Cover Story

Jamie Stever No One’s Stronger Than A Mother

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Submitted by Don Graham

Ontario singer/ songwriter Jamie Stever isn’t content to just write songs and make records without having a purpose to his craft.  “I’ve been writing songs, seriously, for about twelve years now and consider it a craft and something I work very hard at perfecting. I like to have my songs make a difference in someone’s life.”  And so when he had finished his self- penned  “No One’s  Stronger Than A Mother”  he thought this is a song that needs a charitable partner . “ I started looking around for a cause to partner with on this song and ran into  a few obstacles, mostly the charities wanting me to give them money or such. When I hit upon Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) I knew this was the perfect marriage. They wanted to know what they could do to help make this work.”

Stax To The Max Returns to Memphis


Submitted to Cashbox Canada

For the third year in row, the Stax Museum of American Soul Music is taking it to the streets with its STAX TO THE MAX, all-day, outdoor, FREE music and arts festival. This year’s event, billed as Arts Memphis Presents Stax to the Max, takes place Saturday, April 27th, 11 a.m.- 7 p.m.

Stax Records, an American record label started in Memphis, Tennessee,was founded in 1957 as Satellite Records and the name Stax Records was adopted in 1961. The label was a major factor in the creation of the Southern soul and Memphis soul music styles, also releasing gospel, funk, jazz, and blues recordings. While Stax is renowned for its output of African-American music, the label was founded by two white business people, Jim Stewart and his sister Estelle Axton  STewart/AXton = Stax) and featured several popular ethnically-integrated bands, including the label's house band, Booker T. & the M.G.'s. One of the biggest stars signed to Stax was Otis Redding, who had the major hit ‘Sitting on the Dock of the Bay’. The Stax Museum of American Soul Music is a museum located in Memphis, Tennessee, at 926 McLemore Avenue, the former location of Stax Records. It is operated by Soulsville USA, which also operates the adjacent Stax Music Academy.

Bill King: Sharps, Flats and a Camera Lens

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Submitted by Don Graham

Bill King, a native of Indiana, a resident of Toronto and a Citizen of the World  is an artist in every sense of the word. An accomplished pianist and record producer, King also adds photographer to his repertoire.

Bill has been playing piano since he was a child and has fond memories of his grandmother’s house in Indiana where there was an upright piano and she would play spiritual music. At thirteen years old his father decided it was time for Bill to take some piano lessons.  At 17 years old he sent a tape of the trio he had with his brother to The Advanced School of Contemporary Music,  Oscar Peterson’s school in Toronto Canada,  and was awarded a scholarship. He  returned to Indiana and discovered rock  ‘n’  roll music.  “I got interested in rock and roll cause I was interested in the production of the music and also the rhythm that was going on. There was something changing rhythmically that I was interested in.”

When single acts would come to town Bill would be hired to “lift” the songs and arrangements from the records and teach the songs to the band so they could back up the stars. The Dick Clark Caravan of Stars proved a great training ground for the young and eager to learn musician.  Living close to the Kentucky border enabled Bill to listen to a radio station out of Louisville at night and this was his introduction to the black music of the day.

The Country Music Association of Ontario (CMAO) Announces Inaugural Award Nominees


Submitted by Cashbox Canada

Photo Credits: Robin Leblanc

The Country Music Association of Ontario (CMAO) held a press conference in Toronto on April 9, 2013 to announce the nominees for the Inaugural CMAO Award Show to be held on May 27 2013 at the prestigious Markham Theatre(Markham,Ontario). This is the first for this Association, which was formed over four years ago by veteran music industry folks, who believed there was so much country music talent in Ontario, that they needed their own association.

The eligibility for a nominee was:
1. For a group or duo at least 50% of the members must meet the Ontario residency requirement.
2. Must be a business that is operating in the province of Ontario.
3. To be considered an Ontario resident by the CMAO, the artist must have been born in the province of Ontario; OR maintained a permanent resident in the province of Ontario for a period of two consecutive years.
4. Artists have one recording that was commercially released between January 1, 2009 and November 30, 2012.

The category eligibilities was:
This Award is based upon individual performance, either on record or in person within the eligibility period. One Award is presented to the Artist. The artist must meet the residency eligibility criteria and have a commercially released recording that was released between January 1, 2009 and November 30, 2012.

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’!


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


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. "

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