Riverboat coffee house

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The Riverboat coffee house
Location134 Yorkville Avenue
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Coordinates40°43′47.01″N 74°0′1.93″W / 40.7297250°N 74.0005361°W / 40.7297250; -74.0005361Coordinates: 40°43′47.01″N 74°0′1.93″W / 40.7297250°N 74.0005361°W / 40.7297250; -74.0005361
OwnerBernie Fiedler
Genre(s)Folk music.
OpenedOctober 1964
ClosedJune 25, 1978

The Riverboat Coffee House was a Canadian coffeehouse located at 134 Yorkville Avenue in the Yorkville neighbourhood of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It was a key venue for folk rock music and singer songwriter music made famous for featuring high-profile acts, and is considered to be "the best-known coffee house in Canada."[1] It opened in October 1964 and closed on June 25, 1978.[1]


The Riverboat was owned by Bernie & Patricia (a.k.a. Sola, a well-known artist) Fiedler. Located in a basement, its decor was modelled after the interior of a boat, featuring port hole windows and intimate booths.[2] Legend has it that American protest singer Phil Ochs wrote one of his best-known songs, "Changes", on the back porch.[3]

Notable performers[edit]

Numerous Canadian artists, including Lenny Breau, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Ian & Sylvia, Gordon Lightfoot, Bruce Cockburn and Murray McLaughlan, played the Riverboat. A frequent stop on the touring circuit, many American artists, such as John Lee Hooker, James Taylor, Tim Hardin, Simon and Garfunkel, and Phil Ochs, also appeared there.

Live albums recorded[edit]

Live at the Riverboat 1969 by Neil Young

Songs written at or about the Riverboat[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Riverboat". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Historica Canada. Retrieved 17 June 2015.
  2. ^ "Toronto Feature: Riverboat". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 2017-08-22.
  3. ^ Jennings, Nicholas. "The Riverboat and Yorkville's rich music history". heritageyorkville.tripod.com. Retrieved 2015-06-19.

External links[edit]