Pennan Brae Takes to Space in NEW Music Video for "Strut-1980s

Fri Dec 20, 2019

Canadian singer/songwriter and screenwriter Pennan Brae lives by the saying, “shoot for the moon and, if you miss, you will still be among the stars.”

So goes the foreshadowing topic realm for his latest single “Strut-1980s”, fresh from his film release and accompanying soundtrack, Gravity: The Astronot — a remix of sorts of Brae’s previously released The Astronot — available now. 

The story of The Astronot takes place during the space race of the 1960s, which is a historical undertaking Brae has always found fascinating. “As a kid, I was intrigued by pictures of the planets, Solar System and galaxies,” says the Vancouver-based artist. “The space picture books of the 1970s really captured this — it was the tail end of the NASA moon landing missions, and there were so many books for kids to read. 

“I don’t know what was in their ink, but the illustrations seemed so majestic and captivating.”

Capricorn Records & The Iconic Southern Label's 50th

Fri Dec 13, 2019

Mercer Music at Capricorn in Macon, Ga.

In some ways, it feels like the blink of an eye for Dickey Betts. "Then I look at my big white beard and realize it was a long time ago," Betts says with a rascally laugh, calling from his Osprey, Fla. living room.

It's been 50 years since the self-titled debut album by Allman Brothers Band, the Southern rockers with whom Betts found fame as a gifted and expressive guitarist, singer and songwriter. That seven-track album showcased the Jacksonville, Fla.-founded group's blues, psychedelia, jazz and country fusion, crystalized on songs like dark-epic closer "Whipping Post." The LP also established the Southern rock template: Relatable-rogue songs of travel, pain, love and beauty; swaggering musicality; and transportive guitars for days.

Spotify Needs To Make A Decision About Its Future

Fri Dec 13, 2019

Out of all the buzz that Spotify continues to amass as a leading music-streaming service, one problem that virtually no one in the music business has discussed yet is the gaping hole between Spotify’s oft-trumpeted mission statement and its actual business model.

Over the past year and a half, Spotify has made its two-pronged mission loud and clear in investor presentations and on its website“[To] unlock the potential of human creativity — by giving a million creative artists the opportunity to live off their art and billions of fans the opportunity to enjoy and be inspired by it.”

The streaming company has attempted to “[give] a million creative artists the opportunity to live off their art” — or at least jumpstart that part of their objective — by acquiring startups that offer creative tools for musicians and podcasters.

Mother Sun Releases New Video “Lemonade”

Fri Dec 06, 2019

Mother Sun creates warmth with their music. Combining deliberate psych-pop and rock arrangements with a measured amount of absurdity and experimentation, the four-piece from Kamloops, British Columbia produces thought-provoking songs that weave strong melody through colourful tones and jazz-inspired grooves. Mother Sun is Jared Doherty (guitar, vocals), Emilio Pagnotta (guitar, vocals), Alex Ward (organ, bass, keys), and Jared Wilman (drums, percussion, vocals).

Mother Sun formed in late 2017, the four members being active members in Kamloops’ growing indie scene, each playing in multiple other projects. The band worked with Felix Fung of Little Red Sounds in Vancouver, BC to record 10 songs throughout 2018, releasing four singles in advance of their debut full-length release. These included ‘Flower: One Eye’ (May 18th, 2018), ‘Sunny Tuesday (June 21st, 2019), ‘Daylight’ (July 26th, 2019), and ‘Straw Man’ (August 9th, 2019).

Canadian Hip Hop / Hard Rocker Brenin Edmunds Shutters The Year with New Release

Fri Dec 06, 2019

What do you get when you cross a hard rock lead singer with an early 90’s hip-hop head? You get Brenin Edmunds. Since the age of 13, Brenin aka RUBiX has been working diligently to mix his eclectic taste of music into cohesive art. From hip-hop to rock, hard rock to jazz, industrial to techno and everything in between, Brenin has made a name for himself by producing music that sits comfortably outside of each core genre.

