Music Biz Headlines, July 20, 2023

Music Biz Headlines, July 20, 2023

By Kerry Doole

Sarah McLachlan headlined Courtenay's musicfest this weekend

Two-time Grammy Award winner Sarah McLachlan closed the Vancouver Island Music Festival’s main stage on Friday, a signifigant coup for the non-profit fest. – Mike Devlin, Times-Colonist

What to know about the 10 shortlisted Polaris nominees

The 10 contending artists for this year’s Polaris Music Prize include one previous winner, four former bridesmaids, and five first-timers to the shortlist. Though the nominees mostly fall under the general heading of college-radio darlings, their styles range from politically minded Indigenous rap to psychedelic Americana to harrowing club music expressions to atmospheric singer-songwriter musings. – Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

Andrea England serves her community with Four Chords and The Truth.

In addition to working as a singer-songwriter, a song lyrics instructor at Seneca College, and at the CMRRA), Andrea England serves the Canadian music community as founder, host, and curator of the songwriter series Four Chords and The Truth. The quarterly song-circle series began at the Dakota Tavern in downtown Toronto, in 2015 and now sells out before a lineup is announced.  – Nancy Dutra, Words & Music


Ian Blurton says Change of Heart have finished a new album

The co-founder shares that "Everyone who was ever involved with COH are included.– Exclaim!

Carly Rae Jepsen to release new album on the same day she’s playing in Vancouver

Canadian singer-songwriter Carly Rae Jepsen has just announced that her new album The Loveliest Time will be out on July 28—the same day she’s opening for indie rock supergroup boygenius at a sold-out show at the PNE Amphitheatre. – Bridget Stringer-Holden, Georgia Straight

Concertgoers in Toronto dismayed after Live Nation buys beloved live music venue

The Opera House, a long-running live music venue in a historic Toronto building, has just been sold, and though the new owners are thrilled to add the theatre to its "portfolio," it doesn't seem that a single member of the public is pleased with the acquisition. – Blog TO

Canadian record labels are worried about new rules that may be placed on streaming with Bill C-11. Hear them out.

If you’ve been following the various tech-related legislation winding its way through the Canadian federal government, you’ll know about Bill C-11, also known as the online streaming act. While it is now law, implementation still hasn’t happened as everyone wants to be consulted on what’s next.  –  Alan Cross, Journal of Musical Things


'Like a nuclear bomb went off': B.C. musician raced to beat Hwy 20 closure as wildfire closed in

Sean Scallion, his wife, and son were driving when they came across what the B.C. Wildfire Service described as an "aggressive" fire. Scallion, the drummer in a north Cariboo music trio called Interstellar Jays, said they left Bella Coola on B.C.'s Central Coast around 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, just an hour after finishing their performance at the Bella Coola Music Festival. – CBC/Radio-Canada

Local Natives deliver a nostalgic ode to brotherhood, plus new music from PJ Harvey and Hannah Diamond

Start your weekend with a curated playlist of new music, with fresh cuts from Local Natives, PJ Harvey, Joanna Sternberg and Hannah Diamond. – Richie Assaly, Toronto Star

Suspect released from jail following alleged death threats Vs Lana Del Rey

Last week, Canadian police arrested a man accused of making death threats against Lana Del Rey ahead of the singer-songwriter’s performance at the Festival d’été de Québec. Now, after a brief stint in jail, the individual has been released. – Digital Music News

The Wackers: A great Montreal band that deserved better

Flashback to the early 1970s to the best-loved local band of the era, one featuring the late Bob Segarini. – Bernard Perusse, Montreal Gazette

Monstercat drops second stage lineup for free Compound block party

Ain’t no party like a free block party because a free block party don’t stop.  Well, it will technically come to an end at 9 pm on August 26, but not before a stellar lineup of talent takes to the stage at Monstercat’s Compound 2023. – Chandler Walter, Georgia Straight


‘These melodies just flow out of my fingers’ — former Jacksoul member Ron Lopata on his new musical calling

Lopata recently released EP “Sketches for Piano.” And he thinks there’s a market for his “calm, serene” music. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

Ruby Singh knows the joy of getting the band back together.

