Image courtesy of Proviscope.
Image courtesy of Proviscope.

Our Back Pages: Part 1

Well, at least live music made something of a comeback in 2021.

As vaccination compliance levels helped ease border and in-person restrictions that brought concert presentations to a standstill for over a year, people started venturing out again and going to their favourite venues to see their favourite acts. 

And if you were named The Weeknd, your year was nothing short of phenomenal: from an Emmy-nominated half-time Super Bowl Performance to your album After Hours and your single Blinding Lights breaking practically every record there was to break - and then pitching and getting a new HBO TV series to boot. 

This was the year that we waited...and waited...and waited until Drake's much anticipated Certified Lover Boy finally saw the light of day, and Justin Bieber satiated Canadian palates with Tim-Biebs... Bill C-10 was bandied about in Parliament before it lost traction, but the Feds and Provincial governments both pitched in to offer relief our besieged music and touring industries.

There were lots of deals, a few signings and we lost some good people.

Here's hoping that Omicron and other variants don't offer any nasty surprises for 2022, and that we can continue on that road to recovery through the profession we all love and adore.

In the meantime, here's a chronicle of the first six months of 2021, with Part Two to arrive Thursday.

 

JANUARY

"Change manager" Randy Lennox officially leaves Bell Media and hints that his next move could be in either broadcasting or music... Man legally changes his name to Céline Dion while in a drunken stupor... Toronto's Ruth Lowe, composer of the Sinatra hit I'll Never Smile Again, subject of a new book... Linus Entertainment purchases Borealis Records... Hipgnosis Songs Fund spends an estimated $150M for 50% writer share and 50% publisher share of Neil Young's 1180 song catalogue... Bill King and Jesse King's Soul Nation radio show is picked up by Spotify... Bach medal recipient Angela Hewitt finds a suitable replacement for dropped piano... Live Nation's Ticketmaster fined $10M for illegally accessing computers of competitor Songkick... 

Grammy Awards are bumped from January to March due to Covid concerns... Grimes tests positive for Covid-19... Nicki Minaj pays Tracy Chapman US$450K for unauthorized sample use... Taylor Swift's evermore is the No.1 album in Canada to kick off 2021... Nominees for the 50th Anniversary of the Juno Awards to be announced March 9... John Alexander, the man who signed and introduced Alanis Morissette to Jagged Little Pill producer Glen Ballard, recuperates from a near-fatal stabbing during a car-jacking at his Redondo Beach home... Ex-CIMA president Stuart Johnston is now CEO of the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology... Country legend Larry Mercey publishes autobiography Have Mercey...

Patrick Rogers is named new CEO of Music Canada while COO Jackie Dean was also named President of CONNECT Music Licensing... Toronto publishing exec Michael McCarty to launch Kilometre Music Group, with producer Gavin Brown and Barometer Capital CEO Greg Guichon listed as directors... Danielle Smith quits her Corus radio show... Competition Bureau closes its investigation surrounding a potential deal between Postmedia and Torstar and conspiracy allegations... U.S. Federal Court orders ISP Cox Communications to pay a US$1B fine... Nunavut Independent Television launches historic all-Inuit Inuktuk TV channel... TOBi, Hunnah, Naya Ali, Dylan Sinclair and RAAHiiM are recognized at the inaugural SOCAN/SIRIUSXM Canada Black Music Awards...

The Tragically Hip donates $40K from sales of Courage reusable non-medical masks to Unison Benevolent Fund... SOCAN sells MediaNet to Audible Magic... Hipgnosis gets busier, scooping up Shakira and Bob Rock song catalogues... Capitol Studios shutters its mastering division...The U.K. rejects visa-free EU travel... Danny Boyle to direct Sex Pistols TV drama series...TPX represents U.S.-based AdLarge Media's cabana portfolio in Canada in strategic partnership... Netflix increases its subscriber base to 203.7M in Q4, a 23% increase... Drake surpasses 50B streams on Spotify, a first... Beatrice Martin, a.k.a. Coeur de Pirate, buys Montreal's Dare To Care Records... Corb Lund, with assistance from Paul Brandt, protests "mountaintop removal" for coal exploration in western Alberta...

Lady A's "Champagne Nights" co-written by Canadians Madeline Merlo, Patricia Conroy and Dave Thomson with U.S. writer Tina Parol, spends three weeks atop Billboard's Country Airplay radio chart. Shortly thereafter, B.C. country sensation Madeline Merlo signs a global deal with BBR Music Group, a BMG subsidiary... The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) backtracks on grants factoring into CERB benefits as income. as they had looked to artists to potentially repay emergency benefits...Music New Brunswick launches Indigenous Artist Development Program sponsored by Mi'kmaq hip-hop artist Wolf Castle... Hamilton music venues look to stay alive during the pandemic... Spotify sees share price triple in 10 months... Marianne Faithful battles Covid-19...