Canadian hip hop hard rocker Brenin Edmunds shuts the year down with a fitting throwback in the form of his sophomore LP, TWENTY18 — and “Da Bom 1 Day” — watch the video here:

“I began writing TWENTY18 in 2018 during my ongoing separation/divorce, and custody battle for my daughter,” Edmunds says of the process behind the release as a whole. “I was dealing directly with the heartbreak, anger, trauma, and then the subsequent situation regarding the breakup.

“Also, I endured a wrongful dismissal from my previous employment, and I had to deal with restarting the project three times due to producers bailing on the project. 

The 18th Annual Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival

Fri Nov 29, 2019

Toronto-based Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival has announced its 18th annual celebration, with music and food on full display February 21- 23, 2020, including a stellar lineup of JUNO, Maple Blues, and Canadian Folk Music-winners including Lynn Miles, Jack de Keyzer, Swamperella and Wendell Ferguson.

Toronto’s Winterfolk Blues and Roots Music Festival is on Brunswick Ave (near Spadina Avenue and Bloor Street), the all-ages, mid-winter, weatherproof event, is where you’ll find the best of urban, blues, rock, jazz, country, folk and roots music, emulating a multi-stage rural summer festival.

More than 150 artists will be performing on 5 stages. The festival will also include special tribute events, an awards ceremony, community stages and various themed musical workshops with something for everyone to enjoy in venues including The Tranzac Club and The Annex Hotel. 

February 21-23, 2020  

February 21, 7:00 pm – 1:00 am

February 22, 1:00 pm – 1:00 am

February 23, 1:00 pm – 10:00 pm

John Mann Has “Gone Home For A Rest”

Fri Nov 22, 2019

John Mann, the driving force behind Spirit of the West, has lost his long-time battle with Alzheimer’s Disease. He succumbed on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, to the early-onset of Alzheimer’s disease. He was 57.

Mann rose to fame in the 1980s as one of the main singers and songwriters for Spirit of the West, a popular Celtic-inspired group. He was also an accomplished actor, with several film and theatre credits to his name. He was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s in 2014, and the band played its last show two years later. Though the disease was degenerative and his battle several years long, news of his death shook Spirit of the West drummer Vince Ditrich.

Bon Iver Release New Video Naeem

Fri Nov 22, 2019

Bon Iver has released Naeem, the band’s first official, non-lyrical music video since 2012’s Beth/Rest.

The film marks Bon Iver’s first collaboration with Los Angeles-based, Barcelona-born director, AG Rojas, who – after travelling the world as the child of a Colombian writer and Costa Rican painter – has credits including Gil Scott-Heron’s last and Earl Sweatshirt’s first music videos. He has also directed pieces for Kamasi Washington, Florence + The Machine, Emeli Sandé, Run The Jewels, and Zack de la Rocha.

Rojas says, “Naeem is concerned with the potential for intergenerational healing, and how we choose to engage with that potential. All my admiration and love to Cynthia Rodriguez and her child Azul who brought this idea to life, and to Bon Iver for amplifying it.”

Hip Hop Producer Frost Gamble Insists: “Open Your Eyes”

Fri Nov 08, 2019

Winnipeg-based award-winning hip hop music producer Frost Gamble and New York-based battle rapper Tone Chop are out with “Open Your Eyes” — the premiere single off their newest and forthcoming collaborative LP, Kill or Be Killed, available now. 

Watch “Open Your Eyes” (Official Music Video) by Tone Chop & Frost Gamble here:

A self-proclaimed ‘sample head’ who lives to dig through crates, Frost Gamble has recorded with both Platinum-selling acts and GRAMMY Award-nominated artists, including Fresh I.E., Kool G. Rap, KXNG Crooked, Ras Kass, Tragedy Khadafi, Young Bleed, Guilty Simpon, Planet Asia, Skyzoo, and then some.

His releases have twice made waves on the 2018 iTunes U.S. Top 100 Hip Hop album sales chart, once for One #57 (w/ Tone Chop) and the other for Pass the Ammunition #34 (w/ Horseshoe Gang).

Jesse Cook Set to Celebrate 25 Years of Music with 25 Special Canadian Tour Dates

Fri Oct 25, 2019

Award-winning and Internationally acclaimed guitarist, composer and producer Jesse Cook is set to mark 25 years of music with 25 special tour dates across Canada, starting with Nanaimo, BC this March 20th.

