Canadian Musician


Polaris Music Prize Teams Up with Toronto Symphony Orchestra

September 2nd, 2015

Peter Oundjian conducts Toronto Symphony Orchestra in 2014. Photo by Pejman Akbarzadeh

The Polaris Music Prize has announced a partnership with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO). This collaboration will see members of the TSO performing with some of the Short List nominees at the Polaris Gala, taking place Sept. 21 at The Carlu in Toronto, with an opportunity for the winner of the 2015 Polaris Music Prize to perform their original works with the TSO at a concert at Roy Thomson Hall in 2016.

“We’re extremely flattered and honoured that an organization with such an esteemed musical history wants to partner with Polaris-recognized artists in this way,” commented Steve Jordan, Executive Director, Polaris Music Prize. “The idea of artistic collaboration is very dear to us, and we’re anticipating some musically thrilling results.”

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Former CFL Commissioner Enters the Music Industry

September 1st, 2015

MarkCohonThe Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS)/The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts have announced the appointment of Mark Cohon as the new chairman of the board of directors. The former CFL Commissioner will begin his tenure on Sept. 29, 2015 succeeding Ed Robinson. Cohon is the 11th Chairman of the Board of Directors for CARAS/The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts.

“I am extremely pleased that the Board has appointed Mark as its Chairman,” says Allan Reid, president and CEO of CARAS/The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts. “He has extensive experience and passion for raising the profile of brands and delivering successful results. Mark will bring a fresh perspective, and we look forward to his contributions to growing the CARAS, JUNO Awards and MusiCounts brands.”

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Arthur McGregor named Canadian Folk Music Award’s Unsung Hero

September 1st, 2015

Arthur McGregorArthur McGregor, a highly-respected Ottawa-based community leader and founder of the Ottawa Folklore Centre, is the recipient of the Unsung Hero award for this year’s Canadian Folk Music Awards (CFMA). The award will be presented at the CFMA Gala on Nov. 8 at the Citadel in Edmonton. Tickets to the gala event are $48 (plus $2 administration fee) and are available now via

Throughout his life, Arthur McGregor has tirelessly brought music and people together, motivated by the belief that everybody has a right to play music.” As founder of the Ottawa Folklore Centre, an institution in the Ottawa music community for 38 years, McGregor ensured folk music was both accessible and affordable for music lovers of all ages. He has published songbooks, produced CDs, taught music lessons, and created camps and community choirs. Chris White, co-founder of the Ottawa Folk Festival, explains “[Arthur] has supported the music community in countless far-reaching ways and has inspired thousands of children and adults to discover the enjoyment and excitement of singing and playing music.”

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Canadian Music Enjoying Significant Increase in International Airplay & Performances

August 31st, 2015

SOCAN International earningsCanada’s songwriters and composers are enjoying an overall increase of eight per cent in international revenues over the previous year, according to data collected by SOCAN.

With international revenues from Canadian-created music exceeding $55 million in 2014, the performing rights organization confirmed that it was another record-breaking year for Canadian-made music performed outside of the country, topping the previous high set in 2013.

“The popularity of the work of Canada’s songwriters and composers continues to rise worldwide,” says SOCAN International Relations Vice President Catharine Saxberg. “Last year’s increase in international revenue is proof that our music creators resonate around the globe, and that SOCAN is doing even better at the complicated job of tracking international use of music, while expanding our capabilities by attracting top talent and building valuable partnerships with our music rights counterparts worldwide.”

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Second IMSTA FESTA Toronto Taking Shape

August 28th, 2015

SMALL RK & WG full roomOn Oct. 17, 2015 the International Music Software Trade Association (IMSTA) and Ryerson University will partner to host the second annual IMSTA FESTA Toronto, a product showcase and education event focused on music technology and designed for professional and semi-professional musicians, songwriters, music producers, and audio engineers, as well as music students and educators. It is a free event.

Organizers say their educational panels and Q&As will bring together an array of industry experts to discuss the state of the music business, technology, and more. Last year’s event include a keynote Q&A with American audio engineer, record producer, and DJ, Young Guru, as well as a Cooking Beats seminar with Rich Kidd and WondaGurl. Manufacturers and distributors will also be showcasing the latest music creation technologies at the exhibition.

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ole Hires Brian Holdcroft as Vice President of Acquisitions

August 28th, 2015

Brian HoldcroftIndependent rights management company, ole, has secured Brian Holdcroft to fill the new role of vice president of acquisitions.

