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Canadian artist Miranda Mulholland to participate in WTO Public Forum panel on investing in the future of innovation and creativity

On Thursday, Canadian musician, label owner and music festival founder Miranda Mulholland will participate in the World Trade Organization Public Forum 2018, as part of a panel discussion on the future of innovation and creativity. The Public Forum includes more than 100 sessions organized by NGOs, governments, academics, other international organizations, and the WTO secretariat. This year’s theme is “Trade 2030”, as the Public Forum examines how the increasing pace of technology changes will affect sustainable trade, technology-enabled trade, and a more inclusive trading system in the year 2030.

The panel, which is presented by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, is titled “Investing in the future of innovation and creativity – Promoting environmental sustainability, medical breakthroughs, artificial intelligence, and cultural expression,” and takes place on Thursday October 4th at 10am in Room D of the World Trade Organization headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

“Our most valuable resources is human ingenuity,” states the panel description. “Through our creativity and innovation, we can solve the most pressing problems facing our generation and future generations.  Join us for an in-depth discussion of medicines, artificial intelligence, and creative expression – taking a look at new products and services that will meet the goals of Trade in 2030 and beyond.”

“Not only do we cherish the creators and innovators in our world, but we must also support them and incentivize their continuity and success,” continues the description. “Policy leaders around the world play an important role in the ecosystems of innovation and creativity.  This session will look at the global investment environment, cross-border collaborations and the legal and regulatory environments that will propel us toward a better future for humanity.”

The panel will also feature Richard Bagger, Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Market Access at Celgene, and Nicholas Hodac, Government and Regulatory Affairs Executive, IBM, and will be moderated by Ellen Szymanski, Executive Director, Global Innovation Policy Center, U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to her impressive resume as a classically trained violinist and vocalist, Mulholland is becoming increasingly well-know internationally for her advocacy work. She recently appeared before the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage’s study of remuneration models for artists and creative industries, where she shared her personal experience as an artist living in the Value Gap. Earlier this year, she delivered keynote addresses at the Banff World Media Festival and the Economic Club of Canada in Ottawa, as well as speeches internationally at Midem and an Action For Trade event in Washington, DC.

Music Canada urges any of our international colleagues attending the WTO Public Forum to attend this important panel, which will provide an insightful look ahead at what cultural expression and the creative industries may look like in 2030. For those unable to attend in person, the World Trade Organization will be posting audio from the panels on their website following the Forum.

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Music Canada welcomes Pablo Rodriguez as Minister of Heritage; thanks Mélanie Joly for leadership on policies affecting the music sector

Toronto, July 18, 2018: Music Canada welcomes incoming Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Hon. Pablo Rodriguez and thanks the Hon. Mélanie Joly for her efforts in this role following her appointment as Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the changes to his federal cabinet earlier today.

As Minister of Canadian Heritage, Rodriguez will be responsible for implementing the government’s plan to strengthen Canada’s cultural and creative industries, and will be tasked with managing the legislative, regulatory, and Cabinet processes to deliver on the government’s priorities.

“On behalf of Music Canada, I would like to congratulate the Hon. Pablo Rodriguez on his appointment as Minister of Canadian Heritage,” says Graham Henderson, President and CEO of Music Canada. “In this role, he has the opportunity to improve the livelihood of Canadian creators, by creating the conditions for a functioning marketplace where creators receive fair compensation for the use of their work. We look forward to working with Minister Rodriguez to continue to advance policies that support creators and the companies that invest in them.”

Music Canada also extends congratulations to the Hon. Mélanie Joly on her appointment as the Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, and expresses appreciation for her leadership on key policies affecting Canada’s music sector, including the initiation of a process to reform the Copyright Board of Canada, the launch of the statutory review of the Copyright Act, and the #DigiCanCon consultations.

“During her tenure as Minister of Canadian Heritage, Mélanie Joly advanced key priorities to strengthen Canada’s creative industries and improve the livelihood of Canadian creators,” says Henderson. “Her efforts to improve the regulatory frameworks that affect creators, such as the Copyright Board and the Copyright Act, has begun a process to put creators at the heart of cultural policy. Thank you, Minister Joly, and best wishes in your new role.”

