Liner Notes: Bullet News for Feb. 3rd

On Wednesday, MusiCounts, Canada's leading music education charity, announced Dianne Winmill of North Hastings High School in Bancroft, ON as the recipient of the 2017 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award. Blue Rodeo is the sponsor of this year's award, which recognizes teachers showing outstanding dedication and both inspiring and nurturing the musical growth of Canadian youth.

Blue Rodeo members, Jim Cuddy, Bazil Donovan, and Colin Cripps surprised Winmill with the award during a tour of their Toronto recording studio, The Woodshed, with several of her students. Following the presentation, the students had an exclusive opportunity to record in the studio.  

-- Alejandra Ribera released her second album, This Island, last week via Pheromone Recordings. She is now sharing the video for album track, “Carry Me,” and has also announced nine tour dates for Ontario and Quebec, beginning on Feb. 23 at Théâtre Petit-Champlain in Quebec City and closing out at NAC Studio in Ottawa on March 17. That is followed by seven dates in Germany and Austria in late March. 


-- Byron Mikaloff, singer-guitarist of the popular Quebec City band The Lost Fingers, is organizing a concert to show sympathy for the Muslim community in the city and to raise funds for the families of the victims of the mosque shooting Sunday night. Details are not yet finalized but a Feb. 12 date is likely. Source: Montreal Gazette

-- Ottawa’s MEGAPHONO Music Showcase Festival & Conference closes today. The three-day event has welcomed music industry professionals from the US, Canada and abroad for a celebration of Ottawa-Gatineau and Eastern Ontario’s burgeoning music scene. 60 local and regional artists are performing in over 20 venues across Ottawa-Gatineau, with a daytime conference on music industry-related topics held at CITIZEN (207 Gilmour Street). Artists showcasing tonight include Beyries, Tough Age, Petra Glynt and Her Harbour, while a Juno Concert Series event takes over Barrymore's. Info here

-- Nominations are now open for the 2017 Jim Beam INDIES with INDIE88. Submissions are being accepted through until Feb. 17th. Artists or their representatives (including labels and managers) can submit nominations on their behalf. All submissions completed before Feb. 7th will receive discounted pricing. The eligibility period for all awards categories runs from Sept. 1, 2016, through Feb. 1, 2017.

Nominees must have been active during the eligibility period and are based on the performance of the group or artist either on record or in live performances. Complete submission details, eligibility criteria and award categories here. The event takes place during CMW in Toronto April 19th.

-- Jane Cada-Sharp, former General Manager of Revolution Place in Grande Prairie, Alberta, has taken on the role of Membership Consultant for Music Canada Live.  Her focus will be on engaging live music stakeholders across the country, raising awareness of the work of the association and helping increase the momentum the organization is experiencing as the voice of live music in Canada.

-- Via FB yesterday came news that country/pop singer/songwriter Jim Witter suffered a heart attack earlier this week. Word is he is on the mend, though daughter Roslyn posted that “many of my dad's shows will be rescheduled/canceled this month. His agents are working on rescheduling them. “

The 15th Annual Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival takes place in Toronto Feb. 17-19 and will present the best of urban, blues, rock, jazz, country, folk and roots music. Over 100 artists will be performing at five venues and six stages over three days of the long Family Day weekend. Performers will include Trent Severn, Danny Marks, Joe Hall, David Essig, Jack De Keyzer, Noah Zacharin, HOTCHA!, Julian Taylor, Jon Brooks, Lily Frost, Louis Simão, and Blair Packham. Full schedule here

-- Welsh-born and US-based adult pop singer/songwriter Judith Owen showcased her upcoming album Somebody’s Child at a swank soiree in Toronto last night. Held in the elegant confines of the Courtyard Café in The Windsor Arms, it featured Owen performing the album in its entirety. She played fluently on the grand piano and was accompanied by legendary LA bassist Leland Sklar, a percussionist and a three-piece strings section on songs that didn't lack in social commentary. Owen will soon head out on a North American tour in support of Bryan Ferry, with a Montreal stop at St. Denis Theatre on April 3. The night before, she’ll play a solo show at Toronto’s Gallery 345.

Those enjoying proceedings last night included an A-list cast of musicians and industry movers and shakers. Spied by FYI were singers Sylvia Tyson, Cindy Church, Amy Sky and Avery Raquel, jazz musicians Jane Bunnett and Larry Cramer (just back from a Jazz Safari in Cuba), musician/producers Greg Kavanagh and Peter Cardinali, radio veteran John Donabie, Bernie Fiedler, and Paul Shaver. Those hoping that Owen’s husband, comic genius Harry Shearer (The Simpsons, This Is Spinal Tap), would show were out of luck, however. (KD)




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