The Global video gaming industry took in $180B in 2020... Virtual concerts in Ontario music venues closed during the latest lockdown... Vancouver to provide $8.4M in cultural recovery grants for arts in response to pandemic financial impact...New Radicals reunite for the first time in 22 years for US President Joe Biden's inauguration ceremony...According to MRC Data, audio on-demand streaming finished the year with a 16.1% increase in Canada...The Weeknd broke several chart milestones with his album After Hours - scoring the highest single-week album consumption and album sales in 2020  - while and blockbuster single Blinding Lights broke the record for the most weeks spent in the top 10 of the Billboard Canadian Hot 100,  seven weeks at the summit.

Andy Kim raises $190K for charity with his annual Christmas Special, thanks in part to a $100K donation from The Slaight Family. Beneficiaries include Crew Nation, CAMH Gifts of Light and Food Banks Canada... Craig "Big C" Mannix joins Universal Music Canada as Senior Director, Urban Marketing... Bell Media continues to clean its executive house, with Rob Farina, Tyson Parker and Stewart Meyers among the casualties... Rolling Stone now publishing advertorial content... Tennille Arts wins three 2020 Saskatchewan Music Awards... Apple Music's Shazam Predictions taps Toronto rapper LB SPIFFY is a pic-to-click in 2021... Live Nation stock recovers all of its 2020 losses... Glastonbury 2021 cancelled due to pandemic concerns...

According to Hootsuite and We Are Social, 1.3 million new users joined social media every day in 2020... Inspired by Canadian Music Week, South African Music Week debuts virtually... Drake delays the release of Certified Lover Boy as he recovers from ACL surgery... Snotty Nose Rez Kids and David Strickland lead nominees for debut International Indigenous Hip-Hop Awards to be held in Winnipeg May 22-23... Toronto-born rapper Connor Price gets A-list actors Idris Elba and the actress the song is named after with his new single Courteney Cox... Hedley singer Jacob Hoggard's trial pushed back to 2022... YouTube claims it's paid creators $US30B over the past three years...

Flaming Lips successfully pull off "Bubble" concerts in Oklahoma... Live Nation's stock value has not only fully recovered, but surpassed its pre-Covid-19 worth... Glastonbury 2021 is cancelled due to the pandemic... Cardi B. lands first motion picture acting gig, Assisted Living... The late Jacques Levy's wife sues Bob Dylan for US$7.25 M over the sale of Dylan's songwriting catalogue to Universal Music Publishing... Music historian Roger Steffens calls for a Reggae Music Hall of Fame... Carole King's influential Tapestry turns 50... Spotify is now at 155M paid subscriptions...

New York Philharmonic launches on-demand streaming service... TikTok signs a global licensing agreement with UMG... Dominique Fils-Aimé concludes the Black History trilogy with a new album, Three Little Words... A new anthology highlights indigenous musician Willie Dunn... Morgan Wallen apologizes for a racial slur... Dwight Yoakam sues Warner to reclaim music rights... Taylor Swift sets April 9 as the first release of re-recorded albums, commencing with Fearless...

R.I.P. Former WEA promo rap and jazz radio host Larry Green... singer Gerry Marsden... Elton John and Wham! producer Steve Brown... Lou Reed and Rhinoceros keyboardist Michael Fonfara... Ojibwa singer and songwriter Shingoose... bassist Tim Bogert... tuba player Howard Johnson... producer, "Wall of Sound" creator and convicted murderer Phil Spector... New York Doll Sylvain Sylvain... Kisses Sweeter Than Wine singer Jimmie Rodgers...

 

FEBRUARY

Bell's recent housecleaning reflects new direction towards online subscriptions instead of broadcasting... Producer of Nashville country hitmaker Morgan Wallen is Vancouver's Joey Moi... Trickster co-creator Michelle Latimer sues CBC for libel...  Dakota Tavern co-owner Stephen Reid launches a GoFundMe campaign to launch a Judicial Review against The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario... Apparently, the Apple Music doesn't fall far from the tree, as Céline Dion's son René-Charles Angélil releases debut EP Casino.5... Moist returns with a new single Tarantino... Sony Music buys AWAL and Kobalt Neighbouring Rights for US$430M. The company also registered US $4.5B in 2020 revenue... 

