Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 2, 2019

Royal Wood (pictured) fulfils a dream, James Bryan McCollum farewells Prozzak, and Moist reflects upon 25 years. Others in the headlines include Drake, Leonard Cohen, Stars, Kobalt, Burton Cummings, Christina Martin, Metric, Gowan, bundling, valuable vinyl, Rihanna, Michael Jackson, Eric Carmen, Melanie C, Clive Davis, and Navajo country.

Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 2, 2019

By FYI Staff

First James Bryan McCollum quit Toronto. Now he’s quitting Prozzäk

Hamiltonians of a certain late-millennial vintage could be forgiven for not recognizing James Bryan McCollum biking past them on the rail trail. Now based in that city, the former Philosopher King is farewelling his hit pop duo. – Katrina Clarke, Hamilton Spectator 

The uncanny parallels between Drake and Leonard Cohen

Drake is king of Toronto; Cohen is monarch of Montreal. We look at how the two intersect. – Erin MacLeod, CBC Music

Moist’s David Usher, Mark Makoway look back on band’s 25th anniversary

We sat down with the band to chat about their legacy, what it feels like looking back and how they feel playing their hits now, as older gents. – Adam Wallis, Global News


Burton Cummings: the Canadian Man behind "American Woman"

‘Stars: Together’ lets Canadian indie-rock survivors assess the damage in intriguing fashion

“Live through this, and you won't look back.” Stars — the Montreal-based indie-rock group comprised of frontpeople Amy Millan and Torquil Campbell, bassist Evan Cranley, keyboardist Christopher Seligman, drummer Patrick McGee and guitarist Chris McCarron — is celebrating 20 years of music-making, touring, fighting, loving, and reconciling this year. – Carly Maga, The Star

Christina Martin knows it’s a Wonderful Lie 

The singer-songwriter’s new record tackles sticky subject matter with stripped-down songs. – Jade Nauss, The Coast

A razor-focused Close Talker looks to the future with How Do We Stay Here?

Since forming in 2012, the Saskatoon band has been gushed over by heavy-hitting outlets like NPR, Interview, Billboard, Spin, and Q. That’s helped build a base on both sides of the border. – Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight 

Best of November playlist for the near-perfect holidays

Sarah Harmer is back, Jessie Reyez covers a classic, Kathleen Edwards is dreading the holidays and the late Leonard Cohen has made it to the dark side of the moon. Songs from those Canadian artists and five others make up The Globe and Mail’s best-of-November playlist. – Brad Wheeler

His father’s death taught him to stop trying so hard. Now Royal Wood is reaping the rewards.

His father Woodroe won’t be there when Wood, now 40, fulfils a lifelong dream Tuesday of headlining his own show at Roy Thomson Hall — but he played a part in getting Wood there. –  NickKrewen, The Star

Review: Metric stripped their sound down at "art maze" the Funhouse

Playing as an acoustic duo for 200 fans, Emily Haines and Jimmy Shaw hearkened back to their origins and reminded us of the rock-solid bones beneath their stadium-sized songs. – Tabassum Siddiqui, NOW


‘Figaro’s Wedding,’ tweaking gender again and getting audience in on the fun

Toronto’s Against the Grain Theatre often takes the electricity of seeing live theatre a step further by putting the audience in the middle of the action. – John Terauds,The Star

Toiling Midgets: more local than you ever knew

I find myself being schooled by people who do remember Toiling Midgets founder, Craig Grey: a who’s who of first-generation Vancouver punks.  Allan MacInnis, Georgia Straight 

Gowan of Styx talks 40-plus years of rock, and what’s to come for the legendary band

Equipped with six fiercely talented band members — including three from the classic lineup — Styx is considered one of the greatest live acts of all time. Among that all-star lineup is Scottish-born, Scarborough, Ont.-raised Lawrence Gowan, known by many Canadians simply as Gowan. – Adam Wallis, Global News


Want an album with that T-Shirt?

Billboard tightens rules on bundling music and merchandise as many in industry question legitimacy of bundled album sales counting toward ranking on the charts. – Anne Steele, WSJ

Music Streaming Market 2019: Rising trends, demand and business outlook

The report titled "Music Streaming Market" provides an in-depth analysis of different attributes of industries such as trends, policies, and clients operating in several regions. The qualitative and quantitative analysis techniques have been used by analysts to provide accurate and applicable data to the readers, business owners and industry experts. – Marketwatch


What Japan's love of nostalgia says about the country's economy

Despite being thought of as being at forefront of cutting-edge technology, Japan maintains a quiet relationship with all things analogue, from old cameras to cassettes and vinyl. –  Yuko Komura, BBC

40 of the most valuable vinyl records that could be in your collection 

Brought back from the verge of extinction, vinyl record sales are booming due to a renewed interest among younger generations. As a general rule, the rarer the record, the more valuable it is — so, who knows? You may have some treasure buried in your garage. – James Regan, Reference

Kobalt COO Avid Larizadeh Duggan exits firm after five-year association

Kobalt’s Chief Operating Officer has left the company, MBW has confirmed. Her last day was Nov. 28. The respected tech entrepreneur – a non-exec director on the board of Barclays Bank UK PLC – has been associated with Kobalt for the best part of five years. – Tim Ingham, MBW


Rihanna killed Victoria’s Secrets’ fashion show business

Victoria’s Secrets’ antiquated lingerie show of yesterday has finally decided to close up shop, and Rihanna’s successful Savage x Fenty brand surely helped deal the final blow. – Kori Hale, Forbes

Johnny Depp is producing an unconventional musical about Michael Jackson

The 56-year-old actor is set to produce For the Love of a Glove: An Unauthorized Musical Fable About the Life of Michael Jackson,. The show takes a “look into the strange forces that shaped Michael and the scandals that bedevilled his reputation” as narrated by a talking, singing glove. – Just Jared

Raspberries for Eric Carmen as he reveals himself as a major Trump supporter

Who knew? Buried deep in Ohio, Donald Trump has a former rock star as a major supporter. Eric Carmen, lead singer of the Raspberries in the 1970s, has outed himself as a Trump backer. He loves his president. – Roger Friedman, Showbiz 411

Melanie C: 'I've had an incredible career. It's time I accepted myself'

It’s 20 years since Spice Girl Melanie Chisholm went solo, but, she says, it has taken until 2019 – ironically, the year of the band’s reunion tour – for her to really find herself. – Laura Snapes, Guardian

Clive Davis likely to testify in Aretha Franklin estate dispute

Franklin’s son Kecalf Franklin wants the courts to remove the personal representative of his mother’s estate, Sabrina Owens. Owens believes Davis will be able to testify on Aretha’s business matters and music royalties. – euroweb

Navajo country music pays tribute to ‘Indian cowboys’ and outlaw legends

Dozens of bands vie for shows on the Navajo country music circuit each week, reflecting how one of the largest tribes in the United States is shattering stereotypes of “cowboys and Indians.” –  Simon Romero, The New York Times

Zimbabwe public broadcaster paying out $600K in owed music royalties

The national Broadcaster will soon pay local artists over $600,000 in outstanding royalties, Sunday Mail reports. This was revealed by Broadcasting Minister Monica Mutsvangwa when she was launching Arts, Culture and Heritage Policy in Bulawayo. – The Sunday Mail


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.

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