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Canadian Artists Feature on New Compilation Supporting Trans Rights

Ellis, Scott Hardware, Helena Deland and more contributed covers for the 44-song compilation album FADER & Friends: Vol. 1, with all proceeds donated to LGBTQ+ charities.

FADER and Friends Vol. 1 Artwork

FADER and Friends Vol. 1 Artwork

Joanna Sternberg

Canadian artists Ellis, Scott Hardware and Helena Deland feature on a new compilation album released today by The Fader. FADER & Friends: Vol. 1 is a charity release raising money for organizations promoting trans rights in Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. The album features forty-four cover songs, selected and performed by artists like Ellis and Hardware as well as American artists Wednesday, Ezra Furman, NNAMDI, and many more.

“States across the USA are passing a wide range of legislation targeting transgender youth and adults, blocking their access to procedures and medicines that affirm gender identity, and libeling the community as a threat to the physical safety of children. Politicians in the United Kingdom are following suit, and Canada is far from immune,” says a statement from Fader representatives about the compilation.


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“This poisonous rhetoric has translated into an epidemic of violence against the trans community that shows no signs of going away on its own. The war against trans people is not a metaphorical one; we need to loudly affirm which side we're on.”

FADER & Friends: Volume 1, by FADER Label


The comp brings together some of indie music’s most exciting acts performing songs that are near and dear to them, often with original takes on the source material. Model/Actriz contribute a noisy and sinister interpretation of “That’s Not My Name” by the Ting Tings. Dougie Poole offers up a laid-back country rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Joy Inside My Tears.”

Hamilton singer-songwriter Linnea Siggelkow, who performs as Ellis, brings out the fuzz for her version of The Foo Fighters’ “Everlong.”

“I have loved this song for as long as I can remember,” Siggelkow says of the cover. She highlights the significance of the compilation’s charity focus. “Supporting the trans community — and especially trans kids — is so, so important, especially as our government continuously fails to protect them,” Siggelkow tells Billboard Canada.

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Both New Brunswick and Saskatchewan have recently implemented education policies that put trans youth at potential risk, preventing teachers from using preferred pronouns without parental consultation. Ontario Premier Doug Ford has made comments that position LGBTQ+-positive school environments as attempts to “indoctrinate” kids. Meanwhile, this fall, 1 Million March 4 Children rallies happened in cities across the country to "advocate for the elimination of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) curriculum, pronouns, gender ideology and mixed bathrooms in schools."

“It's important to stay vigilant — to keep energy, money, effort, focus and attention in abundance — where trans lives are concerned,” says Toronto musician Scott Hardware, whose version of The Style Council’s “Shout to the Top” appears on the comp.

Hardware has long addressed queer rights and experiences in his musical output. His 2016 album Mutate Repeat Infinity and the 2020 song “Survivor’s Guilt,” both explore the lasting impacts of the AIDS epidemic on queer communities.

Hardware’s version of “Shout to the Top” is both high-energy and hazy, conveying a feverish sense of perseverance. “Shout to the Top" has the power to make me happy-cry,” Hardware says of the song.

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Donations from the compilation will be split between three organizations: the Transgender Law Center, which is America’s biggest trans-led civil rights group; Mermaids, an LGBTQ+ charity in the UK focused on supporting trans youth; and Rainbow Railroad, a Canadian organization that helps at-risk queer people find safety.

Other Canadians making appearances on it include Hannah Georgas, PACKS, Ducks Ltd., and Jane Inc. Toronto art-pop outfit Bernice cover Selena’s “Dreaming Of You,” while Montreal singer-songwriter Helena Deland contributes a stark English folk song, “Newcastle.”

The album is available exclusively on Bandcamp until December.

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Arthur Fogel accepting his award at Billboard Canada Power Players
Marc Thususka

Arthur Fogel accepting his award at Billboard Canada Power Players

Business

Canadian Music A-Listers Come Out to Celebrate Billboard Canada Power Players 2024

The event at the CN Tower on Sunday, June 2, brought many of Canadian music's most influential people to celebrate an industry making waves on a global scale.

The music industry came out in full force to celebrate the first Power Players event in Canada on Sunday, June 2 high above Toronto at the CN Tower. It was a glamorous and lively night that was an early highlight of Canadian Music Week.

The event gathered the powerful executives who made Billboard Canada's Power Players list, and many other Canadian music culture makers and influential people. A packed room gathered to sip cocktails, dance to tunes by DJs DevoDLive and Manni Dogra (who spun a surprise set of Punjabi music for the audience) and chat about the global influence of the country's artists and industry members. Photographers were busy capturing all the looks on the red carpet.

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