Canadian Music Royalty Honoured by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II


Story: Don Graham
Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto, Ontario, was the scene of a unique gathering on Monday June 18th, 2012.

Commemorative medals were presented to distinguished Ontario residents who have already been invested with the Order of Canada and Order of Ontario. All living Order of Canada and Order of Ontario recipients were invited.  It is unusual for these recipients to come together in one place said The Honourable Ontario Lt. Governor David Onley.

Lt. Governor Onley, Governor General David Johnson and other prominent Canadians presented the prestigious awards. CBC Anchor Peter Mansbridge hosted the gala and also received a medal.

Susan Aglukark, Molly Johnson, Ben Heppner and Gordon Lightfoot took the stage at Roy Thomson Hall Monday evening. The four musicians, all members of the Order of Canada, performed at a presentation of Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medals to more than 600 people. The special medal was created to mark the 60th anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne.

Orillia’s Lightfoot was one of several who gave Lt. Governor Onley the idea for the gala. Lt. Governor Onley said he put the event together hastily, after presenting the first 25 Diamond Jubilee Medals on Feb. 6, at a gathering that brought together a remarkable group of people, including Gordon Lightfoot and actor Gorden Pinsent.

Lt. Governor Onley commented “So many people felt it in the room. It was a totally unique experience; these 25 people. It was almost an emotional experience and people were very touched by it. At the end of the day it was decided this had to be done on a larger scale.”

Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival Line-Up Announced

Julian Taylor.jpg

Submitted to Cashbox Canada
Photo at right: Julian Taylor

The artist line-up has been announced for the Winterfolk Festival XIII and it sure to be a time for them to shine at this great event.

TORONTO –The Winterfolk XIII Blues & Roots Festival is proud to announce a stellar lineup for the 13th annual edition of the festiva taking place February 13-15, 2015. A variety of music styles will fill five stages in various venues at Broadview and Danforth in Toronto, where the festival will present four ticketed events along with many other affordable concerts, community stages and workshops. Featured artists include: roots and blues luminaries – Danny Marks, Jack de Keyzer, Gary Kendall, Al Lerman and more. Local rising stars The Heavyweights Brass Band, Vivienne Wilder Band, Jessica Stuart Few and the Andrew Collins Trio will perform along with many other fresh and familiar faces. For more information please

The Scottish Tattoo to Celebrate at the Sony Centre

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Submitted by Sandy Graham

‘Across the hills the pipes are heard an ancient Highland blood is stirred’.

Bagpipes are the most controversial instrument on earth – it can make you cry or it can make you cringe. Being a first generation Scottish Canadian I am in the first part – they make me cry and stand just a little bit straighter with pride.

So with Robbie Burns Day (January 25) right around the corner if you want to continue your celebrations there is a wonderful event at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts on January 29th at 7:30 pm – The Scottish Tattoo – The Music of Scotland.

Led by famed music director and Pipe Major, Steven Dewar, THE SCOTTISH TATTOO features bagpipe players, drummers, musicians, singers and dancers - every last one direct from Edinburgh.  This unique presentation will carry you along for a whole evening on a journey through Scotland that is as stirring as it is varied.

So if you want the experience of Scotland right here in Toronto, inhale deeply and get a fresh a breath of real Highland air. It doesn’t get any better than this!

Dinna be cheap – dig into your wallets (or sporrans) and buy some tickets to a lengendary performance.

For tickets visit: www.sonycentre.ca

April Wine's Myles Goodwyn Donates Hundreds of Shoes to Homeless

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada Credit CBC News

A member of Canadian rock royalty with ties to Nova Scotia is hoping his new Canada-wide charity will bring some sole to the homeless with new and gently-used shoes. The lead singer of the band April Wine, started the Soleful Caring campaign over the holidays in conjunction with Shelter Nova Scotia and Value Village. 700 pairs of donated shoes and winter boots delivered in first round of Soleful Caring Charity.

