Music News Digest, July 13, 2020

David Desrosiers exits Simple Plan (pictured) under a cloud, Indie Week presents a timely webinar, and more festivals and concert series go virtual. Also in the news are Bernard Adamus, Sheila Jordan , Canadian Brass, INXS, Chelle, Tory Lanez, Matthew Good, Jesse Cook, HJF, Rik Emmett, Mattie Leon, and farewell Judy Dyble, Fiona Adams, and Rich Priske.

Music News Digest, July 13, 2020

By Kerry Doole

Montreal's eminently successful power-pop band Simple Plan has parted ways with bassist David Desrosiers. This move comes after claims of sexual misconduct by Desrosiers were shared on social media, including @victims_voices_montreal. On Instagram, the group posted: "Following recent public statements, David Desrosiers is withdrawing from the band in order to work on his personal issues. We offer our deepest apologies to the women who were hurt by his actions. We are also sorry for all our fans who are disappointed by this regretful situation. We will, as a band, take time to pause, reflect and put in place guidelines to prevent similar situations from happening."


From May 2017 until June 2019, Desrosiers was on hiatus from touring with Simple Plan, while battling depression. Sources: Exclaim!, Vice

-- In related news, a wave of sexual allegations related to prominent Quebec entertainers has also impacted the career of singer-songwriter Bernard Adamus. CBCreports he was dropped from his record label, Gross Boite/Dare to Care, following an anonymous post on Instagram accusing him of improprieties.

– Tomorrow (July 14) at 4 pm EST, Indie Week is presenting a webinar entitled When Will it Reopen and How? It’s a look at how venues are surviving, what options are available and what live music will look like, post-pandemic. The speakers are Shaun Bowring (The Garrison/ Baby G - Toronto), Tyson Boyd (The Starlite Room - Edmonton), and Victoria Shepherd (Canadian Live Music Association), with Darryl Hurs (Indie Week / CD Baby) moderating. Register here

– The popular classical music festival Toronto Summer Music takes its annual series online this year with daily performances from July 16 to Aug. 1. The TSM Online Festival features performances from international stars, masterclasses, kids concerts, world premieres and Art Song and Chamber concerts. The opening night (July 16 at 7.45 pm) showcases famed violinist James Ehnes filmed at The Center for Chamber Music in Seattle. A full series schedule here


– The covid-19 pandemic has forced the Muskoka Music Festival to take a pause for 2020, but it plans a return for the August Long Weekend in 2021. Fest founder/artistic director Miranda Mulholland has commissioned performances from some top Canadian artists, to be shown before the movies at the Muskoka Drive-In all summer long (Friday through Monday). Acts featured will include Digging Roots, Kadeema, Terra Lightfoot, and festival alumni Jim Cuddy, Julian Taylor, and Shakura S'Aida. The August long weekend will spotlight a special big-screen airing of Harrow Fair's video for Seat At The Table, filmed at the Gravenhurst Opera House. The inaugural Muskoka Music Festival Songwriting Competition has crownedNoelle Coughlin as the winner for her song Oh My My. More fest info here

– The International Resource Centre for Performing Artists (IRCPA) presents a Zoom conversation with legendary jazz singer-songwriter Sheila Jordan on July 15 (3-4 pm). Jordan, still going strong at 91, looks back on her illustrious career in a chat with fellow singer-writer Ori Dagan. The event is free. R.S.V.P. and send your questions to


– The internationally renowned Canadian Brass has released a new recording of Scarlatti's Toccata, arranged by Brandon Ridenour and available for MP3 download here 

– Calling all INXS fans. Live Baby Live, a 1991 concert film of the Oz rock heavyweight, has been remastered, remixed and restored for its recent reissue via Eagle Vision. Captured at a sold-out show at Wembley Stadium in London, it was released alongside a live album of the same name. Last year, the remastered version of Live Baby Live was screened in theatres for the first time. INXS executive music director Giles (son of George) Martin and Sam Okell helmed an audio upgrade as well at Abbey Road Studios.


– Toronto pop singer/songwriter Chèlle has released her debut single, Don't Need You, a track she terms "a post-breakup anthem." Now available on all streaming services.

– Matthew Good has announced a Side Door acoustic live-stream for July 17 at 9 pm ET/6 pm PT, featuring a Q&A. Fellow singer-songwriter Dan Mangan hosts. Tickets ($20) are limited and are available here It's Good's first show since covid forced him to cancel a nationwide tour that tied in with the release of his ninth album, Moving Walls, released in Feb.

– Star Canadian rapper Tory Lanez has shared a new two-song release, comprising Staccato and 392. The latter trap-accented cut is a new collaboration with Florida artist VV$ KEN, the latest addition to Lanez’s label One Umbrella. Source: Ydraft

– Pop queen Britney Spears and acclaimed world music guitarist/composer Jesse Cook would not seem to have much in common, but it turns out Brit is a major fan of the Canadian's mellow material. She recently added one of Cook’s songs to an Instagram post of herself on the beach doing yoga, with Cafe Mocha looped on the overlay. Reaching Spears' 25 million fans on the platform is a real boost for Cook. 

