Music News Digest, Feb. 20, 2019

Indie rock favourite Hollerado (pictured) is calling it a day, NXNE dates are set, and the Junos showcase art in London. Also in the news are Matt Andersen, Kim Clarke Champniss, IDMA, Zaki Ibrahim,  Ron Sexsmith, Kyp Harness, Phil Nimmons, LyricFind, Jack Pine and The Fire, Amanda Rheaume, and farewell Kofi Burbridge. Videos added for your enjoyment.

Music News Digest, Feb. 20, 2019

By Kerry Doole

Popular Toronto indie rock band Hollerado is calling it a day. The announcement came in a press release yesterday that reads in part: "For the past 12 years we’ve had the best time, all the time, and now it’s time to move on to other things. We are all still best friends in the world and will cherish every second that we got to spend playing music together. After nearly 2,000 shows in too many countries to count, the thing we are most grateful for is the friends we made along the way."

Hollerado will deliver one last record, the self-produced Retaliation Vacation, due out June 7 on Royal Mountain Records. That label was started by Hollerado frontman Menno Versteeg 10 years ago, and it is now home to Alvvays, Mac DeMarco, METZ, U.S, Girls and more. Dates for a final tour TBA, with a Dec. 13 show at the Danforth Music Hall in Toronto expected to wrap it up. Here's Hollerado's brand new single and video.


– NXNE 2019 will run June 7 -16, in venues across Toronto. Club shows run throughout, eSports tournaments are June 8 -9, NXNE Talks June 12, and the Yonge Street Festival Village takeover is June 14 - 16, featuring three live music stages. As in recent years, club shows are curated by top Canadian musicians (Leah Fay, K-os, Jim Cuddy, Ian D’sa, Terra Lightfoot, Cadence Weapon, Rural Alberta Advantage, Elwins, and others have done this in the past), Tastemakers, and varied music associations. More info here

– In advance of the 2019 Juno Awards ceremony in London, ON, Museum London is hosting several all-Canadian art exhibitions, all celebrating a different facet of Canadian art and music. The Art is Art exhibition showcases the non-musical talents of well-known Canadian musicians by presenting visual art installations they’ve created. A work by Lights is featured.


The Juno Photography Exhibition displays over 50 photos of rare and iconic moments from the past 40 years of the Awards ceremonies, and The Polaris Music Prize Posters display presents noted Canadian albums re-imagined as hand-painted concert posters. The Women to the Front exhibition brings attention to the women of the Canadian music scene, and The Art of Music: A Student Exhibition promotes art made by London students. Now open, the exhibits run to March 31.

– Canadian soul-bluesman Matt Andersen has announced an international tour, spanning the US, UK, Europe and Canada, in support of his upcoming album, Halfway Home by Morning (available worldwide March 22, on True North Records). The tour begins in Cologne, Germany, on March 19, with the Euro leg concluding in Berlin on April 3. The Canadian tour starts in Truro, NS, on April 10, covering 16 cities, to May 30, followed by US dates, June 1-16), then more East Coast shows. A full itinerary here. Support acts include Wild Rivers, Amy Helm, Erin Costelo, Bobby Bazini, and Dave Sampson. Helm is featured on this new single/video below.

– Highly-respected DJ, author (the memoir Skinheads, Fur Traders & DJs), recording artist and former MuchMusic personality Kim Clarke Champniss has announced in a Facebook post that he is again battling throat cancer. He explains that radical surgery at Toronto General in Toronto this week means "I have lost my natural voice forever. I have no voice at all for two months. Then a voice prosthesis will be added to my throat." Read the full post here. All at FYI send our best wishes to KCC.


– The International Dance Music Awards (IDMA) returns for its 33rd annual event and voting is open in a variety of categories. It is part of Winter Music Conference, March 25 -28 in Miami Beach. More info here


– Six Shooter has added Zaki Ibrahim to its artist management roster. Six Shooter Management President Helen Britton calls Ibrahim "a fantastic addition to our management roster, and I look forward to sharing all her upcoming plans with the world in the coming months.” The Toronto-based singer/songwriter headlines a show at The Great Hall in Toronto, Feb. 21, and plays Block Heater Festival in Calgary, Feb. 23.

