April 13, 2021



The Word IMPACT Is Powerful! It can be a statement or action that has affected us to leave a memory that has had an influence, and that’s exactly what John Derlis from IMPACT LIVE (Impactlive.ca) has done since 1985.  What you may not know is Impact Live has not only put on shows/events in Barrie but throughout North America including SIN CITY Daytona’s Largest Indoor/Outdoor Bike Week Concert Series in Florida.  This event was an overwhelming 10-day long  biker bash that had heads turning by the thousands converting the "7-Deadly Sins", into “7-Pleasure Seeking Sins” along with some of Southern Rock greats such as 38 Special, Blue Oyster Cult, Steppenwolf, Rick Derringer, Marshall Tucker, The Byrds, Humble Pie, plus exotic Foxy Boxing & Oil Wrestling – I am sure you can picture it, one better, just visit  www.ImpactLive.ca (Past Events Gallery) and see pics and live video for yourself!   

Originating from Toronto, John began event planning at a young age where he soon found himself marketing the biggest waterfront venue in Canada called THE DOCKS ENTERTAINMENT COMPLEX in Downtown Toronto, this is where his creativity and ability to push the envelope with entertainment propositions to a whole new level. The DOCKS not only had incredible live major music including; Electronic Music Festivals, Z103 Summer Rush, Ozzfest, Lenny Kravitz, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Creed, plus too many more to mention.  THE DOCKS marketing department also promoted a famous waterfront patio, beach volleyball, mini putt, driving range, drive-In theatre, a midway, even a sandy beach where John hosted his Swimsuit Canada National Model Search, and the list goes on.   

He brought that innovative creativity to Barrie in early 1988 where he was the General Manager of RUANNE’S, working along with his mentor Joe Iaccobaccio to create Legalized Gambling, The Barrie Music Awards, brought Ladies Night promos to the next level never seen in today’s nightlife scene, along with real and true sax filled Rhythm & Blues live music with great bands such as The Lincolns, Liberty Silver, The Meteors, New Hollywood, George Oliver & many more!  Then the birth of GOODFELLAS, where his live music connections and experience made the Barrie waterfront restaurant and nightclub famous by the creation of music programs such as, Barrie’s Waterfront Festival, GoodFellas Tonight Television Pilot Series, Huronia’s A-Live, Live Band Karaoke where you were able to be the front person of a great 6-piece house band and leave with a recording of your performance displayed with breakthrough technology on many large screens and a spectacular sound, video and lighting system way ahead of its time.  Some of the magical live music moments that graced the GOODFELLAS stage were; Burton Cummings, April Wine, Lighthouse’s last performance with front man Bob McBride, Trooper, Loverboy, Our Lady Peace, Dread Zeppelin, Barrie Native Daniel MacMaster whom later became the former Frontman of Bonham, just to name a few.

One of John’s biggest accomplishments was offering people an alternative to online ticket purchasing, this is where John creatively co-founded TICKETBREAK, to which he is still actively involved in supporting even after selling the majority of the company to Maple Music remaining as a Director.  Having this innovative ticket distribution technology under his belt polished the foundation to which IMPACT LIVE has brought to the people of Central Ontario and several other areas including his newest accomplishment in Niagara Falls.  If you are a concert goer and wondered who originated the scene here for concerts and continually brings us killer entertainment, the answer is simple, IMPACT LIVE!

Enclosed in the profile story is a small sample of what has come through IMPACT LIVE, not forgetting; Triumph,  The Headstones, Misfits, Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Bleeker Ridge, My Darkest Days, The Trews, Finger Eleven, Theory Of A Deadman, Big Wreck, Tom Cochrane, David Wilcox, Colin James and so many more great acts to mention.  But it’s also his support of the local and upcoming bands that he has supported along the way, giving local acts the opportunity to play with such great bands, and it’s the local support that has kept IMPACT LIVE growing in this area.  You can see pics and videos of many of the great shows by visiting > www.impactlive.ca/gallery.php

IMPACT LIVE has certainly made its mark in Simcoe County and has solidified its seat as the promoter that has longevity, and the ability to push forward to keep us entertained with such great entertainment for years to come while always finding the time to support our community by sponsoring charities and service clubs such as Rotary, Kinsmen, Heart & Stroke Foundation and Rock95-Koolfm Toy Drives.

I asked John what the future holds and he grinned saying… “At the club level The Ranch will become Central Ontario’s newest “Concert Party” venue for live music referenced as “The Ranch Concert Hall” when Impact Live hosts recording artist performances.  Concert Hall enhancements such as a large concert stage, video multimedia system, secure dressing rooms backstage (enough to support up to 7 bands performing on the same night), currently applying to increase capacity upwards of 1500 patrons, all of which can see the stage and be served efficiently with the great bar design and flow of the room, which was one of the main reasons for leaving my 20+ year concert residency at 46 Dunlop Street West, formerly The Roxx.  We just announced the sell-out of TIM HICK S & CCMA’s Female Artist of the Year Kira Isabella, plus just announced THREE DAYS GRACE & SERENA RYDER just to name a few winter 2013 shows coming.  As far as Festivals and Arena shows, you’ll just have to wait and read all about it on www.ImpactLive.ca and www.BBBMag.com ”.

Ian Churchward



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