Cover Story

Paul Sanderson Guitar Case, Brief Case, Law Case Celebrating 30 Years

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Submitted by Sandy Graham

The calm, quiet voice of Paul Sanderson doesn’t sound like he is even close to 30 years old, let alone having been in the law business for that long. But it has been 30 years on April 07, 2013, that this multi-faceted man has been practising arts and entertainment law. The name Paul Sanderson is a familiar one with most of us in the music world who would have required an entertainment lawyer at one point in our careers. Quite a celebration and a test of time, in a business that is known for its lack of tenacity and longevity.

For those who do not know, Sanderson is also a talented musician, writer and photographer. Born in Toronto and raised in the east end of Toronto and Scarborough, he went to school where it is rumored that another famous Canadian, Robbie Robertson also attended (John A. Leslie Public School).  He came from a solid family background, although there was not much trace of music or law in the family. “My mother actually had me take classical piano lessons at the age of 7, but my real interest became guitar at a very early age. I am self taught and credit the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana for inspiring me to learn my first riffs. The 50’s and 60’s were a wonderful time to grow up; there was a sense of optimism, and our parents wanted more for us than they had in their era.”

CMW 2013 The Joint Was Jumpin’!

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Submitted by Don Graham

Canadian Music Week aka Canadian Music Old Home Week is over and done with for another year. This year was special. A new venue added some spice to the event and I think made it even more exciting and interesting than the Royal York years. The choice of The Marriott Eaton Centre Hotel was great. Don’t get me wrong The Royal York is a beautiful hotel but the Marriott because of it’s layout made it more interesting. At the Royal York you can stand on the mezzanine and look down over the entire lobby, pretty much seeing everyone that is there. The way the Marriott was set up was that the  events were taking place in different corners of different levels of the Hotel. Every time you went into a different room you saw different people for the first time. The International Market Place, masterfully managed by workhorse and International music tradeshow guru Kathy Hahn and maintained perfectly  by music industry veteran, Mark Smith, was located strategically behind some doors and off the lobby. The lobby was the main mingling area and was the best place to see the fluid traffic and meet up with old colleagues and meet the newcomers as well. The cool thing about his annual gathering is the meeting of guitar cases and briefcases. interaction of the young and the old.

The OUTlaw and the INcrowd

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada
Cover Photo Credits: Jonathan Edwards

Drake Jensen, country music singer /songwriter and voice of the LGBT community in Canada’s country music scene, is the OUTlaw and his legion of fans are the INcrowd. Jensen’s debut album ‘On My Way To Finding You’ was his coming out album and his new CD ‘OUTlaw’ is a giant step in solidifying his place in country music. Please note I said in country music and not gay country music, because although Jensen is a proud, openly gay man he is not defined solely by his sexual orientation. In other words, Drake Jensen is a country singer who happens to be gay and not a gay man who happens to be country singer.  Having watched his evolution over the past year and a half I must say it is impressive the giant steps he has taken in his performing and singing abilities. The first album was produced in Nashville under the tight time constraints attached to such a project while the new album was done at home in Ottawa with long time musical director and producer Jonathan Edwards at Edwards’ Corvidae Studio.  Being at home and working on a less stringent time schedule Drake and Jonathan took their time recording this CD and it shows. There is warmth and believability to this album that is palpable and personal.

On March 13th, 2013 Drake staged a CD release party at the prestigious National Arts Center in his nation's capitol, Ottawa, Ontario.

Dave Charles – Still Rockin’ Radio After All These Years

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Submitted by Sandy Graham

Dave Charles talks with the enthusiasm of a teenager, which is what he was over 4 decades ago when he first started out as a young disc jockey at CJBQ (Belleville) in the news department, circa 1964. This enthusiasm is what gave the station the faith to give this young music fan his own show, and so the romance between Dave Charles and radio began.

