Don't Surround Yourself With Yes-Men!

Fri Dec 06
Peter Åstedt

"My mom thinks the song is great!" Yes, most moms are proud when their babies even just fart so that the source is not that reliable. Sure, you want people to like what you are doing. When you do the hard work and put your heart and soul into it, then you want people to like it. Still, you need the critics to become your fans.

I see it too many times, artists surrounding themselves with yes-men. Sure, it feels great with people that instantly like what you have to offer. It’s easy when you don't need to change anything. At the same time, usually, these yes-men can't take you any further. Since they already like you, they already spread that in their network or either they lie to you to make you feel good. In either case, it won’t take you further.

Okay, all critics are not good either. Letting a metal fan judge a folksong might not get the right feedback for you.  But listening to your mom’s advice before the radio plugger can be a crucial mistake. The radio plugger has the knowledge of what the stations are looking for; your mom has no experience in that area.

BTW Leahy, Black Puma, Good Lovelies, Jay Douglas, Kaia Kater, Tush, Ripped, Salvation Army Band, Recollectiv, Unison Holiday Schmoozefest, Joanne Powell

Fri Nov 29
Leahy

You really should shout ‘cause Leahy band is coming to town. One of the country’s most highly regarded progressive folk-roots bands checks in at Hugh’s Room Live Nov.29/30. Music 8.30pm both nights.

The “Leahy sound” – a combination of strong stride piano, unique bass guitar and drumming styles along with driving rhythm guitar – was the foundation from which fiery fiddle led instrumentals and vocals were launched to mainstream music listeners. Leahy would go on to win three Juno awards and receive countless accolades for their dynamic and powerful performances. As well as touring extensively throughout Canada, the USA and Europe, the band had the enviable opportunity of opening for fellow Canadian, Shania Twain throughout the USA, Canada and the UK on her record-breaking Come On Over tour.

Cashbox Caravan Indie Week Wraps Up with Two Nominations for EMG Artists

Fri Nov 29
Ventresca

Cashbox Canada participated in our first Indie Week Canada and oh what a week it was!

Continuing our journey of the Cashbox Caravan, (recently performing in France and Sweden) we had two official showcases and both were met with resounding success. In addition, our acts performed at other venues throughout Indie Week, all to great reviews and accolades.

The first Cashbox Caravan Showcase was Thursday, November 14 at the B-Side Lounge, a cozy gem of a venue with a great stage and friendly staff. A cocktail hour show from 5-7pm featured Toronto’s newest shining star Ventresca, followed up by veteran singer-songwriters Barry Stagg and Don Graham.

Alex Pangman Releases New Video for “If I Don’t Mean It”

Fri Nov 29
Alex Pangman If I Don't Mean It

Alex Pangman’s latest release is a catchy retro song “If I Don’t Mean It” written by the legendary Connee Boswell (of The Boswell Sisters).

The Boswell Sisters were a close harmony singing group, consisting of sisters Martha Boswell Lloyd, Connee Boswell and Helvetia "Vet" Boswell who were noted for intricate harmonies and rhythmic experimentation. They attained national prominence in the United States in the 1930s.. After a successful career as a trio recording with top jazz musicians in New York, sister Connie embarked on a solo career, eventually selling 75 million records and influencing generations of singers, Ella Fitzgerald included.

What's The Point Of A Producer If You Want to Do It Yourself?

Fri Nov 29
Peter Åstedt

Back to explaining things from the industry again. I seem to come across this quite often, Today it's the urge to work with a producer. In every artist's career, they suddenly start to think that a producer is key to their success. Often with no knowledge what a producer the role really means.

To have a producer means that you hand all your material over to another person.

To have a producer is not that a genius comes into the studio and praises all your musical ideas. No, this person is here to take that stuff to another level. And in many cases, you will not agree on the things they actually change. Yes, they will take off that long nice drum solo that you like. Literally, they will come in and just change the look of your baby.

The artist thinks they need to spend a lot of money on a hotshot producer. This is also a cliché that you get really often. The more money or things they have done is better! In so many cases it's not.

