The Tragically Hip is helping to quell the ticketing ruckus that became national news in the past several weeks. According to a Canadian Press story this a.m., a reconfigured stage will allow blocks of new tickets to be made available at 10 a.m. today for all 15 shows in 11 cities. The arena tour opens in Victoria on July 22, wraps in hometown Kingston, ON on Aug. 20 and includes three nights at Rogers Centre in Toronto where over 60k tickets have already been sold. Ticketmaster tells CP that about 1.3m Hip fans attempted to purchase tickets during the June 3 public sale. Only several hundred thousand seats were available to accommodate them at numerous venues across the country. Each customer today will only be restricted to purchase two tickets, though the band did not say how many will be released to the public. The Hip's new album, Man Machine Poem, is to be released this Friday.
--Ottawa’s CityFolk music festival announced the initial line-up for its Sept. 15-18 program. Confirmed to play so far are Vance Joy; James Bay; Bryson Tiller; Dropkick Murphys; X Ambassadors; Dean Brody; Lake Street Dive; The New Pornographers; Joey Bada$$; Basia Bulat; Dan Mangan; Michael Bernard Fitzgerald; Plants and Animals; Vanilla Fudge;; Marlon Williams; Julien Baker; Guided By Voices; Hat Fitz and Cara; SonReal; Rayland Baxter; John Moreland; Fred Penner; Charlotte Cardin; Blind Pilot; Northcote; Skinny Lister; Fruition; Darlingside; and Jim Bryson . . . with more to be announced in the weeks ahead. CityFolk organizers confirmed a return to the recently-renovated Lansdowne Park location, as well. Attendance this year is expected to exceed 50,000. Audience size has increased incrementally since 2011, when Bluesfest organizers began managing the event.
--- -- SOCAN's annual awards gala set for Monday night (June 20) in Toronto will include a number of Special Achievement awards. Included are: Hockey Night In Canada" composer Dolores Claman; worldwide hit-maker The Weeknd and Ahmad "Belly" Balshe; multi-platinum-selling, box-office singing superstar Johnny Reid; Canadian talent advocate Gary Slaight; and teen singing sensation Alessia Cara. The event is to be emceed by hockey-loving bestselling author Dave Bidini of the Rheostatics.
-- Subscription-based online media portal CARTT this morning reports on a new study showing 46% of households in Canada acknowledged having used Netflix in the month prior to the consumer survey, with a paltry 4% and 3% respectively saying they had subscriptions to Shomi and Crave.
-- The June 19 iHeartRadio Much Music Video Awards is a sell-out, Bell Media reports today. Ashley Benson, Jus Reign, Marianas Trench, Robbie Amell, Scott Helman, Shemar Moore, and Tyler Posey are presenters for the Sunday shindig that kicks off with performances by Coleman Hell and Ruth B.
-- Randy Lennox makes his mark at Bell Media is the headline in the subscription-based Playback online magazine. The feature starts off: ”Canada doesn’t have very many celebrity-style business executives, but Bell Media’s Randy Lennox comes pretty close.”
-- June 30 is the final deadline for submissions to the Canadian Folk Music Awards. Details here.
-- The Corporation of Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall have announced the re-appointment of Jesse Kumagai as its Director of Programming, Marketing & Business Development, effective Monday, July 4. He had earlier held the same post but left to become Vice President, Talent at Live Nation Canada where his responsibilities include programming festivals, tours and individual concerts. “We are thrilled to have Jesse return to our Executive team,” says Massey Hall & Roy Thomson Hall President & CEO, Deane Cameron, who made the announcement. “We are confident that Jesse will continue to help strengthen our presence in the city and deepen our relationships with all of our valued partners and clients who enjoy our buildings. His long history in this community and with Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall as a champion for emerging artists, combined with his passion for the advancement of live music presentation makes him the natural and ideal candidate to lead our growing programming and marketing team.”
“Throughout my career, I’ve been drawn to the places where I felt I could have the greatest impact connecting artists and audiences, helping to develop Canadian talent, and creating new ways to add to our musical heritage,” says Kumagai in a prepared statement. “The path back to this organization was an unexpected one, but I genuinely believe it’s where I can best achieve those goals. I’m returning with a renewed sense of energy, excitement and passion – and I’m determined to have a lot of fun while I’m at it. It feels like I’m coming home.”
-- Microsoft is buying social media networking company Linkedin for more than $26 billion US.
-- JASRAC, Japan's largest copyright collection group, is seeking arbitration in summary courts nationwide against 212 hair salons, restaurants and apparel stores that allegedly failed to pay fees on background music, its spokesman said Friday.
-- Berklee College of Music and MIT Media Lab are leading an initiative that has digital media outlets such as Spotify, Pandora and YouTube and record labels signed up to lay the groundwork for a shared, open database of ownership rights. Their goal is to create a global infrastructure that would, in part, expedite payment flows to artists from the places that deliver their music. – The Artery
-- Award winning writer, filmmaker, author Martin Melhuish has teamed up with CanAmerican international performer and creative entrepreneur Jaren Cerf to establish the Toronto/Montréal-based company, Jarma Matrix. The firm will oversee their creative/business partnership which is active in various areas of the arts world. The partnership evolved from the close friendship and shared common interests which became part of their relationship after meeting during the run of a stage musical Oh Canada What A Feeling, scripted by Melhuish and in which Jaren earned rave reviews for her singing roles that included parts performing as Celine Dion and Joni Mitchell. In the realm of TV, the company is affiliated with TH Entertainment LLC--an internationally-recognized TV production and distribution company, based in Nashville and Toronto, in which Melhuish has been a key creative influence since the late ‘80s. Cerf is in Montreal today to start work on a Can-Irish biopic about the late Irish traditional singer Joe Heaney.
Cerf, Mitiska & Jaren and Chris Jones – “Starting Right Now “
-- Post Media scribbler Lynn Saxberg was clearly impressed with Mumford & Sons’ Sunday night concert in capital city: “Seven years after they hit the mainstream with their breakthrough album, Sigh No More, Mumford and Sons finally made it to Ottawa," she writes, “quenching fans’ musical thirst with a sold-out concert at Canadian Tire Centre on Sunday. About 17,500 people snapped up tickets to Mumfords’ Ottawa debut, selling it out in less than an hour. Frontman Marcus Mumford showed he was not immune to the enthusiasm of a crowd seeing the band for the first time. ‘This already feels like a Friday night not a Sunday night,’ he said at one point. ‘So glad we came at last. Sorry it took so long.’”