Music

The Beach Celtic Festival Kicked Up Its Heels at the Dora Keogh

The Beach Celtic Festival Logo

By Sandy Graham

On a beautiful sunny evening (certainly not reminiscent of Scottish weather) friends, family and entertainers that are part of the Beach Celtic Clan gathered at the famous Dora Keogh on the Danforth in Toronto, Canada to support a worthy cause, a women’s shelter known as Julliette’s Place.

The date was the exact date that Julliette, whom the shelter is named after, was killed by her abusive husband, right in front of her two children. Sad but this is only one story of many of the same, and the support and awareness for this is urgently needed. That is why The Beach Celtic Festival has decided to make Juliette’s Place their charity of choice for this year on September 10 and September 11 in Kew Gardens in the Toronto Beach.

The amazing night of entertainers, auction items, and a feeling of a kitchen party prevailed and a beginning amount of dollars were raised to start the campaign that will continue on until the actual festival in September.

Hosted by Hugo Straney, who also MC’s for the Beach Celtic Festival, the evening rang in four hours of dancing, singing and fun for all – with a free admission but the request to purchase the $ 20 gift bags with all the proceeds donated for the cause.

Meghan Bold and her Bold Steps Dancers tore the house down (and the floor and I think the Dora was quite happy there were tenants underneath with the thundering sound of their heels pounding out the rhythms of both highland and step dancing.

'BURY THE HATCHET' BRINGS NEW ORLEANS COLOUR AND MUSIC TO HOT DOCS

Aaron Walker & Big Chief Alfred Doucette.  Photo by Scott McWhinney.

Story:Lenny Stoute

On a rain swept New Orleans night Big Chief Alfred Doucette is rolling through the back streets in search of the club where the Mohawk Hunters are singing. It takes some finding, which makes this opening sequence apt metaphor for Aaron Walker’s 'Bury The Hatchet' 

The Mardi Gras Indians of New Orleans have been a part of that city’s culture for hundreds of years, yet few visitors have ever seen one. That’s because the Chiefs don’t do Bourbon Street and its commercialized Mardi Gras. Their centuries old traditions are played out in the back streets and laneways where the community they serve live. For these are no maskers for a day and they throw no beads away and in ‘Bury the Hatchet’ Big Easy resident and award winning director Aaron Walker brings their story to vivid, pulsing, life.

The Mardi Gras Indians traditions are based on honouring the memories of the Choctaw Indians who sheltered runaway slaves in the bayous of Louisiana. For the descendants of those slaves it’s become a manifestation of grassroots New Orleans African-American culture.

Kimberley Dunn Releases Ryan’s Song – A Tribute to Sgt. Ryan Russell

Kimberley Dunn

by Sandy Graham

 

On January 12, 2011, Toronto Police Officer, Sgt. Ryan Russell, tragically lost his life in the line of duty. This terrible tragedy inspired a song by family friend, Kimberley Dunn, who performed the song at Sgt. Russell’s funeral in fitting tribute to an officer who gave the ultimate sacrifice. As a city mourned the loss of one of its own; “Ryan’s Song” touched an entire nation.

 

Go Ahead, Try Love and The Laws

The Laws Image

Story: Lenny Stoute


Photos: Paul Hatton


 


The Laws are a law onto themselves. They’re arguably the most successful folk duo since Ian & Sylvia, certainly the hottest and the tallest, have been at it together for ten years and have a DIY work ethic that should be taught in business college.
No agents, no managers, hired PR on a per event basis adds up to more money for The Laws, which in turn allows them to do their own thing in their own time.


 


The pair has just blown in from Nashville at the bottom end of a US tour in support of current cookie Try Love but Michelle’s gracious enough to go with the flow.


 


“ It was a great tour. We got good response at the shows and the album got some really nice reviews. The title says it; with all the bitterness and suffering in the world, it’s important to speak up for love, for optimism. We thought we’d put some love out there”
As is usual on a Laws album, the material deals with relationships and their ups and downs, managing for the most part to come down on the side of hope, of optimism, of the stance that love and time conquers all.
Having lived, loved and worked side by side for this long, Michelle knows a thing or two about intricate relationships.


 

The Duncan Factor

Duncan McKie Image

By Sandy Graham

 

FACTOR, The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings, was founded in 1982 by CHUM Limited, Moffat Communications and Rogers Broadcasting Limited, in conjunction with the Canadian Independent Record Producers Association (CIRPA) and the Canadian Music Publishers Association (CMPA). As a private non-profit organization, FACTOR is dedicated to providing assistance toward the growth and development of the Canadian independent recording industry. The foundation administers contributions from sponsoring radio broadcasters as well as two components of the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Canada Music Fund to support the Canadian music industry.

 

FACTOR has been managing federal funds since the inception of the Sound Recording Development Program in 1986 (now known as the Canada Music Fund Council).
Support is provided to Canadian recording artists, songwriters, managers, labels and distributors through various programs which all aid in the development of the industry. Whether an artist is looking to record a demo, full length sound recording, market and promote an already existing album or showcase and tour domestically and internationally, funding is available. FACTOR supports many facets of the infrastructure which must be in place in order for artists and Canadian labels to progress into the international arena. FACTOR started out with an annual budget of $200,000 and is currently providing in excess of $14 million annually to support the Canadian music industry.