Tickets for The Tempest 25 Tour — a nod to his 1995 debut, Tempest (Narada) — are available for sale on October 25th.

The tour serves as a bemusing milestone for a guy who never planned on releasing an album.

“If you had asked me at age 22, I would have said I would never, never make music for the public,” Cook says with a laugh. “I would have told you the public is much too fickle… They may love you one minute and forget you the next.

“Well… It turns out I did the thing I said I’d never do, and somehow it’s worked out.”

That’s an understatement.

By the numbers, Jesse Cook holds ten platinum and gold studio albums with combined sales exceeding two million copies, five-concert DVDs and live discs, and five PBS specials — his most recent, directed, edited and mixed by Cook himself.

Lyricfind Announces Fender Partnership For Lyric Integration In Fender Songs

Fri Oct 25, 2019

On October 22, 2019, LyricFind announced a partnership with Fender and their latest innovative app, Fender Songs. Players will now have instant access to the lyrics from millions of songs within the app, as dynamic lyric display becomes an increasingly important part of the way we engage with music.

The integration of lyrics in Fender Songs weaves seamlessly into the app’s on-demand song learning for beginners and experienced players alike  - from lyric overviews in practice mode to a “karaoke-style” scrolling lyrics as they play along in real time.

LyricFind is pleased to announce a partnership with Fender Music Instruments Corporation, to provide lyrics to its new app, Fender Songs. The app allows users to practice, play along, and perform to millions of their favorite songs on guitar, ukulele or piano.

The Flyer Vault – 150 Years of Toronto’s Concert History

Sat Oct 19, 2019

First it was an Instagram must-follow, now it's a book. From Duke Ellington to David Bowie to Daft Punk, Toronto has played host to so many music legends, making its name as a major music destination in both Canada and the world. 

Born from the popular Instagram account of the same name, The Flyer Vault runs the gamut of musical genres — from vaudeville to techno and everything in between — using Tate’s extensive collection of concert posters and flyers to illustrate the breadth of Toronto’s musical history. 

Complementing the stunning visuals are stories highlighting iconic moments in legendary music venues across the city, including the Horseshoe Tavern, Massey Hall, The Rock Pile, the Edge, and many more. 

As beautiful as it is informative, The Flyer Vault is a visual tour-de-force showcasing Toronto's’ vast and venerable concert history. 

Both born and bred Torontonians, Daniel Tate and Rob Bowman only recently met through social media, although their paths were similar throughout the years.

Century Surfers Presents ‘The Storm’

Fri Sep 27, 2019

Century Surfers is an exciting brand new rock project out of Toronto featuring vocalist Roddy Colmer and guitarist Jamie Gutfreund.

After forming a fast friendship and bonding over their love of 90s rock artists such as Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, and Soundgarden, Colmer and Gutfreund started to write songs together. 

What initially started as a collaboration for Colmer’s upcoming solo record “Afterglow”, quickly spiraled into a different direction, pushing Colmer and Gutfreund to revisit the sounds of the 90s, with a modern approach, using current production techniques.

After a musically inspiring trip to Nashville, Gutfreund worked on a guitar riff that Colmer would later add his melodic muscles to and compose what would later become their debut single “The Storm”.

In order to bring “The Storm” to life, Century Surfers teamed up with veteran producer and current bass player for the multi platinum selling progressive rock group Saga, Dusty Chesterfield. Wearing their 90s grunge influences on their sleeves, “The Storm” has a darkly melodic verse, leading into a crushing chorus reminiscent of peak Stone Temple Pilots. 

54-40 Release New Video for “Sublime Like Me” from Keep On Walking Album

Fri Aug 30, 2019

54-40 have released a new video “Sublime Like Me” from their album, “Keep on Walking”.

Watch Lyric Video of “Sublime Like Me”

From the band: “Sublime Like Me" is a love letter to the British Dark Wave bands of the 80s that we love.  The original demo of the song was fully-formed and identical in arrangement to the finished master, but Gavin Brown's production craftily modernized the track, while still nodding to its influences.”

