2014 Nominees & Winners

JUNO Fan Choice Award (Presented by TD)

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track “Reflektor” was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for “Reflektor”, created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
iTunes
Avril Lavigne Epic*Sony
Avril Lavigne is a Canadian singer-songwriter. She also holds French citizenship. She was born in Belleville, Ontario, and spent most of her youth in the town of Napanee. By the age of 15, she had appeared on stage with Shania Twain; by 16, she had signed a two-album recording contract with Arista Records worth more than $2 million. In 2002, when she was 17 years old, Lavigne broke onto the music scene with her debut album Let Go. Since her professional debut she has sold more than 30 million albums and over 50 million singles worldwide. Let Go made Lavigne the youngest female soloist to reach number one in the UK. As of 2013, it has sold nearly seven million copies in the United States and over 17 million copies worldwide. Her breakthrough single, “Complicated”, peaked at number one in many countries around the world, as did the album Let Go. Her second album, Under My Skin, was released in 2004 and was her first album to peak at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200, eventually selling more than 10 million copies worldwide. The Best Damn Thing, Lavigne’s third album, was released in 2007, becoming her third number one album in the UK Albums Chart and featuring her first U.S. Billboard Hot 100 number one single, “Girlfriend”. Lavigne has scored six number-one singles worldwide, including “Complicated”, “Sk8er Boi”, “I'm with You”, “My Happy Ending”, “Nobody's Home”, and “Girlfriend”. Lavigne is one of the top-selling artists releasing albums in the U.S., with over 11 million copies certified by the RIAA. Her fourth studio album, Goodbye Lullaby, was released in March 2011.Goodbye Lullaby gave Lavigne her fourth top 10 album on the U.S. Billboard 200 and the UK Albums Chart and her third number one album in both Japan and Australia. Three months after the release of Goodbye Lullaby, Lavigne began work on her eponymous titled fifth studio album, which was released by Epic Records on November 1, 2013 following her departure from RCA Records. Lavigne branched out from recording music, pursuing careers in feature film acting and designing clothes and perfumes. She voiced a character in the animated film Over the Hedge in 2006. That same year, she made her on-screen feature film debut in Fast Food Nation. In 2008, Lavigne introduced her clothing line, Abbey Dawn, and in 2009, she released her first perfume, Black Star, which was followed by her second perfume, Forbidden Rose, in 2010 and her third perfume, Wild Rose, in 2011. In July 2006, Lavigne married her boyfriend of two years, Deryck Whibley, lead singer and guitarist for Sum 41. The marriage lasted a little over three years, and in October 2009, Lavigne filed for divorce. Whibley and Lavigne continued to work together, with Whibley producing her fourth album, as well as Lavigne's single, “Alice”, written for Tim Burton's film Alice in Wonderland. Lavigne married Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger in 2013.
iTunes
Céline Dion Columbia*Sony
From humble beginnings in a rural French Canadian home town, Céline Dion has risen to international superstardom like a shooting star. Céline was called the premier contemporary pop vocalist of the Nineties. She has earned music industry accolades from around the world: Grammy Awards in the US, JUNO and Felix Awards in Canada, and World Music Awards in Europe. The entire world has seen Céline Dion literally transform herself from a gifted pre-adolescent into an international superstar.
iTunes
Drake Cash Money*Universal
Aubrey Drake Graham stepped out as a rapper and singer with pop appeal in 2006, when he initiated a series of mixtapes. He raised his profile throughout the next several months by popping up on countless mixtapes and remixes, and as rumours swirled about contract offers from labels, he gradually became one of the most talked-about artists in the industry. It did not hurt that he had support from the likes of Kanye West, Jay-Z, and Lil Wayne. By the end of June 2009, “Best I Ever Had,” a promotional single, had climbed to number two on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. After a fierce bidding war, Drake signed with Universal Motown in late summer and released an EP (So Far Gone) made up of songs from his popular So Far Gone mix tape. It peaked at number six on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and won a 2010 JUNO Award for Rap Recording of the Year. Thank Me Later, a full-length featuring collaborations with the Kings of Leon, the-Dream, Jay-Z, Kanye West, and Lil Wayne, was issued through Young Money the following year.
iTunes
Hedley Universal
Wild Life was produced by Jacob Hoggard and multiple JUNO Award winner, long-time Hedley creative collaborator and friend Brian Howes (Nickelback, Simple Plan). The two have worked together right from the start on Hedley's self-titled debut album (2005), The Show Must Go (2009) and Storms (2011). Wild Life was released on November 11. “Hedley have delivered another fantastic record,” said Shawn Marino, Vice-President, A&R and Publishing, Universal Music Canada. “They have managed to raise the bar once again and reinvent themselves creatively, while still maintaining their highly infectious trademark vibe.” “Anything” was serviced to radio August 26 and is currently available for purchase digitally. “Anything” exhibits Hedley's signature anthemic charm and is sure to follow in the footsteps of the band's past chart-topping hits “Kiss You Inside Out,” “Perfect”` and “Invincible.”
iTunes
Justin Bieber Island Def Jam*Universal
Justin Bieber is a Canadian pop musician, actor, and singer-songwriter. Bieber was discovered in 2008 by American talent manager Scooter Braun, who came across Bieber's videos on YouTube and later became his manager. Braun arranged for him to meet with entertainer Usher Raymond in Atlanta, Georgia. Bieber was signed to Raymond Braun Media Group (RBMG), and then to an Island Records recording contract offered by record executive L.A. Reid. His debut extended play, the seven-track My World, was released in November 2009, and was certified Platinum in the United States. He became the first artist to have seven songs from a debut record to chart on the Billboard Hot 100. Bieber's first full-length studio album, My World 2.0, was released in March 2010. It debuted at or near number-one in several countries and was certified Platinum in the United States. It was preceded by the single “Baby”. He followed up the release of his debut album with his first headlining tour, the My World Tour, the remix albums My Worlds Acoustic and Never Say Never – The Remixes, and the 3D biopic-concert film Justin Bieber: Never Say Never. Bieber released his second studio album Under the Mistletoe in November 2011, when it debuted at number-one on the Billboard 200. Bieber released his third studio album Believe on June 19, 2012, and it became his fourth chart topper in the United States, debuting at number-one on the Billboard 200. Bieber has received numerous awards, including both Artist of the Year Awards, at the 2010 American Music Awards, and the 2012 American Music Awards, and was nominated for Best New Artist and Best Pop Vocal Album at the 53rd Grammy Awards. With a global fan base, termed as “Beliebers”, and over 40 million followers on Twitter, he was named by Forbes magazine in 2012 as the third-most powerful celebrity in the world. He had earned an estimated US$55 million in the previous 12 months. As of May 2012, Bieber had sold 15 million albums.
iTunes
Michael Bublé Reprise*Warner
Michael Steven Bublé (born 9 September 1975) is a Canadian and Italian vocalist, songwriter and actor. He has won several awards, including three Grammy Awards and multiple JUNO Awards (25). His first album reached the top 10 in Canada and the UK. He found a worldwide audience with his 2005 album It's Time, and his 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible which reached number one on the Canadian Albums Chart, the UK Albums Chart, the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart, the Australian ARIA Albums Chart and several European charts. Bublé's 2009 album Crazy Love debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 after three days of sales, and remained there for two weeks. It was also his fourth number one album on Billboard's Top Jazz Albums chart. His 2011 holiday album, titled Christmas, was in first place on the Billboard 200 for the final four weeks of 2011 and the first week of 2012, totaling five weeks atop the chart, it also made the Top Five in the United Kingdom. With this, Christmas became his third-consecutive number-one album on the chart. His latest album, To Be Loved, was a big success, released in April 2013 it was preceded by the release of the lead single and original composition “It's a Beautiful Day”, “Close Your Eyes” followed and “After All” featuring Bryan Adams performed by him as a UK exclusive and posted on YouTube, the single came out in late-September 2013.
iTunes
Robin Thicke Interscope*Universal
Robin Thicke has established himself as one of the most respected singer-songwriters in soul and R&B music today. The musician, composer and actor, released his critically acclaimed debut album, A Beautiful World in 2003 under the name Thicke. Soon after, he came out with his breakthrough second release, 2006’s The Evolution Of Robin Thicke. Now on the way to double Platinum status, Evolution’s mega hit “Lost Without U” became the number one most played song in Urban Adult Contemporary BDS and topped four Billboard charts simultaneously. Robin’s fifth studio album, Love After War was released in December of 2011. Blurred Lines, Robin’s sixth and current studio album debuted at number one on the Canadian Nielsen SoundScan chart, selling 13,402 copies in its first week. The album was Robin’s first number one debut in Canada and features his 8X Platinum global hit and title track, as well as his second single “Give It 2 U”, featuring Kendrick Lamar and 2 Chainz. “Blurred Lines”, featuring Pharrell and T.I. spent 11 weeks atop the Canadian SoundScan Digital Songs chart and has sold over 663,000 units to-date in Canada.
iTunes
Serena Ryder Serenader Source*Universal
In 2013 Serena Ryder has been breaking new ground on all musical fronts with her latest release, Harmony (Serenadar Source / Universal Music Canada), achieving certified Gold status in just a few short months of release (November 2012). The lead single, “Stompa” is closing in on triple Platinum certification – a first for Ryder. Harmony’s success is due in part to this infectious first single as well as the equally anthemic follow-up track, “What I Wouldn’t Do”, which is currently racing up the charts and set to match “Stompa’s” amazing sales and radio feats. Ryder is quickly becoming a radio sensation south of the border too, with massive radio airplay and topping the U.S. Triple A charts.
iTunes
Walk Off the Earth Columbia*Sony
Walk Off The Earth is an unconventional, multi-talented five-piece musical phenomena that is currently taking the world by storm. Based in Burlington, Ontario their brilliant five-people-playing-one-guitar interpretation of Gotye's “Somebody That I Used To Know” exploded on YouTube garnering well over 35 million views in less than two weeks. The massive fan response quickly drew attention to their collection of innovative songs and videos spanning their last five years and generated an unprecedented flood of media interest. New fans from around the world immediately fell in love with the band's organic, independent, sincere and honest original songwriting, cover interpretations and beautifully filmed videos. For the past five years, the band has built a massive following of dedicated fans from around the world through their unique and heart-warming approach to songwriting, filming and constant, open interaction with everyone their music touches. Their independent spirit, unstoppable work ethic and awe-inspiring creativity has catapulted Walk Off The Earth into new and uncharted waters with only bigger and better things on the horizon.
iTunes

