On Oct. 15, the Western Canadian Music Alliance announced the winners of the 2021 Western Canadian Music Awards, in both the Artistic and Industry categories. The big winner, with three trophies, was acclaimed Indigenous hip-hop duo Snotty Nose Rez Kids. Winning in two categories apiece were Begonia and Kelly Bado.
This year's WCMAs featured a live-streamed broadcast and a special in-person watch party in BreakOut West 2022 host city, Winnipeg. The awards honour artists and music industry professionals from across western Canada.
"It’s been so exciting to celebrate the accomplishments of artists and industry over the past year,” says Robyn Stewart, Executive Director, Western Canadian Music Alliance. “We saw a significant increase this year in material submitted for artist nominations, which is such a wonderful sign of the resiliency of creators. Congratulations to all who released work this year, and to all industry who supported new music releases. I am excited for the future of western Canadian music and the strength we are building together, as we get safely back to live.”
A special pre-awards show program aired earlier in the afternoon, ahead of the full winner reveal, on CBC Radio One’s Up To Speed , where Pop Artist of the Year (Sponsored by CBC Manitoba) was awarded to Begonia, Grant Davidson (MB) was announced as the winner of the Songwriter of the Year Award (Sponsored by SOCAN), and Rock Artist of the Year (Sponsored by Torque Brewing) was presented to Mise en Scene (MB). The award presentations were also accompanied by live in studio performances from Davidson and Mise en Scene.
Following the broadcast, all the award winners were named on BreakOut West’s Facebook Live, featuring a performance by 2021 double nominee, Slow Leaves.. Manitoba's musicians made an outstanding showing this year, taking home 11 of the Artistic awards, including Recording of the Year, which was presented to Begonia, and accompanied by a $2,000 honorarium courtesy of the Stingray Rising Star program. Double-winner, Kelly Bado (Global Artist of the Year and Francophone Artist of the Year) was also presented with a $1,000 honorarium courtesy of APCM.
The Heritage Award, Kevin Walters Industry Builder Award, and Western Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductees will be formally presented at a special event during BreakOut West 2022 in Winnipeg. (February 2-6). This year’s recipients are Manitoba’s Ray St Germain (Heritage Award), Carole Vivier (Kevin Walters Industry Builder Award), and The Watchmen (Western Canadian Music Hall of Fame).
2021 WESTERN CANADIAN MUSIC AWARDS ARTISTIC WINNERS
Blues Artist of the Year – Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne, BC
BreakOut Artist of the Year – Sargeant X Comrade, AB
Children’s Artist of the Year – Claire Ness, YT
Classical Artist or Ensemble of the Year, Sponsored By Canadian Music Centre (CMC) – PEP (Piano and Erhu Project), BC
Classical Composer of the Year – T. Patrick Carrabre, BC
Country Artist of the Year – Nice Horse, AB
Electronic & Dance Artist of the Year – So Sus, BC
Francophone Artist of the Year, Sponsored by APCM (Association des professionnels de la chanson et de la musique) – Kelly Bado, MB
Global Artist of the Year – Kelly Bado, MB
Indigenous Artist of the Year – Snotty Nose Rez Kids, BC
Instrumental Artist of the Year – Rubim de Toledo, AB
Jazz Artist of the Year – Will Bonness, MB
Metal & Hard Music Artist of the Year – Vagina Witchcraft, MB
Pop Artist of the Year, Sponsored by CBC Manitoba – Begonia, MB
Producer of the Year – deadmen, MB
R&B Artist of the Year – Sebastian Gaskin, MB
Rap & Hip Hop Artist of the Year – Snotty Nose Rez Kids, BC
Recording of the Year, Presented by Stingray – Begonia, MB
Rock Artist of the Year, Sponsored by Torque Brewing – Mise en Scene, MB
Roots Artist of the Year – William Prince, MB
Songwriter(s) of the Year, Sponsored by The Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN) – Grant Davidson, MB
Spiritual Artist of the Year – Yvonne St Germaine, SK
Video Director of the Year, Sponsored by Manitoba Film & Music – Alfonso Chin, Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Screaming Indian, BC
Visual Media Composer of the Year – Factor Eight, Live Is But A Dream, SK
2021 WESTERN CANADIAN MUSIC AWARDS INDUSTRY WINNERS
Audio Engineering Award – Sheldon Zaharko, BC
Community Excellence Award – National Music Centre, AB
Excellence in Visual Design – Roberta Landreth, MB
Impact in Artist Development – Birthday Cake, MB
Impact in Live Music, Sponsored by Canadian Live Music Association – The Starlite Room (Starlite Sessions) #SupportCanadianVenues, AB
Impact in Music Marketing – Birthday Cake, MB
Heritage Award – Ray St. Germain, MB
Kevin Walters Industry Builder Award – Carole Vivier, MB
Hall Of Fame, Sponsored by FACTOR – The Watchmen, MB
See the complete list of artistic nominees here, and the list of industry nominees here.