‘Back then dances were a great way for Canadian bands to get new fans and it was a great way to meet our listeners and get ‘out there’. My first pay cheque in radio was $37.00 and I got it up to a whopping  $55.00. Running these shows in the arena sometimes brought in $ 2,000.00 a week. Connecting with the fans and bands. It was the beginning of my love for Canadian music. I got to book Mandala, David Clayton Thomas, JB and the Playboys, MG & The Escorts, you name them, I probably had the pleasure of booking them.’

Charles also played 50% CANCON on the radio station, long before the CRTC made in mandatory.  A true champion of the true north, his dedication to finding these records and playing them earned the station in Belleville the nickname ‘Belleville – the Capitol of Canadian Music’.

‘I was at the right place at the right time. I had the pleasure of working with and playing bands on the air like The Stampeders, The Staccatos (Five Man Electrical Band) Chad Allan & The Guess Who. I started to send RPM Weekly our charts, and Stan and Walt used them to gauge what was going on out there. If you sent me your single, everybody got a shot.’

Go Green In Celebration of St. Patrick’s Day

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Submitted by Sandy Graham

Cover Photo Credit: William C. Smith

In 1847, over 100,000 Irish immigrants migrated to Canada in what would be the result of the infamous potato famine. Nearly 40,000 of these people passed through Toronto, which at the time had a population of just under 20,000.  In the summer of 1847, 863 Irish people died in the fever sheds that were erected at what is now Toronto’s thriving theatre district at King Street West and John Street. In total 1,100 people lost their lives during this tragic time, many died trying to nurse the sick back to health. Next time you walk the streets of downtown Toronto, look for the plaque erected in their memory, right in the heart of the theatre district.

More claim they have Irish ancestry in Canada than any other group in the world. I believe the statistic would be around 300,000 in Toronto alone, an estimated 700,000 in Ontario. So it would make sense that the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Toronto is one that is well attended.

The 26th annual Toronto St. Patrick’s Day Parade takes place on Sunday, March 17th. Up to 500,000 people are expected in downtown Toronto for the fun and excitement. The two hour parade has truly become an end of winter fixture on the Toronto calendar.

The parade is organized by the not-for-profit St. Patrick’s Parade Society.  The Society, through the Parade, works to promote and celebrate all things Irish, while incorporating bands and floats from various communities, representing Toronto’s multicultural diversity.

Tom Cochrane To Be Honoured With The 2013 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada

On February 26, 2013 The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced Tom Cochrane as the recipient of the 2013 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award. Throughout his career, Cochrane has supported a wide variety of vital initiatives — from World Vision to Parkinson’s research.

The Allan Waters Humanitarian Award recognizes outstanding Canadian artists whose humanitarian contributions have positively enhanced the social fabric of Canada. Named after CHUM Ltd. founder Allan Waters, Tom Cochrane will be presented to Cochrane this honour at  the 2013 JUNO Gala Dinner & Awards on Saturday, April 20 in Regina.

“I am very honoured to receive the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award and would like to thank CARAS and the JUNO Awards,” said Tom Cochrane. “With that said, it is an odd thing to receive an award for trying to do the right things when those things have presented themselves in the light of the tremendous blessings I have received in my life and career. Every day my fans, family and friends get up and many of them do the right things for other people and the good of our world and country without getting acknowledged. So I share this with you. Love to all. "

Mindy McCready Goes Home To Her Ten Thousand Angels

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Submitted by Don Graham

Troubled country singer Mindy McCready has died of an apparent suicide at her home in Heber Falls, Arkansas at the age of 37.  McCready hit the top of the charts in 1996 with her sassy anti chauvinist song ‘Guys Do It All The Time’. She also had a hit with ‘Ten Thousand Angels’ that same year and the album of the same name sold a whopping 2 million copies. In 2004 she was charged with obtaining the pain Oxycontin fraudulently, a charge which she pled guilty to and received three years probation.  In May 2005 she violated that probation when she was arrested for drunken driving. Then came an attempted suicide in July, 2005, overdosed in September of that year and slit her wrists in December 2008.That was also the year she was charged in Arizona with hindering prosecution and unlawful use of transportation. Those charges stemmed from an alleged attempt in June 2005 to purchase two
high performance boats, but she claimed she was trying to stop a con man. She also made several trips to rehab and appeared on the VH1 reality show "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew" in 2010. As a side note she is the fifth celeb to die after appearing on that show. There was Joey Kovar who died of an overdose in 2012, as did former Alice in Chains bassist Mike Starr in 2011. Also Taxi’s Jeff Conaway and Rodney King.