Single of the Year

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
Reflektor
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track “Reflektor” was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for “Reflektor”, created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
iTunes
Classified Half Life*Universal
Inner Ninja
Classified is the Canadian MC from Enfield, NS, who has not only remained current, but improved with each disc. Revered and respected, the rapper-producer has taken Canadian hip hop music all over the world, all the while deepening his word play and sharpening his beats. Now, with his first-ever self-titled album on Half Life Records/Universal Music Canada/Atlantic Records, Classified presents the apex of his trials and tribulations of a lifetime spent in the studio, and on the road. “Inner Ninja” (4x Platinum), the album’s blazing, uplifting first single repeats its message over dirty drums and a David Myles chorus, while “New School, Old School”, represents his place in the pantheon of hip hop: someone who's gone toe-to-toe with everyone from Maestro and Drake. Taken together, it’s the work of an artist in his prime. “With every album, I get better at what I do,” says Classified. “I constantly try to refine myself, find new things to value, and give listeners more direction to where I’m going, but make damned sure they have a good time as they come along with me for the ride.”
iTunes
Michael Bublé Reprise*Warner
It’s a Beautiful Day
Michael Steven Bublé (born 9 September 1975) is a Canadian and Italian vocalist, songwriter and actor. He has won several awards, including three Grammy Awards and multiple JUNO Awards (25). His first album reached the top 10 in Canada and the UK. He found a worldwide audience with his 2005 album It's Time, and his 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible which reached number one on the Canadian Albums Chart, the UK Albums Chart, the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart, the Australian ARIA Albums Chart and several European charts. Bublé's 2009 album Crazy Love debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 after three days of sales, and remained there for two weeks. It was also his fourth number one album on Billboard's Top Jazz Albums chart. His 2011 holiday album, titled Christmas, was in first place on the Billboard 200 for the final four weeks of 2011 and the first week of 2012, totaling five weeks atop the chart, it also made the Top Five in the United Kingdom. With this, Christmas became his third-consecutive number-one album on the chart. His latest album, To Be Loved, was a big success, released in April 2013 it was preceded by the release of the lead single and original composition “It's a Beautiful Day”, “Close Your Eyes” followed and “After All” featuring Bryan Adams performed by him as a UK exclusive and posted on YouTube, the single came out in late-September 2013.
iTunes
Serena Ryder Serenader Source*Universal
What I Wouldn't Do
In 2013 Serena Ryder has been breaking new ground on all musical fronts with her latest release, Harmony (Serenadar Source / Universal Music Canada), achieving certified Gold status in just a few short months of release (November 2012). The lead single, "Stompa" is closing in on triple Platinum certification – a first for Ryder. Harmony’s success is due in part to this infectious first single as well as the equally anthemic follow-up track, "What I Wouldn’t Do", which is currently racing up the charts and set to match "Stompa’s" amazing sales and radio feats. Ryder is quickly becoming a radio sensation south of the border too, with massive radio airplay and topping the U.S. Triple A charts.
iTunes
Tegan and Sara Warner Bros.*Warner
Closer
If you know and love Tegan and Sara’s music, the exuberant, polished sound of Heartthrob, their latest album, will come as a shock, almost a deliberate provocation. What happened to those neurotic, self-deprecating indie rockers, the twins from Canada obsessively chronicling their crushes and heartbreaks? When did they become so confident and radio-friendly, so unapologetically mainstream? Are Tegan and Sara pop stars? Why would they even want to be? Things have been going well for them for a long time. Six albums in thirteen years, a passionately devoted international audience, some serious brushes with commercial success, an impressive catalogue of consistently wonderful songs, one of the most striking and underrated bodies of work in the past decade. But they finished their last tour feeling oddly dissatisfied. They weren’t kids anymore – they’d just turned thirty, and they wanted more. They felt restless, couldn’t understand why they weren’t reaching more people. So Tegan and Sara took a deep breath and a long look in the mirror, and popped into that nearby phone booth. And out came Heartthrob.
iTunes

International Album of the Year

Bruno Mars Atlantic*Warner
Unorthodox Jukebox
Peter Gene Hernandez, known by his stage name Bruno Mars, is an American singer-songwriter and record producer. Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, by a family of musicians, Mars began making music at a young age and performed in various musical venues in his hometown. He graduated from high school and moved to Los Angeles to pursue a musical career. Mars produced songs for other artists, joining production team, The Smeezingtons. Mars had an unsuccessful stint with Motown Records, but then signed with Atlantic in 2009. He became recognized as a solo artist after lending his vocals to the songs "Nothin' on You" by B.o.B, and "Billionaire" by Travie McCoy, which were worldwide hits, and for which he co-wrote the hooks. He also co-wrote the hits "Right Round" by Flo Rida featuring Ke$ha, and "Wavin' Flag" by K'naan, allowing him to work with an assortment of artists from various genres. Mars’ debut studio album, Doo-Wops & Hooligans (2010), peaked at number three on the Billboard 200, anchored by the worldwide number-one singles "Just the Way You Are" and "Grenade", as well as by the hit single "The Lazy Song." The album was nominated for seven Grammy Awards, winning Best Pop Vocal Performance for "Just The Way You Are". His second album, Unorthodox Jukebox (2012), peaked at number one in the United States. The album spawned the international hit singles "Locked Out of Heaven" and "When I Was Your Man" and the moderate hit success "Treasure." In addition to his solo music, Mars has collaborated with numerous other artists, notably being featured on the worldwide hits "Lighters" (with Bad Meets Evil) and "Young, Wild & Free" (with Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa). Throughout a singing career spanning three years, he has sold 10 million albums and 58 million singles worldwide. Including not only his work as a singer but as a songwriter and producer as well, his total single download sales surpass 115 million worldwide. He has achieved a total of five number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and seven top ten singles, as a solo artist placing himself in the record books by being the second solo artist to do so after Richard Marx. He reached first place with "Just the Way You Are", which sold 12.5 million copies and contributed to Mars becoming the best-selling digital artist in 2011. In 2011, Mars was named one of Time Magazine's 100 most influential people in the world. In 2014, he was ranked number one on the Forbes 30 under 30 list. He was nominated for five Grammy Awards at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year (Locked Out of Heaven) and he won Best Pop Vocal Album for Unorthodox Jukebox.
iTunes
Eminem Interscope*Universal
The Marshall Mathers LP 2
The Marshall Mathers LP 2 is the eighth studio album by Eminem, released on November 5, 2013, by Aftermath Entertainment, Shady Records, and Interscope Records. Production for the album took place from 2011 to 2013 at several recording studios and was handled by Eminem and other record producers, including Rick Rubin, No ID and Dr. Dre. The album is a sequel to Eminem's third studio album, The Marshall Mathers LP (2000).
iTunes
Imagine Dragons KIDinaKORNER*Universal
Night Visions
Imagine Dragons is an American alternative rock band from Las Vegas, Nevada. The band gained exposure following the September 2012 release of their debut studio album, Night Visions, which peaked at number two on the weekly Billboard 200 chart. Following the release of Night Visions, Imagine Dragons embarked on a world tour, and performed on major late night shows, including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Late Show with David Letterman and Conan. According to Billboard, Imagine Dragons topped the year-end rock rankings for 2013. Billboard also named Imagine Dragons the Breakthrough Band of 2013, and Rolling Stone named their single "Radioactive" the biggest rock hit of the year. MTV also called them "the year's biggest breakout band."
iTunes
One Direction Simco*Sony
Take Me Home
One Direction have truly achieved worldwide stardom. They’ve notched up a staggering 64 number ones and sold over 35 million records – and they’ve done it in just three years. Add the recent success of their 3D film documentary ‘This Is Us’, their 22 million Facebook fans and 16 million Twitter followers and it’s clear they have become a worldwide phenomenon. In the autumn of 2012, Take Me Home was released – and the sales spoke for themselves. Over a million copies of the album were sold worldwide during the first week of release and the record went on to top the charts in 37 countries. This incredible achievement was awarded with another BRIT Award, this time for Global Success.
iTunes
P!nk RCA*Sony
The Truth About Love
P!nk has never been afraid to speak her mind, bare her soul, and share her deepest feelings in her songs. As she casually confers, "I have no choice. It’s what I do." Indeed, it is what P!nk does. And, her 23 million in album sales, two Grammy Awards, five MTV Video Music Awards, and eight top 10 hit singles are proof that the tattooed badass with the heart of a pussycat does what she does well. Very well.
iTunes

Album of the Year (Sponsored by Music Canada)

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
Reflektor
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track "Reflektor" was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for "Reflektor", created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
iTunes
Celine Dion Columbia*Sony
Loved Me Back to Life
From humble beginnings in a rural French Canadian home town, Céline Dion has risen to international superstardom like a shooting star. Céline was called the premier contemporary pop vocalist of the Nineties. She has earned music industry accolades from around the world: Grammy Awards in the US, JUNO and Felix Awards in Canada, and World Music Awards in Europe. The entire world has seen Céline Dion literally transform herself from a gifted pre-adolescent into an international superstar.
iTunes
Drake Cash Money*Universal
Nothing Was the Same
Aubrey Drake Graham stepped out as a rapper and singer with pop appeal in 2006, when he initiated a series of mixtapes. He raised his profile throughout the next several months by popping up on countless mixtapes and remixes, and as rumours swirled about contract offers from labels, he gradually became one of the most talked-about artists in the industry. It did not hurt that he had support from the likes of Kanye West, Jay-Z, and Lil Wayne. By the end of June 2009, "Best I Ever Had," a promotional single, had climbed to number two on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. After a fierce bidding war, Drake signed with Universal Motown in late summer and released an EP (So Far Gone) made up of songs from his popular So Far Gone mix tape. It peaked at number six on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and won a 2010 JUNO Award for Rap Recording of the Year. Thank Me Later, a full-length featuring collaborations with the Kings of Leon, the-Dream, Jay-Z, Kanye West, and Lil Wayne, was issued through Young Money the following year.
iTunes
Michael Bublé Reprise*Warner
To Be Loved
Michael Steven Bublé (born 9 September 1975) is a Canadian and Italian vocalist, songwriter and actor. He has won several awards, including three Grammy Awards and multiple JUNO Awards (25). His first album reached the top 10 in Canada and the UK. He found a worldwide audience with his 2005 album It's Time, and his 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible which reached number one on the Canadian Albums Chart, the UK Albums Chart, the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart, the Australian ARIA Albums Chart and several European charts. Bublé's 2009 album Crazy Love debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 after three days of sales, and remained there for two weeks. It was also his fourth number one album on Billboard's Top Jazz Albums chart. His 2011 holiday album, titled Christmas, was in first place on the Billboard 200 for the final four weeks of 2011 and the first week of 2012, totaling five weeks atop the chart, it also made the Top Five in the United Kingdom. With this, Christmas became his third-consecutive number-one album on the chart. His latest album, To Be Loved, was a big success, released in April 2013 it was preceded by the release of the lead single and original composition "It's a Beautiful Day", "Close Your Eyes" followed and "After All" featuring Bryan Adams performed by him as a UK exclusive and posted on YouTube, the single came out in late-September 2013.
iTunes
Serena Ryder Serenader Source*Universal
Harmony
In 2013 Serena Ryder has been breaking new ground on all musical fronts with her latest release, Harmony (Serenadar Source / Universal Music Canada), achieving certified Gold status in just a few short months of release (November 2012). The lead single, "Stompa" is closing in on triple Platinum certification – a first for Ryder. Harmony’s success is due in part to this infectious first single as well as the equally anthemic follow-up track, "What I Wouldn’t Do", which is currently racing up the charts and set to match "Stompa’s" amazing sales and radio feats. Ryder is quickly becoming a radio sensation south of the border too, with massive radio airplay and topping the U.S. Triple A charts.
iTunes