He speaks to the Straight on the phone a day before taking off to Berlin for a residency at Mono Studios,and discusses an anticipated performance at this year’s Vancouver Folk Music Festival—a gig that will reunite “the full constellation” of musicians involved in the supergroup Ruby Singh and the Future Ancestors. – Chandler Walter, Georgia Straight


Hamilton busker meets Howie Mandel outside Niagara casino. The rest is “Canada’s Got Talent” history

Any musician is going to have a hard time topping Meave’s story of being found. – Scott Radley, Hamilton Spectator 

The struggle was real: Waterloo Region's Danny Michel releases first album in 5 years

‘Ghost Town’ explores ‘dead zone’ of pandemic. –  Bill Jackson, Waterloo Chronicle


Global music streams up 30.8%, and 40% of U.S. listeners enjoy non-Anglophonic music, report finds

Is non-English language music the future of the music business? Perhaps. The global music industry surpassed 1 trillion streams at the fastest pace, ever, in a calendar year, Luminate’s 2023 Midyear Report has found. The number was reached in three months, a full month faster than 2022. Global streams are also up 30.8% from last year. – Maria Sherman, AP

Hollywood grinds to a halt on first full day of joint actors’ and writers’ strikes

Sag-Aftra action sees actors and writers picketing together outside studios and pauses production and promotion of movies. – Adrian Horton, The Guardian

HYBE share price bounces 3% after Jungkook breaks a Spotify record

When HYBE Corporation confirmed in October last year that BTS were to take a break from making music together to honor their military obligations, the company asked its shareholders not to worry. The smash new hit from Junjkook is a major boost for the company. – Tim Ingham, MBW

TikTok and Warner ink 'first of its kind' multi-year licensing deal

On July 18, Kyncl, alongside TikTok CEO, Shou Zi Chew, made a major joint announcement that hints at a new day for dealings between major music companies and the ByteDance-owned app: A fresh, multi-year licensing agreement between WMG and TikTok that both sides dub a "first of its kind" pact. – MBW

Spotify reveals new categories to segment artists’ listeners

As part of the recent changes to its analytics that saw pre-2021 song data wiped from its servers, Spotify promised new fan segmentation features. Now it has unveiled what those are, living within a new ‘Segments’ tab in Spotify for Artists. – Music Ally 

Aretha Franklin's sons clash over her wishes in trial over dual wills

Two sons of late singer Aretha Franklin gave opposing opinions in an unusual trial to determine if a handwritten document found in couch cushions will lead her estate.–  Ed White, AP

Alicia Keys, immaculate from the first note, captivates Scotiabank crowd

Keys, a 15-time Grammy winner, sang hits such as “Fallin’” and “Girl On Fire” as well as covers by Prince and The Eurythmics.  – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star 


Beyoncé and me: How I ended up on stage with Queen Bey herself

“Beyoncé has requested you,” the crew member told me minutes before I was escorted to the VIP booth, a raised platform on the stage with Queen Bey herself. I didn’t believe it then; I’m not sure if I ever will. How did this happen? – Temur Durrani, Globe and Mail

Maggie Rogers feels the joy of bringing people together as she headlines Sommo Festival

During the depths of the pandemic, Maggie Rogers was writing her second studio album, Surrender, with her mouth watering, thinking about playing festivals. This summer, the American singer-songwriter will be living out that fantasy on Prince Edward Island, at Sommo Festival in Cavendish. – Caora McKenna, The Globe and Mail

‘This is so creepy!’: the Taylor Swift vinyl haunted by Britain’s weirdest musicians

Certain vinyl copies of Swift’s Speak Now have a bizarre glitch: they’re playing a obscure British electronica compilation. We delve into this ‘Bermuda Triangle of weirdness.’ – The Guardian

Pitchfork Music Festival 2023: The must-see musicians and all the entry details

In a summer and city filled with music festivals, Pitchfork Music Festival, taking place at Union Park on July 21-23, continues to set itself apart by curating an eclectic set of performers across a variety of music genres. This year is no exception.–  Chicago Tribune

The Roxy is turning 50. Explore the iconic L.A. club’s history, from Neil Young to ‘Rocky Horror.’ 

Beloved nightclubs come and go, but the Roxy has few peers in L.A. or elsewhere, both a hallowed venue where rock gods minted their legends and a still-thriving venue at the heart of the city’s musical nightlife. – Steve Appleford, LA Times


Vanessa Heins


Music News

Alexisonfire Are Releasing a Live Album from Their Hometown Born & Raised Festival

The St. Catharines, Ontario band are bringing the festival back this summer, and they'll release LIVE Born & Raised 2022, St Catharines ON just in time for fans to hear it first.

After a two year hiatus, Alexisonfire are resurrecting their hometown festival Born & Raised on July 5 and 6 at Montebello Park in St. Catharines, Ontario. Just in time, they're releasing a live album from the last time they held the festival, in 2022.

The album, LIVE Born & Raised 2022, St Catharines ON, captures their career-spanning set from the inaugural edition of the festival. In front of their hometown fans, they played songs from throughout their more-than-two-decades long career.

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