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London, Ontario, completes first ever music census

The London Music Census is a first-of-its-kind study of London, Ontario’s music industry. The census originated with the London Music Office, and seeks to further the city’s understanding of the assets that make up the city’s music sector. The census has identified both barriers to prosperity and potential areas for future growth of London’s music sector.

The census was successful in shaping a deeper understanding of the state of London’s live music sector. The results revealed that the city’s music industry is concentrated in the realm of popular music, that there exists a wide variety of music businesses in the city, and that, interestingly, few music businesses are applying for government grants. Several key statistics emerged from the London Music Census, including:

  • London is a hub for emerging talent with 875 students studying music at post-secondary institutions;
  • The live music sector is growing with 4,620 music events held in 2015 and new festivals introduced in 2016;
  • London has a diverse mix of venues which includes 52 live music venues, with total seating capacity of 57,000;
  • Nearly half (44.7%) of musicians surveyed are strictly performing original music; and,
  • Over $ 7 million dollars earned in royalties by 1,203 music writers and publishers in London (2015)

London has made serious efforts in the past few years to support its local music community. This particular initiative is part of the London Music Strategy, which was released in August 2014, and also supports the city council’s 2015-19 Strategic Plan, which includes strong language calling for the strengthening of economic growth in the city’s cultural sector, the support of cultural programming, and celebrating and promoting culture.

“The London Music Strategy is a key part of growing our economy and promoting culture in London through our Strategic Plan,” said Mayor Matt Brown. “The results from the London Music Census will give us a detailed look at how we can cultivate and support London’s already eclectic and thriving music scene.”

The census, which obtained over 1,500 responses, took place over the summer of 2016. The survey, which was posted on the music office’s website, was broken up into five categories: Musicians, Venues, Festival/Event Organizations, Music Industry, and Music Fans.

“The London Music Census provided an opportunity to understand our advantages, issues, and gaps faced by the growing local music industry in London,” said Cory Crossman, London’s Music Industry Development Officer. “Through community and industry support we collected a database of assets and baseline figures for future analysis and measurement.”

To read more about the London Music Census, see the article on the London Music Office website.


Bell Media’s MuchFACT hits $100 million milestone in funding for Canadian music videos and projects

With the announcement of February’s funding recipients, Bell Media also revealed that its MuchFACT (A Foundation to Assist Canadian Talent) program has surpassed $100 million in contributions to projects by Canadian artists.

Since MuchFACT’s launch in 1984, funding for nearly 9,000 projects has helped propel the careers of some of Canada’s most successful artists. MuchFACT’s press release lists Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe,” Arcade Fire’s “Sprawl II,” and “Lovers In A Dangerous Time” by Barenaked Ladies as some of the most prominent videos to receive funding. In addition to developing Canadian music artists, MuchFACT has also been an important resource for Canadian directors, many of whom MuchFACT says have gone on to direct feature films, documentaries and award-winning music videos. The program is exclusively funded by Much & M3, divisions of Bell Media Inc.

20 new project funding recipients were confirmed from MuchFACT’s February music committee meeting. Those recipients are:

Music Content Package

Whitehorse – “Boys Like You” and “Pink Kimono”
Jessie Reyez – “Gatekeeper”

Music Videos

Sam Patch – “St. Sebastian”
Dragonette – “Body 2 Body”
HONORS – “Over”
Dzeko – “Never Gonna Love”
Smalltown DJs – “Erased the Night” (f. Lisa Lobsinger)
Daniel Caesar – “We Found Love”
The New Pornographers – “Whiteout Conditions”
Saya – “Cold Fire”
Cadence Weapon – “My Crew (Woooo)”
Harrison Brome – “Body Heat”
Jacques Greene – “True” (f. How To Dress Well)

Online Music Video / Project

Hoodies at Night – “4 Weeks” (f. KROY)
Chewii – “PuNoni”
TOPS – “Further”
Royal Canoe – “Living A Lie”
Yoko Gold  – “Just a Fling”

Digital Tools

Doldrums – “We Come In Pieces”
BADBADNOTGOOD – “In Your Eyes” (f. Charlotte Day Wilson)

Applications for MuchFACT funding can be submitted though the MuchFACT website. The next upcoming deadline is Thursday, March 9, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

MuchFACT returns this year as a sponsor of the Video of the Year category at the 46th annual JUNO Awards, happening April 2, 2017, in Ottawa.

Below is a showcase of videos that MuchFACT has helped support through the years.


Arkells receive Gold plaques before massive hometown show

Photo: Universal Music Canada

For JUNO-Award winning rock group Arkells, Friday, February 10, 2017, will certainly go down as one of the most surreal nights of the band’s career. With the LED sign outside the FirstOntario Centre flashing “Welcome Home ARKELLS,” Hamilton, Ontario was eager to plow through the heavy snowfall and sing along again with their hometown heroes. Around 9 PM, Arkells took to the stage in front of 10,000 adoring fans and kick-started an epic 26-song set that will be talked about for years to come.