Tonia Evans Cianciulli Releases Book/CD Of Georgina Ann Stirling Performing 12/10 In Toronto

Fri Nov 29
The Heart's Obsession 3rd Annual Christmas Concert

Newfoundland-born, Toronto-based international superstar opera singer Tonia Evans Cianciulli and her new CD and book The Heart’s Obsession, celebrating the historical ripple effect of one woman's voice—Georgina Ann Stirling brings her astounding legacy into the twenty-first century.

Swedish Alt-rock artist YOHIO Releases New Single “Defeating a Devil a Day”

Fri Nov 22
YOHIO Defeating a Devil a Day

Swedish Alt-rock artist YOHIO has released a new single “Defeating a Devil a Day”, the  5th single from the upcoming new album “Neon Light Orchestra” to be released in 2020.

Over 3 million views on his 2 latest music Videos has led to a fast increase of 100 000 New subs in 2019
on the official YouTube Channel to a total of over 160 000.

Watch Defeating a Devil a Day here:

With his extravagant way of expressing himself, the looks of a visual prince, a singing voice which can tackle English, Japanese, and Swedish, his naturally confident stage awareness, and his undoubtedly great fashion sense – YOHIO has captured the heart of thousands of fans all over the world.

Here Is The Secret To Success In The Music Industry!

Fri Nov 22
Peter Åstedt

Yes, the secret to success in the music industry is to understand that it works like any other financial market! No, don’t buy the repeated phrase that 'we all work in the music industry because we love music". We are here for the money like any other artist. And there is nothing wrong with that since we all need a salary to make our daily living. But that we work just because we love music well then, we could just have it as an extraordinary hobby.

So, for all you that just want to play for fun at the local bar or at your parent’s party, I’m not writing about that. That is cool that you are doing it. My story here is aimed at the ones that want to make it more than a hobby. They want a career.  And here it works like any other financial markets. I don't get how people think that someone would put in thousands of dollars in a project that clearly only will generate a hundred dollars.

BTW-Altameda, Morgan Rider and The Deep Dark River, iskwē, Amigo The Devil, Sven Gali, The Box/ Images In Vogue, Julian Taylor Band, Joanne Powell

Fri Nov 22
Altameda

Hailed in some quarters as the best touring band in the West, Edmonton-based rockers Altameda is hitting the road again. This fall, they’re out supporting critically-acclaimed soph album Time Hasn't Changed You.

Altameda has become a must-see live act, winning fans with each show and impressing audiences in North America and recently, Germany.

Since the release of Time Hasn't Changed You, the band performed live sessions for Toronto rock station The Edge, and a special set for SiriusXM's North Americana station. They also landed coveted opening slots with Sheepdogs and The Trewsearlier this year.

As prolific as they are melodic, Altameda also released More Time: B-Sides from Time Hasn’t Changed You as a companion to their full album. The EP included three unreleased B-Sides from the Time Hasn't Changed You recording sessions and was also produced by Aaron Goldstein.

BTW-BAYLA, The Hearts, Christina Martin, Linda McRae/String Bone/ Deni Gauthier, Mazacote, Ben Rogers, Jerry Leger, Long Winter, Cashbox Canada Caravan

Fri Nov 15
BAYLA

Indie-pop singer-songwriter BAYLA is back with a bang! Ok, Brittany Kwasnik is back with a new name, new sound and a big win, first time out the gate. Montreal based BAYLAhas been announced as the winner of the 7th Annual RBC Emerging Musician Program, a part of Canada’s Walk of Fame Emerging Artists Programs and Scholarships. With over 1000 applicants BAYLA wowed the committee with her upbeat and infectious single “Monster”.The accompanying video is thematically linked and probably inspired by the Toy Story films. As the Grand Prize winner, BAYLA will be attending and performing at Canada’s Walk of Fame Awards Show and Gala on November 23 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

Mike Biggar and Manitoba Hal Hit the Road for “All The Same”

Fri Nov 15
Mike Biggar & Manitoba Hal

Multi-award-winning soulful Roots & Blues artist MIKE BIGGAR and critically acclaimed, globe-trotting Blues master MANITOBA HAL have come together to hit the road with their first-ever combined tour, performing shows across the Maritimes, Quebec and Ontario in October and November 2019.

