BTW-Saint Lo, Just John & Dom Dias, Operators, Lisa Loeb, Tia Brazda, Allegra Jordyn, CMW

Fri May 10
St. Lo

So CMW and all the pretty people but before we get to that…

Saint Lo Is a Montreal-based folk, indie, pop rock band with roots that stretch across the continent. Their songs are nuanced and layered featuring hypnotic vocals, profound lyrics, and dense harmonies. They sing about complex emotions – vulnerability, isolation, connection, nostalgia and loss – always infused with more than just a hint of hope. Out this spring, their new album ‘We Could Be’ is a thematic tour-de-force. The first video single from the record, titled ‘Wounds’, is a stunning ode to the way that heartbreak does not occur in isolation. The second video single “Blueberry Fields” is a song about nostalgia, memory, and childhood.

Blueberry Fields is about that feeling of nostalgia – like the exhale of a sigh. The feeling of constantly moving away from the past but keeping it with you as you move forward. It is about people and places loved and lost, while ever cherished. Kinda get the sense this crew is a little young for all this looking back and playing in nostalgia but they’re young enough to get over it.

Is Social Media Killing The Rock Star?

Fri May 10
Peter Åstedt

Many of the older A&Rs (read grumpy old men) are blaming social media for killing the rock star. That social media is taking off the magic away from the artist. At the same time many of the old rock stars were assholes, but in the media they were nice.

I heard so many times that John Lennon was an asshole. Maybe he was, or maybe he wasn’t. I don't know since I never met him and can only tell from the interviews and stories that people in the industry tell me who had met him. The interviews I have seen are, of course, controlled so it can’t give the true picture. It was under control so he was playing the role of the perfect nice guy. Someone that you would have to like.

Legendary Blues Band Downchild Celebrate 50 Years in the Business

Fri May 10, 2019

Legendary blues band Downchild are celebrating 50 years of the blues – and taking the party across North America. Announced U.S. dates thus far include June 21 at Rochester International Jazz Festival (with special guest Dan Aykroyd); and August 17 at Chenango Blues Festival in Norwich, New York. Additional US tour date announcements are forthcoming.

Watch the trailer for the Downchild film documentary, Flip, Flop and Fly, here:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCUyGjjHvK4ljwxnyhSifkQw/featured

Hot on the heels of their JUNO-nominated (Canada’s Grammy) 2017 album, Something I've Done, Downchild have announced a special 50th Anniversary Tour, bringing their iconic sound and timeless hits to theatres and festivals in Canada and the U.S.

The Case For Tribe Royal

Fri May 03
Tribe Royal

So, four hunks of burning babe magnets, three voices entwined in celestial harmonies, two savage guitars, pumping bass and one unifying vision on drums and to date, with zero ineffective ballads which even rock.

This is Tribe Royal, musical children of Ottawa with a deep investment in the honeyed sounds of yesteryear’s amber colored folk rock as dished up by the likes of CSNY and The Byrds but not Sonny & Cher. They are all young dudes tho so they don’t get all tribute bandy about their music, just keep kickin’ it 21st century streetwise while shaping and moulding a specific creative vision.

Which is what?

Before we get into that, the speaking voices of founder/members Chris Kerwin and Terry O'Brien are similar and their speedy, tag team style of answering questions makes it diff to figure out who’s replying. So we’ll hear the quotes as coming from the dual mind of Kerwin O'Brien.

So, the vision thing. Is Tribe Royal looking to build a distinctive sound?

Meet Wes Mason Set to Release I Want Your Love

Fri May 03
Wes Mason

At age 20, Wes has amassed as many accolades as artists twice his age, having won numerous international music awards and gaining tens of millions of media impressions across TV, radio, and online.

Catching up with Wes at his home in Toronto, he shows he has what it takes to make it in this business. True values for a young man and has old soul insight into life.

