Island tour

Rapper Shad unofficially extends Skeleton Park Arts Festival tour

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One of Canada’s top rappers will take to the main stage at Kingston’s Skeleton Park Arts Festival on Saturday night.

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Juno-winning Shad, who wrapped up his tour in support of his newest album, TAO, in Toronto on Thursday, intends to bring the same energy with him during his 7 p.m. performance at McBurney Park.

“It’s perfect,” Shad said. “It’s just when we’re on tour, so we’re in training, we’re in shape and in play mode. There were also no meetings in Kingston during the tour, so it is pretty much perfect. It’s kind of like another tour ending.

The rapper curates his set to connect the community roots of the festival and the outdoor venue with his personal sound. Shad’s music is lyrical, adding a self-conscious element to the energy of hip-hop.

“I love to entertain,” Shad said. “I have kind of an artist’s instinct. So while music is definitely a place where I tackle different things – some of the deepest questions and concerns that I have – it’s also a place where I love to delight people, to spark joy if I can too.

This isn’t the first time Shad has visited Kingston. He performed both in the city and on Wolfe Island. Growing up in London, Ontario, Shad had no plans for a career in the music industry.

“I went to school to study business, initially. In high school for me, music was just a fun thing and not something I thought I would pursue,” the rapper said. “Then when I was in school I kind of caught the bug. I really started to realize that what I really love to do is create my own stories.

Shad released his debut album, When This Is Over, in 2005 and has since released six studio albums. His album TSOL topped Drake’s Thank Me Later for Rap Recording of the Year at the 2011 Juno Awards. Shad hosted the radio show Q on CBC Radio One in 2015 and continues to host the Netflix documentary series Hip -Hop Evolution.

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“Making (When This Is Over) gave me that confidence and gave me the opportunity to try to pursue music a little more and put even more time and energy into it,” Shad said. . “Since then, I kind of put one foot in front of the other and kept creating.”

The rapper admitted he doesn’t know what his next project will be, but he’s excited to explore his relationship with his audience this summer and will be spending time with his two daughters.

“I’m going to play festivals this summer starting with Kingston,” Shad added. “Finishing (the TAO tour) is always important to me. Touring an album feels like I can kind of put this project to rest and my mind is open to new things.