Artist of the Year

Celine Dion Columbia*Sony
From humble beginnings in a rural French Canadian home town, Céline Dion has risen to international superstardom like a shooting star. Céline was called the premier contemporary pop vocalist of the Nineties. She has earned music industry accolades from around the world: Grammy Awards in the US, JUNO and Felix Awards in Canada, and World Music Awards in Europe. The entire world has seen Céline Dion literally transform herself from a gifted pre-adolescent into an international superstar.
iTunes
Drake Cash Money*Universal
Aubrey Drake Graham stepped out as a rapper and singer with pop appeal in 2006, when he initiated a series of mixtapes. He raised his profile throughout the next several months by popping up on countless mixtapes and remixes, and as rumours swirled about contract offers from labels, he gradually became one of the most talked-about artists in the industry. It did not hurt that he had support from the likes of Kanye West, Jay-Z, and Lil Wayne. By the end of June 2009, "Best I Ever Had," a promotional single, had climbed to number two on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. After a fierce bidding war, Drake signed with Universal Motown in late summer and released an EP (So Far Gone) made up of songs from his popular So Far Gone mix tape. It peaked at number six on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and won a 2010 JUNO Award for Rap Recording of the Year. Thank Me Later, a full-length featuring collaborations with the Kings of Leon, the-Dream, Jay-Z, Kanye West, and Lil Wayne, was issued through Young Money the following year.
iTunes
Michael Bublé Reprise*Warner
Michael Steven Bublé (born 9 September 1975) is a Canadian and Italian vocalist, songwriter and actor. He has won several awards, including three Grammy Awards and multiple JUNO Awards (25). His first album reached the top 10 in Canada and the UK. He found a worldwide audience with his 2005 album It's Time, and his 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible which reached number one on the Canadian Albums Chart, the UK Albums Chart, the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart, the Australian ARIA Albums Chart and several European charts. Bublé's 2009 album Crazy Love debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 after three days of sales, and remained there for two weeks. It was also his fourth number one album on Billboard's Top Jazz Albums chart. His 2011 holiday album, titled Christmas, was in first place on the Billboard 200 for the final four weeks of 2011 and the first week of 2012, totaling five weeks atop the chart, it also made the Top Five in the United Kingdom. With this, Christmas became his third-consecutive number-one album on the chart. His latest album, To Be Loved, was a big success, released in April 2013 it was preceded by the release of the lead single and original composition "It's a Beautiful Day", "Close Your Eyes" followed and "After All" featuring Bryan Adams performed by him as a UK exclusive and posted on YouTube, the single came out in late-September 2013.
iTunes
Robin Thicke Interscope*Universal
Robin Thicke has established himself as one of the most respected singer-songwriters in soul and R&B music today. The musician, composer and actor, released his critically acclaimed debut album, A Beautiful World in 2003 under the name Thicke. Soon after, he came out with his breakthrough second release, 2006’s The Evolution Of Robin Thicke. Now on the way to double Platinum status, Evolution’s mega hit "Lost Without U" became the number one most played song in Urban Adult Contemporary BDS and topped four Billboard charts simultaneously. Robin’s fifth studio album, Love After War was released in December of 2011. Blurred Lines, Robin’s sixth and current studio album debuted at number one on the Canadian Nielsen SoundScan chart, selling 13,402 copies in its first week. The album was Robin’s first number one debut in Canada and features his 8X Platinum global hit and title track, as well as his second single "Give It 2 U", featuring Kendrick Lamar and 2 Chainz. "Blurred Lines", featuring Pharrell and T.I. spent 11 weeks atop the Canadian SoundScan Digital Songs chart and has sold over 663,000 units to-date in Canada.
iTunes
Serena Ryder Serenader Source*Universal
In 2013 Serena Ryder has been breaking new ground on all musical fronts with her latest release, Harmony (Serenadar Source / Universal Music Canada), achieving certified Gold status in just a few short months of release (November 2012). The lead single, "Stompa" is closing in on triple Platinum certification – a first for Ryder. Harmony’s success is due in part to this infectious first single as well as the equally anthemic follow-up track, "What I Wouldn’t Do", which is currently racing up the charts and set to match "Stompa’s" amazing sales and radio feats. Ryder is quickly becoming a radio sensation south of the border too, with massive radio airplay and topping the U.S. Triple A charts.
iTunes

Group of the Year

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track "Reflektor" was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for "Reflektor", created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
iTunes
Blue Rodeo Blue Rodeo Productions*Warner
Twenty-six years after the release of their first album, Warner Music Canada recording artists Blue Rodeo prove that their creativity continues to bloom as they announced a plethora of information regarding the release of their 13th studio album. Titled In Our Nature, the album was released on Tuesday, October 29, 2013. In Our Nature was produced by Blue Rodeo, primarily at Greg Keelor's farm studio. While at Keelor's farm, the band had each musician set up and perform in separate rooms around the house giving the record a very warm and communal character. "Doing a lot of touring while making this record helped a lot," says Greg Keelor. "Everybody was getting along and the band was playing well together. I think it's a good crop of songs and everyone just played it right and they played it beautifully." With the addition of guitarist/singer Colin Cripps to the Blue Rodeo line-up, the band is now a seven piece; Jim Cuddy (vocals/guitar), Greg Keelor (vocals/guitar), Bazil Donovan (bass), Glenn Milchem (drums/vocals), Bob Egan (guitar/pedal steel, mandolin), Mike Boguski (keyboards), Colin Cripps (guitar/vocals).
iTunes
Hedley Universal
Wild Life was produced by Jacob Hoggard and multiple JUNO Award winner, long-time Hedley creative collaborator and friend Brian Howes (Nickelback, Simple Plan). The two have worked together right from the start on Hedley's self-titled debut album (2005), The Show Must Go (2009) and Storms (2011). Wild Life was released on November 11. "Hedley have delivered another fantastic record," said Shawn Marino, Vice-President, A&R and Publishing, Universal Music Canada. "They have managed to raise the bar once again and reinvent themselves creatively, while still maintaining their highly infectious trademark vibe." "Anything" was serviced to radio August 26 and is currently available for purchase digitally. "Anything" exhibits Hedley's signature anthemic charm and is sure to follow in the footsteps of the band's past chart-topping hits "Kiss You Inside Out," "Perfect"` and "Invincible."
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Tegan and Sara Warner Bros.*Warner
If you know and love Tegan and Sara’s music, the exuberant, polished sound of Heartthrob, their latest album, will come as a shock, almost a deliberate provocation. What happened to those neurotic, self-deprecating indie rockers, the twins from Canada obsessively chronicling their crushes and heartbreaks? When did they become so confident and radio-friendly, so unapologetically mainstream? Are Tegan and Sara pop stars? Why would they even want to be? Things have been going well for them for a long time. Six albums in thirteen years, a passionately devoted international audience, some serious brushes with commercial success, an impressive catalogue of consistently wonderful songs, one of the most striking and underrated bodies of work in the past decade. But they finished their last tour feeling oddly dissatisfied. They weren’t kids anymore – they’d just turned thirty, and they wanted more. They felt restless, couldn’t understand why they weren’t reaching more people. So Tegan and Sara took a deep breath and a long look in the mirror, and popped into that nearby phone booth. And out came Heartthrob.
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Walk Off the Earth Columbia*Sony
Walk Off The Earth is an unconventional, multi-talented five-piece musical phenomena that is currently taking the world by storm. Based in Burlington, Ontario their brilliant five-people-playing-one-guitar interpretation of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know" exploded on YouTube garnering well over 35 million views in less than two weeks. The massive fan response quickly drew attention to their collection of innovative songs and videos spanning their last five years and generated an unprecedented flood of media interest. New fans from around the world immediately fell in love with the band's organic, independent, sincere and honest original songwriting, cover interpretations and beautifully filmed videos. For the past five years, the band has built a massive following of dedicated fans from around the world through their unique and heart-warming approach to songwriting, filming and constant, open interaction with everyone their music touches. Their independent spirit, unstoppable work ethic and awe-inspiring creativity has catapulted Walk Off The Earth into new and uncharted waters with only bigger and better things on the horizon.
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Breakthrough Artist of the Year (Sponsored by FACTOR and Radio Starmaker Fund)

Brett Kissel BAK2BAK*Warner
When you come from a place called Flat Lake, Alberta, it’s pretty tough to get noticed. For Brett Kissel, it’s pretty tough to be ignored. The 23-year-old singer/songwriter has released two independent albums, sold out countless shows and earned two Canadian Country Music Association Award nominations, becoming its youngest nominee ever. Even before the release of Started With A Song, his major label debut album through Warner Music Canada, Kissel made radio history. With more than 93 per cent of Canadian country stations adding the first single "Started With A Song," the track eclipsed the record for most adds at Canadian country radio in one week, a record previously held by Taylor Swift. Co-produced by Kissel with Ted Hewitt (Rodney Atkins) and CCMA Award-winner Bart McKay, the album is an exhilarating collection of music that can be best described as the new wave of old country: each song a slice of real-life sentiment; emotional touchstones that run the gamut of highs and lows and explore such subjects as deep love, trying moments and poignant reflection, measured out by party anthems and a sense that something special is happening here.
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Florence K Red Blues*Universal
Florence K has created a unique place for herself at home in Quebec and on the international music scene since her first album, Live At Lion D’Or was launched in 2005. With the release of her two studio albums Bossa Blue (2006) and La Historia De Lola (2008), both of which have won Félix Awards for World Music Album of the Year, and with Havana Angels, her gorgeous Christmas opus that was a huge smash just after its release in 2010, Florence has delivered something fresh and original each time. In autumn she returns with I’m Leaving You, a refreshing new album, delivered with the sincerity her fans have come to expect. Created for the most part in Los Angeles with famed producer Larry Klein (Joni Mitchell, Melody Gardot) I’m Leaving You plunges the listener into a rich sonic universe, where Rock meets Blues, where horns and guitars are subtly blended together, where all of the nuances of love are explored and where Florence’s voice shines at the forefront like never before. On this, her first release with Universal Music Canada, the renowned musician from Montreal offers up 10 poignant, personal songs tinged with subtle humour and the pain of heartache.
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Tim Hicks Open Road*Universal
In only 12 months, new Country star Tim Hicks has achieved what most artists would aspire to in a decade. As the #1 highest selling Canadian Country artist of 2013, as well as the #1 Most Played Debut Artist at Radio (Country Overall), 150 Million Audience impressions at radio, 1.5 Million YouTuve hits, and a sold-out Throw Down club tour, Hicks is riding high. After first soaring into the Top 10 at country radio in less than eight weeks with his first single "Get By" (now certified Gold), and ruling the digital charts for more than 17 weeks – a noteworthy number for any musician – Hicks released Throw Down, the critically praised debut album, in August 2013. The album debuted at #1 on iTunes, and Hicks was the #1 selling Canadian artist first week (all genres). Throw Down includes three consecutive Top 10 radio hits, including “Buzz, Buzz, Buzzing” and “Hell Raisin’ Good Time,” which also a #1 video on CMT. Hicks’ fast rise is noteworthy, and he continues to set the pace for a new wave of country artists in Canada. A crowd pleasing live performer, Hicks’ solid identity as the ‘one to watch’ puts him at the forefront – poised for major success in country’s breathtaking rise to the top of all genres.
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Tyler Shaw Sony
Having never taken a professional music lesson, Tyler developed his love and talent for performance on his own, and has drawn inspiration from a wide range of artists. Now nineteen years old, this Coquitlam, BC native has gone from fooling around with a set of second hand strings to releasing his own music on the radio. Tyler enrolled as a student at University of PEI, and it was here where his dorm friends encouraged him to submit some of his YouTube video’s to MuchMusic’s Coca-Cola’s Covers competition. His talent didn’t go unnoticed and Tyler was chosen as the 2012 winner from over 13,000 submissions. His triumph was broadcast live from the MuchMusic Video Awards stage in June, 2012. Fast-forward to November of the same year and Tyler released his own original single "Kiss Goodnight" to radio across the country. The song was produced by Kozminuk and Zuban Thakkar and is nominated for an MMVA this year. The track quickly rose up the charts and is now certified Gold. The success of that song also led to Tyler securing an opening slot on Ke$ha and Pitbull’s tour dates this summer in Toronto and Montreal.
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Wake Owl Rezolute*Universal
Singer/songwriter Colyn Cameron of Wake Owl has been immersed in the world of music for the past ten years. Now a Vancouver native, Colyn was born and raised in Southern California before relocating. "In the beginning I was mostly into rhyme stuff/hip hop," Colyn notes, "I wrote rap basically. Then about seven years ago I picked up a guitar and taught myself basic stuff and immediately began writing songs." After graduation Colyn trained in organic agriculture at Emerson College in England and worked on different farms throughout the UK, Germany, Chile and Canada. Colyn found his travels to be a catalyst for writing songs. "My writing process is always changing. I usually find the most inspiration after these long periods of not having too much of my own space, touring or traveling. A lot just tends to pour out rather quickly," Colyn reflects. It was upon his return to Vancouver that Colyn decided it was time to start recording what he had written on his journey, and thus began the recording process of the Wild Country EP. The result is a six song EP that harvests raw, honest, emotion through Colyn’s words and melodies.
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Breakthrough Group of the Year (Sponsored by FACTOR and Radio Starmaker Fund)

