Crystal Shawanda  Facebook photo
Crystal Shawanda Facebook photo

Music Biz Headlines, May 26, 2022

How the lockdown helped Marianas Trench’s singer-songwriter Josh Ramsay to follow his solo-record dream

The Marianas Trench singer and songwriter recently released his first 18-track solo album, “The Josh Ramsay Show,” on which he plays every instrument except for the strings. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

Crystal Shawanda shares her soaring shift from country music into Midnight Blues

When Crystal Shawanda made the decision to switch from country music to blues, it didn’t sit too well with a few fans. The 38-year-old singer-songwriter from the Wiikwemkoong First Nation in Ontario isn’t particularly hung up on currying favour with close-minded listeners. – Tom Murray, Edmonton Journal

John Derringer’s co-hosts allege abusive behaviour behind the scenes at Q107

One of the women to come forward said she was given “Derringer money” to not complain. – Kevin Donovan & Alex Boyd, Toronto Star

Say hello to Cola, wave goodbye to Ought

We spoke to Tim Darcy, Ben Stidworthy and Evan Cartwright about the road to the new Montreal trio's debut album, Deep In View. – Pat King, Paste

Toronto singer-songwriter Tess Parks finds her way back home

She sought refuge during the pandemic “drawing dots and deciding what to do with my life,” before eventually resolving to finish what would become the album “And Those Who Were Seen Dancing” released May 20. – Ben Rayner, Toronto Star

Bonnie Raitt gives The Bros. Landreth something to talk about

Winnipeg brothers open tour in Hamilton on June 3 after getting a big boost from multiple Grammy-winning singer, Graham Rockingham writes. – Hamilton Spectator

Composer Nicole Lizée’s approach to opera is as classic as you can get

Don’t let the robots fool you. When it comes to writing her first full-length opera, composer Nicole Lizée’s approach is about as classic as you can get. This month Lizée, 49, will witness the world premiere of R.U.R. A Torrent of Light, which marks an exciting step in Canada’s operatic history: a large-scale science-fiction opera.  Who better than Lizée to write a score for an opera about artificial intelligence set in 2042? – Jenna Simeonov, Globe and Mail

‘The job kept me sane’: How some Stratford Festival actors filled their pocketbooks when the show couldn’t go on

This year’s opening is a welcome return for a workforce that was particularly hard-hit during the pandemic. – Karen Fricker, Toronto Star

Caribou revives Daphni alias for new song “Cherry”

Dan Snaith’s first Daphni track since 2019’s “Sizzlin’” is “an endlessly spiralling polyrhythm on an FM synth,” he said. – Jazz Monroe, Pitchfork

Tesher’s meteoric TikTok rise leads to Juno surprise

As part of his Juno nomination, Sharma took the stage for his first-ever performance at the biggest night in Canadian music, with his mom, dad and sister cheering him on from the crowd. The 26-year-old’s own single Jalebi Baby would go viral on TikTok with over 1.6B video views, earning him legions of new fans across the globe, a collaboration with Jason Derulo and a 2022 Juno award nomination for Breakthrough Artist of the Year. – Rukhsar Ali, Globe and Mail

The National Arts Centre’s upcoming season includes Buffy Sainte-Marie and a double dose of Margaret Atwood

The Ottawa-based National Arts Centre has announced the world orchestral premiere of a suite of eight songs in memory of a horrific series of killings that took place seven years ago in Canada. – Brad Wheeler, The Globe and Mail

Rap star J. Cole is heading to play professional basketball in Canada. Here’s what people are saying about it

J. Cole signed with the Scarborough Shooting Stars in the Canadian Elite Basketball League on Thursday. – Demar Grant, Toronto Star

Rich Aucoin announces quadruple album

The form-bending project will arrive in four parts over two years. – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

Montreal musician Patrick Watson’s unlikely TikTok second life

Patrick Watson found unexpected success on TikTok during the pandemic, thanks in part to Justin Bieber. – Jon Dekel, Globe and Mail 

Willie Stratton finds a new stride

The singer-songwriter drops the genre playacting and achieves authenticity on Drugstore Dreamin'. – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