The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board increases its equity investment in Canadian-based rights company Anthem Entertainment, as Anthem arranges a new revolving credit facility of $400M plus an additional $150M that allows it to expand the maximum amount allowed on its line of credit... Morgan Wallen is taped uttering a racial slur and is immediately removed from U.S. country radio, but his Dangerous album remains No. 1 on Billboard despite controversy... Marilyn Manson loses record deal following abuse allegations... Kris Kristofferson announces retirement... Singing legend Tony Bennett reportedly suffering from Alzheimer's... Dolly Parton rejects Presidential Medal of Freedom - twice...

Lil Uzi Vert transplants US$24M diamond in his forehead... Primary Wave Music Publishing scoops up Sun Record catalogue that includes recordings by Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, but not Elvis... Quebecor buys Audiogram in a multimillion-dollar deal... Toronto announces plans to build a public internet network cheaper than Bell or Rogers... Bell transforms three all-sports stations:  Hamilton's TSN 1150 AM switches to Business; TSN 1290 AM Winnipeg and Vancouver's TSN 1040 AM tackle Comedy... Pricy Harmonium Symphonique collection sells 80,000 copies and generates $4M... The Weeknd announces 2022 After Hours world tour and sells almost 1M tickets in short order on the heels of a well-received Super Bowl headlining appearance - one that he reportedly pumped in $7M of his own money towards... 

The Toronto Star reports that Bell enjoyed a 23.9% percent profit margin on quarterly revenue of $800 before BCE Inc. "broke out the chainsaws"... Men Without Hats signs record and management deal with Sonic Envy and Cerberus Management respectively... Halifax's Neon Dreams enjoys a No. 1 hit in South Africa with  Life Without Fantasies... Linus Entertainment acquires Stony Plain Music Publishing... Canada vows to be the next country to make Facebook pay for news... MusicNL's Denis Parker Industry Builder Award goes to Echo Music and Recording Studio in St. John's and Clode Sound Productions in Stephenville, while Rum Ragged captures three awards at The Music NL Awards, including Entertainer of the Year...

Toronto's Nagamo Publishing launches first Indigenous production library and music agency... Ottawa's Barrymore's Music Hall may be in jeopardy... Nickelback joins UK band The Lottery Winners and Donnell Leahy for Rockstar Sea Shanty, inspired by the TikTok craze... The Maple Blues Awards holds four virtual ceremonies from four cities, with announced winners including Garrett Mason, Jack de Keyzer, Matt Andersen, Angel Forrest and Entertainer of the Year Dawn Tyler Watson...  Stephan Moccio releases a solo piano version of Earned It, his hit co-write with The Weeknd. OverActive Media - partially owned by The Weeknd - announces plans to build a $500M, 7000-seat eSports venue on Canadian National Exhibition grounds, to open in 2025...

Drake pays off student loans of rapper BucksInDaCut and doubles his savings... 2021 Mariposa Folk Festival is cancelled due to the pandemic... Fundraiser launched to help ailing rock photographer John Robert Rowlands... The Tragically Hip sues Mill Street Brewery over 100th Meridian brand of beer... The Canadian Live Music Association launches #ForTheLoveOfLIVE campaign... Warner Music Canada drops Matthew Good after public online allegations of abuse against the artist by Good's former girlfriend... Justin Bieber performs first-ever TikTok concert... David Myles launches Myles From Home podcast... Neil Young announces the March release of the 1971 concert film (and album) Young Shakespeare that reportedly is his earliest live concert footage, as well as the new "lost" album Johnny's Island...

Jazz vocalist Carol Welsman teams up with Randy Bachman for A Taste Of Paradise... Roy Woods, Felix Cartel, Kiesza, dvsn, Stars and members of Blue Rodeo and Our Lady Peace establish LOOP/POOL, a Canadian cannabis brand with a philanthropic mandate towards young Canadian artists... The city of Toronto extends the cancellation of in-person events until July 1, directly impacting CMW, The Juno Awards, NXNE and others... After 28 years, Daft Punk throws in the towel... 54.40's Neil Osborne recovers guitar stolen in 2018... China's Tencent acquires another 10% of UMG ahead of the record company's promised 2022 IPO intentions... Coachella is cancelled by you-know-what...

