Timmins residents line up outside the Archie Dillon Sportsplex for festival tickets. Pic: Len Gillis, Postmedia Network
Timmins residents line up outside the Archie Dillon Sportsplex for festival tickets. Pic: Len Gillis, Postmedia Network

Liner Notes: Bullet News For December 12th

Ticket sales for Timmins' eight-day Stars and Thunder 2017 festival headlined by Keith Urban has now passed more than $2.5M.

Timmins Mayor Steve Black reports that ticket sales have exceeded $2.57M, representing more than 11,150 tickets being sold for Stars and Thunder 2017.

Stars and Thunder is the Timmins International Fireworks Competition and Festival, being held next summer as a special celebration to mark Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation. It is budgeted at $3.5M.

-- Justin Bieber dominates Vevo’s list of its most-watched music videos of 2016. The pop star has three out of the top-10 most-watched videos on the music service.

   “Sorry” is No. 1 one with more than 1.8B views. “What Do you Mean?” and “Love Yourself” come in No. 5 and No. 6 on the list.

   Adele’s “Hello” placed No. 2 with more than 1.2B plays. Fifth Harmony places No. 3 with “Work from Home.”

   According to Billboard, Vevo reports David Bowie’s videos receiving the biggest number of views in a 24-hour period, outside of new releases. Bowie’s videos have been viewed 51M times in the period following his January 10 death earlier this year.

-- Concert promoter 117Live has announced it will bring Justin Bieber to Dubai's Autism Rock Arena on May 6. He last performed in the UAE at a two-night run for the Dubai Sevens in 2013 and made headlines when he turned up two hours late to both concerts.

-- Michael Bublé's sixth annual Christmas concert special will air Dec. 20th on NBC. Céline Dion and Blake Shelton are the special guests in a taped show before a live audience in Manchester, England, earlier this year.  

-- Twenty-four year-old Selena Gomez has reportedly signed a US$10M deal with Coach to design her own line and become the face of the luxury accessory brand >>

--- HBO will debut the Allen Hughes documentary, The Defiant Ones, in 2017, Variety reports. The four-part doc traces the lives and long partnership of two of music’s living legends: Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine.

-- On Friday, Madonna was honored as Woman of the Year at the Billboard Women in Music 2016 event in NYC.

   In the speech, she bluntly took on sexism, ageism, and misogyny in the music industry. "You will be criticized, you will be vilified, and you will definitely not be played on the radio," the 58-year-old said to the younger women in the audience of how their careers will change as they age.

    "People say that I'm so controversial," she said. "But I think the most controversial thing that I've done is to stick around."


-- BuzzFeed has posted 17 Canadian acts to watch out for in 2017.

-- Showtime is promoting the 2015 doc, In and Out of Hell, a 58-minute life-and-times about Meat Loaf's turbulent past, rejection by record companies and rise to fame.


-- The Rolling Stones earn their 37th top 10 album on the US Billboard 200 chart, as the band's new set, Blue & Lonesome, debuts at No. 4 with 120K sales and 123K equivalent album units, when streams and track-equivalent downloads are factored in. The Hamilton Mixtape debuts in 1st place with 169K sales and 187K equivalents.

-- Warner Music Canada has just released “heavydirtysoul," twenty one pilots' latest single off their album Blurryface. The first single from the album, “Tear In My Heart,” peaked at #5 on Canada’s Alternative Rock Radio. Three-times platinum-certified "Stressed Out," went #1 at Canadian Alternative Rock; Top 5 at CHR, Hot AC and Modern Rock - and their most recent single, "Ride," made the Top 5 at Alternative Rock and the Top 10 at CHR. Additionally, their single from the Suicide Squad soundtrack, "Heathens," was a #1 hit at Alternative Rock and made the Top 5 at CHR.

    Below, a live edition of the new track, performed this spring in Vancouver.


-- Peace Trail, released on Friday, features new songs that Neil Young has written since the release of his Earth album this past June. Primarily acoustic, the album was recorded at Rick Rubin’s Shangri-La Studios and features Young on vocals and guitar, Jim Keltner on drums, and Paul Bushnell on bass. It was co-produced by Young and longstanding studio cohort John Hanlon, who also mixed the sessions.


-- The Wild Strawberries, the Canadian pop duo led by husband-and-wife team Ken and Roberta Harrison, has announced its next album is to be called Vesper 50. Initially set to be released this year, the band announced on their Facebook page on Dec. 10, that they have only now finished mastering the record.

-- Vancouver DJ / producer Vanic has signed to Disruptor Records / Gold'N Retriever / RCA Records. The first release is a remix of his hit single "Samurai" ft. Katy Tiz, included on an EP featuring new remixes from Pluto, Prismo, BKAYE and Tascione and available now at all digital stores.

   Vanic achieved initial success with his 2014 take on machineheart's "Circles," which earned over 1M SoundCloud plays. Since then, his music has over 80M million collective plays and led him to remixes for Taylor Swift ("I Knew You Were Trouble,") The Chainsmokers ("Nice Hair,") Major Lazer ("Be Together" featuring Wild Belle,) Tove Styrke ("Borderline,") Lana Del Rey ("West Coast" and "Summertime Sadness") and Chvrches ("The Mother We Share.") He plans on touring across Canada with Adventure Club in 2017.

-- Music Nova Scotia has just launched a Podcast celebrating the current success stories and music of NS artists. Entitled Back Home, it features interviews, music, tour dates and exclusive video content. Current episodes feature music and interviews with Ben Caplan, In-Flight Safety, Rose Cousins, Hillsburn, Mardeen, Mo Kenney, Nap Eyes, Erin Costelo, Wintersleep and many more. View here

-- Toronto folk/roots fest Winterfolk turns 15 with its annual event in February. Details online.

-- Montréal psych-rock trio Elephant Stone has announced a winter tour with Walrus in support of their recently released full-length, Ship Of Fools. The eight-city tour starts at Kingston’s Grad Club on Feb. 8 and ends at Montréal’s Fairmont on Feb. 18 A full itinerary is here


-- ‘70s Hamilton underground band Simply Saucer is the subject of a new authorized biography, Heavy Metalloid Music, written by Jesse Locke. A launch party at The Monarch in Toronto Sunday featured a solo set by group mainman Edgar Breau. A Hamilton launch takes place Dec. 17 at Hammer City Records, with a Montréal event to follow. The book is published by Eternal Cavalier Press.

-- RIP: John Mays, an American doo-wop, R&B and gospel singer who resided in Toronto for many years, has died from cancer. He was 76. Mays was a frontman in multiple award-winning Canadian blues band Fathead, earning him seven Male Vocalist awards from the Maple Blues Awards. Georgia-born, he worked in gospel, R&B and blues and did a stint with James Brown. The last Fathead album was 2014’s Fatter Than Ever, on Electro-Fi Records. His death was confirmed on Facebook by Fathead on the weekend.




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