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Notable Canadians We Lost in 2023: Obituaries

We lost some major musicians, industry figures and artists this year, including Myles Goodwyn of April Wine, Robbie Robertson of the Band, artist Michael Snow and actor Matthew Perry.

Notable Canadians We Lost in 2023: Obituaries

Over the past year, we have attempted to acknowledge those among us who passed away. Click the links for their full obituaries. For those who we unintentionally left off the roll call, we regret the omission.

Randy Begg, a founding member, drummer, vocalist, and songwriter of the Juno-nominated band Wednesday, died on Dec. 20, at age 71, of a heart attack.

Tom Harrison, a veteran rock critic for The Georgia Straight and Vancouver Province and frontman of Bruno Gerussi's Medallion, died on Dec. 27 at age 70, following a stroke.

Ian Tyson, the Canadian country legend, died on Dec. 29, at age 89, from ongoing health complications.


Pat Steel (Patricia Steel Moyer), a Regina jazz singer and CBC broadcaster died on Jan. 1, at age 86, of cancer.

Chris (Christopher) Daniels, the founder, leader, and bassist of the Climax Jazz Band, died at age 84.

Michael Snow, an internationally lauded Canadian painter, sculptor, filmmaker and jazz musician, died on Jan. 5, at age 94, from a respiratory infection.

Robbie (Robin) Bachman, co-founder and drummer of Bachman-Turner Overdrive, died on Jan. 12 in Vancouver at age 69. No cause of death was made available.

Jose Evangelista, a noted Spanish-Canadian composer, died on Jan. 10 at age 79.

Bob (Robert) Shindle, a noted Winnipeg-born live sound tech, died of cancer on Jan. 17 at Toronto's Princess Margaret Hospital.

Mendelson Joe (born Birrel Josef Mendelson), a critically acclaimed Toronto singer-songwriter, guitarist, painter and outspoken political activist, died on Feb. 7, at age 78.

Joe (Joel Lindsay) Toole, the guitarist of popular Toronto rock band The Phantoms, died on Feb. 1, at age 60, of cancer.

Guido Basso, a jazz trumpeter, composer, arranger and bandleader long recognised as a key figure in Canadian jazz, died on Feb. 13, at age 85, of natural causes.


Roger Levesque, an arts journalist and a long-time contributor to the Edmonton Journal and Edmonton Sun, died on Feb. 13 of cancer.

Jim Jones, a Toronto bassist who played in Luke and The Apostles, The Happy Pals, the Artists’ Jazz Band, and more, died on Feb. 15.

Peter A. Herrndorf, a media mogul and the former president of the National Arts Centre, died on Feb. 18 at the age of 82.

Tom Stephen, drummer and co-manager of The Jeff Healey Band and Amanda Marshall Healey Band, died on Feb. 20, at age 68, of cardiac arrest.

Jon Erickson, a veteran Canadian sound engineer and tour manager, died on Feb. 26, at age 66, of cancer.

Eleanor (Ilie) Koldofsky, a record producer, head of Aquitaine Records, and the former wife of Sam Sniderman. She was born in 1920.

Gordon Pinsent, one of Canada's most prolific and acclaimed stage, film and TV actors, died on Feb. 25 at age 92.

Rawle James, a Toronto dance music industry veteran, died of a heart attack on March 1 at age 68.

Dane Lanken, a Canadian musician, journalist, and author, died on March 3 at age 77.

Rob Bennett, a veteran independent Toronto concert promoter, died on March 14, at age 71, after a long struggle with ALS.


Peter De Remigis, drummer in Toronto '50s rock 'n roll band The Consuls, died on March 15, at age 82.

Philip Balsam, a Toronto-based artist, musician, composer, and songwriter, died on March 31, at age 79, after struggling with Giant Cell Arteritis for two years.

Care Failure (born Caroline Kawa), lead singer of Toronto hard rock band Die Mannequin, has died at age 36.

Jocelyn Morlock, a Vancouver-based Juno Award-winning composer has died at age 53.

Robert "Red" Robinson OBC, the legendary Canadian disc jockey who spent over 60 years on the air, died on April 1 at age 86.


Don Daynard, a legendary Toronto radio host, died on April 20, at the age of 88, after a lengthy illness. He had long stints as the popular morning man at CKFM & CHFI in Toronto.

William Neil (Willie) MacCalder, a Western Canadian blues pianist and vocalist best known for his work in Powder Blues, has died at age 76. Powder Blues leader Tom Lavin announced the news on his Facebook page on April 23.

Fred Sherratt, a veteran and acclaimed Canadian broadcast executive, died on April 22, at age 93, after a brief battle with cancer.

Tim (Timothy Gregg) Bachman, a Canadian guitarist and vocalist best known for his work with rock bands Brave Belt and Bachman–Turner Overdrive, died on April 28, at age 71, of cancer.

Chris (Christopher Robert) Brookes, a founding pillar of theatre in Newfoundland and Labrador, author, broadcaster and storyteller known around the world for his audio documentaries, died on April 10 at the age of 79.

Vic (Victor James) Folliott, a broadcasting executive and a co-founder of The Grand at 101, died on April 21, due to complications following a seizure.

Robert George Johnston (aka “Georgie Fab”), a Hamilton-based producer, guitarist, and singer/songwriter, died on April 23, at age 73.

Gordon Lightfoot, one of Canada’s most distinguished songwriters who enjoyed chart-topping success with songs such as the Canadian Railroad Trilogy, If You Could Read My Mind, Sundown and Wreck of The Edmund Fitzgerald, died May 1 at age 84.