Prior to their set, the band was surprised backstage with Gold Single plaques for “Leather Jacket,” from their 2016 album Morning Report. “Leather Jacket” is the band’s first Canadian Single Award certification. In 2015, Arkells received their first Gold plaques for the album High Noon.

You can view the music video for “Leather Jacket” below.


Government of Canada to provide $8.3 million in funding towards Massey Hall revitalization

Left to right: The Honourable Melanie Joly, Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet (Whitehorse), Jim Cuddy, Deane Cameron, Adam Vaughan

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, was in Toronto Friday to announce The Corporation of Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall as a recipient of the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund. The Government of Canada will provide $8,330,000 to assist with the revitalization of the legendary Massey Hall, which will improve its accessibility, technical infrastructure and presentation environment.

“We are thrilled that the Government of Canada is investing in Massey Hall’s future through the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund,” said Deane Cameron, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Corporation of Massey Hall & Roy Thomson Hall. “This funding will help set the stage for the completion of the Massey Hall Revitalization Project to ensure that Massey Hall remains a home to showcase and cultivate our future leaders in arts, culture and beyond.”

A rendering of the completed Massey Hall exterior revitalization (photo: Cicada Design for Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects)

The Canada Cultural Spaces Fund launched in 2001 and receives an average of 137 applications each year. As of March 31, 2016, the fund has invested approximately $410 million in 1,381 projects in every province and territory.

“Investing in Canada’s cultural sector helps create jobs for the middle class, strengthens the economy, and ensures that Canada’s unique perspective is shared with the world,” said Minister Joly.

Also in attendance at the announcement was Spadina-Fort York MP Adam Vaughan, and musician Jim Cuddy of Blue Rodeo, who spoke to his experiences playing the infamous stage and the impact the venue has had on the City of Toronto. Joly also spoke to the venue’s presence in Toronto during her address, deeming it a “right of passage” for musicians from all over the world who grace its stage. Toronto-based duo Whitehorse closed out the event with a captivating performance.

Massey Hall opened in 1894, and the last major renovation occurred in occurred in 1948. Phase 2 planning of the revitalization is underway, and construction is set to complete in 2021.


Drake named IFPI’s Global Recording Artist of the Year as fellow Canadians Justin Bieber and The Weeknd reach the Top 10

Today, the IFPI announced that Toronto hip hop artist Drake is the recipient of the IFPI 2016 Global Artist of the Year Award, which recognizes an artist’s worldwide success across physical and digital formats, including downloads and steams. Drake is the first Canadian to receive the award, and the fourth recipient since its launch in 2013.

Joining Drake in the Top 10 chart are fellow Ontarians Justin Bieber and The Weeknd, who reached #5 and #10, respectively. All three artists also appeared in the 2015 Global Top 10 chart.

“I’m delighted to be able to honour Drake as the IFPI Global Recording Artist 2016,” says IFPI chief executive Frances Moore in a release. “Drake’s phenomenal success reflects how deeply his unique sound appeals to an enormous global audience. The Global Top 10 list features a number of amazing artists, and the variety and vibrancy of their art speaks volumes about the exciting state of music today.”

Drake’s 2016 Double Platinum album Views became the first album to reach one billion streams on Apple Music, while the album’s single and summer smash “One Dance” became the first song to be played one billion times on Spotify. In 2015, Drake appeared at number nine on the list.

Justin Bieber, whose 2015 album Purpose contained multi-Platinum singles like “Sorry,” “Love Yourself,” and “What Do You Mean?” lands in the fifth position, allowing for two Canadian artists to appear in the top five. This is the second consecutive year the Stratford, Ontario native has appeared on the list, after reaching the number four spot in 2015.

Multi-Platinum R&B sensation and Scarborough, Ontario native The Weeknd, who released his Platinum-certified album Starboy in late 2016, was announced as the number ten artist, matching his 2015 position on the chart. While his album JUNO Award winning album Beauty Behind The Madness was released in 2015, The Weeknd, born Abel Tesfaye, continued to see success through the start of 2016 with the album’s singles “Can’t Feel My Face,” “In The Night,” and “The Hills.”

One Direction were the first group to be named Top Artist by IFPI when the list began in 2013, which also included Canadian Michael Bublé in the ninth spot. Taylor Swift earned the award in 2014, and in 2015, IFPI named Adele as the top global recording artist, who appears at number four in 2016.

Click here more for information on IFPI’s results, and view the full list below.

Top 10 Global Recording Artists of 2016

  1. Drake
  2. David Bowie
  3. Coldplay
  4. Adele
  5. Justin Bieber
  6. Twenty One Pilots
  7. Beyoncé
  8. Rihanna
  9. Prince
  10. The Weeknd

Alberta will allow all-ages entertainers to perform in bars, lounges

Young musicians are praising the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission, which announced Friday that underage performers will now be allowed to play in bars and lounges throughout the province.

“I’ve been fighting for this since I was nine years old,” said Olivia Rose Leaf, a 17-year-old Alberta musician, adding that the change will mean a lot to the young performers she knows.