In the music sector, Music Canada has been the lead advocate for practical and forward-looking improvements to Canada’s marketplace, institutions, and legal framework. The most pressing issue for the music sector in Canada, and around the world, is the Value Gap. Defined as “the significant disparity between the value of creative content that is accessed and enjoyed by consumers, and the revenues that are returned to the people and businesses who create it,” the Value Gap threatens the future of Canadian culture by harming creators’ ability to make a living from their work.

Music Canada’s comprehensive report, The Value Gap: Its Origins, Impacts and a Made-in-Canada Approach, provides insights into how policymakers can reverse the Value Gap. The report recommends four steps that could be quickly implemented, and would help creators and harmonize Canadian policy with international standards:

  1. Remove the $1.25 Million Radio Royalty Exemption
  2. Amend the Definition of ‘Sound Recording’ in the Copyright Act
  3. Address the Effects of Safe Harbour Laws and Exceptions in Canada
  4. Private Copying: Renew Support for Music Creators

Each of these recommended changes removes an unfair subsidy, harmonizes the laws within our industries, and brings us to international standards. The report was presented to the Industry, Science and Technology committee as part of the Statutory Review of the Copyright Act, as well as the Canadian Heritage Committee in their study of Remuneration Models for Artists and Creative Industries, where it has been cited by members of the committee as well as several other industry groups appearing as witnesses before the committee.

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For more information:
Quentin Burgess, Music Canada
qburgess@musiccanada.com
+1 (647) 981-8410

About Music Canada
Music Canada is a non-profit trade organization that represents the major record companies in Canada: Sony Music Entertainment Canada, Universal Music Canada and Warner Music Canada. Music Canada also works with some of the leading independent record labels and distributors, recording studios, live music venues, concert promoters, managers and artists in the promotion and development of the music cluster. For more on Music Canada, please visit www.musiccanada.com

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Music Canada souhaite la bienvenue au nouveau ministre du Patrimoine canadien Pablo Rodriguez et remercie Mélanie Joly de son leadership en matière de politiques affectant le secteur de la musique

Toronto, le 18 juillet 2018 : Music Canada souhaite la bienvenue au nouveau ministre du Patrimoine canadien, l’honorable Pablo Rodriguez, et remercie l’honorable Mélanie Joly de ses réalisations comme ancienne titulaire de ce poste alors qu’elle est désormais chargée du ministère du Tourisme, des Langues officielles et de la Francophonie. Ces changements ont été annoncés plus tôt aujourd’hui par le Premier ministre Justin Trudeau.

Comme ministre du Patrimoine canadien, M. Rodriguez aura la responsabilité de la mise en œuvre du plan conçu par le gouvernement pour consolider les industries culturelles et créatives du Canada en plus de la gestion des processus législatifs, réglementaires et ministériels permettant de répondre aux priorités du gouvernement.

« Au nom de Music Canada, je tiens à féliciter l’honorable Pablo Rodriguez de sa nomination au poste de ministre du Patrimoine canadien », a déclaré Graham Henderson, président et chef de la direction de Music Canada. « Le nouveau ministre aura la possibilité d’améliorer les moyens de subsistance des créateurs canadiens en créant les conditions nécessaires à l’existence d’un marché fonctionnel où les créateurs toucheront une rémunération équitable pour l’utilisation de leurs œuvres. Nous sommes impatients de collaborer avec le ministre Rodriguez à l’avancement de politiques qui soutiennent les créateurs et les entreprises qui investissent dans leurs carrières. »

Music Canada tient également à féliciter l’honorable Mélanie Joly de sa nomination comme ministre du Tourisme, des Langues officielles et de la Francophonie et à la remercier de son leadership concernant certaines politiques clés affectant le secteur de la musique au Canada, notamment la mise en place d’un processus de réforme de la Commission du droit d’auteur du Canada, le lancement de l’Examen prévu par la loi de la Loi sur le droit d’auteur et celui des consultations #verslenumérique.

