The FYI Bulletin: March 09 , 2023

Women In Music Canada have announced the recipients of the inaugural

The FYI Bulletin: March 09 , 2023

By David Farrell

Women In Music Canada have announced the recipients of the inaugural WIMC Honours which are designed to celebrate and support innovators and creators who have had outstanding success in their field this past year. The Honours were presented at a reception at Toronto’s Opera House.
2023 Honours Recipients
Artist of the Year (presented by Amazon Music) – Charlotte Cardin
Distinguished Leader (presented by TuneCore) – Keziah Myers, ADVANCE: Canada’s Black Music Business Collective
Entrepreneur of the Year (presented by Bandzoogle) – Elise Roller, Misfit Music MGMT
Excellence in Live Music – Heather Gibson, The National Arts Centre
International Leader of the Year – Faryal Khan-Thompson, TuneCore (USA)
Organization of the Year – Ishkōdé Records / Indigenous Music Alliance
Trailblazer Award – Ryhna Thompson, Envision Management & Production
Trailblazer Award – Sandy Pandya, ArtHaus Music
2023 Honour Roll (presented by Spotify):
Ashley Bieniarz, Songsmiths
Domanique Grant
Janna Sailor, Allegra Chamber Orchestra
Mary Beth Waldram, Laughing Heart Music
Nicole Alosinac, Nicole Alosinac Luthiery
Nicole Auger, Indigenous Music Alliance
Shumaila Hemani
Sunny Chen, Sad China
Yolanda Sargeant, Sargeant X Comrade
 Read more about each of the honourees here.


The Canadian Live Music Association (CLMA) has announced that it will offer two virtual training sessions, on March 28 and 29, as part of its commitment to “fostering a healthier, safer live music community in response to harassment in Canada’s live music industry” Bystander Intervention Training and Civility & Respect in the Workplace. Details and registration can be found on the CLMA website.

– Music Publishers Canada is now accepting applications for our 2023 Women in the Studio National Accelerator. This year marks the fifth anniversary of the program. Applications will be accepted online until Wednesday, March 15, 2023, and can be submitted either by the candidate directly, or on behalf of a candidate (as long as you’ve confirmed that the candidate is interested and able to participate in all aspects of the program). Click here to apply.


– Live Nation Canada has announced the expansion of its team with new senior leadership in its Ottawa office, with Ali Shafaee named Regional VP and Alex Primeau coming on board to work closely with Shafaee as Project Manager.  

Shafaee has a 25+ year career in travel and live entertainment.  Prior to joining LNC, he co-founded DNA Live, which has grown over the last 10 years with more than 100 events per year.  In 2010, he co-founded Escapade Music Festival, which started as a single-day event in the downtown Ottawa core and has grown into one of the largest music festivals in Canada. As the new regional VP, he is tasked with helping to grow the events business in Canada and spearheading projects planned for the nation’s capital.

Primeau has been connected to the live entertainment space for the last 15 years as a promoter. He will continue to play a  role in the programming and production of events and festivals.

Jason Klein, a former partner in Taylor Klein Oballa LLP, has been named CEO of Anthem Entertainment following six years as GM and SVP of Legal & Business Affairs with the IP conglomerate. He succeeds Helen Murphy who served five years in the position after a three-year stint as EVP and CFO at WMG. Head-officed in Toronto, Anthem also has offices in Nashville, NY, LA and London with a head count of approximately 200.


- The Warner Music Group / Blavatnik Family Foundation Social Justice Fund has announced additional grant recipients in the U.S. and Canada through its SJF Repertoire Fund, a ten-year $10M initiative that allows WMG employees in participating regions to nominate local organizations for grants of up to $15K. This new set of grantees includes 51 organizations based in 14 states and three Canadian provinces and furthers the Fund’s mission of advancing racial equity in education, arts and culture, and criminal justice reform.  Among the Canadian recipient orgs is Advance, Canada’s Black music business collective. More about the fund and the Canadian recipients can be found here.


– Author, musician, rover and star legal beagle Sander Shalinsky has been named legal advisor and professional counsel to Dominique Zgarka’s SRG/ILS Group. Past clients include the Weeknd and Bob Ezrin.

– Canadian indie-pop act New Friends went viral with Purple Candy, the first song they recorded. With more than 5.5M streams, the quartet scattered to their respective homes during covid, recorded and released more songs, then won Slaight Music’s life-changing It’s Your Shot contest. The resulting EP, Camaro, was recorded with the $100K studio and promotion prize. Here is a tease from the EP entitled Ricochet.

299 Queen St. West is the title of a 118-minute film about MuchMusic that premieres at the South by Southwest Film Festival next week. Directed by Sean Menard (The Carter Effect), the feature doc will stream on Crave at some point later. Included in the doc about the ground-breaking pop music channel created by Moses Znaimer and John Martin are Steve Anthony, Rick Campanelli, Monika Deol, Denise Donlon, Erica Ehm, Namugenyi Kiwanuka, Sook-Yin Lee, George Stroumboulopoulos, Bill Welychka, and Michael Williams.

- There is a long list of big-name stars set to perform Live Nation’s Budweiser Stage that includes Matchbox Twenty, Janet Jackson, Zac Brown Band, Jason Aldean, Morgan Wallen, Pantera, and Robert Plant & Alison Krauss. The full schedule can be viewed here.