– Forced to go virtual this year, the Halifax Jazz Festival is presenting  Canadian Jazz Interviews and Jazz Lab Masterclasses with some notable artists. An interview with Mike Murley can be accessed here, Juno winner Allison Au is featured tomorrow (July 14) at 11 am, and a Jazz Lab workshop on Brazilian Percussion with Ross Burns in on Thursday at 11 am. 

– Though best known for his work in internationally successful hard rock trio Triumph, guitarist/singer/songwriter Rik Emmett has also been a prolific solo recording artist. On July 10, Round Hill Records reissued 11 solo Emmett albums in the digital format; Ten Invitations (1998), Swing Shift (1998), Raw Quartet (1999), Live at Berklee (2000), Handiwork (2003), Good Faith (2003), Strung-Out Troubadours (2006), Live at Hugh’s Room (2007), Liberty Manifesto (2007), Push & Pull (2009), and Marco’s Secret Songbook (2012):


– Toronto Botanical Garden will host eight free virtual concerts in the garden performed by an eclectic mix of Canadian talent starting July 16. Artists appearing in the  8th annual Edwards Summer Music Series include OKAN, Digging Roots, Sina Bathaie, and VC2,. Showtime is every Thursday at 7 pm. More info here 

– As with so many music conferences this year, Contact East event has been forced to go virtual in 2020. Renamed Contact(less) East, the digital conference runs Sept. 25-26, featuring workshops, round-table discussions, and social activities for those in the presenting sector. More info here 

– On Friday, Toronto-based singer-songwriter Mattie Leon released a new single, All The Time, via Inside Pocket / Warner Music Canada. He wrote the song while the Australian wildfires were dominating headlines around the world, but that apocalyptic setting has intensified since then. Leon worked with Juno-winning producer Gavin Brown (Barenaked Ladies, Metric, Tragically Hip) on the track, the third single from a forthcoming Brown-produced EP slated for fall or winter release.



Judy Dyble, an English folk singer best known for her work in Fairport Convention, died on July 12, of lung cancer, at age 71.

Dyble was an early member of the folk-rock band Fairport Convention, originally partnering with founding members Ashley Hutchings, Simon Nicoll and Richard Thompson. She appeared in the band's 1968 self-titled debut album and was then replaced by Sandy Denny.

Dyble also worked with pre-King Crimson outfit Giles, Giles and Fripp, before forming acid-folk band Trader Horne with Jackie McAuley, with whom she released Morning Way in 1970 as well as guesting on The Incredible String Band's 1968 album The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter.

Dyble recently announced the planned release of an album with Big Big Train singer David Longson in September.

Sources:  Loudersound, The Guardian

Fiona Adams, the photographer of The Beatles and other rock stars, died on June 26, of pancreatic cancer, at age 84.

Adams’ famous shot of The Beatles jumping in the air was used on the sleeve of the Twist and Shout EP. She captured the iconic image of the Fab Four on a London bomb site for Boyfriend magazine in April 1963. The photo has been described by the National Portrait Gallery as "the one that defined their early look".

Adams also snapped many other pop acts, from Bob Dylan to the Rolling Stones. Cilla Black, Adam Faith, Sandy Shaw and Dusty Springfield were other British stars of the 1960s who were photographed by Adams for Boyfriend, Fabulous, and other publications.

She later moved into travel photography. In 2009, some of her images featured in Beatles to Bowie, an exhibition of 1960s photography at the National Portrait Gallery. Source: BBC

Rich 'Rock' Priske, the bass player in the Matthew Good Band, died on July 11, age 52. No cause of death has been reported.

Priske played on the last two studio albums from the Matthew Good Band and on Good’s first three solo albums. “My deepest condolences go out to his friends and family,” Good wrote in an Instagram post. “Rest In Peace Rich.”

A Vancouver native who was known as Rich Rock, Priske also performed with acts like Bif Naked, Art Bergmann and the Real McKenzies. 

He was also an avid writer, contributing to weblogs as a "citizen journalist" and for such publications as Canadian Musician and Wine Trails. As an actor, he had bit parts in films like Red Scorpion 2, and Hard Core Logo, and appeared on stage in productions of Cabaret and You Can't Take It with You. 

Barbara Sedun, a former executive at EMI Music Publishing Canada, said on Facebook she was “heartbroken” to learn of Priske’s death. “As long as I can remember he’s been synonymous with the Vancouver music scene,” she wrote. “Always a commanding presence on stage. Gone way too soon.” Source: iHeartRadio, Wikipedia

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