Music News Digest, Nov. 20, 2019

Dave Gunning (pictured) and The Small Glories head CFMA noms, Shawn Mendes is up for an ARIA Award, and Chris Brown and Drake are big winners at the Soul Train Award. Others in the news include Post Malone, Celine Dion, Dave Bookman, CLMA, The Doobie Bros, Sask Country Showcase, Leonard Cohen, Alexisonfire, Hoffey, Peter Foldy, Surefire Sweat, and Squamish Constellation Festival. With video.

Music News Digest, Nov. 20, 2019

By FYI Staff

Organizers of the Canadian Folk Music Awards (CFMA) have announced 105 nominees in 19 categories vying for trophy wins at the annual that is to be staged in Charlottetown, April 3-4. Leading the way with four nods each are The Small Glories (for the album Assiniboine & The Red) and Dave Gunning (for Up AgainstThe Sky). Earning three noms each Joshua Haulli, Vishtèn, Jenn Grant, Ben Caplan, and Lennie Gallant. A full list of nominees here

Post Malone has announced a lengthy Live Nation-produced tour schedule for 2020 that includes Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena on Feb. 14.  Swae Lee and Tyla Yaweh support as special guests. 


Celine Dion’s Courage album earns a 68 out of 100 from critics surveyed by Metacritic, and an 8.4 out of 10 from users. Top-rated reviews include All Music and Rolling Stone. Hits Daily Double forecasts her album will debut at No. 1 in the US with about 120K copies sold in its 1st week. The album is almost a dead cert to top the chart here with a massive sell-through driven by primary CD buyers: Quebec fans and females. Staffs at Archambault and Sunrise will be beaming to see the crowds.

Shawn Mendes faces off P!nk, Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, Billie Eilish and five other contenders in the Best Int. Artist category at Australia’s ARIA Awards in Sydney on Nov. 27. Blushingly, one scribe notes that “Canadian sweetheart” Carly Rae Jepsen is booked as one of the big event night presenters.

— The Canadian Live Music Association presents ‘Event Safety Masterclass' with UK expert Steve Blake. Our day-long training session will provide both preparedness and response best practices for event safety, security, counter-terrorism and crowd management in Toronto on Nov. 25 at The Lounge at Live Nation and the 27th at Otto’s Club, TD Place Ottawa. Details here.


The Doobie Bros. reunite with Michael McDonald for a 30-city, 50th-anniversary tour that (so far) includes one Canadian show, at Toronto’s Budweiser Stage, July 19. 

— Chris Brown and Drake were the big winners at the BET 2019 Soul Train Awards, held in Las Vegas on Nov. 17. Their Indigo collaboration No Guidance won for Song of the Year, Best Dance Performance, and Best Collaboration Performance at the 32nd annual awards show.

— The Sask Country Showcase charity show takes place at TCU Place, Saskatoon, on Nov. 21. The recipient charity is the Crisis Nursery run by the Saskatoon Society for the Protection of Children, and the star-studded lineup features the Juno Award-winning Jess Moskaluke, Tenille Arts, Aaron Pritchett, Aaron Goodvin, Jason Blaine, Bobby Wills, Jay Semko, and Samara Yung. Tix here 

Mundial kicks off its Montreal summit with a night of Korean pop at Cabaret Lion d’Or. Schedule of events here.

Leonard Cohen’s new album Thanks for the Dance has its release Friday (Nov. 21). The Goal is the first of a series of videos teasing the release of the posthumous set cobbled together by son Adam.


Alexisonfire has announced four Jan. Canadian arena tour dates in Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver on its Facebook page. Expect a new release to coincide with the shows.

— Holiday is the latest song from Vancouver duo Hoffey(Jordan and Erika Toohey). A gentle jazzy club beat confection, the duo suggests it is "a song most people can relate to; when you've been working at the same job, doing the same shit every day to the point where you might lose your mind.” They add that it was inspired “by our time living in a sketchy apartment. Working full-time with completely different schedules and wanting to get away from all the craziness and just spend time together.”


— The irrepressible Peter Foldy, who first exploded on the scene in 1973 with Bondi Junction, a No. 1 hit in Canada on the Kanata Records imprint, is back with a mellifluous pop inspiration entitled Toxic World that offers an antidote to noxious times. He’s had many hits since Bondi Junction and now spends his time in LA as a screenwriter and producing the occasional movie.

— BC's Squamish Constellation Festival returns to Hendrickson Field, July 24 to 26, for a second year. Tomorrow (Nov. 21), early-bird passes will be on sale starting at $159 (plus sc and fees). The 2020 festival plans for 40 bands, a songwriters’ workshop, and more. The lineup for the 2020 event will start to be released once general admission passes go on sale after Feb. 28.

— Led by Larry Graves (Mr. Something Something, DRUMHAND), Toronto combo Surefire Sweat blend jazz, funk and world music elements on ts self-titled debut The group is now touring Ontario and Quebec, with five shows lined up, Nov. 22 to Dec. 5. Dates here

— The Toronto music scene lost an invaluable member back in May with the death of radio host/music champion Dave Bookman. In an ongoing effort to honour him, Bookman's record collection has been donated to Rotate This (186 Ossington Avenue) in Toronto. On Nov. 21, 2019, those records will be available for sale, with proceeds going directly to MusiCounts. there will be over Over 600 of his personal records (albums and singles), identified by a specially designed sticker. Rotate This will be open 11 am - 8 pm.

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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