A Tribe Called Red Tribal Spirit/Pirates Blend*Sony
Bursting forth from Canada’s capital, native Producer/DJ crew, A Tribe Called Red, is producing a truly unique sound that’s impacting the global electronic scene and urban club culture. Since 2010 the group – made up of two-time Canadian DMC Champion DJ Shub, DJ NDN and DJ Bear Witness – has been mixing traditional pow wow vocals and drumming with cutting-edge electronic music. Their self-titled album, released in March 2012, was long listed for Canada’s prestigious Polaris Music Prize and included in the Washington Post’s Top 10 albums of the year. ATCR’s music is the soundtrack to a contemporary evolution of the pow wow: their Electric Pow Wow events in Ottawa showcase native talent and aboriginal culture, alongside an open, wild party. Within a couple of years they’ve become the face of an urban Native youth renaissance, championing their heritage and speaking out on aboriginal issues, while being on top of popular music, fashion and art. Their second full-length, Nation II Nation made the Polaris Prize short list as one of the 10 Best Canadian albums of the year.
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Autumn Hill Wax*Universal
Some songs grab you right away, while others sink in over time and won't let you go. Autumn Hill's music does both. Beyond the immediate hooks – the vivid imagery, the effortlessly catchy choruses and the passionate harmonies – are surprising depths. On their debut album Favourite Mistake, Tareya Green and Mike Robins tell compelling stories of loss and love from two distinct perspectives and build soaring pop on a strong Nashville foundation. Calgary native Tareya and Toronto born Mike took very different roads toward an unexpected common goal. Both were working on separate projects when their paths crossed at their label's Christmas party. Mike started harmonizing with Tareya on a song that they had begun working on for her then, solo project and something clicked. "We stopped playing and turned around" Tareya recalls "and everyone was like, that's it!" That song, "Favourite Mistake," went on to become the title track from their debut album. There and then, Autumn Hill was born. The nine songs on Favourite Mistake, recorded between Nashville and Toronto with producers Dave Thompson (Lights) and Tawgs Salter (Walk Off The Earth) tell stories of joy and heartbreak made fresh by both female and male perspectives and prove once and for all that opposites attract. 
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Born Ruffians Paper Bag*Fontana North
The Ontario-based four-piece, Born Ruffians released their third album, Birthmarks in Canada on April 16th on Paper Bag Records. The twelve-track album was written and demoed over the past three years and was produced by Roger Leavens at Boombox Sound in Toronto. A key ingredient to the creation of Birthmarks was a remote farmhouse in rural Ontario. The band wanted to return to the days spent writing their debut, Red, Yellow & Blue when they lived together and "whenever we had an idea we could work it out right there that moment." While some of Birthmarks was born on the farm, many of the songs were conceived long before. Luke Lalonde would write and demo constantly on his laptop, at home and on tour: Toronto, Montreal, Midland, Australia, France, Germany…everywhere. Several songs were realized during the recording process in the studio.
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Courage My Love Homeskool Prom*Warner
Power trio, pop-punk, alternative metal band; they grew up on it all. But while you are jumping around and banging your head with abandon, don’t miss the message: they have no appetite for destruction. Courage My Love is here to uplift and inspire. Becoming, the band’s new EP, produced by Chris Perry in Toronto, is eight tracks bled out of Courage My Love during a period of exciting changes. "Our first EP For Now came out when we were 17," explains Mercedes. "When you’re our age, a lot can happen in two years." Yes, many good things. Like heavy rotation on MuchMusic/MusiquePlus, more than three million YouTube views, and being on Alternative Press Magazine’s list of the Top 100 Bands to Know in 2012. With their popular DIY podcasts and viral videos, Courage My Love not only connect with fans, they reveal more of their true selves. It’s all part of what they do best. "This whole band is about being yourself," says Phoenix. "You don’t need to play by the book to be successful. Being a girl isn’t that big of a deal in music anymore. You don’t need to have a certain look. Break the rules, stand apart."
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July Talk Sleepless*Universal
Upon returning home from a final European tour with his band, Peter Dreimanis sat in a candlelit bar paying little attention to the beat-up acoustic guitar being passed from patron to patron; that was until it found its home in the hands of Leah Fay. He sat listening, dumfounded, realizing he'd met his match. Clearheaded the next day, he started his search for the stranger from the bar with whom he seemingly shared a soul. He found her; they founded July Talk. After linking up with Ian Docherty, Josh Warburton and Danny Miles, the band created a signature sound that is not easy to pigeonhole. Imagine Tom Waits and Amy Millan shouting whiskey-soaked lullabies while backed by the members of Crazy Horse and you'd have a good start. Striking a frenzied balance between Americana and dance-floor-filling indie-rock, July Talk?s Beauty and the Beast aesthetic burns a little going down, but is sure to warm your belly and have you coming back for more.
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Songwriter of the Year (Sponsored by SiriusXM Canada)

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
“After Life”, “Here Comes the Night Time”, “Reflektor” – Arcade Fire
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track "Reflektor" was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for "Reflektor", created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
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Henry Cirkut Walter Capitol*Universal/Mr. 305*Polo Grounds/RCA*Sony
“Roar” – Katy Perry/”Timber” – Pitbull/”Wrecking Ball” – Miley Cyrus
Henry Walter, known professionally as Cirkut, is a Canadian music producer and songwriter. He has been involved in numerous hit songs including co-producing and co-writing for the likes of Britney Spears, Ke$ha, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, B.o.B, Lil Wayne and Taylor Swift. This includes the Billboard Hot 100 number one singles "Part of Me" and "Roar" by Katy Perry, and "Wrecking Ball" by Miley Cyrus. Walter was raised in Halifax and moved to Toronto in 2004. As a member of the Toronto-based Let's Go to War, he co-produced the Britney Spears song, "Mmm Papi", which appeared on her 2008 album, Circus. Walter opened Dream House Recording Studios in Toronto with partners Adrien Gough and Alex Bonenfant in 2010, and shortly thereafter relocated to Los Angeles, California to work with Luke "Dr. Luke" Gottwald's production team. He has been described by the Hollywood Reporter as Dr. Luke's "right-hand man and main production partner".
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Ron Sexsmith Warner
“Deepens With Time”, “Nowhere to Go”, “Snake Road” – Ron Sexsmith
The heart of Forever Endeavour, is a batch of songs sparked by an unexpected health scare in the summer of 2011, and it's these tracks that give the album its sorrowful gravitas. The songs are different responses to the alarming chance that Sexsmith had less time left on earth than he'd assumed. "Deepens With Time" looks back affectingly at childhood memories that make us who we are but also "wound and leave us scarred". "Snake Road" and "If Only Avenue" use the same metaphor to gaze back on paths not taken – or choices not made – but the latter is mid-tempo and boomily regretful where the former is defiantly resolute in its horn-parping blues-rock strut. After the sugar high that was Long Player Late Bloomer, Forever Endeavour is all about slow-energy release, a collection that sits more seamlessly next to earlier Mitchell Froom productions like Other Songs (1997) and Whereabouts (1999). Melancholy without being maudlin, spare without being simplistic, Sexsmith's songs are invariably underpinned by an acceptance of life as it actually is.
iTunes
Serena Ryder Serenader Source*Universal/Independent
“Stompa”, “What I Wouldn’t Do” – Serena Ryder/”When You Know ft. Serena Ryder” – Matt Epp & The Amorian Assembly
In 2013 Serena Ryder has been breaking new ground on all musical fronts with her latest release, Harmony (Serenadar Source / Universal Music Canada), achieving certified Gold status in just a few short months of release (November 2012). The lead single, "Stompa" is closing in on triple Platinum certification – a first for Ryder. Harmony’s success is due in part to this infectious first single as well as the equally anthemic follow-up track, "What I Wouldn’t Do", which is currently racing up the charts and set to match "Stompa’s" amazing sales and radio feats. Ryder is quickly becoming a radio sensation south of the border too, with massive radio airplay and topping the U.S. Triple A charts.
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Tegan and Sara Quin Warner Bros*Warner
“Closer”, “I Was a Fool”, “Now I’m All Messed Up” – Tegan and Sara
If you know and love Tegan and Sara’s music, the exuberant, polished sound of Heartthrob, their latest album, will come as a shock, almost a deliberate provocation. What happened to those neurotic, self-deprecating indie rockers, the twins from Canada obsessively chronicling their crushes and heartbreaks? When did they become so confident and radio-friendly, so unapologetically mainstream? Are Tegan and Sara pop stars? Why would they even want to be? Things have been going well for them for a long time. Six albums in thirteen years, a passionately devoted international audience, some serious brushes with commercial success, an impressive catalogue of consistently wonderful songs, one of the most striking and underrated bodies of work in the past decade. But they finished their last tour feeling oddly dissatisfied. They weren’t kids anymore – they’d just turned thirty, and they wanted more. They felt restless, couldn’t understand why they weren’t reaching more people. So Tegan and Sara took a deep breath and a long look in the mirror, and popped into that nearby phone booth. And out came Heartthrob.
iTunes