« Durant son mandat comme ministre du Patrimoine canadien, Mélanie Joly a fait avancer des priorités clés visant à consolider les industries créatives du Canada et à améliorer les moyens d’existence des créateurs canadiens », a déclaré M. Henderson. « Les efforts qu’elle a déployés pour faire améliorer les cadres réglementaires affectant les créateurs, qu’il s’agisse de la Commission du droit d’auteur ou de la Loi sur le droit d’auteur, ont mis en branle un processus visant à mettre les créateurs au cœur de la politique culturelle. Merci, Madame la ministre Joly, et bonne chance dans vos nouvelles fonctions. »

Dans le secteur musical, Music Canada est le chef de file de la défense d’améliorations pratiques axées sur l’avenir à apporter au marché, aux institutions et au cadre juridique du Canada. Le problème le plus urgent, pour le secteur musical canadien comme pour celui du reste du monde, est celui de l’écart de valeur. Défini comme étant « la disparité significative qui existe entre la valeur du contenu créatif que les consommateurs consultent et apprécient et celle des revenus qui sont transmis aux individus et aux entreprises qui l’ont inventé », l’écart de valeur menace l’avenir de la culture canadienne en réduisant la capacité des créateurs de vivre de leurs œuvres.

Intitulé L’Écart de valeur : ses origines, ses impacts et une démarche faite au Canada, le rapport exhaustif préparé par Music Canada décrit les solutions auxquelles peuvent recourir les décideurs politiques canadiens pour remédier à l’écart de valeur. Le rapport recommande quatre étapes qui pourraient être rapidement mises en œuvre pour aider à harmoniser la politique canadienne avec les normes internationales :

  1. Éliminer l’exemption de redevances de 1,25 million $ de la radio commerciale
  2. Modifier la définition d’« enregistrement sonore » dans la Loi sur le droit d’auteur
  3. Régler la question des effets des lois sur les exemptions de responsabilité et les exceptions au Canada
  4. Copie privée : rétablir le soutien aux créateurs de musique

Chaque modification recommandée vise à faire disparaître une subvention injuste, à harmoniser les lois gouvernant nos industries et à nous permettre de nous conformer aux normes internationales. Le rapport a été présenté devant le Comité de l’industrie, des sciences et de la technologie dans le cadre de l’Examen prévu par la loi de la Loi sur le droit d’auteur ainsi que devant le Comité permanent du patrimoine canadien dans le cadre de son étude de Modèles de rémunération pour les artistes et les créateurs, où Music Canada a été cité par les membres du comité ainsi que par plusieurs regroupements de l’industrie invités à témoigner.

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Pour de plus amples renseignements :
Quentin Burgess, Music Canada
qburgess@musiccanada.com
+1 (647) 981-8410

 

Au sujet de Music Canada

Music Canada est une association professionnelle à but non lucratif qui représente les grandes maisons de disques au Canada, notamment Sony Music Entertainment Canada, Universal Music Canada et Warner Music Canada. Music Canada collabore également à la promotion et au développement du secteur musical en collaboration avec de nombreux chefs de file de l’industrie musicale indépendante – étiquettes et distributeurs de disques, studios d’enregistrement, salles de spectacles, diffuseurs de concerts, gérants et artistes. Pour en savoir plus sur Music Canada, veuillez vous rendre sur www.musiccanada.com

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Canadian Creative Industries Launch ReadTheCode.ca

Toronto, ON (June 10, 2018) — The Canadian Creative industries responsible for creating an industry-wide Code of Conduct have now launched a complimentary website – readthecode.ca – as a resource for industry members.

“On behalf of all the industry organizations that have contributed to this process and the launch of our Code, I am happy to announce this new resource as a next step in our industry’s goal to combat harassment, discrimination, bullying and violence within Canada’s creative sector,” said David Sparrow, ACTRA National president.

“I am also pleased to welcome 36 live and recorded music organizations that will soon become signatory to the Code of Conduct to ensure a healthy culture with zero tolerance to all forms of harassment within Canada’s music community.”

In addition to the Code, the website houses a list of Code signatories and their contact information, additional resources including downloadable, printable versions of the Code (in both English and French), and updates from two working groups on their progress. The Education, Training and Awareness Committee is producing multi-level, industry-wide education and training programs, and the Reporting Committee is creating safer and more effective reporting mechanisms. Updates from these two working groups will be made to this website as they become available.