Aaron Neville turns 80... iHeartMedia acquires Triton Digital for US$230M... A reported US$424M in royalties awaiting artists in The Mechanical Licensing Collective... Alan Cross uncovers TikTok revenue streams for The Weeknd's Blinding Lights at US$7.2M and the  Ed Sheeran/Justin Bieber duet I Don't Care at US$5.2M... The Tragically Hip named Humanitarian Award recipients by CARAS... Michael McCarty launches Kilometre Music Group with Gavin Brown, Rodney Murphy and US$200M in capital funding...Strumbellas' singer Simon Ward healing after mental health crisis... Irving Azoff buys Beach Boys rights for rumoured US$100M+...UMG revives Virgin Records... Warner Music buys a minority stake in Saudi Arabia's Rotana Music...

Kat Von D.'s Miles Davis tattoo draws copyright infringement lawsuit... Bruce Springsteen charged with DWI, later dropped... Kim Kardashian files for divorce from Kanye West... Canadian Songwriter Hall of Fame inducts It's Raining Men, co-written by Thunder Bay's Paul Shaffer and Whitney Houston discoverer Paul Jabara... Dan Hill is also inducted into the CSHF...

R.I.P. Toronto Star entertainment columnist Jim Bawden... Controversial Republican radio windbag Rush Limbaugh... EDM producer Sophie... Animals guitarist Hilton Valentine...Midnight Train to Georgia songwriter and recording artist Jim Weatherly... Neil Young and The Band producer Elliot Mazer... Supremes co-founder Mary Wells...Juno-nominated trumpeter Denny Christianson... Hooked On Classics creator Louis Clark... Jazz fusion pioneer and keyboardist Chick Corea... Audio recording equipment pioneer Rupert Neve... Former Warner Bros. Records  U.S. president and CEO Russ Thyret... Montréal singer, composer and playwright Raymond Lévesque...

 

MARCH

While Quebecor Q4 television revenues rise to $940.9m from $908.6m, overall media revenue falls from $208m to $185.8m...  Slaight Family Foundation donates $30M to 19 organizations providing mental health services...  Randy Lennox announces he'll be executive producer of an Oscar Peterson documentary with filmmakers Barry Avrich and Barry Selby... CMRRA expands to collect international mechanical royalties... Drake bows surprise EP Scary Hours 2 and new 24/7 fully curated radio channel Sound 42... The pandemic causes GDP to decline by 5.4% in 2020...Torstar announces intention to launch an online casino to fund journalism pending the approval of the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario...

Patti-Anne Tarlton named President,  Music Forward Foundation...Distribution Select announces permanent door closure set for July 2... IFPI  2021 Global Music Report says that total music sales revenues for 2020 were $27.12B (USD $21.6B), driven by streaming, which increased by 18.5% from the previous year... Bruce Allen ends radio commentary "Radio Check" on 980 CKNW... CBS reportedly pays $7m for Prince Harry, Meagan Markle interview from Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Productions, with the royals getting no slice of the pie... Joey Moi sets record for Billboard's Country Producer's Chart at 42 weeks, partially on the success of Morgan Wallen's Dangerous: The Double Album...

Heritage Minister Stephen Guilbeault announces a $40M injection of new capital into a "Covid-safe events fund" for the arts and culture sectors... CBC Radio tops ratings with a 16% share, while CHFI is No. 1 with females 25-54 at a 14.5% share and Q107 for guys 25-54 with 12%... Top stations in the following markets: Vancouver's CKNW, 13.9% share; Edmonton's The Breeze, 9% share; Calgary's New Talk 770 with 10.2% share - and in Montreal, CHMP 98.5 for Francophones at 20.8% share and CJAD 800 with 29.8% share... Tim Notter starts GoFundMe to help cover debts for famed Toronto musician hotspot The Orbit Room... Andrew Cash named new CIMA President...Ontario Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Lisa MacLeod announces the investment of $2.5M into the two non-profits: $500,000 to CLMA and $2M to Unison... 

Drake, The Weeknd and Justin Bieber place in the Top 10 of the 2020 Global Artist chart... MusiCounts honours Gary Slaight with Inspired Mind Ambassador Award... The Weeknd leads with six nominations for the 2021 Juno Awards. Jessie Reyez, Justin Bieber and JP Saxe follow with five each for the Toronto-based 50th-anniversary awards show...Kaytranada leads Canadian Grammy Award winners with two... Canadian Music Week announces its May conference will be virtual due to continuing pandemic concerns... Gavin Sheppard's Public Records partners with Cadence. Lauren Hunter of Edmonton's Sonic 102.9 named Allan Waters Young Broadcaster of the Year...  Classified leads East Coast Music Awards noms with eight, followed by Rose Cousins with six... 