Bruce Cockburn Releases New "April In Memphis" Video

Fri Aug 23, 2019

The legendary Bruce Cockburn is releasing a video for "April In Memphis"  from his upcoming album Crowing Ignite, in honour of Martin Luther King on that tragic day April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee.

Bruce says, "The piece came into being on MLK Day 2019. It pretty much formed itself in the course of a practice session. It took the shape of a lament, more than a celebration, which set me to thinking of King’s murder, and the loss of a voice of wisdom, compassion and respect that we could really use about now. Hence the title. I think the video conveys the right sense of the poignant beauty, of the dignity, of the man and the spirituality that fueled him."

Watch Bruce Cockburn - April In Memphis (Official Video) here:

Spotify’s Subscriber Base Grows To 108m, As Total Monthly Active User Count Hits 232m

Fri Aug 02, 2019

Spotify closed its second calendar quarter this year with 108m subscribers and 232m total Monthly Active Users (MAUs).

In a new financial update today (July 31), SPOT confirmed that its premium subs count was up 31% year on year (on the same three months, to end of June, in 2018) – but below the midpoint of its guidance range of 107-110m.

The 108m figure represents a climb of 8m on the 100m subscribers Spotify attracted in the prior quarter of this year.

Worth remembering: Apple revealed last month that Spotify rival Apple Music had recently passed the milestone of 60m paying subscribers, though this figure included free trialists.

Interestingly, Spotify noted to investors today: “We have reached an agreement with two of our four major label partners on the renewal of our global sound recording licenses, and are in active discussions with the other two.

TD Markham Jazz Festival Announces Daily Headliners

Fri Jul 26, 2019

TD Markham Jazz Festival has announced this year’s headlining acts set to perform among the 30+ free concerts across three stages this August 16th, 17th, and 18th. 

Fresh off her debut and JUNO Award-winning album win for So Here We Are, Alison Young will headline the Millennium Bandstand Friday, August 16th at 7:30 pm, ahead of LowDown Brass Band at 9:30 pm. 

On Saturday, August 17th at 9:00 pm, attendees will be treated to what the Jazz Advocate calls “Mr. Personality!” and the Montreal Gazette says is a “must-see live act” — JUNO Award-winning and internationally acclaimed singer, songwriter, pianist and producer Michael Kaeshammer and his spellbinding, genre-bending new album, SOMETHING NEW

“Listening to Michael Kaeshammer play live is like looking through a window into one of the greatest musical minds in the world today.” — The Record

Another JUNO Award-winner is slated for banner status on the Millennium Bandstand Stage; renowned bassist, singer, and composer Brandi Disterheft will headline Sunday, August 18th at 5:00 pm. 

Canadian Artist Marshall Potts Signs to Entertainment Music Group (EMG)

Fri Jul 26, 2019

Marshall Potts recently posted in a blog about his career-changing experience as a Showcase Artist (June 4-7, 2019) at the most famous global music festival in the world, MIDEM, a yearly event in Cannes, France. Marshall talked about sometimes just having to just take that chance, go with your gut feeling, your blind faith, whatever you want to call it. Just go for it.

So this Canadian rocker took that chance and came back from MIDEM with a management contract with industry veteran, Sandy Graham of Entertainment Music Group (EMG).  Sandy personally has decades of experience in the music industry, having been in radio, records as well as a nightclub owner and manager. The team at EMG is proud to represent artists on a unique management level, giving the artist the final say and developing strategies on both a short term and long term basis.

“I am so grateful to have been invited to join Entertainment Music Group (EMG)”, says Marshall Potts. “Looking forward to an awesome new journey with some amazingly talented and above all decent Human Beings. The team there is all about the music and the artist’s needs.”

Canada’s Songs Found in Translation: LyricFind Receives Government of Canada Funding

Fri Jul 26, 2019

Translations matter, and just as lyrics boost engagement, translated lyrics boost engagement across language barriers.

Toronto-based lyric licensing pioneers, LyricFind, have received funding from the Department of Canadian Heritage Creative Export Canada program to focus on and globalize Canadian content, using the power of lyrics and translation. The two-year project supports the licensing, transcription and translation of Canadian artists and songwriters’ lyrics, and monetizes their lyrics through LyricFind’s extensive roster of clients.