Myles Goodwyn, the lead singer of the band April Wine, started the Soleful Caring campaign over the holidays in conjunction with Shelter Nova Scotia and Value Village. He was in Halifax to help deliver 700 of pairs of donated shoes and winter boots.

The idea for the charity came from Goodwyn's experiences living with Type 2 diabetes, a condition that can leave patients' feet permanently numb.

Goodwyn and his Montreal doctor, who also lives with the disease, developed Soleful Caring with fellow sufferers in mind.Canadian rocker Myles Goodwyn helps load donations of shoes and winter boots for his Soleful Caring campaign.

"I think it's very important to get good shoes on all of them," said Dr. Stan van Duyes. "But I certainly think that diabetics should be prioritized."

Invictus Entertainment Group Welcomes David Langley

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Invictus Entertainment Group has recently welcomed David Langley to the position of Director of Marketing & Artist Relations. Langley will also head up the Toronto office for Invictus Entertainment Group, as the award-winning company continues to expand.

"I am thrilled to start this new chapter with Invictus Entertainment Group," says Langley. "It's a very exciting time and I'm looking forward to having the opportunity to work with such a forward thinking and innovative group of people.”

President of Invictus Entertainment Group, Jim Cressman, adds, "We work with elite artists and partners, so we continue to build an elite team. David, like the rest of our team, has an indefatigable passion for the arts. This business is in his blood, and we are excited to welcome him to the Invictus family.”

Langley's extensive background in entertainment includes working for Echo Advertising in 2004 as a Media Buyer, where he was responsible for orchestrating ad campaigns for Alliance Atlantis Films.  In 2005, he became the Senior Media Buyer for Genesis Vizeum, where he was charged with writing and executing all media plans for Live Nation Canada utilizing a variety of media platforms. His bulk of experience comes from his time at Clear Channel and later at Live Nation Canada where he rose to the position of Marketing Supervisor, after working within both the media and marketing departments. Most recently, Langley worked as the Director of Marketing for Open Road Recordings.

BTW-starring Maple Blues Band, Wilderness of Manitoba, Psychic Rites, Dan Mangan and Blacksmith, Controller Controller, Naplampom, Smashing Pumpkins

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute

Here’s an annual bright spot in this dull and drear January landscape. The 18th Annual Maple Blues Awards will be held at the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Koerner Hall on Monday, January 19th, 2015 in Toronto. This annual celebration of the best in Canadian blues begins at 7:00pm, with Danny Marks hosting a lineup of Downchilds Blues Band, Angel Forrest, Brandon Isaak, Harpdog Brown, Steve Hill and Joel Johnson, all backed by the legendary Maple Blues Band. (Host Danny Marks show Cities in Blue on HiFi is also nominated for for Best Writing in a Variety or Sketch Comedy Program or Series.)

The Maple Blues Band has been a fixture at The Maple Blues Awards for 16 of the events 18 years.  Some attribute the long lasting success of the MBA`s in part to the dedication, hard work and positive energy contributed by this group of well-known Canadian musicians. They’ve provided first rate backing for most of the hosts and special guests along with musical stings that set up award presentations.  The Maple Blues Band are Michael Fonfara organ/piano, Pat Carey tenor sax, Gary Kendall bass, Chris Whiteley trumpet, Tom Bona drums, Teddy Leonard guitar, Chris Murphy baritone sax, Al Lerman harmonica/tenor sax.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2015

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Submitted by Don Graham

The inductees for the 2015 class in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame have been announced with the induction ceremony to held be held at Cleveland's Public Hall on April 18th, 2015. 

The annual ceremony often ends with many of the night's artists jamming together. "I'm not putting a band together," says Ringo, "but if Paul McCartney puts one together, I'll do 'With A Little Help From My Friends.'"

The class of 2015 includes:

The Paul Butterfield Blues Band
The racially mixed Paul Butterfield Blues Band blasted off from the Windy City with a wall-of-sound fueled by Butterfield’s inspired harmonica and lead guitarist Mike Bloomfield’s explosive lead guitar. The Butterfield Band converted the country-blues purists and turned on the Fillmore generation to the pleasures of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, Willie Dixon and Elmore James. With the release of their blues-drenched debut album in the fall of 1965, and its adventurous East-West follow-up in the summer of ‘66, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band kicked open a door that brought a defining new edge to rock and roll.