Buzzfeed closes Huff Post's Canadian operations... TPX chosen to sell SiriusXM Canada's Peter Mansbridge podcast, The Bridge... Rogers announces no dedicated radio broadcasts of Toronto Blue Jays baseball games during the 2021 season due to pandemic... Rogers buys Shaw for $26B pending CRTC approval... Cabinet approves CRTC to receive broader powers over online streaming platforms... Digital artist Krista Kim sells the virtual house for $500K... Feds extend the Canada Emergency Business Account application deadline to June 30... Winnipegger Ava Kobrinsky, GM of Home Routes/Chemin Chez Nous named 2021 Slaight Music Unsung Hero Award recipient... The Weeknd's Blinding Lights is the first song to spend an entire year in Billboard's Hot 100 Top 10...

MusiCounts announces the Kanata: Contemporary Indigenous Artists And Their Music education program... Kalaisan Kalaichelvan, Kaïa Kater, Scott Harwood, Alexandra Petkovski, Deanna Choi, and Aubrey McGhee are the six new composers named to the Canadian Film Centre's 2021 Slaight Music Residency... Two Scott B. Sympathy albums - Neil Yonge Street and Drinking With The Poet - released digitally on Curve Music... Justin Bieber registers 2 billion streams of his sixth album Justice upon release... Brett Kissel's Make A Life, Not A Living picks up the most adds ever in a single week at Canadian country radio... London, Ontario rockers Blu Bones claim to release first single and video NFT... Tenille Arts and Joey Moi receive ACM nods... SOCAN expands online concert payments fund...

R.I.P. Jeff Ansell, reporter, MIT-Harvard instructor and consultant... Dick Smyth, one-time CHUM radio and TV personality... British trombonist Chris Barber... Australia's Mushroom Records co-founder Michael Gudinski... Syd Kessler, Canadian King of jingles... Canadian Latin music promoter Jorge Eduardo Perez... Bhaskar Menon, founding chairman, CEO EMI Music Worldwide... Michael Stanley, Cleveland rock legend... Linda Dawe, music promoter

 

APRIL

SiriusXM launches the Dahlia Kurtz Morning Show... The Jim Pattison Broadcast Group rechristened Pattison Media Ltd... Teenage Head/Killjoys drummer Gene Champagne fights for life in a Burlington hospital ICU from Covid-19-generated pneumonia... Apple's Tim Cook tells the Toronto Star that privacy is paramount... Ontario instigates border lockdowns... Dean Brody and U.S. country singer Mickey Guyton to Nielsen BDS Country Airplay and Mediabase charts with their duet "Boys"... Meghan Patrick, Tim Hicks and Robyn Ottolini lead CMAO Awards nods... Corus Studios strikes a U.S. distribution deal with Hulu for 200+ episodes of home renovation, real estate and food verticals...

Tegan and Sara launch a healthcare survey over the effects of the COVID-19 vaccine in the LGTBQ community. Tegan also joins FACTOR Board, as well as Chris Smith... Fed Conservatives propose Broadcasting Act blocks authoritarian states from broadcasting human rights violations in Canada... Former Paquin Group veteran launches Midnight Agency in Toronto and Vancouver...  FP Newspapers suffers a $10.4m revenue decrease from 2019 in 2020 revenues of $53.4m... Moist prepares End of the Ocean, the first new band album since 2014...  Rogers apologizes for a 16-hour wireless outage... Jeff Bezos and Drake are among investors sinkings $80m into Overtime Sports Media... Lina Kim named TPX President... The Weeknd releases a new track as a non-fungible token (NFT)...

Justin Bieber surprises fans with gospel EP Freedom, two weeks after the release of his album Justice... Montreal label Bonsound strikes partnership with U.S. agency Anniversary Group... College Street record store Soundscapes closes... Artificial intelligence from Toronto non-profit Over The Bridge "creates" new Nirvana-type song... Republic Records partners with Canadian and Weeknd manager Wassim "Sal" Slaiby to launch Universal Arabic Music... The No. 1 hit Peaches makes Billboard Hot 100 history as the only chart-topper by two solo artists from Canada - Justin Bieber and Daniel Caesar (U.S. singer Giveon is also on the record.)... Rita MacNeil's Flying On Your Own is inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame...  Six Shooter Records signs Winnipeg's Boy Golden...

