Top 10 Most Anticipated Hip-Hop Concerts Hitting Toronto This Summer (2023)

With COVID-19 now firmly in the rear view mirror, live concerts are back in full swing, bringing plenty of ways for fans to celebrate Hip-Hop’s 50th anniversary. 2023 has already seen a ton of artists bring their concert tours to Toronto, representing the diversity and growth the genre has achieved in its 50-year history, and it’s only going to get better as festival season opens up. Here is a quick look at some of the most anticipated concerts coming to the city that Hip-Hop heads should be looking to attend to keep the #HipHop50 celebrations going!

In chronological order:

10. Ab-Soul at Adelaide Hall
(June 2, 2023)

Those paying attention may have had their 2022 best-albums-of-the-year lists shaken up when Ab-Soul dropped his fifth studio album, Herbert, in mid-December. The six-year gap between his two most recent albums has given fans a chance to miss him, as he’s even been rare to catch on a guest feature in recent years, and hasn’t toured in Canada since T.D.E.’s Championship Tour in 2018. Soulo season is back in full effect, as we’ve now had a few months to digest the new album, and Ab-Soul will be kicking off his first tour since the pandemic with this show at Adelaide Hall in Toronto. There’s no telling how deep the set list will go, but Toronto will be the first to experience it on The Intelligent Movement Tour.

Tickets for this show are already sold out, so fans looking to get in will have to try the resale market.

Throwback footage from Ab-Soul’s 2017 tour:

9. The LOX at Queen Elizabeth Theatre
(June 9, 2023)

Canadian Music Week always has a diverse lineup of artists performing throughout the city during their annual festival, including several showcases of homegrown talent. One event Hip-Hop heads will want to look out for though is New York City’s The LOX returning to Toronto as a group for just their second time. The trio of Sheek Louch, Styles P and Jadakiss made waves during the pandemic with their viral Verzuz event at Madison Square Garden with The Diplomats, and now they’re bringing that same raw, authentic energy to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. Joining them will of course be a Canadian legend with a similar 20+ year legacy, Kardinal Offishall, always one to bring that summer heat to the stage. For Hip-Hop’s 50th anniversary we’re celebrating legacies, and these artists definitely have some that are worthy of the occasion.

Tickets for this show are on sale here.

Throwback footage from the last time The LOX performed in Toronto (2014):

8. Souls of Mischief at Adelaide Hall
(June 12 & 13, 2023)

Souls of Mischief seem to come to Toronto once a decade to celebrate a new milestone for their classic album, 93 ‘Til Infinity. One of the first concerts I reviewed when I started this blog was their appearance headlining the 2013 Manifesto Festival in Dundas Square, where they celebrated the 20th anniversary of their debut album, and now in 2023 the group has embarked on a world tour to celebrate the 30-year anniversary. They’ve toured all throughout Europe so far and will be kicking off the North American leg of the tour with two shows in Toronto. With it being almost a decade since the group released any new music, this one will definitely be a celebration of the classics as they take it back to 1993, celebrating their own legacy as well as the collective Hieroglyphics as a staple in underground, west-coast Hip-Hop. Gotta also shoutout Hiero’s 3rd Eye Vision turning 25 this year.

The June 13th show quickly sold out, but a second show has been added for June 12th! Tickets are on sale here.

Throwback footage from the last time Souls of Mischief performed in Toronto (2013):

7. MIXED BREEDS Tournament at Planet Paradise
(May 26, June 16, July 14, August 11 & September 8, 2023)

Before Haviah Mighty won a Juno Award and Young Stitch was crowned the BET Freestyle Friday World Champion, they were simply local Toronto-based artists developing their craft and looking for their shot at events like this. MIXED BREEDS is one of those events that brings the local scene together and has up-and-coming artists compete in a live setting, performing songs in a track vs track tournament where they can hone their skills on stage and even win prizes that will help advance their music careers. Returning for the first time since the pandemic, the good folks at Raw Dog Entertainment and Raw Dog Apparel have brought back their monthly showcases, all taking place at the kush-friendly Planet Paradise.

If you want to tap into the local talent we have right here in Toronto, MIXED BREEDS is a great way to do it. You may even catch me on the panel of guest judges for some of these events, starting with the June one.

6. Hot In Herre Festival at Downsview Park
(June 24, 2023)

Nelly is an artist who’s always gotten a lot of love whenever he’s come to Toronto over his 20+ year career, and now he’s returning that love with his own specially curated Hot In Herre festival. In collaboration with 90’s Nostalgia, who have put on their own incredible festivals in recent years, Nelly has put together a lineup with several of his peers who bring that nostalgia factor to his inaugural festival to Downsview Park. Between Ne-Yo, Akon, T.I., Fat Joe, Rick Ross, Ja Rule, Chingy, Keri Hilson, and Nelly himself, you have a playlist full of some of the biggest Hip-Hop and R&B hits from the early 2000s. Plus, you never know who’s going to make a surprise appearance at a festival of this magnitude.

