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.

Saskatchewan Country Music Award Winners 2014

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

The Saskatchewan Country Music Association Awards & Country Music Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary in Nipawin SK this past weekend. Top country musicians as well as new and emerging acts from around the province gathered among industry professionals and fans April 11-13 to celebrate the Saskatchewan country music scene. Multi-CCMA award winning band Doc Walker headlined the cabaret on Saturday night, joined by WYATT. The weekend encompassed various other events, including a kick-off party, the SCMA AGM, songwriter’s circle, country gospel show and new artist showcases. 

SaskMusic is pleased to congratulate the winners at this year’s Saskatchewan Country Music Awards.  The SCMA President’s Gala Banquet & Industry Awards were held Sunday April 12, and the 25th Annual SCMA Gala Awards took place Sunday April 13, both from the Evergreen Convention Centre in Nipawin.

Many of this year’s award recipients are previous winners of The Next Big Thing country talent search (presented by Big Dog 92-7 and produced by SaskMusic), including WYATT, Chris Henderson, Jess Moskaluke and The Midnight Roses. Submissions for the 2014 Next Big Thing competition recently launched, and will remain open until May 2, 2014 at www.TheNextBigThing2014.ca.

Academy of Country Music Awards Handed Out in Las Vegas


Submitted by Cashbox Canada

The 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards Show were held on April 6 2014 at the  Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas,Nevada. The ladies, the Belles of Broadway in Nashville, looked more like the Belles of Broadway in New York City as cowgirl boots were replaced with high heel city girl shoes and faded Wranglers and pearl snap tops gave way to ball gowns while the men traded in jean jackets for tuxedos.

George Strait won his second Entertainer of the Year Award, a mere 25 years after he won his first one. The win by Strait did not come as a big surprise. In a few months he will be retiring from  traveling on the road and he won the same trophy at the rival Country Music Association Awards a few  months ago. But the difference is ACM’s entertainer award is fan-voted and there was some concern that Strait’s fan base, being older might not vote. Straight told the crowd "I've always said I have the best fans in the world and I heard this was a fan-voted thing, so I rest my case."

A New Day for Jordan John The Son of Prakash

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Submitted by Michael Williams

I met Jordan John at the Pearl Company in Hamilton, Ontario, a perfect space and after being away from TV for awhile, I went to Cable 13 in Hamilton and asked if I could do a series of shows,”Live from the Pearl Company”. They said yes and I called a number of artists to do the show.

A neighbor of mine who I had seen on bass with Lou Reed, Parliament/Funkadelic, Ann Murray  and The Lincolns and back in the day. The incredible Prakash John, who has an equally incredible son Jordan John. I had heard about Jordan from BJ Cook (singer/songwriter and former member of the Ronnie Hawkins band and Skylark). So I called Prakash John and got an automatic yes and it was butter and beauty mixed into one.

The band was perfect with the rhythm section of the Lincolns aka The Blue Angels and Jordan John on vocals and guitar. You can feel the presence of knowledge; a respect for the music and his craft. There was no fat, no bullshit and no Canadian attitude of lesser than… but a hunger to be more.

When I look at the new crop of young musicians coming up like Julian Troiano, Quincy Bullen and Jordan John, I am filled with hope as these kids are not part of the machine that feeds off youthful dreams and has destroyed countless music careers and spirits.

The young are now empowered and independent thanks to the internet, and not looking for anything from the old music industry as we last knew it.

But it offers them little in terms of freedom, knowledge and advancing their craft skills.

BTW-Starring The Hold Steady, Dillinger Escape Plan, Beautiful Nothing, Gregory Hoskins, Micah Barnes, Tower Of Song and Leonard Cohen, kinda.

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute

Beautiful Nothing is here to tell you paying yer dues never goes outa style. Even while they tended their social media obligations, the five guys in the band also kept up a steady pace playing the Toronto rock circuit just about wherever someone would let them, all the while working on the sound ‘neath the steely gaze of the T.Dot’s  notoriously picky audiences. Also, industry savvy ones like Current Management’s Gerry Young, who knows a good  thing when he hears one and knows what to do with it. Which brings us to the altrock quintet’s first single release,    “Come Colour Me,” freshly in the hands of Canadian radio this week, with the accompanying video serviced to MuchMusic and MTV Canada.

“Come Colour Me” is a feisty thing, primo springtime guitar pop, hitting a sweet spot somewhere between school of early Coldplay and the West Coast big guitar sound exemplified by Yukon Blonde. Beautiful Nothing's self-titled debut CD is set for release May 20, 2014 on Jeff Burns' BKCI label, distributed by Universal Music Canada. Plans are underway  for  a number of live dates in southern Ontario following the release of the CD. A CD release party in Toronto, featuring a live performance by the band, is also in   the cards, with the date and location TBA. Beautiful Nothing is Anthony Ludgate (vocals/keyboard), James Featherstone, (bass), Luke Ludgate (guitar/keyboard), Shane Ludgate (drums/percussion/piano) and Sven Petrovic (guitar).

