Old Man Luedecke was among the ECMA Award winners announced last night
Old Man Luedecke was among the ECMA Award winners announced last night

Music News Digest: April 28, 2017

Ria Mae, Les Hôtesses d’Hilaire, Classified, and Old Man Luedecke are among the artists who took home East Coast Music Awards (ECMAs) last night at the Harbour Station in Saint John, NB. War Horses, Ced Marty & Dave, The Motorleague, Lennie Gallant, Tristan Horncastle, Hillsburn, and Like A Motorcycle were also honoured during the live national broadcast hosted by comedian James Mullinger.

The evening also featured performances from David Myles, Classified, Repartee, Jason Benoit, Ria Mae, Còig, Caroline Savoie, The Motorleague, Les Hôtesses d’Hilaire, Reeny Smith, Lisa LeBlanc, Paper Lions, Gordie MacKeeman and His Rhythm Boys, Like A Motorcycle, and Tomato/Tomato.

The remaining 2017 East Coast Music Awards, including the Industry Awards, will be handed out over the course of the weekend as the festival continues in Saint John.

Read the list of last night’s winners here

─ The 2017 iHeartRadio Much Music Video Awards will be held in Toronto on June 18, with a power-packed lineup of performers has been announced. Among them are DNCE (featuring former MMVA host Joe Jonas), Imagine Dragons, rising star rapper Jazz Cartier, Lorde (a star of the 2014 MMVAs), and singer/songwriter Julia Michaels. The show will be simulcast on Much, CTV, and VRAK, and live streamed across the iHeartRadio app and nine Virgin Radio stations nationally. More performers tba.

The Room 217 Foundation runs a dementia support program to improve the quality of life through music. Organizers have assembled a lineup of heavy hitters for its fundraising concert, Voices That Care, at Toronto’s Glenn Gould Studio on May 5. Performers on the bill are (Foundation director) Murray McLauchlan, Margaret Atwood, Natalie MacMaster & Donnell Leahy, Albert Schultz, Ben Heppner, Travis Knights and Matt Andersen. Tickets available here.

─ Quebec singer-songwriter Klô Pelgag has been awarded the 2017 Prix Rapsat-Lelièvre for her recent album L’étoile thoracique. This trophy is presented annually, alternating between an artist from Québec and one from the Wallonie-Bruxelles region of Belgium, to honour the excellence of an album of Francophone songs. The prize earns Pelgag $5K and assists her label, Coyote Records, in the marketing of her album in Wallonie-Bruxelles. The singer will officially receive her award during the Francofolies de Spa, in Belgium, where she performs on July 20.


Stakeholders in the music industry have lauded the government for declining to renew licences for Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK), saying that the move would relieve musicians from manipulation. According to one report, in the Financial Year 2015/16, the society distributed 13% to the membership and retained 87% for unspecified purposes. A government inquiry into the board members is underway.

Big cheers were heard in music industry boardrooms and in musician circles across the US on Wednesday with congressional approval of a bill that aims to create an independent copyright office and reinforce the rights of content creators.

Toronto based hip hop artist Reema Major has utilized humble beginnings as a Sudanese refugee to propel her along an impressive journey with highlights in the form of a record deal with Interscope Records, co-signs from Maybach Music Group president/ rapper Rick Ross and hip-hop icon Dr. Dre. The 21-year-old is about to have her debut album released. It's called LegenDiary and "AK47" is the lead single.


— Chuck Berry's June 16 album release is teased with the release of a second single, a blues rocker entitled "Wonderful Woman." The LP comes in several editions, including red vinyl.


— Blackjack Billy, a good-time group known for getting the party started, has a brand new single titled “How to Get the Girl” featuring Canadian country act, Madeline Merlo. The single, set for release to Country radio May 3 and available everywhere May 5, was written by Noll Billings, Jeff Coplan and Tim Hicks. Ron Kitchener's RGK Entertainment is behind the release.

— Winnipeg bluegrass quartet D. Rangers has regrouped after a six-year hiatus and is out on a western swing. “We decided enough time had lapsed and we were all ready to commit the time to the band that it needed and to resurrect it,” vocalist and banjo player Jaxon Haldane tells the Western Wheel.


The Canadian Music Competition (CMC) organizers have announced the 2017 National Final, is taking place from June 17 to 30 at the Conservatoire de musique in Gatineau. The three Grand Prize winners of the 59th edition and the winner of the Stepping Stone (professional component) will perform on July 12 in Salle Odyssée at the Maison de la Culture de Gatineau, with the Orchestre de la Francophonie, conducted by Jean-Philippe Tremblay.

Some 200 musicians of ages 7 to 30, from six Canadian provinces, will take part in the competition.

Sony Music has just released DJ Khaled’s new single “I’m The One” featuring Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance The Rapper, and Lil Wayne.

For your Friday entertainment, courtesy of Hits Daily Double, Kendrick vs. Drake: A battle for the year's biggest bow.


Jay Z has resigned with Live Nation. The standing contract terminated in 2018. No terms are disclosed. His 2008 360-deal was worth US$150M. This new one excludes recordings and management and strictly covers the star's touring business.

— Paul McCartney, now 74, has added more dates to his long-running ‘One-on-One’ tour with a handful of new dates. Macca's tour in still ongoing from when it began back in April 2016. With these additional dates, the tour will have totalled 44 dates across five separate legs. All shows are in the US.

Now that Record Store Day has come and gone maybe you have given some thought to downsizing your CD collection that takes up too much space and has mostly been ripped to your hard drive. Getting rid of the little buggers isn't always so easy though. Sadly, fewer and fewer people actually have a player and those that do more than not don't use them as streaming has become de rigueur. Roy Trakin has some ideas on how to purge the collection in a Variety feature. His ideas aren't so new but they might offer impetus to actually go to the liquor store and start filling boxes up with friends whose time has come to move on.

Canada's mechanical licensing agency CMRRA is the focus of speculation about its future strategy as PRO SOCAN is now nibbling at its turf. Digital Music News reports picking up whispers at CMW that it is a potential acquisition target for SoundExchange, an American-based non-profit whose focus is non-interactive digital performance recording royalties.  A vast majority of Sound Exchange’s collections come from Pandora and SiriusXM plays in the United States and its payouts are larger than all of the streaming services for many Canadian indie labels.

The CMRRA and the music publisher board members are steering clear of media inquiries, suggesting something is in the wind.


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