The Code and this subsequent website are all a result of the round-table discussion that took place in November 2017 when a coalition of industry stakeholders gathered together to collaborate on an industry-wide response to harassment, discrimination, bullying, and violence of all kinds. The Canadian Creative Industries Code of Conduct was officially launched on March 8, 2018, and to date, over 60 organizations from within Canada’s creative community have now become signatory.

The website can be accessed through both readthecode.ca and canadiancreativeindustries.ca.

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Media Contact: Carol Taverner, ACTRA Public Relations Officer, tel: 416.644.1519, ctaverner@actra.ca

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Music Canada EVP Amy Terrill’s remarks at the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage’s study on Cultural Hubs

This morning, Music Canada’s Executive Vice President Amy Terrill participated in the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage’s study on Cultural Hubs and Cultural Districts in Canada.

Her remarks, which pulled from Terrill’s extensive Music Cities research, including The Mastering of a Music City report, are included below.

Remarks (check against delivery): 

Chair MP Dabrusin,

Distinguished members of the committee,

 

Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today.  I’d like to commend you on your study as it is an active topic of discussion currently across the country.

My interest stems from my work on Music Cities which we began at Music Canada in 2011.

We define Music Cities as a municipality of any size that has a vibrant music economy which is intentionally supported and promoted.

Since 2014 I’ve led our study of close to 30 international cities and become one of the world’s leading thinkers on the topic.   I’ve advised cities on every continent and spoken at countless events.  I’m an active member of music city committees in Vancouver and Toronto.

Music Canada published a roadmap for the development of a Music City in 2015 and since then about a dozen Canadian cities or regions have taken that roadmap and begun to develop music strategies – including most recently Ottawa which released a strategy just two weeks ago.

 

One of the most important components of a Music City is the availability of spaces and places – to rehearse, record, perform – It’s also likely the top issue identified in Canadian communities.

Some of the common concerns that arise in public surveys and focus groups relating to music are:

  1. Lack of affordable rehearsal spaces; live-work spaces – and housing in general
  2. Pressure on small grassroots venues – affordability pressures – and pressures that come about from mixed use areas – venue closures are creating gaps in what we call the venue ladder which is needed to adequately incubate artists
  3. Heavy red tape is also cited
  4. The need for greater audience engagement
  5. And greater opportunities to collaborate – to connect with other professionals – both within music – and also across the cultural sectors

Creative hubs and cultural districts can, in their own ways, respond to these commonly identified needs and in so doing accomplish larger policy, economic, or cultural goals.

 

In our Music City investigation – we have identified three typical formats for creative hubs:

  • Hubs that are artist-centric with recording facilities, rehearsal and performance spaces, workshops, access to professional services like lawyers or accountants. The Kitchener Public Library is emerging as a cultural hub of this kind.
  • A music business incubator like you might see for other industries providing hot desks, networking events, business development support and training.
  • Or a combination of the two; The Music District in Fort Collins Colorado is a great example. 4000 square feet with programming aimed at both of the two groups, plus outreach to the broader community.

Cultural districts, on the other hand, allow municipalities, in particular, the flexibility to design rules and regulations that can be used to nurture creative activities and organizations in a set geographic area.

Both of these tools are ultimately about creating spaces and places for cultural uses.

 

As you consider this topic and how best the federal government can support them there are two key things I’d like you to remember:

Music spaces are sometimes not what you might expect.

A large portion are not buildings built specifically for a music purpose.  Likely half of the inventory is made up of multi-use, repurposed or unusual spaces.  Bars, restaurants, coffee shops, libraries, retail spaces, micro-breweries, repurposed industrial properties – to name a few.

In large cities and small towns – places for musical creation and performance are emerging from unique raw materials.

Similarly creative hubs do not fit a tight definition – I encourage you to think in broad terms about what qualifies as a creative hub.

And secondly this network of cultural spaces is composed of a mix of for-profit and not-for-profit– both are critical for the sustenance of our cultural sector.

The same artists who perform at not-for-profit venues, perform at for-profit venues – it really makes no difference.