Country Album of the Year

Brett Kissel BAK2BAK*Warner
Started With a Song
When you come from a place called Flat Lake, Alberta, it’s pretty tough to get noticed. For Brett Kissel, it’s pretty tough to be ignored. The 23-year-old singer/songwriter has released two independent albums, sold out countless shows and earned two Canadian Country Music Association Award nominations, becoming its youngest nominee ever. Even before the release of Started With A Song, his major label debut album through Warner Music Canada, Kissel made radio history. With more than 93 per cent of Canadian country stations adding the first single "Started With A Song," the track eclipsed the record for most adds at Canadian country radio in one week, a record previously held by Taylor Swift. Co-produced by Kissel with Ted Hewitt (Rodney Atkins) and CCMA Award-winner Bart McKay, the album is an exhilarating collection of music that can be best described as the new wave of old country: each song a slice of real-life sentiment; emotional touchstones that run the gamut of highs and lows and explore such subjects as deep love, trying moments and poignant reflection, measured out by party anthems and a sense that something special is happening here.
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Dean Brody Open Road*Universal
Crop Circles
At the end of 2013, Dean Brody became the first male Canadian artist to earn two #1 songs at Country radio, in BDS and Mediabase history. Brody's 2012 Platinum-selling anthem, "Canadian Girls," and his latest Gold smash "Bounty" (feat. Lindi Ortega) were both #1 Most Added (All Formats) upon release, #1 selling Country singles at iTunes Canada, and spent multiple weeks at #1 on CMT Canada's Top 20 Countdown. Named 2013's #1 Most Played Canadian Artist at Country radio for the third consecutive year, Brody released his fourth album Crop Circles on November 5, debuting at #1 on the iTunes Canada Country Album chart. As the reigning CCMA Male Artist of the Year, the seven-time CCMA Award winner and now, three-time JUNO Award nominee he has garnered ample acclaim for his songwriting from both audiences and peers, and has amassed considerable mainstream media attention. His most recent features include the title of Hello! Canada's 50 Most Beautiful Canadians, appearances on George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight, Canada AM (CTV), Global TV's Entertainment Tonight Canada and CTV's eTalk. Dean Brody headlines his Crop Circles & Tractor Beams arena tour across Canada this February 2014.
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Gord Bamford Cache*Sony
Country Junkie
Gord Bamford’s rising star continues to shine. This sixteen-time Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA) award-winning and JUNO Award nominated artist keeps putting out great country music, all by staying true to his unique sound. Gord’s humble nature and get-it-done cowboy attitude make his shows entertaining and inspiring. There’s little doubt Gord Bamford is one of Canada’s A-list country artists: he was the leading winner at the 2013 CCMA awards taking home five awards including song of the year for "Leaning On A Lonesome Song". He even donated $100,000.00 to Children's Hospitals across Canada during his October tour! Gord Bamford is a true Canadian boy.
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Small Town Pistols 604*Universal
Small Town Pistols
Named after the small but powerful family matriarch whose spirit Amanda Wilkinson seemed to inherit. People would say, "You’re a pistol like Grandma Ida," While nobody is likely to forget that Amanda and Tyler enjoyed phenomenal success together years earlier with the Wilkinsons, one listen to Small Town Pistols reveals an entirely different beast. Their album profits from a long connection as performers but there’s also a newfound sophistication and scope at work here. "It’s a jump from being a 16 year-old, when we released our first record as the Wilkinsons, to being a near 30 year-old with different things to say entirely. We’re saying things we’d say as adults." With a majestic feel that recalls classic Jimmy Webb, "Living on the Outside" is a track where the duo’s attention to songcraft couldn’t be any clearer or more affecting. It’s significant therefore that it’s also one of three songs co-written by their father. While Amanda and Tyler cite everything from Lefty Frizzell to Emmylou Harris, the Beatles, and Death Cab’s Ben Gibbard as inspiration, they’re happy to admit that "the biggest influence of all is always our dad." The only difference now is their autonomy.
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Tim Hicks Open Road*Universal
Throw Down
In only 12 months, new Country star Tim Hicks has achieved what most artists would aspire to in a decade. As the #1 highest selling Canadian Country artist of 2013, as well as the #1 Most Played Debut Artist at Radio (Country Overall), 150 Million Audience impressions at radio, 1.5 Million YouTuve hits, and a sold-out Throw Down club tour, Hicks is riding high. After first soaring into the Top 10 at country radio in less than eight weeks with his first single "Get By" (now certified Gold), and ruling the digital charts for more than 17 weeks – a noteworthy number for any musician – Hicks released Throw Down, the critically praised debut album, in August 2013. The album debuted at #1 on iTunes, and Hicks was the #1 selling Canadian artist first week (all genres). Throw Down includes three consecutive Top 10 radio hits, including “Buzz, Buzz, Buzzing” and “Hell Raisin’ Good Time,” which also a #1 video on CMT. Hicks’ fast rise is noteworthy, and he continues to set the pace for a new wave of country artists in Canada. A crowd pleasing live performer, Hicks’ solid identity as the ‘one to watch’ puts him at the forefront – poised for major success in country’s breathtaking rise to the top of all genres.
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Adult Alternative Album of the Year

A.C. Newman Last Gang*Universal
Shut Down the Streets
Allan Carl Newman (born April 14, 1968) is a Canadian musician and singer-songwriter. He was a member of the indie rock bands Superconductor and Zumpano in the 1990s. Following the breakup of those bands, he re-emerged as the leader of The New Pornographers in 2000, a band who has enjoyed commercial and critical success. After years of gaining success as the musical savant behind the songs of his bands, in 2004 Newman debuted as A.C. Newman, the solo artist. The Slow Wonder, his first album, was well-received. Newman's second solo album, titled Get Guilty, was released on January 20, 2009. In May 2012, Newman announced via Twitter that he was close to completing his third solo album. The album, Shut Down The Streets, was released on October 9, 2012. Recorded in Woodstock, New York, the album features contributions from Newman's New Pornographers colleague Neko Case. Newman has said that Shut Down The Streets is "all about birth, death, happiness and sadness, chronicling a time in my life where all those things had to learn to coexist side by side." In June 2013, the album was long listed for the 2013 Polaris Music Prize.
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Basia Bulat Secret City*Universal
Tall Tall Shadow
Basia Bulat has garnered great critical acclaim over the years; SPIN praises the singer’s "bright harmonies and…resonant alto voice", Pitchfork praises her "rare, extraordinary voice," and Filter declares "Bulat can pine with the best of them." She has toured in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Australia sharing the stage with artists including The National, St Vincent, Beirut, tUnE-yArDs, Arcade Fire, Andrew Bird and Nick Cave. She has collaborated with Owen Pallett, who created orchestral arrangements of a selection of Basia’s songs that have been performed by the Halifax Symphony Orchestra, Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra and the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony. Basia has even been invited in recent years to help fête Canadian legends Leonard Cohen (for the Glenn Gould Prize in 2012) and Daniel Lanois (for the Governor General’s Award in April 2013). Her third album, Tall Tall Shadow has been praised by The New York Times "a sound that nods to Fleetwood Mac and the early Joni Mitchell. Ms. Bulat has a voice well suited to interiority, warm and honeyed", Now Toronto says "the title track is one of the best Bulat’s ever written", and eMusic says that Tall Tall Shadow "…reveals a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist bursting with creativity and expressiveness."
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Hayden Arts & Crafts*Universal
Us Alone
Hayden is a singer-songwriter from Thornhill, Ontario. His first album, Everything I Long For, was released in 1995 on his own Hardwood Records. The album was a success and Hayden subsequently found himself in a bidding war between record labels, with an offer coming directly from Neil Young. Also in 1996, Hayden performed both nights of Neil Young's annual Bridge School Concert, and contributed the title track to the soundtrack for Steve Buscemi's film Trees Lounge. For his second album, 1998's The Closer I Get, Hayden worked with big name record producers including Steve Fisk, John Hanlon and Scott Litt. He toured North America with a band, including Josh Malinsky of Poledo and Damon Richardson of Change of Heart. In 2001, Hayden released Skyscraper National Park and in 2004, he issued his follow up, Elk Lake Serenade and toured North America with Cuff the Duke as his band. He released In Field & Town in 2008, and The Place Where We Lived in 2009. In 2010 he produced Lou Canon's debut album - his first time producing for another artist. In 2013, Hayden released his seventh full-length – Us Alone on Arts & Crafts, his first on a label besides Hardwood. It was long listed for the 2013 Polaris Music Prize.
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Ron Sexsmith Warner
Forever Endeavour
The heart of Forever Endeavour, is a batch of songs sparked by an unexpected health scare in the summer of 2011, and it's these tracks that give the album its sorrowful gravitas. The songs are different responses to the alarming chance that Sexsmith had less time left on earth than he'd assumed. "Deepens With Time" looks back affectingly at childhood memories that make us who we are but also "wound and leave us scarred". "Snake Road" and "If Only Avenue" use the same metaphor to gaze back on paths not taken – or choices not made – but the latter is mid-tempo and boomily regretful where the former is defiantly resolute in its horn-parping blues-rock strut. After the sugar high that was Long Player Late Bloomer, Forever Endeavour is all about slow-energy release, a collection that sits more seamlessly next to earlier Mitchell Froom productions like Other Songs (1997) and Whereabouts (1999). Melancholy without being maudlin, spare without being simplistic, Sexsmith's songs are invariably underpinned by an acceptance of life as it actually is.
iTunes
The Sadies Outside
Internal Sounds
The Sadies, consisting of brothers Dallas and Travis Good, drummer Mike Belitsky and upright bassist Sean Dean, have been building an international reputation since their formation in 1994. Their most recent release is Internal Sounds – a follow-up to JUNO Award nominated and critically-acclaimed New Seasons. On Internal Sounds The Sadies' bring their signature blend of country, psychedelic, rock and surf into rifle-scope focus, further underscoring their reputations as musicians' musicians. The Sadies have released 16 studio albums, including two with R&B Legend Andre Williams, an album with Jon Langford, an album with Neko Case and album with John Doe, The Good Family album, plus a soon to be released album with Gord Downie. The band has also collaborated with Blue Rodeo, Garth Hudson, Buffy Sainte-Marie and Neil Young just to name a few. Always at the top of the list when discussing musical chops and live intensity, The Sadies are now more intent than ever on making their mark as songwriters. In one turn as heavy as a sledge, and on the other flitting across melodies with the ease of so many sparrows, The Sadies prove once again that denying them now is simply prolonging your conversion.
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Alternative Album of the Year (Sponsored by Long & McQuade)

Arcade Fire Arcade Fire Music*Universal
Reflektor
Arcade Fire’s highly anticipated fourth album Reflektor was released on October 28 via Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Produced by Arcade Fire, James Murphy and Markus Dravs, the album was recorded in Jamaica, Montreal and New York. Title track "Reflektor" was released on the 9/9 at 9:00pm, featuring guest vocals from David Bowie and an accompanying video by long-time collaborator Anton Corbijn. A second interactive video for "Reflektor", created for Google Chrome and written and directed by Vincent Morisset, was shot in Haiti.
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Rah Rah Hidden Pony*Universal
The Poet's Dead
Originally formed as a trio in 2007 in Regina, the rock sextet Rah Rah, released their new record, The Poet’s Dead on October 2, 2012, via Hidden Pony Records. Recorded in the fall of 2011, under the production guidance of Gus Van Go and Werner F (The Stills, Hollerado, Preistess), Rah Rah have fine-tuned the band and refined their sound. Known for their energetic, enthralling live shows, the members of Rah Rah share a collective mentality, taking turns taking the lead, both in songwriting and while on stage. Lyrically, The Poet’s Dead showcases some of the finest song writing from the band and their strongest collective step forward to date. The band has toured incessantly behind the album release – through out North America, and recently in Europe – sharing the stage with the likes of Minus The Bear, Wintersleep and Said The Whale.
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Royal Canoe Nevado*Fontana North
Today We're Believers
A six-piece ensemble from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Royal Canoe gives you everything but on their own maniacally hybrid terms. It's one thing to reference a particular style, or even a range of styles. It's another thing entirely to grab huge handfuls of sounds from pretty much anywhere, throw them all together and come up with something both cohesive and totally distinctive – something that also happens to ripple and crack with energy. This is what Royal Canoe does best. Royal Canoe's dedication to crafting a seamless musical pastiche is obsessive. For live shows, they’d rather lug hundreds of pounds of keyboards, mixers and pedals across the continent (very much like a voyager canoe, in fact) than rely on lengthy backing tracks. They actually play every part, every time. And while their van is packed with hardware, much of that hardware is, in turn, crammed full of widely-sourced samples and adoringly homemade sounds. Their fearlessness about using whatever they feel like is grounded, not in recklessness, but in a decisive confidence. We're Believers, the band's latest album, was released on September 3rd, 2013 in Canada and USA, with UK/Europe releases which followed in late September.
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The Darcys Arts & Crafts*Universal
Warring
The Darcys are an art rock band from Toronto comprised of Jason Couse (vocals, guitar, keys), Wes Marksell (drums), Michael le Riche (guitar, synth, vocals) and Dave Hurlow (bass). The band's 2013 studio album, Warring, represents its third release on Arts & Crafts and the final instalment in a trilogy of albums that includes The Darcys (2011) and AJA (2012). Warring was produced by Tom Mcfall (Stars, R.E.M., Bloc Party) and mixed by Dave Schiffman (Rage Against The Machine, System Of A Down). The album was written over three years and recorded in Toronto during the final six months of 2012 with a focus on sonic detail inspired by the history of great studio opuses.
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Yamantaka//Sonic Titan Paper Bag*Fontana North
Uzu
With their sophomore effort UZU, Yamantaka // Sonic Titan's Alaska and Ruby continue their exploration of cultural dualities. While Yamantaka // Sonic Titan has always provided an outlet for the core duo’s celebration of their Asian heritage, the inclusion of auxiliary musicians and artists into the fold has reinforced one of the most crucial defining dualities of the group: the merging of diasporic and indigenous perspectives. This meeting of East and West is perhaps most visible in UZU’s lead single "One". As the first Yamantaka // Sonic Titan song to extend the song writing credits beyond the core duo, "One" incorporates the indigenous upbringings of the extended group by leading off with a traditional Iroquois song. The introductory chant is a social song calling all people together, and is performed by people of the Mohawk tribe. From there, the band kicks into a driving guitar line and a vocal hook as sweet as any J-pop hit. It is safe to say there is no other band like Yamantaka // Sonic Titan on the planet. In a world that is increasingly homogenized, a record like UZU is all the more important for demonstrating how disparate cultural perspectives can merge into something entirely new while retaining their individual sovereign character. 
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Pop Album of the Year (Sponsored by TD)

