lakeside venue is at The Port Lands at the corner of Cherry Street and Commissioners Road, across from what was called the Sound Academy. There’s regular bus service, plenty of parking and it is one of the most bike friendly sites in town with free bike valet parking.

By TTC bus, from the west, take the 172B Cherry St bus from King or St. Andrews to Commissioners St.Coming from the east, take the 72C bus from Pape Station to Cherry and Commissioners St. There is tons pf parking for cars. And, this just in, free boat shuttle from Harbourfront to NXNE Port lands.


And we had a boat that wasn’t afraid of sailing through the weeds.


Where are the Port Lands?

Just east of downtown Toronto, as close to Lake Ontario as you can get without falling in. Just past the Distillery District and south. Where those giant white abandoned industrial silos by the Cherry Street Bridge are, you can cross the bridge to enter to NXNE Land Port Lands. It’s just south of the part of the Gardiner Expressway that should have been torn down and where it curves to become the Don Valley Parkway. It’s where the the biggest bike paths in Toronto meet: one north-south, one east-west. It’s on the way to Cherry Beach, across the street from what was called the Sound Academy, also across from T&T Market. It’s where Cirque de Soleil pitches their tent in the summer and some gasp and are charmed by wonderment. It’s easy to get to and very cool when you get there.

Red dot is the NXNE Port Lands.

Red dot is the NXNE Port Lands, well actually bigger than the dot, it’s a fucking huge site. Blue dot is NXNE headquarters, not so huge.

Site Map at 51 Commissioners St.

Site Map at 51 Commissioners St.







Should I email (insert name & email of person on the NXNE contact list) to ask them to book my band?

Band submissions are now closed, thanks for the tons of applications, will be hard to choose from all of this excellent talent. And we’re not surprised. Here’s an important reminder: if you just joined Sonicbids to apply to NXNE for free, taking advantage of the 30 day free trial, and you don’t want to start paying for membership, cancel now.

Do you program (insert genre here)?
If it’s good and we can put it on a showcase, we’ll book it.



What is a Yonge-Dundas Square?



It’s a big public space at Yonge and Dundas in the middle of downtown Toronto. We also call it YDS, some people call it Toronto’s Times Square and we regularly create special NXNE events there. This year we added a live video gaming on the big screen and on dozens of ganes and computers, great live music, celebrity appearances, hello cast memebers from Pitch Perfect and a screening of the film  movies and more to our YDS programming. The fun ran from Thursday, June 16 through Saturday, June 18. The Square was jammed with activations including new games and an opportunity to play them. The great live bands included Zeus, the Fast Romantics, Jane’s Party, Ferraro and Sam Cash and the Romantic Dogs among others.

I hear the shows at YDS are free. That’s cool, but what’s the catch – how much are they?
They’re free. Really.

Are they all ages?
Yes. Fun for the whole family. Also free.




What is the Future Land Interactive Conference?

The NXNE conference has been an evolving beast throughout our 22 years. The conference was originally exclusively music focused with lots of info for new bands on how to crack into the, wait for it, record business. Needless to say the industry has changed dramatically over the years and so has the conference.

Atari founder Nolan Bushnell is coming to Future Land, NXNE's one-day Interactive Conference.

Atari founder Nolan Bushnell is coming to Future Land, NXNE’s one-day Interactive Conference.

Emerging digital technologies have become a huge part of the NXNE conference, just as digital has become a huge part of the music industry. We find plenty to talk about around the convergence of these two worlds. And we are always exploring new technologies and their impacts on our lives. We will also explore the issues and opportunities in the booming world of gaming.  Gaming has also emerged as a new and important way for musicians to make money and gain profile. This year’s conference took place Wednesday, June 13 at Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Business and RU is an active partner in producing the event. All day passes were only $80 with student and industry discounts available. Check out Future Land -Interactive Conference page on this site for more details. Nolan Bushnell, the godfather, and grandfather of gaming was the astounding, inspiring, brilliant and funny the keynote speaker, he invented Atari.

Who has spoken at the NXNE Conference?

Patti Smith, Johnny Rotten, Steve Earle, Bruce Cockburn, GZA, Fab Five Freddy, Marc Maron, Andrew Loog Oldham, Reggie Watts, Peaches, Irvine Welsh, Suroosh Alvi and many more.


Where and how do I get my pass or tickets?

Give us a break, we just finished 2016, look for details on 2017 tickets and talent this December. We’ll have the dates for you before that.


Why did you do it this way?

Honestly, did you see that Future Islands line in 2014? A lot of people walked away disappointed that they didn’t get to see one of the year’s biggest bands and we wanted to prevent that bitter, lifelong disappointment from ever happening again. In other words: a lot of people asked that we make a change to help get them into big ticket shows, so we introduced Northby Advanced ticket shows so you can be guaranteed of getting into the shows you want.

If I didn’t buy a Northby Advanced ticket, can I still get into the show?
Maybe. It depends on if we have tickets at the door.

Say I bought the walk-up admission. Do I have to leave right after the band I paid to see?
You got in, you can stay and party. But, if you leave the venue, please note you may not be allowed back in if capacity has been reached.




I’m a member of the media and I don’t know what I’m doing. Help me.
Hey media member. That’s not a question. But we’re still here for you because we value you and just like you, we want your parents to be proud of you. You should wander over to this page. If you have any specific questions that need immediate answers, please email damien@flip-publicity.com.

I run a blog. Can I interview [insert band name here]?
NXNE doesn’t facilitate third-party media requests. If you are accredited media, you are encouraged to speak with your PR contact at NXNE to set up an interview. Otherwise, you’re on your own.


Is there an app for my beloved smartphone?

Where can I find NXNE on the internets?
Why right here, silly. You can also follow us on Twitter, double tap us on Instagram, and like us on Facebook for updates on what we’re doing, where we are, who we’re listening to, and all that fun stuff. Really – it’s a good idea, and not just during the festival either. We’ll keep you company all year round.

I have specific questions for specific people. Where do I find that information?
Contact page to the rescue. Please direct all general inquiries and additional, pressing questions somehow not already covered in this extensive FAQ to info@nxne.com.