Music News Digest, Nov. 5, 2020

Nav (pictured) delivers a new mixtape tomorrow, a Stones exhibit will roll into Kitchener, and Radio Starmaker launches a new program. Also in the news are AmericanaFest UK, Music PEI, CMW's Virtual Voices, Mariposa, CIMA, Tom Wilson, Tucker Lane, Universal Honey, Brayden Alexander, Mario Romano, Al Qahwa Ensemble, Sacha, and farewell Peter Erdmann and Baron Wolman.

Music News Digest, Nov. 5, 2020

By Kerry Doole

With little advance fanfare, chart-topping rapper and producer Nav releases a new mixtape, Emergency Tsunami, tomorrow (Nov. 6), via XO/Republic/Universal Music Canada. The mixtape was entirely produced by longtime collaborator and producer Wheezy and comes on the heels of an already banner year for the second-generation (Toronto) Canadian. Back in May, Nav released his Good Intentions album, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200. His previous release, Bad Habits, accomplished the same feat in 2019.

– The Rolling Stones Unzipped exhibit — delivered by DHL — will have its Canadian premiere in downtown Kitchener, Ontario, next fall at THEMUSEUM.  Tickets are already on sale here. The 10,000 square foot exhibit — which originally opened in London, England, under the name “Exhibitionism” in 2015, then moved on to various US cities, Australia, Japan, and now the Netherlands — features hundreds of artifacts and memorabilia from the band’s nearly 60-year career, including a replica studio, a recreation of their Edith Grove flat, interactive audio station, and more than 300 personal items from Mick and the boys, ranging from diaries to iconic stagewear.


“It is an exciting time for THEMUSEUM as we pull back the curtain a little bit more and reveal exactly what guests can expect when they step into the world of The Rolling Stones in a way never before imagined,” says David Marskell, CEO of THEMUSEUM. “Guests will enjoy an immersive experience that, at its core, celebrates the power of music, art and design. This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.” Unzipped opens Nov. 2, 2021, and runs until January 30, 2022. (Karen Bliss)

– A reminder that Nov. 6 is the final submission deadline for the 2021 Juno Awards. To be considered your national music release must fall between Sept. 1, 2019, and Nov. 6, 2020. Submit here.


– The Board of Directors of the Radio Starmaker Fund has announced the creation of a new program dedicated to supporting music creation by members of the Canadian music industry who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour. Effective immediately, this funding stream is available to eligible musicians who have not yet met Starmaker sales criteria. This will be a "stepping stone" program that recognizes the systemic barriers that prevent otherwise eligible applicants from qualifying for the established Starmaker programs. The application deadline is Nov. 19. More info here.

– In Jan. 2021, CIMA will be conducting its third Business and Showcase Mission to AmericanaFest UK. The event will be held virtually from Jan. 25-28. AmericanaFest UK is a four-day conference, awards show and music festival featuring Americana music from the US, Austria, Spain, Denmark, the UK and more. The deadline to apply to join the Mission is Nov. 13. Apply here.

– The next webisode of CMW's Virtual Voices Series is on Nov. 10. It features Ariel Hyatt, founder of Cyber PR, on the topic of Developing Your Signature Story: The Cornerstone of your Artist Brand. Register now for free here. The Nov. 24 session is led by Fiona Bloom and is entitled Connect Your Way to the Top - Without Leaving Your Living Room


– Mariposa Folk Festival has announced it is planning for the 2021 festival, scheduled for July 9-11 at Tudhope Park in Orillia. The org notes that "the health and safety of our patrons, volunteers, artists and community are paramount, so we will be ready to change plans in accordance with any health authority recommendations in place at the time." 2021 tickets are on sale here and early bird prices are the same as last year. If the festival has to be cancelled, full refunds would be available. 


– Today (Nov. 5) at noon, CIMA presents a Lunch and Learn webinar entitled Introduction to International Performance Rights. Join the Worldwide Independent Network's COO, Charlie Phillips, for an overview of international performance rights. The session will cover how the rights operate, what the options are for independents to collect money from international usage, and some pointers on good metadata practice. Register here.