– After a year in the making, Birdsong and the David Martin Foundation have released First Flight 101, a collection of songs written and performed by 12 artists that include David Martin (late son to John Martin and mother Margaret Konopacki). As his mother and foundation founder states in the explainer: “Birdsong is dedicated to helping others like David find a way out of the darkness of a life with mental illness.”


Everything you need to know about the foundation can be found here.

– Following a successful first edition in 2022, CIMA’s AfterParty is back and heading to Edmonton to celebrate the triumphs of the Canadian Independent Music sector on March 11 and staged at the Pendennis Building.  Cadence Weapon takes centre stage with The Barkells backing the rapper..

– We rang the alarm earlier about stifling US work visa hikes. Now MMF and FAC in the UK have released evidence that shows 70% of their members believe the increases mean they can no longer afford to tour in the market.

– Bernie Finkelstein tells the column that longstanding client Bruce Cockburn has a new album (Linus/True North) set for release May 11, entitled O Sun O Moon. A teaser track, Us All, can be streamed here. Separately, Finkelstein has been pushing along a doc entitled Atomic Reaction that delves into Canada’s connection to the Manhattan Project and the invention of the atomic bomb. In an email, he reports that “my feature-length documentary, Atomic Reaction, that we're producing for CBC Doc Channel is about 2/3 thirds finished and I'm liking it.”  The doc score is composed by Jonathan Goldsmith.


– Julian Taylor has teamed up with Greg Nisbet to syndicate his Jukebox radio show. The 3-hour program is a co-production between Julian Taylor, First Peoples Radio, and Nisbet’s RadioMogul media company. The music mix is eclectic, with each episode featuring music from many genres, about 70% of which is music from BIPOC artists. The show airs on community, indigenous and campus radio stations, about 50 frequencies both in Canada and abroad.

 – The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) announced today The Juno Awards are returning to Atlantic Canada, making their second visit to Halifax in March 2024. The main event takes place on Sunday the 24th.

In related news, Choclair, DJ Mel Boogie, Dream Warriors, Haviah Mighty, Kardinal Offishall, Maestro Fresh Wes, Michie Mee and TOBi have been named to appear on this year’s March 13 Juno show.

– Universal Music Group Nashville is teaming up with Universal Music Canada on country newcomer Josh Ross. Ross, a Waterdown, ON native, is already an established hitmaker in his home country with back-to-back Top 5 singles on Canadian country radio. Now turning heads in Nashville, Ross was recently named one of Spotify’s Hot Country Artists To Watch, has shared the bill with Bailey Zimmerman, and will join Nickelback and Brantley Gilbert on a North American tour this year.

– Leonard Cohen’s children and heirs, Lorca and Adam Cohen have accused the late musician’s former manager Robert Kory and his attorney of forging a false version of Cohen’s trust, according to the filing obtained by TheWrap.

Sakamoto Agency has signed Alberta-based artist Kyle McKearney to the national roster with president Paul Biro named as the responsible agent. A break-out artist of 2022, McKearney earned two Western Canadian Music Award nominations, was named a SiriusXM Top of the Country semi-finalist, placed 2nd in Alberta Music’s Project Wild, and received a CCMA award nomination for Alternative Country Album of the Year for his debut solo album Down-Home.

– Bryan Adams is named to open the 2500-seat Pickering Casino Resort arena on April 26. He’s currently featured with Tenille Townes on her new single, The Thing That Wrecks You. Adams directed the video shown below.

– This year’s Jim Beam INDIES awards take place June 8 at History in Toronto with Charlotte Cardin headlining the event. Regular tickets, taxes in, are $50.

– Here is the third HBO teaser for The Idol that’s led by the Weeknd. No date has been set for the series to debut on home screens but will be screening at the Cannes Film Festival in May.

– ASCAP has released its 2022 Annual Report. Revenue surpassed US$1.5B for the first time and collections totalled $1.522B, an increase of $187M or 14% over the previous year.

The Beaches performing at Billboard Canada's Women in Music Launch on June 5, 2024
Marc Thususka Photography

The Beaches performing at Billboard Canada's Women in Music Launch on June 5, 2024


The Beaches, Charlotte Cardin, Allison Russell Make the 2024 Polaris Music Prize Long List

The 40-album long list for the Polaris Prize, which awards $50,000 to the best Canadian record of the year features up-and-comers like punk group NOBRO and producer Bambii, plus rapper TOBi, and legends like Quebec group Karkwa and previous Heritage Prize winner Beverly Glenn-Copeland.

Some of the country's biggest breakthrough artists are in contention for the prestigious Polaris Music Prize.

The 40-album long list was revealed today (June 11) at Sonic Boom record store in downtown Toronto. It features some of the buzziest names in Canadian music, from The Beaches — who were recently awarded Billboard Canada Women in Music's inaugural Group of the Year award — to Grammy-winner Allison Russell, to Canadian Hot 100 charting acts like Charlotte Cardin and Talk, to underground mainstays like Cindy Lee, who had an organic breakthrough this year with Diamond Jubilee.

keep readingShow less