“I grew up on classic rock and and folk/country music. I loved the lyrics of Garth Brooks, lyrics are what gets to me. I also listened guitar songs like ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’, Harrison really knew how to make a guitar tell a story. I grew up on The Doors, The Beatles, The Who so I was surrounded by classic rock, hip hop and R&B. I think it has influenced my sound but I took it and made it my own.”

The Many Sides Of Marc Jordan

Fri May 03, 2019

He has written hits across many genres for the likes of Diana Ross, Josh Groban, Cher, Bette Midler, Joe Cocker, Chicago, Amy Sky and Rod Stewart (including his worldwide hit, “Rhythm of my Heart”). He’s a Juno-winning producer, an artist with a sturdy international following, a musical visionary with a cinematic bent, a nuanced vocalist, proficient guitarist, Musical Director of the Slaight Family Music Lab and with Amy Sky, a national UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for Canada with a burgeoning rep as a painter. With such a rich legacy, it can safely be said dude can kick back and not write another song ever without dulling any of his luster.

That, however, is not how it’s ever going to guy with a guy who matter of factly lets on he’s in the studio every day before he has his first coffee. The current release, Both Sides, is a collection of chilled out popular songs that blur the lines between pop and jazz by some of his favourite composers, along with previously unreleased original Marc Jordan  songs, all superbly arranged by Toronto multi-talent Lou Pomanti.

Neena Rose This Bud’s For All of You

Fri Apr 19, 2019

It was a grey, rainy, foggy morning, I needed an emotional upgrade and Neena Rose turned out to be just the person for that. From the sec I pick up the phone, the Hammertown based 17 year old rising r’n’b presence is all rapid fire delivery punctuated by giggles and riding a wave of being really here, really now and really a happening thing.

Last March, Neena Rose was the first young Canadian female artist to represent at the California Copyright Conference in Los Angeles. She appeared at the “Young Guns — Innovative and Thriving in the New World Music Order” and pronounced it an exciting learning experience.

“I was the youngest one and there was so much to be learned. For me the most important takeaway was that how you make money in the music business has changed and it isn’t going back to old models. Also the power of social media in music is just going to increase. I learned that you have to evolve to survive.”

The Hard Truth About Showcasing

Thu Apr 04
Peter Astedt

I run one of the biggest showcase festivals in Scandinavia. Showcasing has become much bigger in the last fifteen years. Still, I feel that many artists don’t really understand what a showcase does and how to get something out of it. Too many times I hear both the artists and professionals mutter that they waste their time and got nothing out of going to a certain festival and that it costs money.

Most of the time these people don’t understand it. A showcase festival is an arena to move your career forward. You are here to showcase not play a festival gig. A festival gig you are booked because you draw an audience for the organizer. Here you get an opportunity to show off what you have to offer and find people to build your team.

Gino Vannelli ‘Wilderness Road'

Thu Apr 04
Gino Vannelli

Since his debut release of Crazy Life, in 1973, Gino Vannelli has remained one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary music.

But Vannelli’s evolving music has kept his fan base growing for over 40 years. From rock, to jazz, to soul, even classical, this singer/songwriter/producer has left no musical stone unturned.

BTW Andrew Bird, Lee Harvey Osmond, Bangerz Brass, Sonny & The Sunsets, Spoons, Allison Lupton, Julian Taylor, Steve Earle, Ex Hex

Fri Mar 29
Andrew Bird Photo Credit Amanda Demme

Andrew Bird
Photo Credit Amanda Demme

Humble internationally acclaimed multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Andrew Bird’s new album is called My Finest Work Yet. It’s just out and it may just live up to its title.

Along with the new album, Bird is premiering an animated video by Andrea Nakhla for “Manifest”.

His forthcoming My Finest Work Yet Tour will find him on an expansive run of North American dates. Bird will be joined by a variety of guests including Yola, Meshell Ndegeocello, Hiss Golden Messenger, Chicano Batman, MadisonCunningham, Tift Merritt, and a co-headline date in Boston with Calexico and Iron & Wine.