The Junos 2014 Winners List

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada

Congratulations to all the great winners of this year’s Juno Awards.

WINNER Justin Bieber

WINNER Closer, Tegan and Sara

WINNER Unorthodox Jukebox, Bruno Mars

WINNER Reflektor, Arcade Fire

WINNER Serena Ryder

WINNER Tegan and Sara

WINNER Brett Kissel

WINNER A Tribe Called Red

WINNER Serena Ryder

WINNER Crop Circles, Dean Brody

WINNER Forever Endeavour Ron Sexsmith

WINNER Reflektor, Arcade Fire

SaskMusic Announces New Executive Director Derek Bachman

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

The Board of Directors of SaskMusic is pleased to announce the appointment of Derek Bachman as the new Executive Director of SaskMusic effective April 1, 2014. Mr. Bachman has been working with SaskMusic since 2009 as Program Manager, and we are excited to welcome him into a new role at the helm of our organization. 

The Human Resource Committee, appointed by the SaskMusic Board of Directors, conducted a cross-Canada search, reviewed applications from all over the country, and interviewed a select group of applicants before coming to this decision. 

Mr. Bachman brings a great deal of experience to SaskMusic, having worked in the Canadian music industry for the past 18 years. He has been on the production team of several of the largest festival, concerts and events in the province’s recent history, receiving recognition including Talent Buyer of the Year (2013 Western Canadian Music Awards) and Album Design of the Year (2009 Western Canadian Music Awards).Mr. Bachman has also shown dedication to the cultural community in serving as a Director on numerous boards, including the Western Canadian Music Alliance, Credit Union Centre, and Host Committees of the Saskatoon 2007 JUNO Awards and 2012 Canadian Country Music Week, among others. His recent roles at SaskMusic have included overseeing our international and domestic export missions, and our Investment Program initiative. 

Record Store Days of Old - Music and Memories

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Submitted by Don Graham

On April 19th we will celebrate Record Store Day in Canada, a tribute to the shops that are fading fast from the landscape. Even the large chain stores like HMV, are disappearing quickly, giving way to online purchases and digital downloads.  But for those who grew up in the 1950’s, ‘60’s and 70’s the memories of the corner record store will live forever.  The local record shop was not only a store it was a meeting place, a destination, sometimes with nothing particular in mind, just looking for the music and fellow likeminded audiophiles.  Saturday mornings at the local shop was an adventure whether you came home with some new wax to play or just some new knowledge of  the latest bands and recordings.

Greg Arcade Leaving Home!

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada

Greg Arcade & His Rockin’ Band is a three piece Country Rock & Roll group from Canada. Made up of a trio of good ol’ Canadian boys, the band is kickin’ up a sound wilder than a pack of wolves howlin’ on a cold Manitoba morning. 

This squadron of country-twangin’ two-step bangin’ rock & rollers is made up of Greg Arcade on leading vocals & guitars, and Sean Andert on bass singing backing vocals with Justin Schafer while he‘s bangin’ on them drums.

Presenting a sound similar to the early releases of Sun Record Co., Greg Arcade & His Rockin’ Band carve out their own racket, being akin to Presley, Cash, & Lewis, yet standing out and on their own. 

On stage, Greg Arcade is a high-energy entertainer and band-leader. Off stage, he is a seasoned session-musician, songwriter, producer, engineer, and is responsible for the development of numerous projects.

Greg Arcade has performed in a variety of venues across North America, including the sweat soaked stages of Toronto’s Horseshoe, and Calgary’s Palomino, to the heights of the Winnipeg Centennial Concert Hall. With a limited number of performances in Europe, Greg Arcade is looking to expand his influence internationally. He has seen radio play as far as South America, Asia, and Australia, while finding regular play on select stations in Europe and North America.

Spectra Musique Signs a Distribution Agreement with DEP and Believe Digital Canada

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Montreal, March 18, 2014 - DEP Distribution et Believe Digital are happy to announce an agreement with the Spectra Musique record label. Commencing April 2014, the entire Spectra catalog, which includes Quebec's highest profile artists will be made available on all digital platforms by Believe Digital and will be distributed physically by DEP. The first releases under this agreement will be La symphonie rapaillée, the third chapter of Douze hommes rapaillés, available as of April 1st and the Philippe Brach album, on April 23.

Maurice Courtois, DEP President declared: "This new agreement is a key turning point for us all. We are extremely happy to join forces with L'Équipe Spectra and their talented artists".

Created six years ago, the Spectra Musique label, represents artists and projects such as Michel Rivard, Vincent Vallières, 12 hommes rapaillés, Susie Arioli, Richard Séguin, Patrice Michaud, Zachary Richard et Catherine Major.Spectra Musique has sold more than 600,000 units of its prestigious catalogue, including 114,000 copies of Vincent Vallières' Le monde tourne fort (2009) and has earned 15 nominations and 5 Felix Awards at l'ADISQ.

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