Performing in the South Okanagan next month will be extra special for one of Canada’s brightest country music stars, Shawn Austin.
Although the 33-year-old chart-riser is from Vancouver, Penticton has been home to some of his life’s biggest moments, headlined by his wedding.
On June 3, Austin will be joined by an all-star lineup of performers at the South Okanagan Events Centre for the Some Things Never Change Tour, with Canadian country-music staple Dallas Smith scheduled as the show’s main event.
“I was the guy who played at restaurants and bars all across B.C., like 10 shows a week, just trying to hone my craft and build a foundation,” Austin said. “Then I finally got an opportunity, signed with Dallas’ Steelhead record label in March of 2017, and the rest is history.”
Since his big break five years ago, the musician has been nominated for Canadian Country Music Association’s “Rising Star” award twice, while collecting over 23 million streams of his music on multiple online platforms. His hit singles, particularly Tailgate Heaven, have also appeared near the top of the nation’s chart positions.
Austin’s appearance at the SOEC is part of a Canada-wide tour that features the aforementioned Smith, James Barker Band, Meghan Patrick, Jojo Mason, Kelly Prescott and Manny Blu.
“It’s really exciting to be part of this show,” Austin said. “The crowds have been unbelievable so far and I know Penticton will be among the best. It’s a place I that love to spend time in and returning there is a little extra special for me.”
Though Austin’s momentum on the live stage hit a speed bump in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, that didn’t stop him from continuing to emerge as one of the nation’s brightest country music stars.
In May of 2020, the musician was featured on Season 2 of NBC’s Songland, a reality television show that follows the journeys of “undiscovered songwriters.” As part of the episode, Austin performed an original song for country-music mega-stars Florida Georgia Line.
“That show, aside from the exposure, just elevated my songwriting ability,” Austin recalled. “It was a major stepping stone for me.”
Aside from Penticton, the tour will hit cities like Prince George, Abbotsford and Regina, before wrapping up in Toronto on June 30.
Tickets for the Peach City show, set to begin at 7 p.m., can be found on the SOEC’s website.