Hedley Universal
Wild Life
Wild Life was produced by Jacob Hoggard and multiple JUNO Award winner, long-time Hedley creative collaborator and friend Brian Howes (Nickelback, Simple Plan). The two have worked together right from the start on Hedley's self-titled debut album (2005), The Show Must Go (2009) and Storms (2011). Wild Life was released on November 11. "Hedley have delivered another fantastic record," said Shawn Marino, Vice-President, A&R and Publishing, Universal Music Canada. "They have managed to raise the bar once again and reinvent themselves creatively, while still maintaining their highly infectious trademark vibe." "Anything" was serviced to radio August 26 and is currently available for purchase digitally. "Anything" exhibits Hedley's signature anthemic charm and is sure to follow in the footsteps of the band's past chart-topping hits "Kiss You Inside Out," "Perfect"` and "Invincible."
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Michael Bublé Reprise*Warner
To Be Loved
Walk Off The Earth is an unconventional, multi-talented five-piece musical phenomena that is currently taking the world by storm. Based in Burlington, Ontario their brilliant five-people-playing-one-guitar interpretation of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know" exploded on YouTube garnering well over 35 million views in less than two weeks. The massive fan response quickly drew attention to their collection of innovative songs and videos spanning their last five years and generated an unprecedented flood of media interest. New fans from around the world immediately fell in love with the band's organic, independent, sincere and honest original songwriting, cover interpretations and beautifully filmed videos. For the past five years, the band has built a massive following of dedicated fans from around the world through their unique and heart-warming approach to songwriting, filming and constant, open interaction with everyone their music touches. Their independent spirit, unstoppable work ethic and awe-inspiring creativity has catapulted Walk Off The Earth into new and uncharted waters with only bigger and better things on the horizon.
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Robin Thicke Interscope*Universal
Blurred Lines
Robin Thicke has established himself as one of the most respected singer-songwriters in soul and R&B music today. The musician, composer and actor, released his critically acclaimed debut album, A Beautiful World in 2003 under the name Thicke. Soon after, he came out with his breakthrough second release, 2006’s The Evolution Of Robin Thicke. Now on the way to double Platinum status, Evolution’s mega hit "Lost Without U" became the number one most played song in Urban Adult Contemporary BDS and topped four Billboard charts simultaneously. Robin’s fifth studio album, Love After War was released in December of 2011. Blurred Lines, Robin’s sixth and current studio album debuted at number one on the Canadian Nielsen SoundScan chart, selling 13,402 copies in its first week. The album was Robin’s first number one debut in Canada and features his 8X Platinum global hit and title track, as well as his second single "Give It 2 U", featuring Kendrick Lamar and 2 Chainz. "Blurred Lines", featuring Pharrell and T.I. spent 11 weeks atop the Canadian SoundScan Digital Songs chart and has sold over 663,000 units to-date in Canada.
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Tegan and Sara Warner Bros.*Warner
Heartthrob
If you know and love Tegan and Sara’s music, the exuberant, polished sound of Heartthrob, their latest album, will come as a shock, almost a deliberate provocation. What happened to those neurotic, self-deprecating indie rockers, the twins from Canada obsessively chronicling their crushes and heartbreaks? When did they become so confident and radio-friendly, so unapologetically mainstream? Are Tegan and Sara pop stars? Why would they even want to be? Things have been going well for them for a long time. Six albums in thirteen years, a passionately devoted international audience, some serious brushes with commercial success, an impressive catalogue of consistently wonderful songs, one of the most striking and underrated bodies of work in the past decade. But they finished their last tour feeling oddly dissatisfied. They weren’t kids anymore – they’d just turned thirty, and they wanted more. They felt restless, couldn’t understand why they weren’t reaching more people. So Tegan and Sara took a deep breath and a long look in the mirror, and popped into that nearby phone booth. And out came Heartthrob.
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Walk Off the Earth Columbia*Sony
R.E.V.O.
Walk Off The Earth is an unconventional, multi-talented five-piece musical phenomena that is currently taking the world by storm. Based in Burlington, Ontario their brilliant five-people-playing-one-guitar interpretation of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know" exploded on YouTube garnering well over 35 million views in less than two weeks. The massive fan response quickly drew attention to their collection of innovative songs and videos spanning their last five years and generated an unprecedented flood of media interest. New fans from around the world immediately fell in love with the band's organic, independent, sincere and honest original songwriting, cover interpretations and beautifully filmed videos. For the past five years, the band has built a massive following of dedicated fans from around the world through their unique and heart-warming approach to songwriting, filming and constant, open interaction with everyone their music touches. Their independent spirit, unstoppable work ethic and awe-inspiring creativity has catapulted Walk Off The Earth into new and uncharted waters with only bigger and better things on the horizon.
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Rock Album of the Year (Sponsored by Musicians' Rights Organization Canada)

Headstones Frostbyte*Universal
Love + Fury
After a decade’s absence, Headstones are back and, as they would say, still making bad life choices. Their fans would vehemently disagree; Love + Fury is among the most welcomed decisions they’ve arrived at. Hugh Dillon, Trent Carr, Tim White and Dale Harrison—punk-rock troublemakers from Kingston, Ontario – brought their anti-social demeanor to the Canadian musical landscape in 1987 and ruled the road and the radio for a decade and change before self-imploding in 2003 after getting on one another’s nerves, and irritated by a music industry they perceived to be promoting pre-fabricated synthetics over genuine artistic expression. During their self-imposed hiatus, Hugh Dillon satiated his musical hunger with his Redemption Choir and solo albums, but devoted his time and energy to his acting career. In October 2012, they decided to launch a crowd-funding project through PledgeMusic so they could get new music out to their fans, in the true spirit of independent grass-roots self-promotion. This was their way to get the fans what they had been craving since the band’s revival. Within a day, Headstones had reached 100 per cent of their crowd-funding goal.
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Matt Mays Sonic*Warner
Coyote
Matt Mays is on a quest to find and create the music he hears in his head. When he stays still the sound drifts farther away. "When the vibrations stop," he says, "it’s time to move on." A few years back, Matt left to embark on a journey into open space. To live in the midst of a world where anything could happen. A crusade into the sound, traversing the vast musical divide that he calls home. Mexico, California, Indonesia, Hawaii, Costa Rica, New York. Wherever. He used surfing, yoga, and a ukulele as tools to bring him closer to the melodies and words different places and experiences inspired. Coyote covers the whole spectrum of the sound that Mays finally found. "I've always loved animals that are beautiful but dangerous," Matt explains. "It's a good analogy for life. Coyotes are native to Canada, Mexico and the United States and that's where I travelled while writing this album." Coyote is Matt’s fifth album since his self-titled debut. He’s won numerous ECMAs and been nominated for four JUNO Awards. He’s toured Canada, the USA, and the UK.
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Matthew Good Frostbyte*Universal
Arrows of Desire
Throughout his two decades at the forefront of Canadian music, Vancouver-based rock icon Matthew Good has only been one thing: unpredictable. Refusing to adhere to the path of least resistance – Good has successfully shuffled through musical genres and aural approaches. The strains of his early work in The Matthew Good Band are virtually incomparable to that of revered solo efforts such as 2007’s Hospital Music, 2009’s Vancouver and 2013’s Arrows of Desire. From multi-Platinum sales to four JUNO Awards including Vancouver being heralded as 2011’s Rock Album of the Year, 19 nominations overall and almost one million albums sold, Matthew Good’s personal mantra of musical evolution has blossomed internationally. "Arrows of Desire is simple rock," Good states of his most recent effort. "I grew up listening to bands that were four or five chords who made it magic and that’s kinda what I wanted to get done. That’s not saying there aren’t some complexities on the record because there damn well is, but I don’t know...it was just fun to do."
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Monster Truck Dine Alone*Universal
Furiosity
Monster Truck was formed in 2009 by Jon Harvey (bass, lead vocals), Jeremy Widerman (guitar, vocals), Brandon Bliss (organ, vocals) and Steve Kiely (drums, vocals). True to their notorious maxim "Don’t F*ck With The Truck", the band steamrolled across the country, becoming one of the biggest stories in Canadian rock. Their first two singles from The Brown EP ("Seven Seas Blues" and "Righteous Smoke") hit the Top 10 on Canadian Rock radio, the band scored a sweet EA NHL 2013 online trailer spot with "Seven Seas Blues" and "Righteous Smoke" is currently featured in the trailer for The Art of the Steal starring Kurt Russell and Matt Dillon. Monster Truck won a 2013 CRMA (Canadian Radio Music Award) in Rock for "Seven Seas Blues" and was also hand-picked to open for Slash on his 2012 North American tour. Over the past year, the band has opened for the likes of Deep Purple, Clutch, The Sheepdogs, Billy Talent, Alice in Chains and most recently ZZ Top and Kid Rock.
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Three Days Grace RCA*Sony
Transit of Venus
Three Days Grace is a Canadian rock band formed in Norwood, Ontario, Canada in 1992, originally under the name Groundswell. After a breakup in late 1995, the band regrouped in 1997 under its current name with a line-up consisting of guitarist and lead vocalist Adam Gontier, drummer and backing vocalist Neil Sanderson, and bassist Brad Walst. In 2003, Barry Stock was recruited as the band's lead guitarist. The band is based in Toronto. After signing to Jive Records, Three Days Grace has released four studio albums, each at three-year intervals: Three Days Grace in 2003, One-X in 2006, Life Starts Now in 2009, and Transit of Venus in 2012. The first three albums have been RIAA certified Platinum, Platinum, and Gold, respectively, in the United States, whereas in Canada they have been certified by Music Canada as platinum, double platinum, and platinum, respectively. The band have a string of number one songs on the Billboard Alternative Songs and Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks charts.
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Vocal Jazz Album of the Year