Our cultural districts are also made up of this mix.

Commercial entities – as an example music venues or music studios – are important tenants in cultural districts and struggle with some of the same challenges facing their non-profit cousins, but typically do not qualify for federal funding programs.

Queen Street West was mentioned in the department’s testimony.  One of Queen West’s most iconic and longest-serving operators – the Legendary Horseshoe Tavern – is only able to maintain its space thanks to the generosity of the building’s owners.  Should the landlord choose to charge market rent – the Horseshoe could not remain.

Other jurisdictions have recognized the important contributions of the commercial sector – and that they too face affordability pressures – and heightened demands from nearby residents to mitigate sound – and have made loans or grants available to venues to upgrade their facilities or acquire specialized equipment.

This is something that could be considered in an enhanced funding program.

Again – I applaud you for your study.

Thank you and I look forward to expanding on some of these issues in the Q&A.

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#EveryStage: Why copyright is so crucial for Canada’s music sector and an important part of Music Canada’s advocacy efforts

Leading up to the 47th annual JUNO Awards, Music Canada is highlighting the ways in which our advocacy supports Canadian artists at every stage of their careers. So far, we have profiled our work regarding music education and Music Cities. In this week’s edition, we highlight our advocacy efforts regarding copyright, which is crucial for all artists.

Copyright effectively underpins the entire music ecosystem – it is copyright that allows creators to sell and license their music in today’s wide array of platforms, and it is copyright that protects the investment that artists and labels make in their career.  As the Canadian Intellectual Property Office outlines in the video below, copyright allows creators to control how their work is used and allows them to monetize their work when it is used.

Music Canada represents Canada’s recording industry to government and public agencies on many different fronts, including how laws, regulations and policies affect music creators. Federally, copyright advocacy is a big part of that role. In addition, Music Canada plays an important role as a collaborator with artists and other industry organizations in the Canadian music and cultural industries to advocate for the creation of a functioning marketplace where creators are paid fairly every time their work is used. Music Canada is a thought-leader on the importance of strong support for creators in the Copyright Act, particularly in highlighting the real-world effects it has on artists and their livelihoods. Reforming Canada’s Copyright Act to ensure that creators are paid when their work is commercialized by others is our top priority.

Currently, the biggest challenge for the music industry in Canada and around the world is known as the Value Gap. The Value Gap is defined as the significant disparity between the value of creative content that is accessed and enjoyed by consumers, and the revenues that are returned to the people and businesses who create it.

At the heart of the Value Gap for music is misapplied and outdated “safe harbour” provisions in copyright law, which result in creators having to forego copyright royalty payments to which they should be entitled, and amount to a system of subsidies to other industries.

Music Canada’s recent report, The Value Gap: Its Origins, Impacts and a Made-in-Canada Approach, examines the Value Gap and its causes, and demonstrates how it impacts artists, businesses and our nation’s cultural foundations, with a particular focus on music. The report includes recommended steps that Canada’s federal government can take today to address the inequities that artists face due to the Value Gap.

In addition to our Value Gap research, Music Canada has been a lead advocate for reforming the Copyright Board. This is another priority for the music sector, as the rates set by the Board directly impact the value of music and the amount that artists and labels receive for their music and investments. Music Canada is calling on the federal government to reform the Board so that tariff rates are set faster, more efficiently and more predictably – all in the name of royalties that better reflect the true value of music in a functioning music marketplace.

As part of Music Canada’s advocacy on Board reform, we have participated in the Senate hearings on the Copyright Board, the government consultation on reforming the Board, and the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage’s Review of the Canadian Music Industry, each time appearing as a key stakeholder in favour of full and meaningful reforms. Music Canada’s Graham Henderson also raised the issue in a recent Policy Options op-ed, and in a speech before the Economic Club of Canada citing the need for reform of the Copyright Board as a key priority for government.

Next week, as JUNO Week kicks off in Vancouver, we’ll conclude our #EveryStage series by profiling Music Canada’s efforts to celebrate success in Canada’s music sector, including our Gold/Platinum program and partnerships with the JUNOS and other awards that celebrate Canadian music.