– In recent years, a growing number of Canadian artists have turned their attention to literature, penning fiction or memoirs. Three examples, Ron Sexsmith, Kyp Harness, and Joel Thomas Hynes, are teaming up for a readings-focused event entitled Singing Literature at Toronto's Monarch Tavern on Feb. 20.

– At the recent Oscar Peterson International Jazz Festival in Niagara On The Lake, Phil Nimmons received the Canadian Jazz Master Award. At 95, Nimmons is still active teaching, playing and composing.

– Toronto-based company LyricFind has opened offices in two key regions for the global music business: Morocco and Vietnam. “We’re proud of the expansion we’ve made into markets in the Middle East and North Africa, Latin and South America, and Asia,” explains Darryl Ballantyne, Founder & CEO at LyricFind, a world leader in licensed lyrics.

– Jack Pine and The Fire will attend the 2019 Junos in London, ON, as their sophomore album, Left To Our Own Devices, is nominated for a Best Artwork award. Ottawa based alt-folk songsmith Gareth Auden-Hole aka Jack Pine shares the nomination with artist-illustrator Emil Mateja. Pine then plays solo dates in Ontario and Quebec, March 21-April 6. 

– Fresh from successful showcases at FAI in Montreal and a National Arts Centre show in her former hometown of Ottawa, singer/songwriter Amanda Rheaume launches her new album, TheSkin I’m In, in her new hometown of Toronto with a Cadillac Lounge show tomorrow (Feb. 21).



Kofi Burbridge, keyboardist and flautist of the Grammy Award-winning Tedeschi Trucks Band, died on Feb. 15, at age 57. The group confirmed the news via Facebook.

Burbridge was a classically-trained multi-instrumentalist, and he has provided keyboards, organ, flute, and backing vocals for various bands throughout his career. He was previously part of the Derek Trucks Band.

Burbridge joined his first band in the Atlanta region called Knee-Deep, and he later joined the Aquarium Rescue Unit shortly after Col Bruce Hampton left, which reunited him with his brother Oteil Burbridge, known for his work in the Allman Brothers Band, 

Burbridge joined the Derek Trucks Band in 1999, playing with them until 2010. In 2010, Kofi and Oteil Burbridge joined the new group, Tedeschi Trucks Band.

In June 2017, Kofi Burbridge suffered a heart attack and had surgery to repair an aortic rupture.  After four months of recovery, Burbridge returned to the band in October, 2017 but suffered a health setback that was announced last month. Sources: Ultimate Classic Rock, Wikipedia

Neil Young

Neil Young

Music News

Music News Digest: Neil Young & Crazy Horse Sizzle at Toronto's Budweiser Stage

Also featured this week: Ottawa's Capital Music Awards, Drake tops BET Awards noms, a star-studded tribute to Toronto indie stalwart Dave Bookman, a fiery new Art Bergmann track and the state-of-the-art future of Hamilton's FirstOntario Centre.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse are touring North America extensively this summer (the Love Earth Tour), including many Canadian arena and festival dates. Judging by the show they delivered at Toronto's Budweiser Stage on Monday (May 20), fans of the Canadian rock legend are in for a serious treat. Aside from a three song solo segment including a crowd sing-along on "Heart of Gold," the concert concentrated on the full-on sonic assault of Young and his comrades (the rhythm section of 80-year-olds Ralph Molina and Billy Talbot and Micah Nelson on guitar).

The well-curated set list included such Young classics as "Cortez The Killer," "Powderfinger," "F &## Up," "Down By The River," "Like A Hurricane," "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" and "Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)," with the band adding to the original arrangements in intriguing ways. The guitar interplay of Young and Nelson was at times positively transcendent. Long may this genuine rock hero run. Check out his tour itinerary here.

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