Music Biz Headlines, May 27, 2021

Accolades galore as Bob Dylan (pictured) turns 80, Greg Keelor explores heartbreak on a new album, and The Tragically Hip scours the vaults. Others in the headlines include Bob D’Eith, I M U R, Gabrielle Papillon, The Beaches, Art Bergmann, Opera Atelier, Cirque du Soleil, TikTok, WaveOptics, Facebook, Sparks, Roger Daltrey, Duran Duran, PM Dawn, Jay Landers, Jackson Browne, Bob Koester, Eurovision, and Olivia Rodrigo.

Music Biz Headlines, May 27, 2021

By Kerry Doole


The Tragically Hip bandmates reflect on healing as new album of songs recorded for ‘Road Apples’ is released

The healing continues. With the release May 21 of Saskadelphia, a six-song album of previously unheard material, plus an upcoming performance at the Juno Awards on June 6 with Leslie Feist, the surviving members of the Tragically Hip say they are reconnecting again after the heartbreaking death of their iconic singer Gord Downie three and a half years ago. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

Bob D'Eith's knowledge of the music biz is helping BC artists

D'Eith is currently holding down the position of B.C. parliamentary secretary for arts and film. In this role, he's responsible for helping the province's musicians and artists—as well as music venues and arts organizations—survive the pandemic that has been bleeding them dry for over a year. He's come a long way from playing a goo-ed-up weirdo in a Rymes with Orange video when he played keyboards in that band. – Steve Newton, Georgia Straight


On Our Radar: I M U R explores the addictive quality of young love in new video 

The video, based on a past relationship of Jenny Lea, the lead vocalist, shows the addictive quality of new love and how a deep infatuation can become problematic. – Breanne Doyle Georgia Straight

‘I’m definitely an expert on my heartbreak’: Blue Rodeo’s Greg Keelor on his solo album, ‘Share the Love’

At least someone has found some comfort with this pandemic. Greg Keelor, co-founder of Blue Rodeo and solo artist in his own right, has endured aural issues for years. So, as much as he dreaded the live music shutdown mandated by Covid, it’s been a welcome respite for his hearing. He has just released a new solo record. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

East Coast artist Gabrielle Papillon releases a must-watch new video

The clip highlights the strength it takes to fight personal battles. – Alec Martin, The Coast 

For Toronto alt-rock band the Beaches, their hometown and namesake neighbourhood are always on their mind

When it comes to their music, the Beaches are never far from home. They explain how Toronto and their namesake neighbourhood influence their songwriting. – Andrea Yu, The Toronto Star

Art Bergmann's rage has seasoned beautifully on new album

Art Bergmann's new album Late Stage Empire Dementia is out today, intentionally coinciding with Endangered Species Day.  He may technically be a senior, but Bergmann the citizen hasn’t tempered his rage against the establishment. – Jenny Feniak, Edmonton Journal


Opera Atelier’s Handel: ‘You can’t write off the appeal of sensuality. Why not take it and work with it?’

Easter has come and gone, but the story of Jesus Christ’s resurrection is about to return to Toronto thanks to Opera Atelier’s decision to climax its 35th anniversary season with a rare staging (viewable online, of course) of Handel’s first Italian oratorio, “La Resurrezione” (“The Resurrection”). – William Littler, Toronto Star

The show will go on: Inside the year that nearly killed Cirque du Soleil and its plan to return to the stage

From a pandemic shutdown to a bankruptcy filing and sale to an unlikely owner, the circus troupe had a challenging year. But now it’s looking forward to a post-pandemic revival. – Jason Kirby, Globe and Mail

Here is some flowery lyrics data that might help your gardening

LyricFind is a Canadian-based company that licenses the use of lyrics online around the world. For the May long weekend–the time when every Canadian will descend on a garden centre to get their plants going–they released an infographic featuring which flowers are most commonly mentioned in song lyrics. – Alan Cross, Journal of Musical Things


‘Go where their audiences are’: Why some brands are ‘prioritizing TikTok’ for influencer marketing

When it comes to influencer marketing some brands — particularly those targeting Gen Z — are starting to consider using TikTok creators over Instagram influencers in their campaigns.” – DigiDay

Goodbye primetime, hello IP? 9 key takeaways from this year’s Broadcast-Lite upfronts

The TV biz did its best to serve up the usual razzle-dazzle at this week’s virtual upfront presentations, tapping stars for extended bits and queuing up sizzle reels for the Madison Avenue crowd. – Variety


Snap is buying its AR display supplier for more than $500 million

Snap has agreed to acquire WaveOptics, the supplier of the augmented reality displays that power its new Spectacles glasses, for more than $500 million. – The Verge

Facebook, YouTube agree to voluntary anti-piracy measures with UK Creatives

Backed by the UK government, British creative industries, along with several major social media services like Facebook and YouTube, have settled on a set of new anti-piracy measures.” – Hypebot