– Music PEI is announcing that nominations are now being accepted for the 2021 Music PEI Board of Directors Industry Awards, honouring outstanding individuals who provide vital contributions to the music industry and dedicate themselves to helping our community flourish. This is the first year nominations for the Board Awards are open to the public for submissions. Anyone may submit themselves or someone they know for these awards, and the recipient will be decided by the Music PEI Board of Directors. Submissions are open until Nov. 27. More info here

– Roots songsmith and author Tom Wilson (Blackie and The Rodeo Kings, Lee Harvey Osmond) has an exhibition of his art at the Grimsby Public Art Gallery. On Sun. Nov. 8, he will be reading and talking about his work at the Gallery -  three sessions: 1:30, 2:30 and 3:30. Reserve by calling (905) 945- 2887 or e-mailing

– Saskatoon roots-rock combo Tucker Lane has put the release date of new album Random Fireworks on a Beach Obscured by Trees back to Jan. 15, preceded by a new single, Love Or Hatred. Group principals Johnny Sinclair and Leslie Stanwyck (ex-The Pursuit Of Happiness) have also stayed busy putting out material from their earlier band, Universal Honey. Just out is Universal Honey Extended Play 2020, with its track Rolling Back Time going to rock radio. A Campfire Session featuring the first live performances by UH in over a decade is now up on the Universal Honey Youtube channel. Tomorrow (Nov. 6), UH is releasing Can't Stop Thinking About Christmas to all streaming and digital platforms. It features four bonus tracks and guests Jim Cuddy, Ron Sexsmith, Andy Maize, Dave Rave, and more. 


– Gaining attention is the recent release of Honey, the debut album by Toronto R&B singer/songwriter Brayden Alexander. The first single and video, Queen, is now out. Trivia note: Brayden is the brother of Paige Kobra from the 2019 Juno nominated hard rock/metal band Kobra & The Lotus

– Mario Romano’s day job is as head of Castlepoint, one of Toronto’s most important real estate developers. He is also a highly accomplished jazz pianist, arranger and bandleader, and he earned acclaim with his 2010 debut album Valentina. He has just released a new album, The Journey So Far, on Modica Music, and here is one of the tunes.

– Tomorrow (Nov. 6), Toronto’s acclaimed world music group Al Qahwa Ensemble is releasing a new single and accompanying video, The Rain/Il Matar. It is from an upcoming third album African Routes, out Nov. 27. Prominent local players in the group include Maryem Tollar, Ernie Tollar, Demetri Petsalakis, and Naghmeh Fahrahmand. More info here.


–  Canadian Country artist Sacha has been chosen as November & December’s iHeart Radio Future Star for her new single Standards. The track has been streamed over 350K  times since release. The Future Star program highlights up-and-coming talent from across the country every eight weeks through Bell Media. Standards, the song, has also been added to all 13 Pure Country Radio Stations across Canada. Sacha released her debut EP The Best Thing this summer.


Peter Erdmann, president of PolyGram Records Canada from 1981 through 1992, died of heart failure at his home in Hemmingford, QC on October 20. He was aged 88. A full obituary will follow in Monday’s edition.

Baron Wolman, a photographer noted for his late '60s work for Rolling Stone, died on Nov. 2, age 83, of ALS.

Wolman took some of the earliest and most well-known images of rock & rollers during his stint as Rolling Stone’s first staff photographer, from 1967 to 1970.

During his stint at Rolling Stone Wolman caught the rise of rock & roll as few had during the time: an open-mouthed Jimi Hendrix attacking his guitar at the Fillmore West (a “money shot,” Wolman called it), Janis Joplin relaxing at home with her cat, Smokey Robinson adjusting the do-rag he wore before shows to keep his hair in place, Grace Slick ironically wearing a Girl Scout uniform, Frank Zappa sitting atop a tractor at a construction site, and Jerry Garcia flashing his missing, chopped-off finger for the first time publicly.

After choosing to leave the magazine, Wolman started a short-lived fashion-and-culture magazine (Rags), moved on to aviation photography (he learned to fly), and started his own publishing house, Square Books. In 2011, he published The Rolling Stone Years, a hefty collection of his work for the magazine.  Source: Rolling Stone

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