Amy McConnell & William Sperandei Independent
Stealing Genius
"For its jaw-dropping chutzpah, Stealing Genius deserves a JUNO Award," said the Toronto Star's Peter Goddard. Stealing Genius producer Feisal Patel wanted to make an album with William Sperandei for years. "William is the best trumpet player I've heard. When I first heard him, I couldn't believe he was playing in this small club in Toronto." William, who studied with Ellis Marsalis in New Orleans, has played with some of the best, including Wynton Marsalis, Andrea Bocelli, David Foster and more. William and Feisal both wanted to work with a singer, but they had a very specific idea of what they were looking for – a jazz singer who loved melody. After years of searching, they found Amy. Amy's singing background is jazz and musical theatre so "she understands the art of singing as an expression of words," William says. "Her tone is incredibly beautiful and she feels the lyrics." Amy is just as big a fan of William's. "William is amazing. He stands there and music pours out of him. And it's different every time and it's brilliant every time. He plays with so much imagination and fire." Together, they set out on a journey through some of the most beautiful melodies of the 20th century.
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Erin Propp with Larry Roy Independent
Courage, My Love
Erin Propp and Larry Roy are a jazz/folk song-writing team from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Erin’s crystalline voice and Roy’s mastery of the guitar create a brilliant musical experience for audiences. Erin Propp’s voice has been turning heads since she was a teenager, with songs and a delivery that are full of beauty, high-artistry, and heart-breaking honesty. Larry Roy is a respected veteran of the Canadian jazz scene, contributing to an array of records as guitarist, engineer, writer, and producer, and emerges now as co-songwriter with Erin Propp. 2012 was a banner year for Erin and Larry, debuting with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, opening for Gretchen Parlato in Winnipeg, and releasing their debut full-length album, Courage, My Love in early 2013 which has received critical acclaim, winning a 2013 Western Canadian Music Award for Jazz Recording of the Year. Propp and Roy’s songs and performances are thoughtful, seamlessly arranged, and inventive while being accessible.
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Matt Dusk eOne
My Funny Valentine – The Chet Baker Songbook
With My Funny Valentine, the JUNO Award nominated performer Matt Dusk reintroduces and reinterprets Chet Baker’s repertoire for a new generation – and comes home in the process. Recorded in Toronto, Dusk and an 80-piece orchestra are joined by Grammy Award-winning trumpet and flugelhorn virtuoso Arturo Sandoval, JUNO Award winning jazz king Guido Basso, Canadian chanteuse Emilie-Claire Barlow and Straight No Chaser alum Ryan Ahlwardt – the 12-song album digs deep into Baker’s vast and varied catalogue. The set list glides seamlessly from lushly appointed signature ballads like "Deep in a Dream" and the unconditional-love title track, "My Funny Valentine", to swinging renditions of standards like "Let’s Get Lost", "All The Way", "Embraceable You" and "Come Rain or Come Shine." For Dusk, who produced the album with Terry Sawchuk and Shelly Berger, it was a true labour of love. Emphasis on labour. "It took me almost six months to choose the songs on the record," he says. "I would only record a song that I knew Chet had either recorded or performed."
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Mike Rud Independent
Notes On Montréal ft. Sienna Dahlen
Mike Rud, songwriter and veteran Canadian jazz guitarist, has been performing at jazz clubs and festivals in virtually all major Canadian centers, since 1986. He has shared the stage with jazz luminaries such as Herb Ellis, Kenny Wheeler, and Randy Brecker, to name just a few. But in his new project, Notes on Montréal, Mike is heading out into far broader musical territory. Inspired by the literature of Montreal (Roy, Richler, Tremblay and many others), Mike has written a cycle of music and lyrics, in a variety of grooves, focused around that city and its mythic identity. This disc features the stunning Toronto vocalist Sienna Dahlen, a brilliant Montreal-based rhythm section, and a beautiful string quartet. Mike holds a master's degree from McGill, one of the many universities and colleges where he has taught. He also studied privately in New York City with one of history's great guitarists, Jim Hall. He has three previous CDs of his own, Whyte Avenue, Chimbe, and Live from Lotusland, and is a guest on many other CDs. He makes his home in Montreal, with two wonderful daughters. 
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Sonia Johnson, Charles Biddle Jr., Annie Poulain Effendi*Select
Triades
SONIA JOHNSON: A woman of many talents, she produced her first opus, “Don’t Explain”, in 2005. Her latest album, Le Carré de nos amours, 2012 JUNO Award winner for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year, is a perfect blend of the improvisational spontaneity of jazz and the lyricism of French chanson. The fiery singer’s passion for both musical traditions is on full display in this latest effort.
CHARLES BIDDLE JR: Son of the great jazzman Charlie Biddle, Charles always knew to set himself new challenges, overcome borders and explore new artistic approaches, he’s an artist of unprecedented versatility, bestowed with a rich musical heritage. Charles expresses himself as well in English as in French and remains accessible to a public that attends his appearances. Popular on the Internet, Charles has hundreds of fans on social media.
ANNIE POULAIN: Since 2000s, the singer decided to specialize in the composition and arrangement of French jazz pieces. With two albums to her credit, Jazzons Québec and “Saoulée à l’autre” for which she is responsible on several levels, from the composition to the production, not to mention the arrangements and was in nomination for Jazz Album of the Year at the 2010 ADISQ gala.
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Contemporary Jazz Album of the Year

Brandi Disterheft Justin Time*Universal
Gratitude
From her deep, resonating upright bass lines and potent improvisations, it is clear that 27-year-old Brandi Disterheft, an accomplished musician hailing from Vancouver and currently residing in New York City, has a healthy respect for the jazz tradition. A quick check of her bass mentors – Canada’s Don Thompson, Rufus Reid, Niels-Henning Orsted Pedersen, Rodney Whitaker and, more recently, Ron Carter – gives an indication of her low-end pedigree. "I really do like that low end," says Brandi, "whether it’s from Mingus playing so raw and passionately or the beautiful walking solos from Monk’s bass player Larry Gales or Jimmy Blanton with Ellington and Sam Woodyard. I just love all that stuff. It feels good to listen to and feels good to play."
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Christine Jensen Jazz Orchestra Justin Time*Universal
Habitat
Saxophonist and composer Christine Jensen is considered "one of the most important Canadian composers of her generation", according to Globe and Mail jazz critic, Mark Miller, and has emerged as a creative alto and soprano saxophonist on both the Canadian and international jazz scene. Downbeat Magazine says "Jensen writes in three dimensions, with a quiet kind of authority that makes the many elements cohere. Wayne Shorter, Maria Schneider and Kenny Wheeler come to mind." Christine is famous for writing specifically for the musicians she plays and records with. Her ability to create intimate dialogues amongst the players within the context of her compositions makes her work a pleasure for musicians to play. In the lead-up to this recording, she collaborated with special guests on this repertoire, including Geoffrey Keezer, Brad Turner, Karl Jannuska, François Théberge, Gary Versace, Donny McCaslin, Steve Amirault, Franck Amsallem, along with her long-term musical relations with sister Ingrid Jensen and Joel Miller. 
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Darcy James Argue's Secret Society New Amsterdam*Naxos
Brooklyn Babylon
Brooklyn-based composer-bandleader Darcy James Argue, a seven-time winner in the DownBeat Critics Poll, is credited with "making the big band cool again" (Time Out New York) and "reinventing the jazz big band for the 21st century" (John L. Walters, The Guardian). Active in New York with his 18-piece ensemble Secret Society since 2005, the Vancouver native first gained international recognition with his widely acclaimed 2009 debut, Infernal Machines (New Amsterdam Records), which appeared on over 100 Best-of-the-year lists, earned Grammy and JUNO Award nominations, and quickly made him one of the most talked about musicians in jazz. In addition to appearances at venues ranging from jazz and rock clubs to such prestigious theaters as Merkin Hall, The Kennedy Center, and Amsterdam’s Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, the group has also performed at the Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver Jazz Festivals, the Ecstatic Music Festival, the London Jazz Festival, the Moers Festival and numerous others. Argue premiered Brooklyn Babylon, an innovative multimedia collaboration with graphic artist Danijel Zezelj, over the course of four nights at the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival in 2011, and recorded the music for a highly praised sophomore release, also on New Amsterdam Records.
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Earl MacDonald Death Defying*Independent
Mirror of the Mind
Earl MacDonald lives jazz as a performer, composer and educator. Director of jazz studies at the University of Connecticut, the Winnipeg native earned degrees in jazz performance from McGill University and Rutgers, where he apprenticed with Kenny Barron. Earl is an active clinician, guest conductor and teacher at summer camps, in addition to his position at UCONN. From 1998 to 2000, MacDonald was the musical director, pianist, and arranger for the Maynard Ferguson Big Bop Nouveau Band. In 2002, MacDonald won the Sammy Nestico Award, for outstanding big band arranging. Earl was selected as a finalist for the 2007 Charlie Parker Jazz Composition Award during his affiliation with the BMI Jazz Composers' Workshop in New York. Twice he appeared as a finalist for the ArtEZ Composition Contest in the Netherlands. MacDonald's last CD, Re:Visions - works for jazz orchestra received a 2011 JUNO Award nomination. From this album, Earl's composition, "Bad Dream" won the jazz song category of the Tenth Annual Independent Music Awards. His new recording, Mirror of the Mind embodies his ongoing search for new ways to express himself musically, while challenging the defining boundaries of jazz.
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Marianne Trudel–Trifolia Independent*Select
Le refuge
Marianne Trudel is a multi-talented pianist, composer, improviser, arranger and producer. At once energetic and passionate, her music cuts across a wide swath of musical interests. As a performer, she pursues an active career as a leader in a variety of settings ranging from solo performance to more intimate duos and trios, and larger groups as quintet, septet and large ensembles. She has played in Canada, United States, France and Germany. She has published five recordings under her name, all having garnered rave reviews. Recipient of the Prix Étoiles Galaxie de Radio-Canada (Montreal Jazz Festival 2007), Marianne Trudel has presented multiple artistic projects that not only bring her considerable skills to the fore but also her keen sense of creativity. She has shared the stage with, among others: Kenny Wheeler, Chucho Valdes, Mark Feldman, Tony Malaby, Ingrid Jensen, and Mark Helias. She has composed and arranged for Radio-Canada and the American Composers Orchestra (NYC). "If there is justice in the jazz world, pianist Marianne Trudel should be on the edge of a breakout. She is playing with confidence and creativity and her compositions bristle with fresh ideas and a real sense of purpose," says jazz journalist James Hale.
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Traditional Jazz Album of the Year

