Matt Mays
Calgary Folk Fest

Matt Mays

from Dartmouth, NS

Don’t mistake Matt Mays for a Haligonian. Born in Hamilton, this king of Portland Street hails from the City of Lakes, the Darkside, the Dirty D, none other than Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Getting his start with country rock ensemble The Guthries, a family band of sorts featuring several Minnikins, many of which are lovable East Coast folk mainstays to this day. Mays struck out on his own in 2003, releasing a self-titled debut that would garner two Juno nominations. With his band El Torpedo, Mays brought southern rock to an otherwise traditionally inspired East Coast tradition, ripping the foam off every pint of Oland’s Export in every rock ‘n’ roll bar from Merigomish to Miramichi. That is, when he isn’t running off to Mexico or Hawaii to surf between tours. Though the stages have grown, and the El Torpedo name has retired, Mays has added three more Juno nominations to his name, and even brought home the award in 2014 for the rugged Coyote. Though his gruff vocal performance may draw comparisons to other grunge-influenced Canadian rockers from as close by as Hanna, AB, Mays has never compromised his artistic integrity. Instead he’s plunging deeply into conceptual song writing, exemplified by his 2006 drum-centric beat system When the Angels Make Contact – purportedly designed as a soundtrack for a film that only a few lucky folks can claim to have seen, and his 2020 release Dog City is a Sgt. Pepper-inspired concept album from the perspective of a rescue dog.

Biography by Liam Prost


Saturday July 29, 2023

10:25 PM – 11:30 PM · ATB @ Mainstage


A collaboration with others

Sunday July 30, 2023

1:55 PM – 3:05 PM · Community Natural Foods Stage 6

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