Watch “All the Same” here:
https://youtu.be/pfGglFzWcWU

Friends for years, Mike and Hal’s first performance together came in February 2019 when Hal joined Biggar onstage for his blues showcase at the International Folk Alliance Conference in Montreal QC. They appeared again in May 2019 at East Coast Music Week in Charlottetown PEI for showcase appearances that garnered praise from audiences and industry delegates. Their first official tour combines Biggar’s soulful melodies and powerhouse vocals – Hal’s effortless mastery of the Blues on the resonator, cigar box guitar and ukulele – and abundant fun and humour from each with their onstage banter, demeanour and tales from the road.

The Social Media Dilemma – Nice or Mean?

Fri Nov 15
Peter Åstedt

It is a focus on the hate on the internet. Yes, the algorithms are the focus. They are designed to bring topics that will make us react. Since we mainly just react with a ‘thumbs up’ or a ‘heart’  to things we like and it takes us to be angry to write something, the algorithms just give us cute cats and bad decisions made by politicians.

And the same here in my blog. Most of the posts are I write about are things that I react around. Things that annoy me or I want to change. The opposite is the post where I just celebrate something like it was the best thing since sliced bread. It's never anything in between. Why? Easy it won't get my readers to react. Yes, I'm stuck in the algorithm trap where I have become a react junkie?

I guess I'm not so much of a ‘react’ junkie. I seldom look at my numbers or how many likes or so. Still, back in my head, I feel I'm just here nagging. You can hear me say on panels that I'm an old grumpy guy writing negative things. I would like to experiment with the things I create. So, can I write three positive posts in the blog? Just leave the old grumpy person for awhile?

Producer And Songwriter Chris Birkett Releases Debut Album with The Free Spirits

Fri Nov 15
Producer And Songwriter Chris Birkett Releases Debut Album with The Free Spirits

Multi-award winning record producer and songwriter Chris Birkett has announced the release of the debut album with The Free Spirits 1:11.

11:11 signifies a time of serious reflection in the world, heralding a new beginning, announcing an Age of Awakening for the planet.  The 11 songs on the album have titles and lyrics that ask us to explore ourselves and our world.  Listening to this music, you’ll notice a pattern that flows through the album.

Every Day People - “We got to live together” - a new take on the Sly Stone classic

The Power of Our Love - “We are climbers, and we’re climbing to the stars..”

Seeds of Peace - “Find the peace within, and give it to the one you love.”

BTW-Adam Ndaro Solomon, Dan Mangan, Coco Love Alcorn, Taylor Abrahamse, nêhiyawak, Linda Carone, Les Stroud

Fri Nov 08
Adan Ndaro Solomon

The ‘African Jimi Hendrix’ has a new album that’s another step forward in his evolution, a lilting and in parts slashing fusion of the styles of his native Kenya and the folk/roots elements of Western music that he employs to generate organic, joyous, uplifting sound.

Adam "The Professor" Solomon is a Juno Award-winning composer, guitar maestro, and singer. He established his career playing lead guitar and singing on recordings and videos with some of Kenya's most popular artists including Joseph Kamaru, Bana Citoyen, Super Kalles and numerous others. It was during this period he picked up the ‘Hendrix ‘ tag.

Solomon was a co-founder (with Tarig Abubakar) of Canada's best-ever pan-African band, the Afronubians, with whom he toured western Canada in 1993. He collaborated with them for two CD releases, "Tour To Africa" (1994) and "The Great Africans" (1995). The band looked poised for mainstream and indeed, international success when Abubakar died in a car crash while on a visit to his native Sudan. "Afronubians Live" was released posthumously in 2005.

Please Get the Gatekeepers Back!

Fri Nov 08
Please Get the Gatekeepers Back!

Not everyone has the right to release music! Even though many crappy musicians seem to think that. I just had a nutcase that really made me think those forbidden words “it was better before”.

This particular idiot wants to change the Spotify link system, so it fits his different releases with different names. No, the world won’t adapt to your stupid artist's uncertainty. We have been back and forth with his name change for three months and have changed it in at least six different versions. For what? Nothing really. It’s just that he doesn’t understand how to separate things from his account through Spotify artists. Will it change his career? Not really his eight listeners probably will never see any difference.