Brian McKenna, an acclaimed Montreal-born documentary filmmaker and founding producer of CBC's The Fifth Estate, died on May 5, at age 77, after a short illness.

Wayne Keen, a broadcast executive, died on May 5, at age 57, after a long battle with cancer.


Stacie Lynn Roper, a country singer best known for her work as the lead singer of Hey Romeo, died on May 8, at age 47.

Andy (David Andrew) Lindsay, an Ontario musician and music business executive, died on May 26 at the age of 58.

Douglas G. Caldwell, a veteran Canadian record label executive, died on June 11, at age 64, after a battle with mental illness.

Vance Masters, a former drummer for the Guess Who, died on June 22 at age 77, following a severe Covid-19 infection.

Robert Joseph "Bob" Segarini, singer, songwriter, producer and media personality, died in his sleep on July 10th at Etobicoke General Hospital, where he’d been for the past several months. He was 77 years of age.

Jaime Royal (Robbie) Robertson, guitarist, singer, and songwriter best known for his work with The Band, died Aug. 9 in Los Angeles at age 80. No cause was given.

Bill Lawrence, a familiar Hamilton TV personality for decades as host “Uncle Bill” on the children’s show Tiny Talent Time, died on July 14, at age 91, from a heart attack.

Tex Emery (born Emery Anthony Herperger), a veteran Canadian country artist, died on Aug. 17 at the age of 92.


Denis LePage, a disco producer and artist at the heart of Montreal’s pumping 1980s nightlife, died on Aug. 21, at age 74, of cancer.

Keith Spicer, Canada’s first Commissioner of Official Languages and a former chair of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), died on Aug. 24 at the age of 89.

Phil (Philip Bridgman) Lind, who served as a collaborator and confidante to Rogers Communications founder Ted Rogers for four decades, died on Aug. 20, on his 80th birthday.

Doug ("Dougie") Trineer, a Canadian country recording artist, songwriter and producer, died on Aug. 28, at age 83.

George Belmore, a Burlington, Ontario-based country recording artist /performer, died on Sept. 3. His age has not been reported.

Bruce Guthro, one of Cape Breton's most well-known troubadours whose remarkable 40-year career made waves on both sides of the Atlantic, died on Sept. 5, at age 62, of cancer.

Stan Klees, a Canadian music industry architect who championed Canadian talent along with Walt Grealis, inspired Canadian content regulations, co-founded what would eventually become the Juno Awards, and created the MAPL logo to help qualify Canadian content, died in his sleep Friday, Sept. 22, of natural causes, was 91.

Cal Cavendish, a Canadian country music singer/songwriter, died on Sept. 22, at age 83. A cause of death was not reported.

John Edward 'Ted' Farr, a Canadian broadcasting veteran, died on Oct. 6 at age 75. A cause of death was not reported.

Armand Larrivée Monroe, a queer pioneer and trailblazer in the Montreal nightlife and drag scene, has died at age 88.

Matthew Perry, Canadian actor and star of Friends, died on Oct. 28.

David Gavan Baxter, a Toronto roots singer/songwriter, guitarist, producer, and one-time publishing executive, died on Nov. 4, at age 68, of congenital heart disease and other health conditions.

Ian Ferrier, a Montreal musician and poet, died on Nov. 3, at age 68, of a brain tumour.

Albert Gerald (Al) Rain, a Canadian songwriter, manager and producer, died on Nov. 14 at age 84.

Peter J. Moore, a Grammy-winning record producer, engineer and mixer, died on Nov. 11, at age 67, after a long fight with cancer.

Karl Tremblay, singer for Les Cowboys Fringants, died of prostate cancer, band members announced on Facebook on Nov. 15. He was 47.

Chad Allan (born Allan Kowbel), a Winnipeg-born singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist known as the first lead singer of The Guess Who, died on Nov. 21 at the age of 80.

Towa (Towela) Beer, a Toronto-based former music industry executive, marketer, events producer and TV host, died on Nov. 25 due to diabetes-related complications. Her age has not been reported.

Roy (Chesley) MacCaull, a hit-making Canadian country music singer/songwriter, died on Nov. 23 at age 86.

Myles (Francis) Goodwyn, April Wine co-founder, longtime frontman and lyricist, died from cancer on Sunday (Dec. 3) in Halifax at the age of 75.

Charles Officer, a Canadian film, TV, and video director, died on Dec. 1 at the age of 48.

Bernie Pitters, a veteran Toronto-based reggae keyboardist and producer, died on Dec. 9 at age 68.

Jayson Hoover, a Vancouver soul singer popular in the '60s and '70s, died on Nov. 5 at age 78.

James (Jimmy) Ayoub, the original drummer of Montreal rock band Mahogany Rush, died on Dec.10, at age 70. No cause of death has been reported.

Bill Elliott, a regionally popular guitarist from Bass River, Nova Scotia, died on Dec. 8, at age 67. A cause of death has not been disclosed.

Ken Grant (born Born Kenneth Fredrick Ivan Grattan), a notable fixture on Ottawa radio for over three decades nicknamed "The General," died on Dec. 1, at age 88.
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Japan’s MILLENNIUM PARADE Coming to Toronto on 2024 Global Tour: See the Schedule

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek on Nov. 2 in Mexico City.

MILLENNIUM PARADE is set to launch its first-ever global tour called the WHO AND HOW TOUR 2024 in November, traveling to nine cities around the world for 10 shows.

The band, led by Daiki Tsuneta of King Gnu, will kick off the trek in Mexico City, then hit Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Berlin, Paris, London, Utrecht, and Tokyo. The Tokyo shows will take place at Tokyo Garden Theater on Dec. 19 and 20. The tour will mark the first time in three years that the band performs live.

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