This Industry is 100% or Nothing

Fri Mar 29
Peter Astedt

This industry is 100% or nothing.

Is it possible to have a Skype with you on Saturday?

“The whole band can be on than on other days we work.”

“I can't meet that time because I pick up my kids from school.”

“We can't play there I have a family vacation to attend.”

I have seen so many variations on these sentences as different excuses to not make gigs or having a problem to just set up a meeting. All these excuses tell me is that your career is just not your major focus, something else is occupying your life.

Music Export Canada Presents Canadian Blast in Guimarães, Portugal

Fri Mar 29
Canadian Blast in Guimarães, Portuga

Westway LAB, Portugal’s first showcase festival and professional music conference, will take place for the sixth consecutive year from 10th to 13th of April in Guimarães, Portugal. Founded in 2014 with a clear mission: to operate a cultural, social and economic transformation through music, crossing borders enabling the construction of sustainable internationalization of artists and professionals from Portugal. During the 4 day event, Guimarães becomes a music city, combining in an innovative way the realization of an event based with three dimensions: Process (artist residencies), Thought (PRO Conferences) and Product (showcases and headline concerts).

BTW-Headstones, Don Stevenson, Maestro Fresh Wes, Avatar, Kerri Ough, Tim Bovaconti, Big Groove

Fri Mar 22
Headstones

He’s never been one to chill too far back and once the call was made to revive Headstones, guiding light Hugh Dillon has been busy getting it done. Following on the heels of their successful album Little Army, Headstones have once again been busy recording new music in Kingston, with plans to release a new record later this year. In advance, the band has released their version of the Gordon Lightfoot classic "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald." Always a song on their radar, circumstances finally clicked into place to give them the right opportunity to share their take with the fans.

This impactful interpretation of the iconic track chronicling the sinking of the bulk carrier SS Edmund Fitzgerald on Lake Superior on November 10, 1975 was a #1 hit for Lightfoot and remains one of his best-loved songs. While showing respect for the past, Headstones have put their unique spin on the song to introduce it to a whole new rock audience. The video was shot on location in Kingston, Ontario.

Ringo Starr Announces New Tour and Book

Fri Mar 22
Ringo Starr Photo Credit Scott Robert Ritchie

Sir Ringo Starr announced tour plans for 2019 with his All Starr Band, featuring Steve Lukather, Colin Hay, Gregg Rolie, Warren Ham, Gregg Bissonette and the return of All Starr alum Hamish Stuart.

The first leg begins in March with one US show at Harrah’s Resort Southern California on March 21st before the band head to Japan,starting in Fukuoka on March 27th and ending April 11th in Osaka (full dates listed below). August 2019 marks the 30th Anniversary of Ringo and His All Starr Band and they will hit the road for a celebratory tour which will kick off at Harrahs in Windsor on August 1st and then head to Ravinia near Chicago, Illinois to play two shows with the Beach Boys August 3rd and 4th and two shows at Nashville’s historic Ryman in Tennessee on August 7th and 8th. The tour will conclude September 1stat the Greek Theater in Los Angeles, California, nearly 30 years to the day when the inaugural All Starrs completed their first tour on September 3, 1989. (A full itinerary will be announced soon).

If I Can Get Readers, You Can Get Fans

Fri Mar 22
Peter Åstedt

Submitted by Peter Åstedt

All this started with yet another one of the artists I manage who complained how hard it is to get fans.Or rather get them to stay and follow them.

My answer was that I could start a blog and be the old grumpy man I am and still get readers and If I can get readers you can get fans. The thing is it would be easier if you are an attractive artist with good songs to get an audience. I’m exactly the opposite, grumpy old guy from the music industry, nagging about things in the music industry.

So, the bet was on. And I started my blog. First thing, where was my audience? I guess my biggest mistake was that I thought I wrote for artists. There are so many blogs online about how the artist struggles. How they don’t understand why people don’t discover them, or why they don’t get this or don’t get that. I thought I could break into that market mainly just pointing out the angle that the industry has. All these questions would find an answer in my blog!