The previous policy, which prohibited underage performers from playing in bars and lounges had been in place since March 2007, when it was instituted out of a concern for public safety. But a consultation with musicians, venue owners, and promoters, led by MLA David Shepherd and Thom Bennett of the Edmonton Live Music Initiative, prompted the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission (ALGC) to reconsider.

According to Bill Robinson, president of the AGLC, the change is the result of changing attitudes in the industry. He also suggested that the training of staff has improved the overall safety in bars, making the policy shift possible.

The change is not a complete reversal. Bars and lounges will be required to request approval from the AGLC to permit minors to enter their premises as entertainers, and the approval process is expected to take up to a few days.

Still, the response from the music community and government has been positive—the prevailing view is that underage artists should be allowed to perform at the same venues as everyone else. Musicians, especially young and emerging artists, will benefit from the opportunity to begin building their live audience earlier in their careers.

“This is a great step forward for our music scene, for young performers, and for our province as a whole,” said Shepherd, who is a musician himself. “It makes areas like Edmonton’s downtown a much more attractive place to visit and to live.”



Nominees and performers revealed for 2017 JUNO Awards

Allan Reid, President & CEO of CARAS, announcing the 2017 JUNO nominees in Toronto.

Earlier today, the nominees and first round of performers were revealed for the 46th annual JUNO Awards. The announcement was made at a press conference at Toronto nightclub REBEL, and was streamed live on the JUNOs website.

Multi-Platinum stars Drake, The Weeknd, and Shawn Mendes each received a leading five nominations, while Alessia Cara and the late Leonard Cohen gathered four nominations. Several nominees were on hand for the event including The Strumbellas, Coleman Hell, Wintersleep, Billy Talent, Sultans Of String, Weaves, and more.

Celine Dion’s Encore un soir, Drake’s Views, The Weeknd’s Starboy, Shawn Mendes’ Illuminate, and Leonard Cohen’s final studio album You Want It Darker were nominated for Album of the Year, for which Music Canada is proud to return as a sponsor in 2017.

Alessia Cara, along with Ruth B and A Tribe Called Red, were announced as the first performers for the awards show, which coincides with the Ottawa’s Canada 150 celebrations.

“There is a lot of excitement in the air for the JUNOs and for Ottawa 2017,” said Allan Reid, President and CEO of CARAS, who spoke at the Mayor’s breakfast in Ottawa last week. “We are thrilled to be going back.”

2017 will mark the third time Ottawa has hosted the JUNO Awards. From 2007 to 2015 the JUNO Awards have created a total economic impact of almost $99 million, including $11 million for Ottawa in 2012, $14 million for the 2011 JUNO Awards in Toronto, and $10 million for the 2015 JUNO Awards in Hamilton.

Randy Lennox, President of Broadcasting and Content at Bell Media, also spoke at the event, commending Reid for his work with the JUNOs, and many of the event’s long-standing partners. Lennox, former President & CEO of Universal Music Canada, will be honoured with the Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award at the 2017 JUNOs, along with Buffy Sainte-Marie for the 2017 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award, and Sarah McLachlan for her induction into the Canadian Music Hall Of Fame.

The 2017 JUNO Awards will be handed out Sunday, April 2, 2017, at the Canadian Tire Centre. Limited tickets are still available through Ticketmaster.


Music Canada Proud to Support 46th Annual JUNO Awards

Music Canada is proud to return as sponsor of the Album of the Year Award at the 46th Annual JUNO Awards.

“As the Canadian music industry comes together in Ottawa in 2017, coinciding with Canada’s 150th anniversary, we are reminded of the impact that music has had in building our country’s identity. From past Album of the Year winners like Anne Murray, Bryan Adams, and the Tragically Hip, to this year’s nominees, music has always been a defining part of our cultural identity,” says Graham Henderson, President and CEO of Music Canada. “In addition to its intrinsic values, the music sector supports thousands of jobs across the country, which is why we are proud to advocate for policies and programs that benefit the music ecosystem and support a creative middle class.”

The Album of the Year Award will be presented at the 2017 JUNO Awards Broadcast at the Canadian Tire Centre on Sunday, April 2nd, 2017 in Kanata, ON.


Red Hot Chili Peppers presented with Gold plaques for ‘The Getaway’ in Toronto

Photo: Warner Music Canada

Prior to their highly anticipated sold-out show at Toronto’s Air Canada Centre, legendary rockers Red Hot Chili Peppers were presented with Gold award plaques for their latest album The Getaway by Warner Music Canada.

The 2016 album also features the Gold-certified single “Dark Necessities.” The Getaway is the band’s ninth album to be certified Gold in Canada, while “Dark Necessities” is the first track in the band’s career to be certified in Canada. In 2001, the band received their highest Canadian certification for Californication at Six Times Platinum.

The video for “Dark Necessities” can be seen below.



Mayor John Tory and Councillor Josh Colle issue statement on Toronto music venue closures

Below is a statement jointly issued this afternoon by Toronto Mayor John Tory and Councillor Josh Colle on the City’s commitment to live music venues following recent venue closure announcements.


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