Music Biz Headlines, Aug. 16, 2021

The return of metal queen Lee Aaron (pictured), Canadians crafting K-pop hits, and Arkells rock out in Toronto. Also in the headlines are Dr. Disc, Sled Island, John Lennon, VSO, Ishkōdé Records, Massey Hall, AEG, New Romantics, Garth Brooks, Lorde, Britney Spears, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughan, the Beatles, Dana Gillespie, Toots Hibbert, and Aretha.

Music Biz Headlines, Aug. 16, 2021

By Kerry Doole

Canada’s ‘Metal Queen,’ Lee Aaron has a new album and an appreciation for the ‘sisterhood’ of rock ’n’ roll

“She holds a power, like no other man.” If those words don’t ring a bell, they’re from the 1984 song “Metal Queen” by Canadian rocker Lee Aaron. – Gilles LeBlanc, Toronto Star

5 Canadians who are helping craft K-pop's biggest hits

As the genre continues to grow worldwide so does its roster of songwriters and producers. – Melody Lau, CBC Music ·

How did we get from vinyl to streaming? Owner of iconic Hamilton record store looks back

The owner of 30-year-old Dr. Disc has lived through big changes in Hamilton's music scene. – Sebastian Leck, CBC News

Arkells are ready to take Budweiser Stage for their emotional return to performing live

All the Hamilton rock faves ask is that you sing, dance and treat each other well. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

Arkells light up Toronto’s Budweiser Stage with a defiant, revue-style performance in the city’s return to large-scale live music

It was a firm extended middle finger to the pandemic and a defiant celebration. – Nick Krewen, , Toronto Star


Three local albums to bump on Acadian Day

he annual celebration of Acadian culture, Festival Quinzou (AKA National Acadian Day) has been keeping the fun going since 1881—even if the Canadian government only recognized it as an official holiday in 2003. Tip your hat to the area's rich francophone community by checking out these album by local artists. – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

Sled Island Rock Lotto offers nine randomly assembled 'supergroups' from across Canada

On the surface, the Sled Island Rock Lotto album seems an idea that might work better in theory than practise. Take 45 artists from across Canada and have them form nine separate indie-rock supergroups. With its members all working remotely in their respective cities, have each band write and record a song. Release the results as an album under the Sled Island banner. – Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald

Canadian documentary to revisit forgotten 1969 Toronto music fest with John Lennon

Work is reportedly under way on a doc that'll explore the event some say pushed Lennon into leaving the Beatles. – David Friend, CP

Winter-in-Summer delivers a hill full of indie bands

Ten local bands, five nights of music, two full weekends of performances, one new festival on the hill — welcome to Winter-in-Summer. Altameda, Laur Elle, Scenic Route to Alaska and Josh Sahunta will round out the second weekend on Sept. 17 and 18. – Justin Bell, Edmonton Journal


The VSO returns to the Orpheum on September 18

Vancouver classical music fans need to keep September 18 open. That's when Maestro Otto Tausk and the full Vancouver Symphony Orchestra will take music lovers on an emotional journey of return to the historic Orpheum Theatre. – Steve Newton, Georgia Straight

A book about Massey Hall is coming out in November

Author David McPherson will look back at the 127-year-old venue's musical history. – Kevin Ritchie, NOW

Ishkōdé Records is Indigenous-owned, women-led and ready to change the game

Co-founders ShoShona Kish and Amanda Rheaume are hoping to break barriers while also being 'good aunties'. – Holly Gordon, CBC Music

Vines Art Festival: Janelle Reid and Mad Riddim’s music heals, empowers, and liberates

As the sun approached the horizon on opening night of the 2021 Vines Art Festival on August 9, audience members, with bannock and other refreshments in hand, gathered around the natural stage at Second Beach for a riveting final performance of the evening. – Alina Blackett, Georgia Straight


Coachella, Stagecoach and other festivals will require vaccinations as part of new AEG mandate

In one of the strongest statements yet by a major player in support of a pro-vaccination policy in the live music industry, AEG Presents, the second-largest live music company in the country, has announced that proof of vaccination will be required for ticketholders and crew at all the venues it owns or operates in the US — including festivals like Coachella, Stagecoach and Day N Vegas as well as its theaters and clubs. – Chris Willman, Variety