What leaders can learn from megastar The Weeknd

The bona fide pop star has managed to keep control of his ever-expanding projects. One lesson: Let the work speak for itself. – Josh O'Kane, The Globe and Mail

Dundas Valley Orchestra and Burlington Concert band combine for concert at Warplane Heritage Museum

Heroes don’t always wear capes. Sometimes, they’re just ordinary people doing extraordinary things. To celebrate all of the heroes who helped us get through these past two years, the 55-piece Burlington Concert Band and 50-piece Dundas Valley Orchestra are banding together for “The Heroes Among Us,” a concert on May 29 in the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum. – Leonard Turnevicius, Hamilton Spectator

Enterprising Pacific Opera owes much credit to artistic director Timothy Vernon

Timothy Vernon became Pacific Opera’s founding artistic director in 1979 and has remained its artistic director ever since. Now that is surely what can be called commitment. – William Littler, Toronto Star

International

Is Elon Musk going to save the music industry?

Music companies have demanded that Twitter license music fully. But, as the platform’s potential new owner, Elon Musk won’t play the music industry’s game – instead, the music industry must play his. A Musk music DAO initiative could actually be the answer to their plea: it would be a blockchain-based, decentralised copyright management and licensing platform that would democratise the way music is licensed. – Ran Geffen, MBW

Paul McCartney tops the list of UK’s richest musicians

Paul McCartney, U2 and Andrew Lloyd Webber are at the top of the Sunday Times Rich List for musicians from UK and Ireland. Beatles star McCartney’s wealth is listed as £865m, with the publication reporting that he has gained £45m since 2021. – The Independent

Tencent Music and NetEase Cloud Music added more paying music users than Spotify in Q1

According to newly-issued financial results analyzed by MBW, Tencent Music added 4.0 million paying music users quarter-on-quarter in Q1 2022. TME’s official ‘paying online music’ user-base now stands at 80.2M customers. NetEase Cloud Music, meanwhile, added an impressive 7.8M paying online music users to its platform quarter-on-quarter in Q1 2022. – Tim Ingham, MBW

Music streaming has a 'tsundoku' problem

In Japanese culture there is the concept of tsundoku. It means when someone buys so many books that the very act of reading them becomes overwhelming. So they sit unread as yet more books are added to the teetering piles, the blank bibliomaniac behind bars. Tsundoku generally relates to tangible objects but it increasingly feels pertinent to the subscription streaming age. – Eamonn Forde, MBW

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band announce 2023 tour

The Boss is hitting the road with the full E Street lineup for the first time since 2017. – Evan Minsker, Pitchfork

John Doe’s latest foray into folk music isn’t quite the way Woody might have done it

John Doe, folkie? That’s certainly what the name his new project — “The John Doe Folk Trio” — seems to suggest, as does the trio’s just-released record, “Fables in a Foreign Land.” Has the man who founded X, the seminal punk band in which he’s been active for over 45 years, traded in the rock club for the cofeehouse? – Stuart Monro, Boston Globe

Jerry Lee Lewis is newest inductee to Country Music Hall of Fame

Great balls of fire, finally! Piano playing madman and American music legend Jerry Lee Lewis is the newest inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame in the Veteran’s Era category. The announcement came May 17 at a press conference in Nashville, and after years of lobbying by fans who wanted to see the American music legend honored while he is still with us. – SavingCountryMusic

Taylor Swift receives honorary degree from New York University

Taylor Swift has Grammys galore and now she has a new title – “doctor.” The superstar received an honorary doctorate of fine arts from New York University last week, blowing kisses as the crowd roared when she walked toward the stage at a packed Yankee Stadium. – Nardos Haile, AP

Tears for Fears debut 4 new songs live at 2022 Tour kickoff

"The Tipping Point World Tour" is plenty satisfying in its familiarity, but full of welcome surprises as well. – CoS

What Labor promised the arts

With Labor forming government in Australia, we revisit what Tony Burke promised for the arts and ask the sector to keep him accountable. – Tony Burke, Artshub

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