Music News Digest, Feb. 1, 2019

Céline Dion is the subject of a forthcoming biopic, The Power of Love, slated for release in 2020. French star Valérie Lemercier will direct the film and play the singer. Dion, 50, has authorised the project and granted the rights to her songs, Variety reports. The Power of Love will follow Dion from her childhood in Quebec in the 1960s, where she was the youngest of 14 children in what she has described as a poor but happy family, to her teenage rise to fame.

Cécile Gaget of French studio Gaumont said the film would be “in the vein of “[forthcoming Elton John biopic] Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody."  Of the director, she added: “She’s a powerhouse who knows how to move and how to dance. And she’s an perfectionist and an overachiever in many ways like Dion.” Source: The Guardian

–  Toronto hip-hop artist Notifi hosted an industry showcase at Toronto's Drake Underground on Wed. night, attracting a full house on a bitterly cold evening. Signed to Slaight Music and Sony Music Canada, he has made a splash with the track "Won't Get Lonely," one he reprised in a short set that displayed his skills as both a rapper and a soulful vocalist. The video for his new single, "Wave," was also premiered. Those spied in attendance included (Notifi's music lawyer) Sander Shalinsky, Warren Copnick, Darryl Hurs, Lisa Zbitnew, and Cam Carpenter from Indie Week, Slaight Music's Derrick Ross and Barnaby Marshall, and FYI's David Farrell. Word is that Notifi is attracting serious US industry interest.

– Alessia Cara has announced The Pains Of Growing 2019 Canadian Tour, kicking off at National Arts Centre in Ottawa, on May 11. The 12-city tour by the Grammy-winner closes out at Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Vancouver, on May 27. Her full itinerary here. Tix for all dates will go on sale Feb. 7 at 10 am.

 –  Juno and CCMA Award-winning country act The James Barker Band is booked to play the prestigious Country To Country (C2C) Festival in the UK in March (currently the only Canadian act on the bill). Since the release of a debut EP Game On two years ago, the band's material has attracted 60M total streams.

– The final public performance of the Beatles was on Jan. 30, 1969 when they surprised the central London office and fashion district with an unexpected concert from the roof of Apple Corps.  50 years later Toronto band The Lonely Hearts paid tribute to that event with a rooftop performance of their own. The group filmed a live performance on Jan. 22 on the roof of the historic Cameron House where they covered five Beatles classics. The concert video is now out.

 –  Within the classical music world, 23-year-old Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki is a big deal, as shown by the fact he made his Carnegie Hall debut at age 20. Today (Feb. 1), he releases Mendelssohn via Deutsche Grammophon/Universal Music Canada. On his new album, Lisiecki explores a pair of early Romantic masterpieces: Mendelssohn's Piano Concertos in G minor and D minor, in which he is accompanied by the internationally acclaimed Orpheus Chamber Orchestra of New York.

 –  Music BC's free workshop Fostering A Respectful Workplace is coming on Feb. 8, 10 am - 5 pm. Labels, agencies, management, publishers, promoters, studios and live music venues are encouraged to apply. RSVP here

– The application deadline for Music BC travel grants is today (Feb. 1) at 5pm. Apply here

– Music PEI is now hiring two people to assist delivery of the Canadian Song Conference, from May 3-7. The positions run Feb. 4 to July 1.  Send resumes to by Feb. 4

– Soulful US singer/songwriter Sarah McCoy released her debut album, Blood Siren, via Blue Note/Universal Music Canada last week. Of note is the fact it was co-produced by Canadian Chilly Gonzalez and Renaud Letang. That team previously had great success working with Feist.

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