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Music Canada applauds 2018 Federal Budget

Music Canada is pleased to see that the 2018 federal budget, which was tabled yesterday in the House of Commons by Minister of Finance Bill Morneau, further illustrates the Government’s commitment to reforming the Copyright Board of Canada.

Budget 2018 advances the Government’s Intellectual Property Strategy, as well as outlines measures to modernize Canada’s regulatory frameworks. Recognizing the need to promote efficient and predictable regulation within these frameworks, the Budget proposes support for the Government to “pursue a regulatory reform agenda focused on supporting innovation and business investment.” The Budget also correctly states that for “Canadian companies to grow and thrive in the global marketplace, they also need a competitive and predictable business environment that supports investment.”

In the music sector, this is particularly true at the Copyright Board. The rates set by the Board directly impact the value of music, and the ability for creators and labels to commercialize their work and investment. Music Canada has been a lead advocate for reforming the Copyright Board. We participated in both the Senate hearings on the Copyright Board, and the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage’s Review of the Canadian Music Industry, appearing as a key stakeholder in favour of full and meaningful reforms. Music Canada’s Graham Henderson also raised the issue in a recent Policy Options op-ed, and cited the need for reform of the Copyright Board as a first priority for government to modernize in a speech before the Economic Club of Canada.

“Reforming the Copyright Board of Canada has for years been a top priority for creators and the businesses that support them,” says Music Canada President & CEO Graham Henderson. “Music Canada extends our appreciation to the Government, particularly Ministers Bains and Joly, for taking the next step in modernizing this institution, which is vital for Canada’s cultural industries.”

Budget 2018 is great news for a more timely, efficient, and predictable Copyright Board. We look forward to working with Ministers Navdeep Bains and Mélanie Joly to make this a reality.

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Ed Sheeran named 2017’s best-selling global recording artist by IFPI, as Canadians Drake and The Weeknd return to Top 10

IFPI Global Award – Ed Sheeran
Photo Credit: John Marshall – JM Enternational

The IFPI revealed their Top 10 Global Recording Artist Chart today, naming Ed Sheeran as the world’s best-selling artist of 2017. Sheeran is the fifth recipient of the IFPI Global Recording Artist Award, which recognizes an artist’s international success across physical and digital formats.

Sheeran earned the top spot due to his worldwide success of his album ÷ (Divide) and its multiple hit singles including Shape of You, Castle On The Hill, and Galway Girl. The best-selling album topped the charts in 31 countries and was certified multi-Platinum in 34 markets, including Canada, where it was certified Six Times Platinum. Sheeran also had the world’s best-selling single, as Shape of You topped the charts in 25 countries, and was certified multi-Platinum in 24 markets, including Canada, where it reached Diamond status. That marks the first time that the IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year has had both the best-selling album and single of the year.

“Being crowned the biggest star in the world, with the biggest song and biggest album, is the result of years of ambition, creativity, and hard work on a global scale,” said Max Lousada, CEO of Recorded Music for Warner Music Group & Chairman and CEO of Warner Music UK. “Ed is truly an incredible songwriter, vocalist and performer, whose ability to tell stories and make people feel is what stands him out from the crowd. He’s always had a totally authentic connection with his fans, something he places over everything else. Congrats also to Stuart Camp, the Atlantic teams in the UK and US, and everyone at Warner who contributed to Ed’s amazing success story.”

Ed Sheeran presented with multiple award plaques for the album and its singles by Warner Music Canada.

“It’s wonderful to be able to announce Ed Sheeran as the IFPI Global Recording Artist 2017,” said IFPI chief executive, Frances Moore. “The success Ed has achieved is astonishing and testament to his ability to write and perform songs that connect with a truly global fanbase.”

Drake, who received the Global Artist Award in 2016, placed second on the chart this year. His mix tape More Life broke streaming records, including most first-day streams for an album on Spotify, and most streams in a 24 hour period on Apple Music. Fellow Canadian The Weeknd placed 7th on the chart this year, climbing up from the 10th position on the chart in 2016. Both Drake and The Weeknd have now placed in the Top 10 on this chart for three consecutive years.