Holdcroft, a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), is a mergers and acquisitions professional with nearly two decades of relevant experience, last serving as director of finance – acquisitions and projects at the CBI Health Group where Holdcroft oversaw over 40 acquisitions that contributed to more than tripling the size of the company, says ole. ole’s acquisitions team has, to date, concluded more than $450 million in acquisitions, according to the company.

Holdcroft will be based in ole’s Toronto office reporting directly to Ed Killin, executive vice president acquisitions.

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“A Song A City” Music Collection to Raise Money & Awareness for Spina Bifida & Hydrocephalus

August 27th, 2015

“A Song A City” co-founders Danny Lamb & Jay Baty

The first A Song, A City charity single “PUSH” (People United for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus) was released a year ago, on Oct. 25th on iTunes, which is International Awareness Day of the conditions. This Oct. 25th, 2015, the team behind A Song, A City is going to be releasing the full collection of songs written on the road in the U.K. and Europe in 2013.

A Song, A City is a musical initiative begun in 2013, which designed to drive awareness towards two conditions known as Hydrocephalus/Spina Bifida. The conditions affect 1 and 1,000 people around the world.

Co-founder Danny Lamb is an official Young Ambassador for the Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association of Ontario. He was was born with Spina Bifida Occulta, the most non-severe form of Spina Bifida, and was diagnosed with Hydrocephalus when he was just three years old. The two conditions can often, but not always, go hand in hand. Spina Bifida, often referred to as “Split Spine,” occurs when the spinal column does not fully develop, often leaving an open lesion protruding out the lower back. The condition can vary in severity, and also have a number of different physical/mental challenges that affect one’s life and day-to-day living.

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CMW 2016 Registration & Artist Applications Now Open

August 27th, 2015

Billy Talent at the Indie Awards during CMW 2015. [Photo: Michael Raine]

Billy Talent at the Indie Awards during CMW 2015. [Photo: Michael Raine]

Registration is now open for Canadian Music Week 2016 and limited-time discount price of $329 is available until Sept. 21, 2015. CMW 2016 will be held May 4-14, 2016 in Toronto. For those interested in showcasing at CMW 2016, artist applications are being accepted until Dec. 29, 2015 via Sonicbids.

The Music Summit portion of the CMW conference will be held May 5-7, 2016.

For artist applications, the submission fee is currently $25. The fee changes to $40 on Sept. 1 and again to $50 on Nov. 1.

For registration, the price goes up to $399 on Sept. 22.

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Bell Media, Universal Music, and Arts & Crafts Shuffle Executives

August 26th, 2015

Jeffrey Remedios [Photo: Lucia Graca/FACTOR]

Jeffrey Remedios [Photo: Lucia Graca/FACTOR]

A high profile shuffle has been announced among major Canadian music and media organizations. Long-time Universal Music Canada President and CEO Randy Lennox has left for a senior leadership role at Bell Media and taking his place atop the Universal hierarchy is Arts & Crafts co-founder Jeffrey Remedios. Subsequently, Kieran Roy has been named president of Arts & Crafts.

For Bell Media, Lennox fills a newly created role as president of entertainment production and broadcasting, a new position responsible for a wide range of television, digital and radio operations. He will oversee all English independent and in-house entertainment productions for conventional, specialty, and pay television, as well as digital media.

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Ole Launches ‘On the Spot’ Development Program for Canadian Country Music Week

August 21st, 2015
ole country music artist Gord Bamford.

ole artist & CCMA nominee, Gord Bamford.

Country music artists are invited to apply now for music publisher ole’s inaugural On The Spot artist development program event during the 2015 edition of Canadian Country Music Week (CCMW). On the spot, which gives unsigned country artists a chance to jumpstart their career, will take place Sept. 12 from 2 to 4 p.m. at The Dome in Halifax, NS.

The winner will receive a deal with ole that includes music publishing, EP recording production, YouTube audio-visual management, and support from ole’s creative staff, a total value of up to $40,000.

Unsigned country artists (those without a label, publishing, or management deal) are invited to submit two YouTube videos, one in which they perform an original song, and another in which they perform a cover song from the ole catalog, to by Aug. 23, 2015, at 11 p.m. PDT. A panel of expert judges will select the finalists by Aug. 26, 2015, to perform live at the event, in front of an audience and a panel of top music executives, who’ll provide a critique and select the winner.

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