POP Montréal dans la ruelle, a series of pop-up hybrid concerts, kicks off with a rooftop balcony show with Martha Wainwright... Kardinal Offishall promoted to UMC Senior V.P., A&R... "Parkside" Mike Renaud launches charity-based Token Of Gratitude initiative... Margaret McGuffin promoted to CEO of Music Publishers Canada... Command Sisters, Monowhales, Myles Castello and Shawnee Kish were announced for the Allan Slaight Juno Master Class... Canada joins 40-plus countries for virtual Climate Live concert featuring Canadian performers Barenaked Ladies, Scott Helman, Julian Taylor and Moscow Apartment among others... J.P. Saxe, Shawn Mendes, Powfu, Frank Dukes, Tate McRae, The Weeknd, Drake and the Biebs are Canucks nominated for eight annual iHeartRadio Music Awards...

Lindsay Hyslop is named Anthem Records' Director of Marketing... CMW inducts Kim Mitchell into the INDIES Hall of Fame... Pandemic forces RBC Bluesfest to cancel July festivities for 2nd year in a row... Federal budget promises more than $1B to support and bolster the arts impacted by the pandemic...  International Indigenous Music Summit goes virtual at NAC... Gene Champagne off a ventilator and out of ICU... Junos bumped to June 6... Fraser MacKenzie new UMC Senior Director, Digital Marketing... The Weeknd named ASCAP Songwriter of the Year... Saskatchewan's Country Thunder music festival is cancelled due to Covid... Music supervisors Michael Perlmutter and Dondrea Erauw win Guild of Music Supervisors Award for their work on The Cuban...

CCS Rights Management celebrates its 10th anniversary... Steven Page generates a $100K income stream through an online Live From Home series... Robyn Adair signs off Calgary Y105 after 32 years... Chris Taylor stays on eOne Music President as Hasbro sells music division to Blackstone Investments... Serena Ryder scores Steve Earle as a duet partner for Better Now... Music Declares Emergency initiative concerning a climate emergency launches Canadian chapter with Teagan and Sara, Dan Mangan, Sarah Harmer, Moscow Apartment and Caribou among its contingent... Kilometre Music Group, the music rights management company formed in part by Michael McCarty, announces Shaun Frank's interest in Closer by The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey as first acquisition...

The 2021 CMAOntario Music Festival and Awards shifts from May 28-30 to Sept 03-05... The BC government announces $22.5M music industry funding to be administered over three years by Amplify BC... LyricFind hires Zack Werner to manage business development...  ECMA festivities moved online due to COVID concerns... Tate McRae's "you broke me" takes 28 weeks to hit #1 at U.S. Top 40 radio and surpasses 1 billion streams... Drake invests in sports media and entertainment startup Overtime with Jeff Bezos and 24 NBA pros... Sakamoto Agency partners with U.S. firm GrassRoots Promotion to create a new radio and online promotions company, GPS Promotion... Toronto R&B duo dvsn signs management deal with Atlanta record label LVRN...

R.I.P.  Montreal radio personality Buddy Gee a.k.a. Jerzy Delman....CFRB broadcaster Bill McVean... Blue Peter frontman Paul Humphrey... rapper Earl "DMX" Simmons... Myles & Lenny co-producer Mickey Erbe... Poco co-founder Rusty Young...ex-Grant Avenue Studio owner, engineer, producer and photographer Bob Lanois... Meat Loaf hit songwriter Jim Steinman... Digital Underground rapper Shock G (Greg Jacobs)... Bay City Rollers singer Les McKeown... A&R and record producer Marcus Klinke...  Grammy Award-winning engineer and producer Al Schmitt... 

 

 

MAY

Acadia Broadcasting purchases Evanov Halifax FMs CKHZ and CKHY... Prism Prize nominees announced... Greg Godovitz launches Rock Talk YouTube webcast... CHOM-FM's Terry DiMonte announces his end-of-May signoff... Isabelle Mondou appointed new Deputy Minister of Canadian Heritage...  TikTok partners with MusiCounts to buy $1M musical instruments for students...  Bell Canada buys operations of Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix promoter... Nick Meinema opens Nashville-based agency Action Entertainment Collaborative... CIMA partners with Manitoba Music, Music BC, MusicOntario and Music Nova Scotia to present The Great Virtual Escape to Canada House featuring iamtheliving, Laura Roy, Rayannah and Witch Prophet...

Tegan and Sara's memoir High School to be adapted as an original series for Amazon  IMDb TV... Radio Connects reports that 27.6m Canadians listen to 453m hours of radio weekly, an 85.1% weekly reach with an in-car audience of 33%... Canada's Cory Marks strikes gold with Outlaws & Outsiders featuring Travis Tritt, Five Finger Death Punch's Ivan Moody and Motley Crue's Mick Mars... Federal court dismisses a CBC lawsuit against the Conservative Party of Canada... Said The Whale frontman Tyler Bancroft launches Universal-distributed indie label Everything Forever. Said The Whale and shy kids are among initial signings...Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Logan Staats, Julian Taylor and Beatrice Deer are featured at the 2021 International Indigenous Music Summit...