Heard It In A Love Song

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Submitted by Don Graham

Love songs have been around forever. As far back as 4000 B.C. Back in ancient times, poetry was sung. We see drawings of the poet playing a lyre or other stringed instrument and although none of the melodies for these early love lyrics have survived we can imagine a softly strummed harp or lyre and a  melodic voice singing the words that have been preserved.

When we fall in love today, we feel what men and women felt in centuries past: desire, joy, disappointment, yearning and fulfillment.

So just how far back can we trace love songs? When Pharoah Rameses wanted to tell a beautiful, Egyptian lady that he found her desirable, did he have a court musician sing something that sounded like “Unchained Melody’?  Maybe he did? They have recovered 3500-year-old Egyptian love poems from pieces of papyrus and pottery fragments. They are filled with the same kind of language and sentiments that we hear in love songs today.

The 55th Annual Grammy Awards Eh?

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Submitted by Don Graham

The Grammys will be presented for 55th time on Sunday February 10th in Los Angeles California, The Grammys started in 1959 as a way to recognize achievements in the music industry, similar to the Emmys and the Oscars for television and movie accomplishments. This was the beginning of NARAS (The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.) Once it was decided to create the award, there was still a question of what to call it. One working title was the Eddie, paying homage to the inventor of the phonograph, Thomas Edison. It was decided that they would use the name of the Emile Berliner invention, the gramophone, for the award.

A lot of Canadian artists have won Grammys over the years. David Foster has won 16 Grammys and been nominated 47 times. Celine Dion has 5 awards, and her songwriters have won 5 as well.  Alanis Morrisette has 7. Michael Buble and Diana Krall each have 3.  Bryan Adams has been nominated 15 times but only won once. Neil Yong has  won 1 as well as Nelly Furtado with 1. Sarah McLachlin has 3 and  Shania Twain has 5. Canadian Polka King Walter Ostenak has won 3 times.

Gordon Lightfoot oddly enough has never won a Grammy and Leonard Cohen was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Award in 2010. Daniel Lanois has taken home 5 Grammys as a producer or co-producer. In 2011 Canadian band Arcade Fire were up against Lady GaGa, Katy Perry, Eminem and Lady Antebellum for album of the year and shocked the music world by winning.

Buddy Holly The Levee Isn’t Dry and the Music Didn’t Die

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Submitted by Don Graham

It’s over half a century since that fateful winter night in Iowa when Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens fell from the cold sky and into rock ‘n’ roll pop culture mythology.  It’s hard to believe that 54 years have passed since Buddy contacted Dwyer Flying Services and rented the plane for $36 a person. This event is still shrouded in lies, rumours and Hollywood drama.
We will likely never know all the facts. Was Maria Elena really pregnant? People on the tour say Buddy never mentioned it and there are no doctors reports to verify it. Did Buddy need cash because Norman Petty was withholding money? Not likely, He had received over $20,000 in royalties not long before his death. And that’s $ 20,000 in 1959 dollars, when a bottle of coke was a nickel and the admission to the Surf Ballroom that night was $1.25.

The Big Bopper was found some 40 feet from the plane causing speculation that perhaps he had survived the crash and went looking for help? In March 2007 his body was being moved and his son requested an autopsy to see the cause of death. It was determined that every bone in his body was broken and he died instantly. His weight likely propelled him from the plane. 

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