Tim Hicks livin' the life in LA. Pic: Instagram
Tim Hicks livin' the life in LA. Pic: Instagram

Music News Digest, April 5, 2019

Meghan Patrick and Tim Hicks lead the nominations list for the 2019 CMAOntario Awards, with six noms each. The 7th Annual Awards show, presented by Slaight Music with support from Ontario Creates, take place Sunday, June 16 at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.

Hosted by Jason McCoy, the show will include performances by Hicks, Patrick, Jason Blaine, Kira Isabella, The Reklaws, Tebey, The Washboard Union, Western Swing Authority, Cold Creek County, The Abrams, Ryan Langdon, Gabrielle Goulet, Jade Eagleson and The Good Brothers, who will be honoured with the 2019 Impact Award.

– Cardi B leads all nominees at the 2019 Billboard Music Awards, cited 21 times in 18 categories, just shy of the record for most nominations set by Drake and The Chainsmokers, who each had 22 in 2017. Drake ties with Post Malone for second most noms this year, with 17. Travis Scott is up for 12 awards, and late rapper XXXTentacion is up for 10. Kelly Clarkson hosts the Awards from the MGM Garden Arena in Las Vegas on May 1. The show airs live on NBC. The full list of nominees here. Source: Billboard

– It has been a big week for Canadian pop queen Carly Rae Jepsen. In Toronto on Monday night at the SOCAN Awards gala, her mega-smash "Call Me Maybe" was named the most performed song in the 30-year history of SOCAN. Jepsen then announced that her fourth studio album, Dedicated, comes out on May 17 via School Boy/Interscope Records.  She begins a Dedicated headlining tour June 27 at House of Blues in Anaheim, Calif. and will make stops in Nashville, New York City, Washington, DC and Los Angeles. Source: Grammy.com

– Red Bull Music Academy (RBMA) and Red Bull Radio will end in their current form on Oct. 31, 2019,  Resident Advisor reports. The energy drink is ending its association with the consultation company Yadastar, which oversaw the creative and curatorial sides of both operations. The company will remain involved in music. Red Bull Music (which has no affiliation to Yadastar) will continue, and Red Bull Music Festival—separate from RBMA—is scheduled to hold two editions in New York and Tokyo this spring. 

RBMA, co-founded by Torsten Schmidt and Many Ameri in 1998, the branded event has toured the world, hosting lectures, workshops, parties, concerts and operated a daily online music publication. The most recent academy—its 20th —took place in Berlin last year. In addition to lectures with the likes of Brian Eno, Frankie Knuckles, and Jeff Mills, RBMA gave participants access to high-end equipment, instruments, and studios. 

– Roxodus Music Fest has announced Aerosmith will headline the festival July 14.  It's the band’s only scheduled Canadian performance this year. The four-day concert series runs July 11-14 in Edenvale, ON. Other acts on the final day include Matthew Good, Theory of a Deadman and I Mother Earth. Previously announced billings include Kid Rock, Nickelback, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Alice Cooper, Cheap Trick, Collective Soul, Peter Frampton, Billy Idol, Blondie, Big Wreck, and Headstones. Ticket info here 

– Two and a half years ago Drake's “One Dance” became the first song on Spotify to be played one billion times. This week, the 25th song joined the billion stream club.  Here is the list that features Justin Bieber multiple times. Source: Hypebot

– Suzanne Vega, Donovan Woods, and Jeremy Dutcher headline the 2019 Stan Rogers Folk Festival, held July 25-28 in Canso, NS. Also in the lineup are Bruce Guthro, Còig, Dave Gunning, Gabrielle Papillon, Garnet Rogers, Garrett Mason, Gordie MacKeeman and His Rhythm Boys, Joey Landreth, J.P. Cormier, Justin Nozuka, Kaia Kater, Lydia Persaud, Rachel Beck, Reeny Smith, Rose Cousins, T. Thomason, The Bombadils, The Weather Station, Villages, and Vishtèn. Artist info here. Passes here 

– The CIMA is organizing a business development mission for independent companies in the Canadian music industry at the 14th edition of the A2IM Indie Week in New York, June 17-20. Register here before April 26.

– The Los Angeles Times has named Craig Marks Music Editor, responsible for coverage of popular music, beginning April 8. Marks has previously been executive editor at Billboard, editor in chief at Spin and Blender, and co-founder and editor in chief of Popdust.

– It has been hard to escape Mötley Crüe of late, and the barrage of publicity has helped the hard rockers score a rare, and perhaps unprecedented trifecta by simultaneously having a hit biopic, print autobiography, and a CD. The 2001 book The Dirt: Confessions of the World's Most Notorious Rock Band has just returned as a New York Times Best Seller. The film The Dirt is making a splash in theatres, and The Dirt Soundtrack currently stands at #10 on Billboard’s Top 200, a first in over a decade for the group.

– The principal casting for the first public performance of Could  Have This Dance?, a new musical featuring the hits of Anne Murray, written by Nova Scotians Geordie Brown and Belinda Hart, takes the stage July 26 at Halifax's Rebecca Cohn Auditorium. The all-Canadian cast includes Ellen Denny, Judy Marshak, Charlotte Moore, Laura Larson, Andrew MacNaughton, and David Michael Moote. Source: Broadway World

– After nearly 20 years of publishing album reviews, live reviews, interviews, features and news items, online music publication Drowned In Sound is ceasing publishing new articles. UK-based founder and editor Sean Adams says the site's restored and archived forums will remain open. DiS also operated a record label, Drowned In Sound Recordings, which released material by Kaiser Chiefs, and Canadian acts Metric, the Stills, and Martha Wainwright. 

RIP

Kim English, a house music vocalist, died on April 2, aged 48, from kidney disease. The Chicago singer’s label Nervous Records confirmed the news on Facebook.

Beginning her career as a gospel singer, English worked with legendary house acts including Masters At Work, François K, and Mood II Swing, with whom she released the classic house anthem "Learn 2 Luv."

Her debut single was 1994's "Nitelife" and 1995's "I Know a Place" was her first hit. Between 1999 and 2002 she achieved six dance hits in a row and five Number Ones.

By 2007, English had earned her sixth, seventh and eighth US No. 1s with "It Makes a Difference," "C'est La Vie" and "My Destiny," tracks that were included on her second album, My Destiny. Sources: NME, Factmag, Wikipedia

Lou Natale, a Genie Award-winning screen composer who also scored an Oscar-winning film, passed away March 31, in his native Toronto, age 69.

Natale began scoring movies in 1981 after working as a songwriter. He founded Natale Music Inc. and started by scoring the short film The Bamboo Brush. The next film he scored was Atlantis Films' adaptation of the Alice Munro story Boys and Girls,  which won an Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film, in 1983. That was the start of a fruitful 20-plus-years relationship between Natale and Atlantis.

Natale also earned a Genie Award for Best Song, for “Cowboys Don’t Cry,” from the 1988 movie of the same name, directed by Anne Wheeler.

He was nominated for six Gemini Awards, one Canadian Screen Award, the Ontario Arts Council 2014 Louis Applebaum Composers Award, and scored many award-winning shows, among them a 1987 TV movie of the classic A Child’s Christmas in Wales.

Natale’s other credits include the Canadian series Traders, Blue Murder, and PSI Factor; the U.S. series Mutant X, Playmakers, and Tilt; and many movies of the week and feature films. Among the latter are Eugene Levy’s Sodbusters, the CBS thriller Adrift, NBC’s The Bruce Curtis Story: Journey Into Darkness, and ESPN’s Hustle: The Pete Rose Story, directed by Peter Bogdanovich. He also composed the score for CTV’s The Horses of McBride in 2012.

There was a celebration of Natale’s life earlier this week. Source: Words & Music

Billy Adams, a US Rockabilly Hall of Famer who wrote and recorded the rockabilly staple "Rock, Pretty Mama," died on March 30, at age 79.

Born in Redbush, Kentucky, Adams was one of 14 children and the son of a coal miner who worked in the Van Lear coal mine, the same place Loretta Lynn sings about in "Coal Miner's Daughter."

Among other songs he recorded in the late '50s are "You Heard Me Knocking," ''True Love Will Come Your Way" and ''You Gotta Have a Duck Tail." Source: AP

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