“This year’s Global Top 10 really is a ‘who’s who’ of popular music,” continued Moore. “Each artist has a unique impact on the music industry through the talent and energy they are channelling through their work. I congratulate them all for such a successful year.”

The full Top 10 list, which was counted down by the IFPI on Twitter, is now available below.

Top 10 Global Recording Artists 2017

1 Ed Sheeran
2 Drake
3 Taylor Swift
4 Kendrick Lamar
5 Eminem
6 Bruno Mars
7 The Weeknd
8 Imagine Dragons
9 Linkin Park
10 The Chainsmokers

Previous Winners

2016 Drake
2015 Adele
2014 Taylor Swift
2013 One Direction

 

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Top Ten (11) Things You Need to Develop a Music City

What does it take to become a Music City?  This question has occupied people on every continent over the last several years since the publication of The Mastering of a Music City by Music Canada.  Elected leaders, municipal officials, music community advocates and business leaders from a variety of towns, regions and cities, have been enticed by the idea of a vibrant music economy with its promised economic, social and cultural benefits.

Just the past weekend, over 30 cities sent teams to the Responsible Hospitality Institute’s (RHI) convening on sociable cities where Music Canada’s Executive Vice President, Amy Terrill, was asked to identify the top ten things cities need to develop a Music City.

RHI’s approach to sociable cities builds on a foundation of four key elements:  Form an Alliance, Plan for People, Assure Safety and Enhance Vibrancy with music falling into the final category.

Joining an international faculty of thought leaders, Terrill presented the following top 10 list (with a bonus number 11) for cities looking to develop as a Music City.

  1. Driver – there needs to be an individual or organization which has influence in your community that is passionately committed to this effort and is willing to resolutely move it forward. This may be a music organization or a leader in the music community; it may be a politician or the head of a city agency.  There will be many others needed to fill out the band, but there must be someone on lead vocals who can command respect and understands both music and municipal politics.
  2. Music Community engagement – it’s important the music community is fully engaged from the beginning of the process. Without their broad support, your program will likely lack authenticity and not succeed. Who will build trust in the music community and help overcome any skepticism about involvement from City Hall?  Who will organize the music community around the mission?  Who will keep the program rooted in what makes your city’s music scene unique?  Furthermore, representation from a broad cross-section of the community is critical to ensuring the program doesn’t become mired in industry politics.
  3. Champions – champions will be needed from many corners – city staff, and leaders of allied agencies like tourism, economic development, downtown business associations, chambers of commerce – people who understand what you’re trying to do and will rally support from their networks. Identify key stakeholders, as they will likely become important influencers and add legitimacy to your policy efforts.  We find impassioned music fans in all walks of life and often some of your key stakeholders will fall into this category.
  4. Political leadership – if your driver is not already in the Mayor’s office, then you will need to find a political champion. The support of a Mayor and members of City Council will be necessary when, inevitably, matters come to a vote before them.  In addition, political direction is paramount to motivating, or giving city staff the necessary reassurance, to add programs, change the ways things have always been done, or free up scarce city resources.
  5. Catalyst – it certainly helps to have a catalyst. Perhaps it’s a major music event or the opportunity to host one.  The annual JUNO Awards (Canada’s version of the Grammy’s) has been an effective catalyst for several host communities.  It might also be an election, a public policy consultation or even a crisis.  Any one of these things can provide the urgency needed to inspire people to take risks, do things differently and make the investment of time, creativity and resources that’s required.
  6. Validation – tap into best practices from other cities and the active network of advocates, policy makers, artists, municipal leaders which is leading the way in this work. Validation from other cities will make your job a lot easier and can be critical in convincing otherwise skeptical city leaders. It also enables you to identify key factors for success, and ensure that these aspects are incorporated into your own planning process.
  7. Understanding your strengths and weaknesses – measure your city against the essential elements of a Music City defined in The Mastering of a Music City as:
      1. Artists and musicians;
      2. Music ecosystem (professionals and businesses who support artists in their careers);
      3. Spaces and places (education, rehearsal, recording);
      4. Thriving music scene (venue ladder, all ages etc);
      5. Receptive and engaged audience.

