advertisement
FYI

Music News Digest, Dec. 3, 2018

A posthumous album from slain rapper Smoke Dawg, Canadians make Variety's list of hitmakers, and a star-studded cast celebrates Mandela. Also on the news are Soundstreams, Don Brownrigg, Music NL, Andrew Cash,  Manitoba Music, Baby It’s Cold Outside, and farewell Claude Péloquin (pictured). Video provided for your enjoyment.

Music News Digest, Dec. 3, 2018

By Kerry Doole

Nickelback is named to headline Canada's first annual Roxodus Music Fest, a three-day concert series running July 11-13, 2019 at Edenvale, ON. Also on the bill are Kid Rock, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Alice Cooper, Peter Frampton, and Cheap Trick.


-- Toronto rap contender Smoke Dawg (real name Jahvante Smart) was killed back in July, alongside Koba Prime (Ernest "Kosi" Modekwe ), a member of the hip-hop collective Prime, in a shooting in downtown T.O.. A posthumous album, Struggle Before Glory, by the 21-year-old Smart (a Drake protege) has just been released, and the 13-song collection includes the previously-released "No Discussion," produced by Murda Beatz. Smoke Dawg first made a mark two years ago with the hit track "Still" (3.1M YouTube views), with Mo G.

advertisement

– Entertainment industry bible Variety has just published its list of 2018's biggest “behind-the-scenes” hitmakers, and Canadians figure prominently. Producer/songwriter Frank Dukes (CamilaCabello, Post Malone, Drake) is given special mention, and fellow Toronto songwriters/producers Boi-1da , Murda Beatz, and Noah "40" Shebib make the list for their work with Drake. Check the full list here

– Last night (Dec. 2), the free Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 concert was held in Johannesburg, South Africa. Staged in tribute to the centennial of Nelson Mandela's birth and honouring his legacy in the fight to end extreme poverty, the lineup featured Beyoncé & Jay-Z, Ed Sheeran, Eddie Vedder, Femi Kuti, Pharrell Williams and Chris Martin, Sho Madjozi, Tiwa Savage, Usher,  Wizkid, Cassper Nyovest, and D'banj.

The six music creators chosen to participate in Soundstreams’ 2019 Emerging Composer Workshop (ECW) are James Lowrie and Haotian Yu (both SOCAN members), Yiguo Li, Angela Elizabeth Slater, Harriet Steinke, and Tze Yeung Ho. This year, the ECW mentors will be Norway’s Rolf Wallin and Canada’s Dorothy Chang, with the Rolston String Quartet as the resident ensemble. The seventh annual edition of the ECW, an intensive mentorship program, takes place Jan. 24 -Feb. 3 in Toronto. The emerging composers’ new pieces will be showcased at a public concert at the Alliance Française in Toronto, on Feb. 1. Tix available here.

advertisement

–  Highly-regarded East Coast singer/songwriter Don Brownrigg has released a new song, "Room For Me." It was recorded live-off-the-floor with Daniel Ledwell (Jenn Grant), and Brownrigg explains that  "it's about looking for an answer that I'm not sure I'm going to get." A new album is expected in 2019.

 Applications for Artist Development grants from Music NL have a Dec. 7 deadline. The grants aim to foster and develop Newfoundland and Labrador musical culture through the funding of diverse artists and genres in demos, EP’s, full-length sound recordings, marketing and promotion materials. Submit here

 Before becoming an NDP MP, Andrew Cash was a noted Canadian singer/songwriter, first in L'Etranger (alongside later fellow MP Charlie Angus), then as a solo artist and half of The Cash Brothers. He lost his Toronto seat (the Davenport riding) in 2015 but has just announced his decision to run again in the 2019 campaign. On Dec. 9, he is holding a nomination party at The Gladstone Hotel.

advertisement

– Manitoba Music and Manitoba Film & Music are partnering again for the Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Bonspiel, which takes place at the Granite Curling Club in Winnipeg on Feb. 9. The ninth annual event will raise funds and awareness for the Kevin Walters Memorial Fund—a charity that helps support promising performers and organizations in music, film, performance and the creative arts. Registration for the event 2019 is now open here. Over 120 curlers rocked last year's event, raising over $6K for the Fund.  

–  A US radio station has removed American Songbook holiday classic "Baby It’s Cold Outside" from its playlist after listeners complained it was at odds with the #MeToo movement.  Glenn Anderson, a host at Star 102 Cleveland, in Ohio, confirmed the station had pulled the song over what he said were the “manipulative and wrong” lyrics. These include the line “Say, what’s in this drink?” sometimes viewed as a reference to date rape. Source: The Independent

advertisement

RIP

Claude Péloquin, the Quebecois poet and lyricist, died Nov. 26 at the age of 76, from cancer.

A singular poet, writer, screenwriter, director, and prolific lyricist, Péloquin’s name is stamped indelibly on the great Québecois songbook. His most recognized work is undeniably “Lindberg,” which he co-wrote with Robert Charlebois, and for which he was honoured with SOCAN’s Cultural Impact Award at its 2017 Montréal Gala.

Written in 1967, the song had a major cultural impact. Péloquin and Charlebois would continue to collaborate frequently until the ’80s. Péloquin released five albums under his own name, notably Laissez - nous vous embrasser où vous avez mal, in 1972, alongside composer Jean Sauvageau.

In 2013, Péloquin collaborated with singer-songwriter Yann Perreau, and the resulting album, À genoux dans le désir, was a success. Source: SOCAN's Words & Music

advertisement
DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla
@anmollium / Anmol Raina

DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla

Chart Beat

Karan Aujla & DIVINE Debut in Top 25 on Billboard Canadian Albums Chart

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE land the No. 22 spot on this week's Canadian Albums chart with their new collaborative release, 'Street Dreams.' On the Canadian Hot 100, Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em" ascends to No. 1, while Canadian pop artist Preston Pablo makes a debut.

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE are making moves together on Billboard's Canadian Albums chart this week, with their collaborative project, Street Dreams, debuting in the No. 22 spot.

The seven-track album, released Feb. 16, blends harder hip-hop and smooth R&B pop, the latter shining through especially on the Jonita Gandhi-assisted "Yaad." It's not Aujla's highest spot on the Albums chart — he reached No. 5 in 2023 with Making Memories, his collaboration with Canadian Punjabi artist Ikky — but it gives him some momentum going into his upcoming performance at the Juno Awards on Mar. 24, where he's nominated for TikTok Juno fan choice and breakthrough artist.

keep readingShow less
advertisement