Music News Digest, Oct. 12, 2018
Drake (pictured) muses about retirement as he tops Spotify's most-streamed list, BreakOut West kicks off, and Halifax Pop Explosion nears. Also making news are Believe, Nuclear Blast, Music New Brunswick Awards, FMO, Folly & The Hunter, the AMAs, Music PEI Awards, Tami Neilson, Table-Turned, Jack de Keyzer, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Trews, Jerry Granelli, and a farewell to M. William Krasilovsky.
By Kerry Doole
Drake continues to make the headlines at every turn, and this week was no exception. He was shut out at The American Music Awards on Sunday night, and more gigs on his problem-plagued tour with Migos were cancelled. Billboard reports that Drizzy recently sat down with NBA superstar LeBron James for an upcoming episode of HBO's The Shop, and in a new teaser (below), he discussed the struggle of retiring gracefully. "I think maybe one of my biggest concerns in my career is just to figure out how to exit gracefully," said Drake. "I've watched people overstay their welcome, and I just don't ever want to be that guy that's addicted to the feeling of victory, addicted to the emotion of people digesting something that they love, and get to the point I'm just feeding them something and they're just like, 'Yeah.'"
On the positive side of the ledger, Spotifyhas just named Drake as their most streamed artist. He beat out Ed Sheeran and Eminem, with The Weeknd in at No. 4 and Justin Bieber at No. 8.
– BreakOut West, Western Canada's largest music industry event, is now well underway. Running Oct. 10-14, it features a four-day industry conference, 60+ showcasing bands and a kick off concert with The Wild. Artists schedule here. Conference sked here
– The Halifax Pop Explosion runs Oct. 17-20, and a limited amount of $80 Festival wristbands remains. The fest opens on Oct. 17 with a performance by Polaris Prize winner Jeremy Dutcher. Another anticipated highlight is the Countdown to Legalization Party with Matt Mays and Partner. See the full sked here.
– Digital music giant Believe continues to expand and diversify. MBWreports the company has acquired a majority stake in 31-year-old rock and metal label, Nuclear Blast, for what MBW speculates could be an eight-figure sum. The wide-ranging deal sees Believe become a distribution partner and shareholder of Germany-born Nuclear Blast – one of the biggest existing label brands in rock music. It is home to bands such as Nightwish Slayer, Sabaton, Accept, In Flames, Lamb of God and Dimmu Borgir.
– For the upcoming Music New Brunswick Awards, Chloé Breault and The Hypochondriacs lead the nominations on the francophone and anglophone side respectively. They will perform at the awards show, taking place on Oct 25. Other nominees appearing onstage include Danny Boudreau, Shaun Ferguson, Kam Speech and Ventus Machina. Thirty awards will be presented to artists and industry professionals who have made their mark on the New Brunswick music scene in the past year. See the full nominees list here
A limited number of tickets for the MNB Awards Show are available at the Centre culturel de Caraquet ticket office, as well as online at Billetterie Accès. The public can help select the winners, by voting in certain categories that have a public component before Oct. 15 at noon.
– Folk Music Ontario has a newly-elected Board of Directors and Executive Committee for 2018/19. The Committee comprises Co-Presidents Preetam Sengupta and Amie Therrien, VP Rosalyn Dennett, Treasurer Paul Fortune, Secretary Syma Shah, and Members at Large Emma Jane Julien and Max Merrifield. The Directors are Liz Scott, Alex Sinclair, Richard Henderson, and Tim Des Islets.
– Montreal duo Folly & The Hunter (multi-instrumentalists Laurie Torres and Nick Vallee) releases a new album, Remains, on Outside Music on Oct. 26. It could conceivably be the last one, as the pair announced an indefinite hiatus via a press release yesterday. "Taking a break has nothing to do with our love of making music,” the band says. “But keeping a band active long-term takes the right circumstances, and as time passes, those circumstances have become hard for us to sustain. We both need to focus on other things for a while, for our mental and physical health. Both the compositions and the lyrics on the new album reflect the bittersweet nature of this hiatus, and it's a fitting farewell to this period in our lives." here's a brand new video.
– Varietyreports that The American Music Awards hit a new all-time low in the Nielsen ratings on Tuesday night. The three-hour show on ABC drew a 1.8 rating in adults 18-49 and 6.5 million viewers. That is down 25% in the key demo and approximately 29% in total viewers compared to the 2017 broadcast, which drew a 2.4 rating and 9.2 million viewers.
– A reminder that submissions for the 2019 Music PEI Awards & showcases close at 11:59 pm AT on Oct. 19. The awardswill be handed out during Credit Union Music PEI Week from Jan 23-27. More info here
– Globe-trotting Canadian turned Kiwi roots/soul star Tami Neilson has just announced four November Canadian shows. She plays Ottawa's Rainbow (Nov. 20), Montreal's L'astral (Nov. 21), London's Aeolian Hall (Nov. 22), and Hamilton's Mills Hardware (Nov. 23).
– Chicago-based vinyl subscription service Table-Turned has announced a couple of new label partnerships. Garage Rock subscribers are guaranteed a record from Grave Mistake Records, and Ska-Punk subscribers are guaranteed a record from Jump Up! Records. Subscription information here
– Veteran singer/guitarist Jack de Keyzer is heading to Memphis to represent Toronto at the International Blues Challenge. Earlier this week, he beat out Bywater Blues in a showdown at The Dakota Tavern. The Blues Challenge takes place in Memphis, Jan. 22-26. All proceeds from the door go toward the winning band's expenses, and a GoFundMe page is also up.
– A new Lynyrd Skynyrd film can be released despite a dispute over the band’s intentions after a federal appeals court ruled in its favour on Wednesday, AP reports. The decision by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan came in a case involving a movie called Street Survivors: The True Story of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Plane Crash. A lower court judge decided earlier the film violated a “blood oath” made by band members not to exploit the group’s name after a 1977 plane crash that killed its lead singer and songwriter, Ronnie Van Zant. The 2nd Circuit reversed that decision, saying the movie can be distributed.
– For the past 20 years, the Canadian Pacific (CP) Holiday Train has been collecting food and raising funds for food banks across North America. The Trews will hop on board the second leg of the trip with Willy Porter in Chicago to complete the trip through Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota before arriving at their final destination in Weyburn, Sask. on Dec. 16. The CP Holiday Train has raised more than C$14.5 million and gathered 4.3 million pounds of food for communities along its North American routes.
– Christmas concerts are now being announced, and Halifax Jazz Festival's 16th annual holiday fundraiser looks like a winner. It features Swing Into The Holidays for the evening entertainment, along with perennial family favourite, Tales of a Charlie Brown Christmas, featuring Jerry Granelli, for the matinee show, both on Dec. 9 at the Spatz Theatre, Citadel High School, Halifax. Of note: master percussionist Granelli was a member of the Vince Guaraldi Trio when the band scored and performed the original recording of A Charlie Brown Christmas more than a half-century ago. Tix here
M. William Krasilovsky, the co-author of the book “This Business of Music,” died on Oct. 7 of congestive heart failure in Ashland, Oregon. He was 92.
An expert on matters of copyright, Krasilovsky wrote “This Business of Music” with Sidney Shemel, a music attorney working with United Artists, as a legal reference for musicians in the early days of the music industry. First published in 1964, it went on to sell more than 500,000 copies over 10 editions. The book was also famously featured in the 2003 movie School of Rock. Source: Variety