Tickets for this concert are on sale at

Throwback footage of T.I. bringing out surprise guests in Toronto (2014):

5. LL Cool J & The F.O.R.C.E. at Scotiabank Arena
(June 29, 2023)

If you liked how LL Cool J and Questlove curated the Hip-Hop 50-Year Celebration segment of the Grammy Awards this year, this is the concert tour to continue that energy. With no traditional “headliners” and “openers,” LL Cool J along with The Roots, DJ Jazzy Jeff and DJ Z-Trip have formed The F.O.R.C.E. (Frequencies Of Real Creative Energy) to bring a concert similar to their Grammy segment, with a different lineup of Hip-Hop icons joining them in each city. The Toronto show will at least have Queen Latifah, Jadakiss and Rakim representing for the ’80s and ’90s, and you never know what kind of surprises The F.O.R.C.E. will have in store. If you’ve ever seen The Roots perform live, you know it will be a constant rotation of never ending music, plus this is LL Cool J’s first arena tour in 30 years. Need I say more?

Tickets for this concert are on sale here.

Throwback footage from the last time Rakim performed in Toronto (2014):

4. Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa at Budweiser Stage
(July 26, 2023)

Embarking on the High School Reunion Tour, Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa are returning to Budweiser Stage for the first time since they co-headlined Drake’s 2016 OVO Fest. The duo are sure to bring the party vibes, as their catalogues are filled with weed smokers anthems, and they’re able to blend eras between the ’90s and 2010s. It’s always a good time when Snoop Dogg is in the building, and he’ll be joined by frequent collaborator Warren G, plus Too $hort, who between them make up one half of the group Mount Westmore. With all the years of music between these artists, this concert is going to have a little something for everyone.

Tickets for this concert are on sale here.

Throwback footage from the last time Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa performed together in Toronto (2016):

3. Toronto’s Festival of Beer at Bandshell Park
(July 28-30, 2023)

Toronto’s Festival of Beer is always a highlight every summer. They have hundreds of beers from around the world available for sampling while enjoying the summer weather, and they always book iconic artists with plenty of classic throwbacks to perform at the Bandshell stage. This year’s Friday Hip-Hop part of the festival will feature Ice Cube, who recently toured through smaller market cities in Ontario this past February, plus Big Boi, who hasn’t performed in Toronto since OutKast’s reunion tour in 2014. Saturday will feature rock band Third Eye Blind, and Sunday will be headlined by R&B/Pop star T-Pain. As always, beer lovers and music fans will unite for an epic time throughout Beer Festival weekend!

Tickets for all 3 nights of the festival are on sale at

Footage from Ice Cube performing in Kitchener earlier this year:

2. Bastid’s BBQ at The Bentway
(July 29-30, 2023)

Making its return for the first time since the pandemic, Skratch Bastid has his Bastid’s BBQ food and music festival coming back to multiple cities across North America. This year’s edition for his hometown Toronto will be two days long at The Bentway, and is sure to showcase a ton of DJs who can actually chop it up on the turntables, as well as quality emcees. So far only one wave of artists has been announced, with Queens legend Pharoahe Monch set to be one of the headliners. Fans can expect an action-packed two days of Hip-Hop heaven, with a showcase of raw DJing and emceeing skills on stage along with quality foods on the grill.

Tickets for this festival are on sale here.

Throwback footage of Masta Ace & Marco Polo performing at Bastid’s BBQ 2019:

1. 50 Cent at Budweiser Stage
(July 31 & September 22, 2023)

Twenty years ago, 50 Cent’s Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ was the biggest album in the world, and so it’s only right that he takes the music back on tour to celebrate its 20th anniversary. While he’s been completely focused on producing tv shows and other entrepreneurial endeavors in recent years, the impact and influence of his debut album is enough to bring him out of rap retirement to celebrate the milestone. It’s been rare to see 50 perform live over the years, and this may be our last chance with it being called The Final Lap Tour, making this an opportunity Hip-Hop heads will not want to pass up. Joining 50 on tour is one of the greatest live performers in Hip-Hop history, Busta Rhymes, making the deal even sweeter.

Tickets for the July 31st show are on sale here, and they recently announced a second show September 22nd, tickets going on sale here starting May 26th.

Throwback footage from the last time Busta Rhymes performed in Toronto (2018):

Check out the SYpherSights Youtube channel for more concert videos.

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