Soul-Popster Dylan Cohen Launches ‘Ode to T.O.’ in New Music Video ”Alleyways”

Fri Nov 08
Soul-Popster Dylan Cohen Launches ‘Ode to T.O.’ in New Music Video ”Alleyways”

Like the thickened blanket of graffiti on Toronto’s back laneways, each artful burst layering on the last so can be said for Canadian alt. soul-popster Dylan Cohen’s newest video, “Alleyways”.

The visual ode to Cohen’s home base features crowd-sourced footage from Toronto residents, and proceeds from the launch party will be in support of The Laneway Project. The video was produced by members of the team behind JUNO Award-winning production house Route 11 (Grimes, Janelle Monáe, Sofi Tukker, Ria Mae) and Cohen’s classmates at the Harris Institute.

“I’ve always had a soft spot and fascination for Toronto’s laneways,” says Cohen. “It’s like the streets could be so busy and overwhelming, and then you and your friends could all hang a turn into an alleyway and have the space to yourselves.”

“The term became a metaphor in the song for ‘things that connect us all’ but are sometimes unseen.”

Cashbox Canada Magazine Hosts Two Showcases at Indie Week 2019

Fri Nov 08
Cashbox Canada Magazine Hosts Two Showcases at Indie Week 2019

The Cashbox Caravan continues its journey, having stopped in France (MIDEM in Cannes, France) and Orebro, Sweden (Live at Heart Sweden) and ending our year back here in Canada at the ever-popular Indie Week 2019.

“The idea behind the travelling Cashbox Canada Caravan was to give indie artists a chance to showcase at major events and have the opportunity to perform for agents, pr people, and labels with first-class sound and on professional stages all on a global level,” says organizer Sandy Graham. “We are proud to be able to offer an alternative way of showcasing at major events where the competition for submission is so high.”

Now the third event this year of the Cashbox Caravan will be back in the country of origin for the magazine, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

“Indie Week has given us the opportunity to bring talent from other areas in the world so we will be able to have acts from not just Canada, but Sweden, Spain and the USA,” Graham says.

The first CASHBOX CARAVAN SHOWCASE is at the cocktail hours of:
5 pm – 8 pm
Thursday November 14
B-Side Lounge (669 College St)
Doors: 5:00pm

BTW-Fergus Hambleton, Sleave, Grace Cummings, Jerry Leger, Ava Lake, Raine Hamilton, David Bauhaus J, Donkey, Tony McManus/Julia Toaspern, Matters Of The Heart, Sleater-Kinney, Jessica Rhaye

Fri Nov 01
Fergus Hambleton

Gonna start by getting personal in the sense that Fergus Hambleton is a personal fave of mine. It seems like he’s been weaving his way into Toronto’s musical tapestry since forever. In the '70s Hambleton hooked up with legendary Jamaican composer/trumpeter Jo Jo Bennett and a lasting friendship was formed leading to the pair becoming the foundation for acclaimed reggae collective the Sattalites.

"I was a sax player and I was living in the neighbourhood where all of the reggae stores and musicians were," says Hambleton. "I got to know people and they would ask me to come and play on this and this and that and that. I got pulled into it gradually and it was all very nice. I enjoyed that music because Jamaican music always has lots of horns in it and as a Sattalites horn player, I always appreciated that."

The World of Empty Streams Sounds Metallic!

Fri Nov 01
Peter Åstedt

I just saw that a friend posted about a local band being signed to a bigger festival organizer. Never heard about the band before so I was a bit curious. I had heard about their former band though. It was one of the metal bands that was doing things very fast and very costly until they crashed after a couple of years.

So, they reformed and changed their name. Also, kind of a stupid mistake but usually the aftermath of an emotional and poor decision.

Anyway, I saw that they were picked up by the only metal label left in Sweden. Usually, people brag around that but this label, even though they are owned by a major, is counted as a small shit label with no power whatsoever. And since I haven’t heard anything around about the project, I was a bit puzzled. Why brag and share this shit? As usual, I just went into Spotify and checked the numbers.

Pretty good numbers, too good numbers to be unknown like that. Most songs were between 500,000 to 300,000 each. But they only had 10,000 monthly listeners. Also, they only had 5,000 followers. Something strange here.