You will not have 100% of all of these elements covered when you begin, but you need to know what your strengths and weaknesses are in these fundamental components.

  1. Strategy Development – ultimately you want to develop a music strategy for your community. Common strategies can be found in The Mastering of a Music City but while we can learn from other cities, there is no cookie-cutter approach.  Your strategy should be based on the unique aspects of your community.  Avoid the tendency to want to be all things to all people, or to try to do everything at once.  Begin with short term opportunities that will likely bear fruit quickly.  That will provide you with those early wins that will enable you to build momentum and amass allies. But it is also important to identify medium and long-term goals, as these enable you to design your policy and programming with the goal of sustainability.
  2. Clear roles and responsibilities – clarity about who is responsible for such things as strategy implementation and communication is essential for success. You will most likely involve volunteers on committees or advisory boards, as well as paid city staff or agency staff.  Ensure all participants are clear from the beginning about their roles.  Such things as committee terms of reference, job descriptions, and communication policies can be helpful.
  3. Succession Planning – while a successful program may benefit from the passion or expertise of individuals, in order to ensure longevity, you need to consider succession planning from the start.
  4. Patience – invariably this initiative will take longer to bear fruit than you expected. Bureaucracy can be slow to change; individuals and organizations can be heavily entrenched in doing things a certain way; and, there will be unexpected obstacles that deter you from your path.  Be patient and acknowledge each minor achievement along the way.

“It was a privilege to be part of the Sociable City Summit,” says Terrill.  “I was particularly impressed by the diversity of city representation with elected officials, city staff, downtown business leaders, law enforcement agencies, universities, venue operators, architects and other professionals coming together for conversations about the nighttime economy.”

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CARAS announces that London, Ontario, will host the 2019 JUNO Awards

The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced today that London will host the 2019 JUNO Awards, as well as all the JUNO Week events, from March 11 through March 19, 2019. JUNO Week 2019 is supported by the Province of Ontario, the City of London, Tourism London, and the 2019 Host Committee.

“We’re excited to be bringing the 2019 JUNOS to London. This city has seen incredible growth with its music scene and as such, is the perfect platform to celebrate Canadian talent,” said Allan Reid, President & CEO, CARAS/The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts. “We want to thank the Government of Ontario for their support in bringing the JUNOS back to Ontario. We look forward to supporting and showcasing the city’s diverse music scene.”

While this marks the first time that London has hosted Canada’s music awards, the Forest City is well-positioned to deliver strong results as host of the JUNO Awards, thanks to several years of steady progress on music-friendly policies and programs via the London Music Strategy. In recent years, London has hosted an incredibly successful Country Music Week and CCMA Awards; completed its first ever music census;  taken steps to modernize noise bylaws for music and dancing on outdoor patios; and hosted its first Music Career Day. In recognition of these efforts, Music Canada presented London’s Music Industry Development Officer, Cory Crossman, and Chris Campbell, Director of Culture and Entertainment Tourism at Tourism London, with our 2017 President’s Award for their incredible commitment to making London a Music City.

“We are thrilled to host the 2019 JUNO Week celebrations here in London. As one of Canada’s emerging cultural scenes we are excited to show the world how culturally rich and diverse London is,” said Chris Campbell. “The JUNO Awards is London’s opportunity to bring artists and music fans to our great city to showcase our hospitality and our growing music scene and we could not be happier to be the 2019 Host City.”

JUNO Week 2019 is expected to drive approximately $10 million in economic impact in London, a figure which is consistent with results in previous host cities. The CARAS release states that since the JUNOS began touring across Canada in 2002, the awards have driven more than $120 million in economic impact.

“Ontario is a key music hub in Canada and North America,” said Daiene Vernile, Ontario’s Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. “Our vibrant culture is driven by our exceptional talent and diversity, making Ontario a great fit for hosting the JUNO Awards in 2019. We have a thriving music industry that makes a significant contribution to Ontario’s economy by creating jobs, generating sales and building the province’s profile at an international level. I am thrilled to welcome the JUNOS to London.”

The 48th Annual JUNO Awards will be broadcast live on CBC from Budweiser Gardens, on Sunday, March 17, 2019.

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