Was I wrong! I didn’t get it in the beginning. I was marketing the blog against the artist community all the time and hoped that people would go in and read it. All I got was silence. I saw that artists would read it but they didn’t comment or come back. I was puzzled. These are the answers on the questions the other was telling in the other blogs or posts I saw online?

Bara Jonson and Free Fairytale Me

Fri Mar 22
Bara Jonson and Free Fairytale Me

How does an act from Sweden take a chance and go to a Live at Heart Festival on a Peninsula named Burin in Canada’s Newfoundland, write a song and end up on the Swedish Independent Music Chart 10 weeks in a row in a # 1 position, thanks to the fans (who are now friends) that they met there?

This is what Bara Jonson and Free did. “We rented a car, drove through torrential rain, landed in the middle of nowhere at the Marystown Hotel and suddenly you feel like you came ‘home’? There is no explaining it, but that is what happened to us.”

So they went back to Sweden and immediately wrote “Hello Newfoundland” and their newly found friends embraced it.

The release of the video included all of the amazing people who forged the road to these lifetime memories and also featured Tale The Rapper.

Watch ‘Hello Newfoundland’ here: https://youtu.be/Lg1FiA8jCZM

Country Music Hall of Fame Announces 2019 Inductees

Fri Mar 22
Country Music Hall of Fame Announces 2019 Inductees

Submitted by Don Graham

It’s that time of year again when The Country Music Association announces its inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame. The class of 2019 includes, Brooks and Dunn, Ray Stevens and Jerry Bradley all outstanding contributors to the country music industry. The inductees are from three categories, the modern era, the veteran era and the songwriter/musician/non-performer categories.

Joni Mitchell’s 75th Birthday Celebration CD

Fri Mar 15
Joni Mitchell’s 75th Birthday Celebration CD

Last November, some of Joni Mitchell’s musical friends and 3,000 fans gathered to celebrate and the special night was recorded by Verve/Decca Records. Her friends and fans gathered to pay tribute to the legendary singer, performing a special concert on Mitchell’s birthday at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in downtown Los Angeles. The star-studded line-up included James Taylor, Norah Jones, Chaka Khan and Rufus Wainwright and a host others.

The release of The Music Center Presents Joni 75: A Birthday Celebration was 8 March 2019 and also featured performances by Brandi Carlile, Glen Hansard, Emmylou Harris, Diana Krall, Kris Kristofferson, Los Lobos with La Marisoul, Cesar Castro &Xochi Flores, Graham Nash, Seal and more.

Each performer brought their own interpretation to Mitchell’s iconic catalogue. Brandi Carlile teamed up with Kris Kristofferson for a duet version of ‘A Case of You’, while Diana Krall covered the jazz-leaning ‘Amelia’. Mitchell’s hits were also represented, with Seal taking on ‘Both Sides Now’, and Rufus Wainwright doing a beautiful rendition of ‘Blue’.

Barry Stagg Capturing ‘One Heart At A Time’

Fri Mar 15
Barry Stagg Capturing ‘One Heart At A Time’

Barry Stagg was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada where he lived for the first 29 years of his life. Although he resides in the US, he still spends summer months in Nova Scotia and maintains a Canadian address and passport.

He has written and recorded songs for Gamma Records, United Artists, London Records, RCA, and Cashbox Records. Barry is well known for his world hit song "To Love Means To Be Free,” released on his Green and Stagg album in 1969, which earned him the Canadian Business Music Industry’s writing award.

I caught up with Barry at his home and he still has all the enthusiasm of a young artist starting out.

“I just got back off the road doing a US promotional tour for both radio and television for ‘One Heart At a Time”. I was humbled by the reception and accolades we got every stop we made. I feel blessed that after all these years I still get to do what I love most. Write my songs and perform for people. There is nothing better than seeing the reaction to your material.”

Stagg has quite a legendary career behind his name: