Canada has a great rap: Drake and The Weeknd again have the #1 and 2 spots on the American Hot 100 with Toosie Slide and Blinding Lights, and on the Billboard 200, The Weeknd’s After Hours album maintains supremacy for the 4th week, with fellow ‘6’ star Tory Lanez’s The New Toronto 3 mixtape album debuting at #2.
– Starting tonight, an ET Canada partnership with the CCMA kicks of a 5-night broadcast showcasing 20 hat stars in support of Canada’s covid-19 relief efforts. Tonight, Shania Twain with Dallas Smith, Lindsay Ell, and High Valley appear on ET Canada at 7:30 pm ET/ 7 pm PT on Global, with simultaneous broadcasts on Corus Country 105, CISN Country 103.9 and Country 104.
– The City of Toronto has partnered with Unison to shift its fee-based City Hall Live music program to Facebook. Fans are urged to use the virtual tip jar to donate to the music biz charitable org.
– Filmmaker Will Dunlop needs help piecing together a documentary covering the life and times of legendary CFNY/102.1 The Edge personality Martin Streek; the history of the station, and the rise and fall of alternative music club culture. Alan Cross has the details.
– Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault unveiled early plans on Friday to give an additional $500M to Canada’s arts, sports and cultural sectors this fiscal, but who, how and when remain to be detailed.
The department plans to consult with the entertainment and sports industries to “fine-tune” how the money will be allocated, Guilbeault said Friday in a hastily convened media scrum following a similar dictum announced by the PM. With hands in his pocket (and ours later, for sure) the newbie portfolio minister disclosed that the department is already working with the Canada Council for the Arts, which has conducted its own consultations with the arts and culture community. Based on the 2019 budget allocations, the new injection boosts Heritage's 20201 budget past $2B.
– Drake is raising cash for the pandemic through an Instagram challenge. The winner gets to fly with a few friends and the Drake entourage on his customized private jet.
– Canada Day celebrations will be exclusively online, according to a tweet sent out by Heritage Canada: “In light of the current situation with the covid pandemic and the government's priority of keeping Canadians safe, Canadian Heritage has decided to host Canada Day virtually. Details will be announced soon.”
– After producing more than 200 records, Stew Kirkwood has closed Sound Extractor Studios, the recording studio he ran in west Edmonton for the past 18 years.
– Dianne Buckner pens a thoughtful feature for CBC News about Canadians who have started businesses during the pandemic. From pet services to food delivery and even advertising, many companies are forging ahead with launch plans.
– After Ticketmaster quietly scrapped refunds for postponed events in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the ticket seller's parent company Live Nation is reversing course. In a statement to NOW, Live Nation's Ontario office said the company is now rolling out "a full program of options for fans with tickets to shows that have been cancelled or rescheduled" effective May 1.
– Shambhala Music Festival is an annual electronic music festival held during the last week in July at the Salmo River Ranch, a 500-acre farm, in the West Kootenay mountains near Nelson, BC, has teamed up with Westwood Recordings’ Twitch for a 3 pm PDT blunts and beats extravaganza today (April 20).
– Charlie Barath, an American blues harpist, is working with local businesses in his hometown of Barton, OH, to create a series of Facebook performances from inside his car. The businesses get social media mentions throughout the week as well as during his show and in turn, reciprocate by plugging him on their own socials. “I do this as a service to the local businesses,” Barath tells Ellwood City Ledger. “Sometimes the business will comp me some product, like a meal to go, as a way of saying thanks. I’m just happy to help.”
Federal guidelines announced Friday helped boost Disney’s share price to give it a market cap of over US$192B, exceeding Netflix’s two-day stint of being worth more than the mouse, Variety reports. Friday’s closing price for Disney stock settled at $106.63 as compared to the streaming giant settling at $422.96.
– UMG and Andrew Lloyd Weber’s Truly Useful Company have been running a no-cost series of Weber stage musicals on YouTube that included an hour-plus Sunday viewing of a 2011 Royal Albert Hall production of The Phantom of the Opera. Notably, under the banner of The Shows Must Go O, the Phantom covid fundraiser tracked 11.4M viewers.
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Gustavo Dudamel, the conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, shows us how he guides the musicians using his body and eye contact.