Strut Entertainment names Ashley Sperling Director of Marketing and Brand Partnerships... Quebecor majordomo Pierre Karl Peladeau withdraws offer to buy Air Transat... Quebecor Q1 profit drops from $131.6m to $121.3m from last year, despite revenue growth from $106B to $109B... Wrangling over Bill C-10  continues... The Joe Rogan Experience podcast reportedly attracts $72.8m in ad revenue yearly... Facebook agrees to pay 14 Canadian publishers for using news content... CRTC backtracks on its bid to lower wholesale internet rates... PM Justin Trudeau and Chris de Burgh among those who bid on-air adieu to CHOM's Terry DiMonte... CMW presents an exclusive conversation with Nile Rodgers and Timbaland, hosted by Merck Mercuriadis, as well as a keynote interview with Island Records founder Chris Blackwell...  

SOCAN honours 24 CanCon "guardians," including Terry Brown,  Frank Davies, Al Mair and others... Drake named Billboard Artist of the Decade... Celine Dion heads back to Las Vegas, headlining Resorts World Las Vegas in November... James Barker Band signs with Sony Music Nashville and Villa 400... Pandemic woes result in the cancellation of Toronto's Beaches International Jazz Festival, the CNE and the Toronto Caribbean Festival... William Prince, Begonia, Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Tate McRae and Sargeant X Comrade lead nominees at the WMCA Awards...Dine Alone Records signs DIY metal collective Respire... Canadian indie A&R and song management firm Reliant Music expands to establish Amsterdam offices...

The Weeknd scores 10 out of a possible 16 Billboard Music Awards... Late Edmonton-based and SNFU punk hero Chi Pig is honoured with a mural in his hometown... Mackenzie Porter's hit These Days tops Australian charts... Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame announces the induction of the Alannah Myles chart topper Black Velvet, co-written by Christopher Ward and David Tyson... Allison Russell and Kathleen Edwards are nominated for Americana Music Awards... The Weeknd and Eddie Schwartz lead SOCAN Award winners...

R.I.P. Wendy Christine Gilmour, ex-manager of Lennie Gallant...Talas singer Phil Naro... one half of Cashman & West and Jim Croce producer Tommy West... Toronto booking agent Rob Tustin... Whitesnake video ingenue Tawny Kitaen... Lloyd Price, Rock 'N Roll Hall Of Fame vocalist... hard bop trombonist Curtis Fuller... Staple Singers' Pervis Staples... Toronto-based flautist Kathryn Moses... jazz vibraphonist Frank Wright... harmonica virtuoso James Harman... Muscle Shoals Sound co-founder Roger Hawkins... Actual Milli Vanilli singer John Davis... "Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head" and "Hooked On A Feeling" singer B.J. Thomas

 

JUNE

Vanessa Thomas jumps from CSHF to VP, Member and Industry Relations, SOCAN... U.S.-based Turner Sports signs Wayne Gretzky as an analyst... Libs, Bloc, NDP vote down a Conserative amendment to protect user content from Bill C-10...  The Weeknd wins three Juno Awards during the Friday industry portion of the ceremony... Toronto's Thomson family reportedly becomes $8B richer during pandemic... Bill C-10 is pushed into parliamentary debate... Rogers rebrands 680 News Toronto, News 1130 Vancouver, 660 News Calgary, News 95.7 Halifax and 570 News Kitchener under CityNews umbrella, effective fall 2021.. Spring radio ratings find top Numeris stations in certain markets as follows - Ottawa-Gatineau - CBC Radio One (16.8% share, A12+); Winnipeg - CBC Radio One (16.7% share, A12+); Halifax - CBC Radio One (21.5% share, A12+); Hamilton - KX94.7 (7.0% share, A12+); Victoria - CBC Radio One (21.7% share, A12+)... 

The Coalition of Canadian Creators is seeking an amendment to the Copyright Act which would enable creators' rights reversion 25 years after the date of a transfer, rather than 25 years following a creator's date of death...  Live Nation teams up with Drake to launch a new 2500-person capacity Toronto concert venue History... Kilometre Music Group acquires half of Ahmad "Belly" Balshe's 180-strong song catalogue... CIMA announces three award recipients; William (Skinny) Tenn, Sultans of String leader Chris McKhool and Honey Jam founder Ebonnie Rowe... ECMA Award winners with two apiece include Classified, Les Hay Babies, Maxim Cormier, Rich Aucoin, and Rose Cousins... Bell announces MuchMusic revival via TikTok...