Murphy’s Laws of Songwriting – Ralph Murphy Releases New Book

Ralph Murphy

By Don Graham

 

The reason I was asked to review this book is that as a songwriter I would have a perspective on its contents unique to the Cashbox Canada staff. There are course countless books on songwriting but most of them state the obvious and at the end of the day nothing really is gained from reading them. I had a feeling from knowing Ralph Murphy, mostly by reputation and track record, no pun intended, but also having met him through my longtime publisher Brian Chater that this would be an important book to read and digest. That coupled with some of the great testimonials from established songwriters like Paul Williams and Donnie Schlitz and a  direction from Canadian songsmith Randy Bachman to “read it, learn it and burn it!” furthered intrigued me. Randy’s suggestion of course was a compliment of the highest degree, meaning once you read this ALL the secrets to writing a hit will be revealed so keep it to yourself!!! I wonder if that’s why the cover features the title in flames??

 

As Ralph states at the beginning of the book this isn’t to teach HOW to write songs because most likely if you’re reading it you already are a song writer. This is more aimed at how to hone your craft and the “do’s and don’ts “as seen through the eyes of a seasoned professional songwriter/publisher/ music professional.

 

THE JUNOS CELEBRATE 40 YEARS IN TORONTO, CANADA

Drake t the Juno Awards

Photo and Story Courtesy of CARAS

 

 HOT ON FIRE! ARCADE FIRE NABS FOUR JUNO AWARD WINS -Neil Young honoured with Allan Waters Humanitarian Award- -Bryan Adams welcomes Shania Twain to Canadian Music Hall of Fame- Toronto, ON (March 27, 2011) – A royal procession of Canadian music stars took to the stage for Canada’s biggest night in music, THE 2011 JUNO AWARDS. CTV’s special two-and-a-half hour anniversary broadcast of the Awards blew the roof off the Air Canada Centre with power-packed performances, tributes to 40 years of the JUNO Awards, and eight winning categories announced. THE 2011 JUNO AWARDS is now available on demand at junos.CTV.ca. 

 

OMDC HOSTS JUNO NOMINEES PARTY AT THE ROYAL YORK HOTEL

OMDC Photo Credit Natasha Slinko

By Sandy Graham

Photo Credit Natasha Slinko

 

There has been a really cool commercial on television this last year featuring the likes of icons like Molly Johnson, Tomi Swick, Alex J Robinson, Justin Hines, The Arkells and Toya Alexis singing There’s No Place Like This – Ontario.

 

It seems this is true to fact with this year’s nominees for the 40th Juno Awards Celebrations. According to OMDC data, 78 Ontario-based acts and companies collectively have earned 103 Juno nominations this year, and 56 of the acts are affiliated with independent, Ontario-owned or controlled record labels, publishers, and managers.

 

Emphasizing the importance of the music industry to the province’s new millennial economic strategy, Tourism & Culture Minister Michael Chan stated that “Ontario’s music industry is a pillar of our rapidly growing entertainment and cultural sectors, contributing over $20 billion annually to our province’s economy.”

 

FACTS FROM THE OMDC:

Jevon Rudder Releases New Single – “Oh Yeah” in Canada and the U.S.

Jevon Rudder Photo by Taffi Rosen

by Natasha Slinko


 


Great news as Jevon Rudder is scheduled to release his song “Oh Yeah” on Thursday March 17th, 2011, directly after Canadian Music Week.  “Oh Yeah” is an upbeat song that will get you up on your feet dancing to lyrics that tell the tale about a girl  ‘with take me home eyes` and who has ‘one hand on the jukebox and the other in the air’ and ‘she goes wild every time, she hears Tim McGraw, she wears daisy dukes and cowboy boots and dances on the bar’.  And trust me you`ll have one hand up in the air singing `Oh Yeah`.




This is a song of celebration and the independent woman that is out to have a good time and will not apologize to anyone for having her cake and eating it too, all the while having a good time in the process. It seems fitting that this song is being release just a week after the 100th Anniversary of International Women`s Day on March 8th that is celebrated globally. May all women know that they have the choice of this freedom to dance and yell  “Oh Yeah” .




Born in Toronto Ontario, the city of multi-culturism and multi-music, Rudder`s style is influenced by various genres outside of country, such as rock ‘n’ roll, rhythm and blues and reggae, but through his album The Good, The Bad & The Lucky, Rudder shows us that he is the embodiment of country. 



Shelley Siegel – A Canadian Success Story Not To Be Forgotten

Mushroom 1

by Sandy Graham

 

It was 1975, and I was Music Director of the radio station in Montreal known as CJFM – FM 96, owned and operated by Standard Broadcasting at the time. We were # 2. CHOM-FM our big competition was # 1. 

 

It was a different era; first off I was a female in the Music Director chair; and thanks to Rosalie Tremblay at CKLW in Windsor showing that a woman could be in radio, it was a chance I was given to show the ‘big boys’ a girl could do the job. 

 

In the ‘day of the dinosaurs’, we had what was called ‘Record Day’, usually on a Wednesday, when all the promo record guys would line up outside my office, and wait for their chance to pitch their new product. It was what would be considered an archaic way to do things nowadays, but I sometimes wonder if the current email, WAV, MP3 tracking system really works; back then the promo person got to stand there as you put the new tune on a turntable, and they got the chance to dance around and get you excited about their latest passion. It was also an opportunity to receive a WHOLE album, and maybe find another gem on there that wasn’t the single release. Cover art was just as important as the product, not to mention liner notes that told of who played, produced and backed the product. 

 

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