74,000 people attend Garth Brooks concert in Kansas City, only 35 get on-site vaccinations

Elvis helped America eradicate polio by getting vaccinated in public. Garth Brooks could only convince 35 Kansas City concert attendees to get the Covid vaccine. –  Ashley King, DMN

Over 200 Lollapalooza attendees got Covid-19 — but it wasn't a super-streader event, top doc says

"We would have seen a surge if we were going to see a surge, at this point," Chicago Dept. of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said. – Block Club

 Germany's recorded music industry generated over $1bn in H1 2021

Germany generated €903.8M (approximately $1.094B) on a retail basis in the first six months of this year from physical music sales and streaming, an increase of 12.4% year-over-year. That’s according to new results published by the German Music Industry Association (BVMI) in its H1 2021 report. – Murray Stassen, MBW


Aaliyah, Britney, and the commodification of an artist’s legacy

In 2021, amid contentious battles over master recordings and conservatorships, fans can no longer avoid the ugly truth that pop stars don’t control their artistry. –  Hazel Cills, Pitchfork

Tony Bennett retires from performing

“There won’t be any additional concerts,” his son and manager Danny said in a new interview with Variety. – Madison Bloom, Pitchfork

Bowie, bed-hopping and the blues: the wild times of Dana Gillespie

She tamed Keith Moon, got laughed into bed by Bob Dylan and went to a young David Bowie’s house for tuna sandwiches – but the blues singer’s 72 albums are what really define her. – Garth Cartwright, The Guardian

The best of Sarah Vaughan: Five essential albums

The legendary Sarah Vaughan left an indelible mark on the world of jazz. She was a defining figure in the genre with a voice that was said to happen only once in a lifetime. These five albums are among the very best of ‘the Divine One.’ – Raina Hersh, JazzFM

The 10 Best New Songs

Great songs, like the 10 we’ve highlighted below, land somewhere deep inside our brains, scratching an itch we couldn’t locate if we tried. This particularly exciting release week saw the return of Big Thief plus new work by Indigo De Souza and  Magdalena Bay. – Paste - staff

Britney Spears’s father ‘agrees to step down’ from controversial conservatorship

Pop star’s new lawyer welcomes news, saying it is ‘vindication’ for his client. – Irish Times

The Beatles expanded Let It Be/Get Back release is due in October

It looks like the expanded edition of The Beatles ‘Let It Be’ will be released on October, possibly on 15 October, the same day the ‘Get Back’ book is being released. – Paul Cashmere, Noise11

Respect: Aretha explained... Just a little bit

Respect, the new movie starring Jennifer Hudson as the late soul singer Aretha Franklin, proves once again that musical biopics have become the tribute mediocrity pays to talent. – Liam Lacey, Original-Cin

Lorde hits back at “insulting” and “sexist” idea that she’s part of Jack Antonoff’s “stable”

"I haven’t made a Jack Antonoff record. I’ve made a Lorde record." – Will Richards, NME


Tribute concert for Toots spiked by cease-and-desist letter

Al Hardwicke Kassi, the booking agent who has represented Toots and the Maytals in the United Kingdom for the last 20 years, insists that it was a cease-and-desist letter from the estate of the late Maytals frontman, and not Covid,  that has resulted in the postponement of the tribute concert originally set for Sept. 4 at the iconic Roundhouse in London. – The Gleaner.

Spandau Ballet, the Blitz kids and the birth of the New Romantics

A movement that went on to dominate the charts and fashion worldwide grew out of a small club scene in London in the early 80s. One insider recalls how Steve Strange and Spandau Ballet revitalised the UK music scene. – David Johnson, The Guardian

Billboard Japan


Music News

Japan’s MILLENNIUM PARADE Coming to Toronto on 2024 Global Tour: See the Schedule

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek on Nov. 2 in Mexico City.

MILLENNIUM PARADE is set to launch its first-ever global tour called the WHO AND HOW TOUR 2024 in November, traveling to nine cities around the world for 10 shows.

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek in Mexico City, then hit Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Berlin, Paris, London, Utrecht, and Tokyo. The Tokyo shows will take place at Tokyo Garden Theater on Dec. 19 and 20. The tour will mark the first time in three years that the band performs live.

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