News Media Canada pleads with PM Trudeau government for action to support local journalists... Legendary songwriter Gordon Lightfoot announced as the act that will reopen Massey Hall, November 25-27, to no one's surprise... The company behind Pornhub is accused by a law firm of being a "criminal enterprise"... Bill C-10 pushed through Parliament by a vote of 196-112, awaiting Senate approval... Pattison Media grabs stake in Vancouver-based Everything Podcasts... Drake's "Toosie Slide" registers 1 billion views on TikTok over within three days... Emm Gryner and Justin Bieber captured London Music Awards... Juno Award-winning singer and songwriter J.P. Saxe announces The Feelings Are Stupid tour and the June 25 release of his debut album Dangerous Levels Of Introspection... 

Headstones' singer Hugh Dillon co-creates the Mayor Of Kingstown TV series with Yellowstone creator Taylor Sheridan, starring Dillon, Jeremy Renner and Dianne Weist... Canadian ex-pat Tami Neilson cleans up at the New Zealand Country Music Awards with APRA Best Country Song for Queenie Queenie and Best Country Music Artist... SiriusXMCanada's Top Of the Country semi-finalists include Winnipeg's Don Amero, Vinson BC's Raquel Cole, South River's Carolina East, Toronto's Nate Haller, Beaconsfield's Brittany Kennell, Hudson Bay's Kalsey Kulyk, Surrey's Tyler Joe and Almonte's Kelly Prescott... Coalition Music and Canada's Music Incubator launch CoHo Creative Hub for creators to produce and collaborate on their art...

Polaris Music Prize winner Jeremy Dutcher headlines POP Montreal's National Indigenous Peoples Day lineup, with Buffalo Hat Singers, Scott Sinquah and Geronimo Inutiq among the participants... Barenaked Ladies recruit Marvel comics illustrator Enis Cisic for the video for its new single New Disaster... Singer, songwriter and Blackie & The Rodeo Kings co-founder Tom Wilson named 2021 City of Hamilton Arts Awards Lifetime Achievement Honouree... Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson partners with Epiphone for signature electric guitar... CANO songs Dimanche Apres-midi and Baie Ste. Marie are inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame... Toronto's outdoor CityView Drive-In announces a summer slate of shows that include Big Wreck, the Reklaws, Matt Dusk, Chad Brownlee, Tokyo Police Club, Born Ruffians, Skratch Bastid, Shad, k-os and Haviah Mighty...

Manitoba singer-songwriter Leonard Sumner wins the $10K TD Indigenous Songwriter Award... Leslie Feist announces plans to premiere theatrical music show Multitudes at Hamburg's Kampnagel Festival in August... Toronto R&B artist Jhyve wins CBC Music's Toyota Searchlight, with the prize including the Allan Slaight Juno Master Class talent development program...Indie Week founder Darryl Hurs announces new online Music Pro Summit for September... A David Bowie original painting bought for $5 at a Northern Ontario thrift store is sold via auction to a U.S. collector for $108K CDN... Billboard's 2021 International Power Players List includes The Weeknd power-management trio of Wassim “Sal” Slaiby, Amir “Cash” Esmailian and La Mar C. Taylor, Canadian web services and direct-to-fan e-commerce platform Bandzoogle CEO Stacey Bedford, Hipgnosis Song Fund CEO Merck Mercuriadis and eOne Global president Chris Taylor...

Juno Awards 50th Anniversary show racks up 2.2M viewers across CBC various platforms... Moscow Apartment signs to U.S. label Hazel Street Records, marking first U.S label signing of an It's Your Shot contest winner... CMRRA signs a multi-year agreement with TikTok for the collection of digital mechanical royalties in Canada. The deal also accounts for TikTok’s past use of musical works... Singer-songwriter Julian Taylor signs with Warner Music Canada...

R.I.P.  Canadian bluegrass pioneer Mike O'Reilly... folk singer/songwriter Michael Laderoute... Rob McConnell & The Boss Brass trumpeter Al Stanwyck... Ben Harper bassist Juan Nelson...  Tim Thorney, musician, songwriter, recording artist, jingle writer and producer... Tafelmusik violinist and leader Jeanne Lamon... respected journmalist Jim Bessman... Goddo drummer Doug Inglis... Calgary-based U.S slide guitarist Ellen McIlwaine... avant-garde composer and trumpeter Jon Hassell... synth pioneer Peter Zinovieff.

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