Bob Dylan at 80: In praise of a mighty and unbowed singer-songwriter

Prolific, resilient and endlessly creative … as Dylan celebrates his 80th birthday, Edward Docx assesses his artistic contribution to the human story. – The Guardian


My favourite Dylan song – by Mick Jagger, Marianne Faithfull, Tom Jones, Judy Collins and more

Bob Dylan is 80 today. But what’s his greatest song? Stars pick their favourite – and recall their own encounters, from Marianne Faithfull turning him down to Judy Collins whacking a policeman to get backstage. – Dave Simpson, The Guardian

Happy Birthday, Bob Dylan, our most underappreciated comic

As he turns 80, don’t be fooled by his serious music. From the start, his work has been filled with a cockeyed humor that can range from corny jokes to dark wit. – Jason Zinoman, New York Times

Discuss: Was 1971 the most important year in pop music and politics?

Okay boomers, here’s a question to keep you occupied for hours and hours: What was the most important year in the history of pop music? Before you wander off on tangents of personal pieties about music legends, concerts and the album that changed your life, there’s a strong argument to be made about the correct answer to that question. It’s in a new, eight-part series, 1971: The Year That Music Changed Everything, that will divide, annoy or amaze people of all ages. – John Doyle, The Globe and Mail

This week In the Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc: Jay Landers, independent A&R executive.

As one of the most versatile music industry figures of our time—being an independent A&R executive, music publisher, producer, and songwriter, Jay Landers is a fast runner, always a step or two, or even three steps ahead of any others in serving client requirements. – Larry LeBlanc, Celebrity Access

Roger Daltrey will hit the road this fall for his Live and Kicking U.S. solo tour.

"Roger Daltrey is delighted to announce that he and members of the Who touring band will be on the road late summer 2021, performing some Who hits, a few rarities and some solo hits," a note on the Who's website reads. "So far, three dates have been announced with several more to follow." – Ultimate Classic Rock

Jackson Browne reveals details of Downhill From Everywhere

The topic Jackson warns of in ‘Downhill From Everywhere’ is not that different from a similar message he was also telling in 1974’s ‘Before The Deluge’. “There is a thread from ‘Before The Deluge’ and everything,” Brownede tells us. “That song was a quasi-prophecy. That song was based on a book called ‘Eco-Catastrophe’ by Dr Paul Erhlich. That was sort of based on speaking after an apocalyptic event. – Paul Cashmere, Noise11


Duran Duran create video for invisible using AI

The veteran Anglo rockers used Artificial Intelligence to film their latest music video. –  Celebretainment

10 new albums to stream today

Featuring CHAI, Olivia Rodrigo, Fiddlehead and more. – Scott Russell & Paste Staff 

How freaky rap pioneers PM Dawn wrote the rules of summer style

The group’s earnest, hippie-inflected style feels uncannily resonant today. – Rachel Tashjian, GQ

Eurovision: Italian winner will take voluntary drug test

Organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest say the lead singer for the Italian rock band that won has asked to take a drug test to refute speculation that he sniffed cocaine during the show. A statement Sunday from the European Broadcasting Union said Maneskin lead singer Damiano David “will take a voluntary drug test after arriving home.” –  Nicole Winfield, AP

Sparks: No. 1 in Heaven

Each Sunday, Pitchfork takes an in-depth look at a significant album from the past, and any record not in our archives is eligible. Today we revisit the brilliant 1979 album from the Mael brothers that transformed them into future-pop prophets. – Stuart Berman, Pitchfork


Review: Olivia Rodrigo delivers flawless Gen Z pop on her debut album

Whatever you think of Olivia Rodrigo — whatever you could say (or tweet) about the 18-year-old singer-songwriter shaping up to be pop’s breakout star of 2021 — trust that Rodrigo has already thought it. – Mikael Wood, Los Angeles Times

Megadeth bassist/co-founder David Ellefson ousted after sexual misconduct accusations

“We do not take this decision lightly,” the band says. –  Samson Amore, The Wrap

Bob Koester: The purest of purists

Remembering the life of the man who kept the spirit of jazz and blues alive and thriving in Chicago.  – James Porter, RockandRollGlobe

Myles Smith attends the Sony Music's The BRIT Awards 2024 After Party at the Nobu Hotel on March 02, 2024 in London, England.
Shane Anthony Sinclair/Getty Images

Myles Smith attends the Sony Music's The BRIT Awards 2024 After Party at the Nobu Hotel on March 02, 2024 in London, England.

Chart Beat

Hot 100 First-Timers: Myles Smith Shines With Breakthrough Single ‘Stargazing’

The song debuts at No. 77.

English singer-songwriter Myles Smith lands his first career entry on the Billboard Hot 100 chart (dated May 25), as his breakout single “Stargazing” debuts at No. 77.

Released May 10 on It’s Okay To Feel/RCA Records, the track arrives on the chart with 6.7 million official U.S. streams, 34,000 in radio airplay audience and 6,000 downloads sold in its opening week (through May 16), according to Luminate. It also starts at No. 10 on Digital Song Sales.

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