Music Biz Headlines, Feb. 28, 2022

The return of Fefe Dobson (pictured), Dallas Good is remembered, and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin replaces Putin supporter Valery Gergiev. Others in the headlines include Leonard Cohen, Kanye West, Basia Bulat, Oscar Peterson, Kathleen Edwards, Mitchell Marcus, DijahSB, Sham Family, BlackRock, Ukrainian artists, Francis Ford Coppola, James Brown, movie scoring, and David Bowie.

Music Biz Headlines, Feb. 28, 2022

By Kerry Doole

Singer-guitarist Dallas Good created powerful cosmic-country rock with the Sadies

While the late Mr. Good was one-fourth of the Sadies’ long-running membership, he seemed to occupy the dominant portion of the band’s soul. Easily cool and possessing a baritone voice, he cast a distinguishable, timeless silhouette while performing. – Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

Fefe Dobson is starting over, but still ‘kicking doors down’

The Canadian singer-songwriter was a 2000s phenom… then her career twisted and turned around unexpected roadblocks. Now, Dobson is "letting it all hang out" with fresh music for a new generation. – Bradley Stern, Billboard

The sound of Toronto in 2022: 20 artists to watch

As the city's music scene opens up and heats up, these Toronto bands and musicians are bursting out of the gate. – Richard Trapunski, NOW


Quebec conductor steps in after Putin supporter booted last-minute from Carnegie Hall

Montreal-born maestro Yannick Nézet-Séguin agreed to a last-minute substitution at New York's Carnegie Hall on the weekend, taking over after a Putin-supporting conductor was turfed. Valery Gergiev had been scheduled to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra for three nights, Friday through Sunday. – CTV News

New Leonard Cohen book collects unpublished short novel, stories from early in his career

When it comes to posthumous releases, Leonard Cohen is our man. McClelland & Stewart has announced the forthcoming publication of A Ballet of Lepers: A Novel and Stories. “Leonard said before his death that his life’s true masterwork was his archive, which he kept meticulously for the benefit of fans and scholars one day to discover,” said lawyer Robert Kory, the overseer of Cohen-related product. – Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

Singer-songwriter Basia Bulat is back with chamber folk new album ‘The Garden’

Toronto-born, Montreal-based one-time Polaris Music Prize finalist used source material from her first five studio albums for album out Feb. 25. – Nick Krewen, The Star

Oscar Peterson: Black + White nominated for six Canadian Screen Awards

Director Barry Avrich’s documentary Oscar Peterson: Black + White is nominated for six Canadian Screen Awards. It’s the most nominations for any documentary this year. – Adam Feibel, JazzFM

Kathleen Edwards quits her Quitters cafe

The 43-year-old singer-songwriter said she actually made the decision to return to music in 2018, but was able to balance her retail operation with the demands of the music industry until the pandemic hit. – Lynn Saxberg, Ottawa Citizen


Jazz at Lincoln Center: Songs We Love brings some of NYC's finest musicians to Calgary

For the first time, Songs We Love is hitting the road and its first stop is Jack Singer Concert Hall on March 3, where Calgarians can get a taste of New York jazz as the nine-piece ensemble runs through songs made popular by Ma Rainey, Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland and Sara Vaughan and others who defined the genre from 1920 to the early 1960s. – Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald

Musical Stage Company founder Mitchell Marcus leaving for a life on the runway with Northcrest Developments

Mitchell Marcus is leaving the theatre company he founded to plan cultural programming at the new Downsview airport development. As an artistic director and chief executive officer at Musical Stage Company, Mitchell Marcus has helped musical theatre soar to new heights in Toronto over the past 18 years. – JK Nestruck, Globe and Mail

Drake offers to save Randy's Take Out after beloved Toronto patty shop announces it is closing

The superstar made the offer when an iconic Toronto Jamaican patty shop after it announced it would be shuttering. – CP24 News

Rapper DijahSB celebrates Toronto while also unmasking its shortcomings on new EP

The Star spoke to DijahSB just ahead of them releasing “2022 the EP” about their career right now, loving the process and how Pokemon is art. – Demar Grant, Toronto Star

When Joni Mitchell talks, the songwriting neuroscientist Daniel Levitin listens

The melodious neuroscientist and struggling songwriter Daniel Levitin was speaking to his friend Joni Mitchell and she had some constructive criticism for him.  What did Levitin, the best-selling author of This is Your Brain on Music, do? He listened to Mitchell. When Shakespeare offers to help you write a sonnet, best not to protest too much. – Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail


Local band Sham Family is poised to have a very, very good year

After destroying Lee’s Palace with their deconstructionist noise-rock tangle, Sham Family plays their third real show as part of the “Class of 2022” bill at the Monarch Tavern Feb. 26. – Ben Rayner, Toronto Star

Calgary's Amy Bishop confronts trauma with defiance, truth and a powerful voice on seventh solo album

Bishop confronts trauma with defiance, truth and a powerful voice on new album Back to video. It referred to the sexual abuse she suffered as a child growing up in Calgary. The singer-songwriter had told very few people about it and had certainly never written about it in a song before. – Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald



BlackRock teams with Warner to launch $750m music-buying fund, via Influence Media Partners

Another week, another big-money acquisitive fund in music emerges. Financial giant BlackRock has co-invested with Warner Music Group in a new $750 fund to acquire stakes in music copyrights. According to the WSJ, this fund is being launched in partnership with Influence Media Partners, the US-based company that has previously bought into rights from songwriters such as Julia Michaels and Ali Tamposi. – MBW

Private equity and the music industry: An unlikely love story

All investors are looking into new directions to increase their returns. The rise of one asset class has caught a lot of market attention lately. With the advent of streaming, music royalties have a similar payoff structure to bonds. We chose to take a deeper dive into the music industry and explored the opportunities and risks of this alternative asset class. – BSIC 

Why are major music companies using other people's money to buy copyrights?

Why are these major music companies not entirely using their own funds to make these acquisitions?  Tim Ingham suggests that it could be because they’re hedging their bets against threats to the potential future growth of the music industry. – MBW

Ukrainian artists on the Russian crisis: "Now is the time to push for change"

Bloom Twins and Khrystyna Soloviy talk to NME about the ongoing conflict with Russia and what the rest of the world can do: "Ukraine cannot be erased". – Andrew Trendell, NME

Carnegie Hall cancels appearances by pro-Putin musicians

As war in Ukraine rages, activists put pressure on artists to denounce the invasion or face cancellation-. –The Washington Post

Ye: Donda 2 review – desultory soundtrack for a social media circus

Flashes of genius from the artist formerly known as Kanye West are lost amid unrefined production and tedious barbs at his estranged wife. 2 out of 5 stars. – Alexis Petridis, The Guardian


Francis Ford Coppola says there are too many award shows

'I Liked It When It Was Just the Oscars', says the 'Godfather' director says he preferred when the Oscars were 'more intimate' and not a 'big razzle-dazzle production.' – Variety

Questlove, Black Thought, Mick Jagger to produce James Brown four-part docuseries

The show is set to air in 2023, in honor of what would have been the soul musician's 90th birthday. – PhillyVoice

We've been thinking about Lionel Richie all wrong

He’s always been both awkward and sophisticated, and his ability — via voice, composition, mood, a spiritual reverence for his own talent — still personifies a seductive mix of vulnerability and courage. – LA Times

10 new albums to listen to today

Featuring SASAMI, Gang of Youths, King Hannah and more. –  Paste Staff

“The minions do the actual writing”: The ugly truth of how movie scores are made

The streaming revolution is changing the way film composers get paid and exposing the flaws of a system where big names farm their scores out to uncredited “ghost composers.” Now, the artists actually writing the music are demanding recognition—and a fair share of the profits. – Vanity Fair

David Bowie's son had the perfect response after Russia Today quoted his father

Quoting tweeting RT, Jones simply replied: "Wrong song," with a Ukrainian flag emoji and two heart emojis, along with an image of some poignant lyrics from another famous Bowie song Heroes (1977). – Indy100

Soleil Launière
Jaime Antonio Luna Quezada

Soleil Launière


Soleil Launière wins the Francouvertes: “It means a lot to me as an Indigenous artist”

Meet the Innu artist, big winner of the 2024 edition of the showcase-competition, who is the first Indigenous artist to win since the Quebec music competition started allowing submissions in Indigenous languages.

Soleil Launière has won the 28th edition of Francouvertes, becoming the first Indigenous artist to win the Quebec-based music competition.

The multidisciplinary Innu artist from Mashteuiatsh, Quebec won the grand final of the musical showcase on Monday, May 13. The Montreal-based artist edged out rapper Sensei H and maximalist rock singer-songwriter Loïc Lafrance.

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