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Music News Digest, Dec. 14, 2023: The Tragically Hip and Jake Gold Honoured by War Child

Billboard Canada FYI's weekly roundup also includes news on Boots & Hearts, SXSW, Veal, and more.

The Tragically Hip, Jake Gold and War Child's Samantha Nutt

The Tragically Hip, Jake Gold and War Child's Samantha Nutt

Courtesy Photo

Awards news

The SOCAN Foundation has announced the winners of the Young Canadian Songwriters Awardssponsored by SiriusXM Canada. They are Andelina Habel-Thurton, Brighid Fry (Housewife), Elizabeth Royall, Fin McDowell and Sofia Kay, and each received a cash prize of $5K. Five others received an honourable mention and a cash prize of $1K.

Festivals news

- The Calgary Folk Music Festival’s Block Heater 9.0, powered by ATB, will run Feb. 15-17. It presents 27 artists from eight countries, with highlights from the strong and eclectic lineup including The Devil Makes Three, Tanya Tagaq, Daniel Romano, Dominique Fils-Aimé, This Is The Kit, Matt Holubowski, Rich Aucoin, Vieux Farka Touré, Tanika Charles and U.S. Girls. See the full lineup here.


- An impressive slate of Canadian artists is confirmed to perform at SXSW 2024 in Austin. NOBRO, Zoon, Elisapie, and Afternoon Bike Ride join the previously announced Kiwi Jr., Sorry Girls, and Arielle Soucy at the prestigious fest and conference. Canadian showcasing partners include M For Montreal, BreakOut West, and POP Montreal. SXSW runs March 11-16.

- Self-described as Canada's largest music and camping festival, the country-themed Boots and Hearts festival runs at Ontario's Burl's Creek Event Grounds from Aug. 8 to 11, 2024. The event recently announced US stars Cody Johnson, Thomas Rhett and Jason Aldean as its 2024 headliners. Organisers have termed the 2023 edition, one featuring Keith Urban, Tim McGraw and Nickelback, the most successful yet, with 40K fest-goers in attendance. Read more in Billboard Canada.

- The AfroJazz Fest aims to showcase the beauty and diversity of African & Caribbean cultures through performing arts, music. Its next event is Afro-Jazz Cabaret at The Gasworks in Hamilton on Dec. 15. The highly recommended free show features award-winning vocalist Lorraine Klaasen, Intellect, and Faith Amour. Reserve a spot here.

- The deadline to submit for the 2024 TD Toronto Jazz Festival (June 21-30, 2024) is Dec. 15. To apply, use the online submission form here.


Industry news

- On Dec. 6, The Tragically Hip and manager Jake Gold received War Child Canada’s Founder Award, at the #TheWorldThatsPossible gala.

On Facebook, the band posted that "We have been supporting their efforts for over 20 years since headlining their benefit concert in 2000. We are, and have always been, humbled and inspired by their efforts to make the world a better place. War Child makes it their mission to empower children to overcome the brutal impacts of war and conflict. If you are able, consider supporting their efforts in the form of a donation at"

War Child later announced the gala raised $1.26M for the org.

- On Dec. 22, Caliban Arts Theatre in Toronto and CONTXT present a holiday party sure to thrill any fans of the infectious sounds of Rocksteady. Expect to hear tunes from the likes of Ken Boothe, Desmond Dekker, Bob Marley and The Wailers, Jimmy Cliff,and more, courtesy of DJ Selectress Sunshine. Of note: Proceeds from the event go to support CONTXT's fine programming at the venue.

Artists news

- Toronto roots veterans Skydiggers are closing out a run ofA Skydiggers Christmas tour dates in Orillia on Dec. 14, followed by two nearly sold-out shows in Meaford (Dec. 15) and Paris (Dec. 16), prior to their annual Toronto show on Dec. 22 at The Danforth Music Hall. Details here. Expect holiday tunes alongside songs from their 2023 EPs, Hide Your Light and Bide Your Time. Here's a brand new video.


- '90s power rock trio Veal was the first band of renowned guitar-slinger/singer-songwriter Luke Doucet (Whitehorse). The group has just announced a reunion that will feature 2024 club shows in Ontario and Western Canada. Check the itinerary here. Veal's debut album, Hot Loser, is now available to stream for the first time since its 1996 release.


- Terry Draper is best known as the drummer and one of three songwriters for the famed 1970s Toronto progressive rock band Klaatu, but he became a prolific solo artist later. This week he celebrates a major milestone in the form of a 20th solo album, In The Beginning, released on Dec. 12. More info here. He has just released a video for "In The Beginning," the title track of his new album.

- Singer/songwriter JENNA Nation has successfully transitioned from jazz to a pop/R&B sound, and she currently has two singles out and garnering attention. Her Christmas song id "My Christmas Wish" and her other track, "All I Need," has gained over 15K streams across all platforms to date. Check it out here.

Courtesy OVO/Republic Records


Rb Hip Hop

Here’s Drake’s Reaction to a Woman Claiming She ‘Got Pregnant’ to ‘For All The Dogs’

Drizzy should just go ahead and rename his latest studio album to For All the Parents.

Drake certainly has a way with the pregnant ladies.

During the first Nashville stop of his It’s All a Blur Tour — Big as the What? with J. Cole earlier this month, a woman named Camille Smith brought a sign saying “I got pregnant to For All the Dogs (this is also my 5th time seeing you this tour).” But it was Drizzy’s first time seeing her because he clocked her sign and took a moment to respond, which can be seen in Smith’s TikTok clip that she captioned, “POV: Drake finally acknowledges you at your 5th show.”

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