Ultravox Founder Midge Ure Set For Phoenix Concert Hall Performance March 4

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Toronto's Blue Peter To Open Show
Submitted to Cashbox Canada

One of the most influential pop musicians to emerge from Britain is making a rare solo appearance at Toronto's Phoenix Concert Theatre on March 4. Midge Ure, leader of the groundbreaking UK band Ultravox — and the man who co-founded Live 8 and Band Aid (and co-wrote "Don't They Know It's Christmas") — has been a successful solo artist since the mid-80s, but has continued his relationship with his former band.

After working on live albums, the latest Ultravox record, and the updated version of “Do They Know it’s Christmas”  in support of the 2014 Ebola outbreak relief efforts, he has also found time to present his newest studio album Fragile.

Who: Midge Ure, with special guests Blue Peter
What: A rare Toronto appearance of the influential British pop star, Live Aid and Band Aid co-founder, one-time member of Thin Lizzy, and front man of Ultravox; Midge Ure's successful solo career has been ongoing since 1985.
Why: Because this is classic new wave music, and too few artists play it any more
When: Wednesday, March 4th — Doors 7:30 p.m Show 8:00 p.m.
Where: The Phoenix Concert Theatre, 410 Sherbourne St, Toronto
Tickets: $22.00 (+SC). Available online at http://www.thephoenixconcerttheatre.com/ or www.ticketbreak.com 

Hip Kitty Releases Christmas Song for World Vision

Jen Goncalves Hip Kitty.jpg

Submitted by Sandy Graham
Photo: Jen Goncalves Hip Kitty

This hard rock band was formed in Nashville (‘Music City’) Tennessee but don’t expecting any southern offering of twang from these rock ‘n’ rollers. Their melting pot of influences range from Guns N' Roses to Goo Goo Dolls, Jefferson Airplane to Evanescence and combine to breed a sound all their own, birthing new life into the rock world. HIP KITTY is currently promoting their "Nothing Left to Burn" CD while completing production of their upcoming single "Smile Pretty" with Grammy award-winning producer Toby Wright (Alice in Chains, Korn, Metallica, and The Wallflowers).

BTW-Shananigans, Riverdale Share Concert, Royksopp, Blonde Redhead, Selena Evangeline, Alex Goodman


Submitted by Lenny Stoute
Photo at right: Shananigans

Off the top, here are a couple of opportunities to help out while enjoying fine homegrown music. It’s Riverdale Share Concert time again, come Dec.7. Now in its 22nd year, This year’s show at the Danforth Music Hall offers a stellar lineup including Devin Cuddy, Kim Stockwood, Wexford Gleeks, operatic tenor Robert Missen, the young players of Kitchen Music Studios, Murray McLauchlan, Kobo Town’s Drew Gonsalves, Blair Packham, the Frankland School Choir and many others including that guy Santa. Showtime is 3 pm, bring twenty bucks, a non-perishable food item and a smile. The good cheer comes with the ticket.

The Riverdale Share Concert is a diverse holiday celebration held every December in Toronto’s Riverdale neighbourhood. It’s made possible by the contributions of residents, businesses, students, volunteers, civic leaders, and some of Toronto’s most celebrated artists. This 100% volunteer-run organization plans to once again raise over $30,000 and truckloads of food for families in crisis in the community in one afternoon. riverdaleshare.com

You folks out Kitchener-Waterloo way check this out. Celtic party band Shananigans are staging a House Concert to benefit the YWCA Mary’s Place Shelter of Kitchener, ON. The Concert happens Sat. Dec.12, 7.30 pm and admission is by donation as stipulated below. Here’s the band’s personal plea for this most worthy cause on account of there are kids involved. For site info, check the link below.

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