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FYI

Music News Digest, Oct. 30, 2019

Chilly Gonzales (pictured) returns to Canadian stages in 2020, the CMPA is transformed as Music Publishers Canada, and Eric Lapointe goes to court. Others in the news include Anthem Entertainment, Allison Hamamura, Jason Collett, Coco Love Alcorn, Gentiane MG, Gillian Snider & Leslie Stanwyck, and Nick Drake. With video.

Music News Digest, Oct. 30, 2019

By Kerry Doole

Grammy-winning pianist/composer Chilly Gonzales returns to Canadian stages in 2020 with an intimate hour of pieces from the Solo Piano album cycle, after which he is joined by Stella Le Page on cello and Joe Flory on drums to perform hits and surprises from the rest of his repertoire. The January shows are in Montreal, Quebec City, Ottawa, and Toronto. Tickets and show details here. The fact that he is now headlining such prestigious concert halls as the National Arts Centre and Roy Thomson Hall shows just how far the flamboyant performer has come.


– The Canadian Music Publishers Association  announced it will become Music Publishers Canada, effective immediately. A press releases states "the new identity better reflects the heart of what music publishers do: create, promote, and protect. The rebrand includes a refreshed look, social media channels and evolving programming." Margaret McGuffin, Executive Director of Music Publishers Canada, explains that "the new brand communicates our evolving identity as champions of the rights of music publishers in Canada. These are exciting times. The creation and distribution of music in Canada is undergoing rapid and extraordinary change and the role of the music publisher has never been more integral. It has grown into overseeing the creation, promotion and protection of songs and the development of new markets. It encompasses everything from songwriter development to copyright management."

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– Quebec rock star Eric Lapointe pleaded not guilty to a charge of assault during a hearing in Montreal municipal court, Oct. 28.. There will be no preliminary hearing, and Lapointe will return to court on Jan. 30. Lapointe announced last week he was leaving his role as a coach on La Voix, the Quebec French-language adaptation of The Voice, citing personal reasons.

Last week, he won his 14th ADISQ award, when his record Delivrance captured the rock album of the year title. Interesting fact: his former manager, Yves-Francois Blanchet, now leads the Bloc Quebecois Leader. Source: Globe and Mail

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– Anthem Entertainment has appointed Allison Hamamura as General Manager, West Coast, and head of the company’s recorded music label, Anthem Records. Based in LA, the music industry veteran joins Anthem Entertainment from the Aloha Music Group where she has been the Chief Creative Officer for the past seven years. Previously, Hamamura served as VP of A&R for Hollywood Records and as GM at Mercury Records. In her new role, Hamamura will report directly to Anthem Entertainment CEO Helen Murphy.

– Now in its 13th year, Jason Collett's annual music and literary variety show, Basement Revue,  moves to a new Toronto venue, the Paradise Theatre. This art-deco era theatre has just undergone a major renovaton, and its reopening soon is eagerly awaited. The Revue runs December 5, 12, 19 and 26. The event has previously featured the likes of ­Feist, Michael Ondaatje, Gord Downie, Tanya Tagaq, Jennifer Castle, and Claudia Dey. Tix here 

– Toronto singer/songwriter Coco Love Alcorn launches her new album Rebirth with a concert at Hugh's Room Live tonight (Oct. 30), followed by a 13-date cross-country tour closing out at Owen Sound's Roxy Theatre, Dec 14. Dates here

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– Montreal-based jazz pianist Gentiane MG (Michaud-Gagnon) has released a sophomore album, Wonderland, and heads out on a seven-city Canadian tour soon, starting at Hermann’s Jazz Club in Victoria, Nov. 5, closing out at The Jazz Room in Waterloo, Nov. 16. Dates here. Gentiane MG (Michaud-Gagnon) received the Radio-Canada Jazz Award 2018-2019 and the François-Marcaurelle de la Guilde des Musiciens du Québec award.

–  Today (Oct. 30) is the last chance to register for the Folk Alliance conference in New Orleans at the Advanced Registration Rate. Registration goes up $100 tomorrow.

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– In a new duo project, Saskatoon-based singer/songwriters Gillian Snider & Leslie Stanwyck have joined forces, recently putting out a debut full-length album Parallels. Formerly in the Pursuit Of Happiness, then Universal Honey, Stanwyck and hubby Johnny Sinclair now lead the roots-rock band Tucker Lane, and Sinclair produced this new album. Snider also fronts her own project, The Whiskey Jerks.

– Toronto's annual The Songs Of Nick Drake tribute to the late Anglo folk legend continues to grow in stature and show producer Luke Jackson states the upcoming event "could be the finest Nick Drake concert I’ve ever assembled." To be held at Hugh’s Room Live, Nov. 8 and 9, its featured performers include Patricia O'Callaghan, Marla & David Celia, Elizabeth Shepherd, Mitchell Girio (King Apparatus), Lisa Boudreau (Lost and Profound), and Brent Jackson (The Junction). The rhythm section pairs Mark Mariash and  Maury LaFoy, and the string quartet comprises Sahra Featherstone, Wendy Solomon, Johann Lotter and Alex Cheung. Tix here

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DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla
@anmollium / Anmol Raina

DIVINE (L) and Karan Aujla

Chart Beat

Karan Aujla & DIVINE Debut in Top 25 on Billboard Canadian Albums Chart

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE land the No. 22 spot on this week's Canadian Albums chart with their new collaborative release, 'Street Dreams.' On the Canadian Hot 100, Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em" ascends to No. 1, while Canadian pop artist Preston Pablo makes a debut.

B.C.-based Punjabi artist Karan Aujla and Indian rapper DIVINE are making moves together on Billboard's Canadian Albums chart this week, with their collaborative project, Street Dreams, debuting in the No. 22 spot.

The seven-track album, released Feb. 16, blends harder hip-hop and smooth R&B pop, the latter shining through especially on the Jonita Gandhi-assisted "Yaad." It's not Aujla's highest spot on the Albums chart — he reached No. 5 in 2023 with Making Memories, his collaboration with Canadian Punjabi artist Ikky — but it gives him some momentum going into his upcoming performance at the Juno Awards on Mar. 24, where he's nominated for TikTok Juno fan choice and breakthrough artist.

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