Music News Digest, Sept. 8, 2017

American rights organization BMI, whose members include the likes of Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and Sting, announced on Thursday that it had $1.13B in revenue and distributed $1.02B in royalties during its most recent fiscal year, which ended in June.

— Canadian teen writer, activist, public speaker, and global citizen, Hannah Alper has her first book released by Nelson Publishing on Nov. 1. It's entitled Small Acts, Big Change and, yes, she is the daughter of "That" Eric Alper.

Sam Smith bares his soul on his gospel-tinged new single “Too Good at Goodbyes” that was released earlier this morning by Universal Music. It’s from an as-yet named album that arrives before Santa hits chimney pots everywhere.

— Also in the new release hopper is “Love So Soft,” the teaser single from Kelly Clarkson’s debut Atlantic album, Meaning of Life. The soul-laced package is due Oct. 27.

— Welsh-born Canadian blues-rocker Philip Sayce has a stinging cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” as part of Warner Music Canada’s 50th-anniversary collection, Covered in Gold: 5.0.

— Acclaimed Canadian singer Terra Lightfoot is teasing the release of her Oct. 13 New Mistakes album with the immediately captivating “Paradise” single that is available at better online stores everywhere.

— He may be gone, but he’s not forgotten. George Michael is back via a remix of his 1980s “Fantasy” hit, this time with a funky remix by Nile Rogers who has “mixed feelings” about the new edition. The track can be found on Listen Without Prejudice/MTV Unplugged that has its release on Oct. 20.

— Rounder Records releases the late Gregg Allman’s final studio recording, Southern Blood, today. The sibling to Duane, these two pioneered Southern rock in the ‘60s. Don Was produced this last session, recorded in Muscle Shoals, and including songs written by such luminaries as Jackson Browne, Willie Dixon, Jerry Garcia & Robert Hunter, Lowell George and Spooner Oldham & Dan Penn.

— Here’s the official U2 lyric video for “You’re the Best Thing About Me,” taken from a forthcoming Songs of Experience album.

Annie Lennox surprises Sting at the Polar Music Awards.

— Cameco Cares Concert Series has raised $820,000 for the Saskatoon city hospital foundation. On board as performers for the fundraisers were Barenaked Ladies, Huey Lewis and the News, Sarah McLachlan, and Train.

The late CBC storyteller/radio host Stuart McLean is still visible, thanks to a new CD collection, The Vinyl Cafe: The Unreleased Stories. The 4-disc package set for release on Oct. 6 features artwork by friend and regular show guest Reid Jamieson and includes two new stories recorded at McLean’s final Vinyl Cafe performance.

— Hamilton's Supercrawl fest is now in its ninth year, and the free three-day event runs on different downtown stages, today (Sept. 8) through Sunday. Headliners include Basia Bulat, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, Andy Shauf, Tanya Tagaq, Bros, The Sheepdogs, The Acorn and Harrow Fair.

— Toronto's Horseshoe Tavern marks its 70th birthday on Dec. 6. An anniversary concert series runs Sept. 26 through Dec. 31. The club has announced Max Weinberg’s Jukebox on Oct. 10, along with shows by Lisa LeBlanc, Fast Romantics, Constantines, and Skydiggers. Previously unveiled performers include Billy Bragg (his three shows sold out instantly) DOA, Hollerado, The Pursuit of Happiness, Elliott Brood, and 54.40. A book about the 'Shoe, The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern: A Complete History, by David McPherson (published by Dundurn Press) will be launched at a private media and industry launch on Oct. 11.

— The Alberta Music Industry Association is looking for individuals to join its Board of Directors. The deadline for nominations is Sept. 11. Apply here

— BreakOut West is being held in Edmonton, Sept. 13-17. The conference and live music fest is seeking volunteers. Apply here

— East Coast hip-hop fest Hopscotch Halifax has announced US MC Joyner Lucas as its headliner. He will perform Sept. 30 at Dartmouth Cove, 20 Canal Street with City Natives. Hopscotch's mission is to bring back the traditional roots of hip hop parties. The fest runs Sept. 28-Oct. 1.

Canada's Music Incubator (CMI) has announced the creation of AE West, an extension of CMI’s Toronto-based Artist Entrepreneur program, in partnership with the National Music Centre and Alberta Music. The program includes mentoring and networking, and takes place Nov. 7 to Dec. 18. Applications are now open, with a deadline of Oct. 13. More info here 

— Road warriors The Sadies are continuing to log serious miles. They perform at Octfest in Brooklyn on Saturday, followed by Western Canada dates, Sept. 13- 24. A show in Brisbane Australia at the Out On The Weekend fest on Oct. 15 is followed by seven European shows in October. Here's a brand new video for the latest single off their Polaris longlisted album Northern Passages, shot at Toronto's Royal Cinema.

RIP

Adam "Chef Adams" Semeniuk, a storied Canadian Country singer and songwriter in the '50s and '60s, passed away Aug. 28 in Lindsay, ON. He was 90. Chef released material on the Quality, Canatal, Town & Country, Arc. Paragon, Marathon, Boot and Cheyenne record labels, and placed several singles on RPM Charts.

Born in Sturgis, SK, he relocated to Ontario in the late 40s. After working in restaurants (where he earned the nickname "Chef") he began to pursue his recording career as Chef Adams. He fronted the Country Rhythm Kings in 1953, signed with Quality Records and released his first single "Now That You're Gone" in 1956. Following a follow-up single, "Marilyn Bell Has Done It Again", Adams quit the label over a musical direction issue. The '60s saw Adams form a duo with Yvonne Terry (in 1963-1964) and in 1968 he formed another band in which he fronted called Chef Adams And The Adams Boys who toured into the early 1970s.

Murray Lerner, a documentary filmmaker whose work captured some musical greats in era-defining performances, died on Sept. 2, at home in Queens, NY, age 90. Lerner filmed the Newport Folk Festival for four years in the early and middle 1960s, including the much-referenced moment when Bob Dylan plugged in an electric guitar. He also filmed the volatile 1970 Isle of Wight Festival, and in 1981 he won his only Academy Award for From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China. At his death, Mr. Lerner had just completed a film about Joni Mitchell’s Isle of Wight set. Source: New York Times

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