Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 3, 2018

The Cuban connection of Jane Bunnett (pictured), Drake plays a GTA supper club, and Ariana Grande's pop culture references. Also in the headlines are Toronto jazz, Hall and Oates, School of Rock, Joe Bonamassa, classical music, Apple Music, The Weeknd, Lauryn Hill, Alessia Cara, Deadmau5, Hugh Jackman, Scottish Music Awards, Freddie Mercury, and Feargal Sharkey.

Music Biz Headlines, Dec. 3, 2018

By Kerry Doole

Canadian jazz icon helps Cuban women sidestep machismo of music scene

Ms. Bunnett has spent her career immersed in Cuban music, studying its intricacies. Based in Toronto with her husband, trumpeter Larry Cramer, she has been a crucial, cultural go-between since the 1980s, matching the best of Afro-Cuban jazz with audiences outside Cuba.  –  Guy Dixon, Globe and Mail

Drake played an "exclusive" supper club in Woodbridge

Tickets for the rapper's show at Après Noir started at $550 and topped out close to $3,000, but the performance felt loose and intimate.  –  Jonathan Dekel, NOW

Made-in-Toronto jazz I (Ernesto Cervini's Turboprop, Myriad3, Ethan Ardelli Quartet CDs reviewed)

Toronto jazz bandleaders in their mid-30s are distinguishing themselves this fall with some excellent releases. –  Peter Hum, Ottawa Citizen

Sponsorship feud strikes a sour note at Honens International Piano Competition

Clashes involved sponsors and organizers over which pianos could be used by musicians in the lucrative competition. –  Marsha Lederman, Globe and Mail


A look at all the pop culture references in Ariana Grande’s ‘Thank U, Next’ music video

The pop star's “Thank U, Next” music video premiered on YouTube Friday and Twitter users are going wild — and it’s easy to see why. The video, which is about five minutes long, is a throwback to major teen rom-coms in the early 2000s and features high-profile cameos. –  Ilya Banares, Toronto Star

The Georgia Straight musical advent calendar for Christmas 2018—Day One: Hall and Oates

Here's today's selection. This is possibly the greatest Christmas music video ever made. Or I guess you could say it's the two greatest Christmas music videos ever made.   John Lucas, Georgia Straight

Many Moonwakes 

On Phonetic Limbo the sprawling Halifax band follows its musical muse wherever it wanders.  Tara Thorne, The Coast

The 20 best Toronto concerts in December 2018

Before the year's over, there's still big hometown shows from Jessie Reyez, Shad and Lil Berete, plus variety shows, mosh-friendly holiday benefits and much more.   Staff, NOW

Review: School of Rock - we salute you!

Who would have guessed that School of Rock, Richard Linklater’s 2003 comedy about a rocker who pretends to be a substitute teacher, would eventually evolve into a lucrative multiplatform franchise? It is now in Toronto as a musical.    J. Kelly Nestruck, Globe and Mail


Joe Bonamassa's Vancouver show not tops in sound quality

The sound was awful from where we were. You could barely hear Fig’s drums, and Wynans’ organ just washed over everything. Joe’s guitar and vocals did not fare much better. It was just one big muddled mess.   Steve Newton, Georgia Straight


The music industry sells classical as soothing background music — robbing a great art of its power

If classical music really sounded as it’s described in radio ads, its composers would have fallen asleep while writing it. “You’ve found an oasis — a place where you can get away from all the craziness,” intones WCLV, a station in Lorain, Ohio, in a recent promotion. “Take some time to relax." Jennifer Gersten, Washington Post

Apple Music coming to Amazon Echo devices 

Service begins the week of December 17. Users will be able to ask Alexa to play songs, artists, albums and Apple. Users can also ask Alexa to stream Beats 1 one or other curated radio stations.  – Hypebot

Talent and touring

The Weeknd kicks off first Asia tour in Hong Kong with seamless set

The contemporary R&B hitmaker performed a polished set made up of numbers from three award-winning albums. – Louise Moon, scmp

Lauryn Hill review – a difficult re-education

Once the soul voice of a generation, Lauryn Hill has long had a reputation for being a difficult star. But could she do justice to her landmark album?   Kitty Empire, The Guardian

The growing pains of being Alessia Cara

With all the success comes criticism, and Cara got her fair share of it. And even this past week, the singer took a short break from social media after she posted the nasty comments she has received from people online.    Mesfin Fekadu, AP


The greatest showman? Hugh Jackman announces world tour

Actor to perform hits from musicals including The Greatest Showman and Les Misérables across Europe and North America. – Ben Beaumont-Thomas, The Guardian

Deadmau5 drops intensely strange music video for "Drama Free

The Canadian EDM star stays with the weird on a new track featuring Lights. –  Matthew Meadow, youredm

Variety’s 2018 Hitmakers revealed

From Camila's producer to Post's manager, we salute those who contributed in no small part to the soundtrack of the last year. – Staff, Variety


The 25 Best Live Acts of 2018

Here is a list of newcomers, veterans and legends who all blew us away and left us wanting more. They range from the fierce artistry of Janelle Monáe and the quirky stage concept of David Byrne to the beautiful mystique of U.S. Girls and the rambunctious youthfulness of Shame. –  Staff, Paste

Stars out in force for Scottish music awards

Annie Lennox, Susan Boyle and Mark Knopfler were among the big winners at a star-studded awards ceremony in Scotland. – Irish Independent

Feargal Sharkey’s mission to save our chalk streams

The former Undertones lead singer and keen fly fisherman is taking on the water companies and Environment Agency. –  Andrew Anthony, The Guardian

Rami Malek calls Freddie Mercury the Marvel character of rock stars

The Bohemian Rhapsody star states "Mercury is almost superhuman. He walks on stage with a cape and a crown, like a rock star Marvel hero." –

Five Finger Death Punch
Travis Shinn

Five Finger Death Punch

Chart Beat

Five Finger Death Punch’s ‘This Is the Way’ Scores DMX His First Mainstream Rock Airplay No. 1

The band extends its record for the longest streak of No. 1s in the chart's history, while the rapper earns a posthumous ruler.

Five Finger Death Punch extends its record streak of No. 1s on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Airplay chart, while featured artist DMX achieves a posthumous leader, as “This Is the Way” tops the June 15-dated survey.

The song is Five Finger Death Punch’s 11th straight Mainstream Rock Airplay No. 1, lengthening the longest streak of leaders in the chart’s 43-year history. The Ivan Moody-fronted band’s run began in 2018 with “Sham Pain.”

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