Carn Davidson 9 Addo
Nine
The Carn Davidson 9 was formed at the beginning of 2011 as a collaborative project between JUNO Award nominated trombonist William Carn and saxophonist Tara Davidson. As leaders of their own small jazz groups, Carn and Davidson have each released three CDs, all entirely comprised of their own original material. This collaborative project is an opportunity for both artists to re-imagine their compositions for this chamber jazz instrumentation, shining new perspective on their existing repertoire. This nine-piece chordless ensemble utilizes its seven horns as both melodic and harmonic devices, anchored by bass and drums. The Carn Davidson 9’s unique sound is made stronger by an all-star line-up of prominent Canadian artists who are all exceptional ensemble players as well as outstanding soloists. In the fall of 2012, the group released their debut recording, 9, on Toronto’s Addo Records.
John MacLeod & His Rex Hotel Orchestra Exquisite
Our Second Set
John MacLeod's credentials as a trumpeter, composer and arranger have been firmly established in a distinguished career spanning over thirty years on the Canadian music scene. He has worked with Toronto's most elite musicians and musical organizations in both the jazz and commercial music fields. He was a featured soloist with one of the world’s most renowned big bands, Rob McConnell & the Boss Brass. He has performed, produced and engineered on over a hundred albums including Grammy and JUNO Award winners. As a composer and arranger, John has scored music for symphony orchestras including his own Champagne Symphony. In 2003, John formed the 20 piece "Rex Hotel Orchestra" who released their inaugural recording Our First Set in 2010 and received the JUNO Award for Best Traditional Jazz Album in 2011. This year the band released their current CD Our Second Set. In 2008, John conducted and performed with his own symphony pops orchestra, The Champagne Symphony at Carnegie Hall in New York City featuring world-renowned Canadian jazz clarinetist, Bob DeAngelis. The Champagne Symphony has also recorded two CD’s all with MacLeod's symphonic arrangements. John currently teaches at Humber College and the University of Toronto.
Mike Downes Addo
Ripple Effect
Mike’s extensive discography highlights his work as a bassist, composer and arranger. Recordings include Molly Johnson’s 2009 JUNO Award winning Lucky and JUNO-nominated recordings: Lorne Lofsky’s Bill Please, Ranee Lee’s Dark Divas and Maple Groove and Molly Johnson’s Another Day and Messin’ Around. He has released three recordings as a leader – Forces, Then and The Winds of Change. He has been called "…one of Canada’s immensely talented young giants" (Jazz Report), "…as strong a player as he is a composer" (Calgary Herald), "…wonderfully resourceful… a huge tone and a prodigious technique" (Winnipeg Free Press), and Jazz Player says "…his time playing is delightfully inventive and his intonation is absolutely impeccable…his lines are clear, hip, and agile."
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Phil Dwyer and Don Thompson Triplet*Outside
Look for the Silver Lining
Canadian musician Phil Dwyer has appeared on nine JUNO Award winning releases including Best Contemporary Jazz Album of 2012 for Changing Seasons (Phil Dwyer Orchestra). From 1988-2004 he was a first-call session player, concert and club performer and composer/ arranger in Toronto. He has also toured throughout Canada and the U.S., as well as in Europe, Asia, Mexico, and South America. Living back on his native Vancouver Island since 2004 Phil has remained busy with touring and recording projects and in addition he also operates his own summer music school. Don Thompson is also an accomplished pianist, vibraphonist, composer and arranger. He spent many years with George Shearing with whom he appeared playing bass and piano (in a duo setting) and vibraphone in the quintet. Through the years he has worked and recorded with many of the greatest jazz musicians in the world such as Jim Hall, Paul Desmond, Frank Rosolino, Kenny Wheeler and John Abercrombie. Don has won three JUNO Awards, the Oscar Peterson Award (Montreal Jazz Festival) and the Hagood Hardy Award for Composition (SOCAN) as well as 13 National Jazz Awards. In 2009 he was made an Officer of the Order Of Canada. 
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The Ian MacDougall 12-tet Barbarian*Independent
The Ian McDougall 12tet LIVE
Ian McDougall is a legendary jazz trombonist whose name is known internationally among traditional jazz aficionados. He is a Canadian ambassador for jazz, having performed in Ireland, Scotland, Denmark, Holland, Germany, Australia, Switzerland, and throughout the United States. Well known through his playing in Rob McConnell’s Boss Brass of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, Ian went on to produce six CDs as leader of smaller ensembles. Ian is known not only for his unique trombone sound and style, but also for his compositions, both jazz and classical, and for his mentoring skills. He received the Order of Canada in July of 2008, and resides in Victoria where he is still active as a performer, writer, and teacher. In March of 2012 he and eleven great jazz musicians played three nights at the Cellar Jazz Club in Vancouver. All three nights were sold out – and they were recorded. This album is the result of these great musicians' playing and composing, and the new CD was released on December 1 2012, at two sold out concerts in Victoria at Hermann's Jazz Club
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Instrumental Album of the Year

Colin Stetson Constellation*Outside
New History Warfare Vol.3: To See More Light
Colin Stetson was born and raised in Ann Arbor, and spent a decade honing his formidable talents as a horn player, working with a wide range of artists including Tom Waits, TV on the Radio, Arcade Fire, Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson. He settled in Montreal in 2007. In 2008 Aagoo records released Colin's debut, the first in his New History Warfare album cycle. New History Warfare Vol. 2: Judges arrived via Constellation in Spring 2011, kicking off a hectic year of solo engagements and touring as part of Bon Iver's band. The album met with universal acclaim: called "pure revelation" by All About Jazz, was shortlisted for the Polaris Music Prize, and landed on the most prominent year-end lists. His frequent appearances on international stages cemented his reputation as a versatile and virtuosic player. Colin's astounding physical engagement with his saxophones produces emotionally rich and polyphonic compositions. Stetson is equally at home in the avant jazz tradition of players who have pushed the boundaries of the instrument through circular breathing, embouchure. April 2013 saw the release of New History Warfare Vol. 3: To See More Light via Constellation, completing the series. The album was short listed for the Polaris Music Prize.
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Esmerine Constellation*Outside
Dalmak
Esmerine's new album Dalmak emphatically confirms that the group has indeed continued writing, exploring and collaborating. Bruce Cawdron (Godspeed You! Black Emperor) appears alongside co-founder and cellist Rebecca Foon (Silver Mt. Zion, Set Fire To Flames); with percussionist Jamie Thompson (Unicorns, Islands) and multi-instrumentalist Brian Sanderson. European tours in 2011-2012 took Esmerine to Istanbul, where the group's enthusiastic reception led to an invitation for an artist residency. The majority of Dalmak was recorded in Istanbul, where the band was joined by Turkish guest players: Hakan Vreskala, Baran A??k, Ali Kazim Akda?, James Hakan Dedeo?lu on various instruments. Dalmak is a Turkish verb with many connotations: to contemplate, to dive into, to bathe in, to plummet. Esmerine presents some of its most richly minimal and intimate music alongside what is surely its most explosive, energized and ornate. Dalmak is a tour-de-force of cross-cultural music-making, emotive but unsentimental, deeply textured and detailed, guided throughout by DIY rock, new folk and modern classical/contemporary sensibilities. The album’s gorgeously saturated warmth and pulsing grit was achieved courtesy of Breakglass head engineer Jace Lasek (Wolf Parade, The Besnard Lakes, Suuns) and Ian Ilavsky, who mixed the album alongside Beckie and Bruce.
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Mahogany Frog MoonJune*Planetworks
Senna
Mahogany Frog is an instrumental electronic rock band from Winnipeg. The group is currently comprised of four multi-instrumentalists: Graham Epp (guitar/keyboards/trumpet), Jesse Warkentin (guitar/keyboards), Scott Ellenberger (bass/keyboards/trumpet) and Andy Rudolph (drums/electronics). The music draws influence from ‘60s psychedelia, electronica, ‘70s progressive/kraut-rock, jazz, ‘50s "ultra" lounge and ambient/experimentalism. Using an arsenal of keyboards (Moog/ ARP/ Farfisa/ Korg/ Rhodes/ Nord), cacophonous, feedback-ridden guitars, fuzz-bass and walls of electronics, the group creates dynamic, multi-layered songs which explore tone, mood and composition. Although Mahogany Frog’s unorthodox sounds and complex arrangements can challenge the ear, their haunting progressions and playful melodies are immediately catchy and satisfying. Onstage the band performs furiously, often connecting multiple songs together with interludes consisting of ambient noise. Over the past decade Mahogany Frog has recorded six LPs, delivered high-profile performances at Pop Montreal, Winnipeg Jazz Festival, Prog Day in Chapel Hill, NC and SESC in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and shared the stage with notable artists such as Caribou, Deerhoof, The Besnard Lakes and Eric's Trip. With the fall 2012 release of their LP, SENNA, the group was awarded Instrumental Recording of the Year at the 2013 Western Canadian Music Awards.
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Petr Cancura RootsToBoot*Independent
Down Home
Born in Eastern Europe, brought up in Ottawa, and later thrusting into the urban jungle of New York City, it is no surprise that Petr Cancura’s musical pallet is as wide as it is. A saxophonist with a vast knowledge of jazz, Balkan, African, Brazilian and American folk traditions, Petr also performs on banjo and mandolin as well as the medium format black and white camera… all of which influences each other into a roots, song and improvising music making machine with a visual sensibility. Cancura studied music at Carleton University, receiving a Masters in Music from New England Conservatory in Boston with honors in performance. Cancura has performed with Grammy nominated Danilo Perez, Grammy nominated Julian Lage, Bob Moses, Joe Morris, Jacek Kochan, Kathleen Edwards, Kenny Wollesen, Joe Maneri, Cecil McBee, The Ghost Train Orchestra and the JUNO Award winning Mighty Popo. He is an in demand sideman, bandleader and composer in Canada and the U.S., found performing at festivals all over the world. Petr’s source of expression is most focused on his blend of Americana roots music and jazz in his group Down Home.
The Peggy Lee Band Drip Audio*Fontana North
Invitation
Cellist, composer and band leader Peggy Lee resides in Vancouver where she performs with a wide variety of ensembles including the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, Microcosmos and the new music ensemble Standing Wave. As an interpreter and improviser, she works regularly with long time associates Tony Wilson, Dylan van der Schyff, Ron Samworth, Wayne Horvitz and Robin Holcomb, as well as in a new collaboration with vocalist Mary Margaret O’Hara called Beautiful Tool. In the past, Peggy has performed with the likes of trumpeter Dave Douglas, guitarist Nels Cline (Wilco), guitarist Bill Frisell and Wayne Horvitz. With her own group, The Peggy Lee Band, she has been able to develop her compositional skills. Invitation is the fifth record by The Peggy Lee Band and the second release by the group for Drip Audio. The album showcases the high standard of ensemble playing the group has become known for, as well as outstanding individual performances by the members of the band. Peggy’s compositions and arrangements cover a wide range of musical terrain – haunting melodies and lush harmonies, driving rhythms, and complex sonic explorations; each piece is constructed with the specific talents of the band members in mind. 
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Francophone Album of the Year (Sponsored by Festival du Voyageur)

Alex Nevsky Audiogram*Select
Himalaya mon amour
Alex Nevsky signed with Audiogram and released his first record produced by Yann Perreau De lune à l’aube in 2010, which brought him two nominations at the ADISQ gala in the prestigious categories Pop-Rock Album of the Year and Revelation of the Year. He was named Radio-Canada Music revelation of 2010-2011, and went on tour in Thailand and China with the 16th edition of Fêtes de la francophonie. In spring 2013, Alex Nevsky was the first Canadian and francophone artist to be a part of the official selection of the Record Store Day. He launched a seven inch vinyl containing two songs. "On leur a fait croire" rapidly became a staple of commercial radio in the province of Quebec, staying in the top five for five weeks and eventually hitting number one on the top 100 charts for two weeks (as of October 18). After over 100 performances of his show, he treads a new creative path along his travels of love, which take him to Turkey, France, Germany, Spain and Denmark. Coloured horizons, heavy feelings, and intense stares of faraway strangers become muses behind the writing and composition of his second album Himalaya mon amour, launched in front of one thousand people in three cities.
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Damien Robitaille Audiogram*Select
Omniprésent
Damien Robitaille grew up in the Franco-Ontarian village of Lafontaine, on Georgian Bay, the son of an English-speaking mother and a French-speaking father. He began studying classical piano at the age of eight and guitar at 13, and played the trumpet in his high school band while also taking violin lessons. At 15, he started writing Beatles-inspired songs in English. In early 2003, Robitaille released his first, self-titled album, a collection that aired only on Lafontaine community radio, but brought him gigs in Lafontaine, Sudbury and Waterloo. In 2003, he made the Ontario Pop finals and won a scholarship to the Granby National Song School. For a nine-month period starting in the fall of that year, he worked on his song writing technique and stage performance at Granby with such seasoned instructors as Robert Léger et Luc De Larochellière. In 2004, Robitaille took part in the Chanson en Fête festival in St-Ambroise, Quebec, and in the Granby International Song Festival, reaching both contests’ finals. Settling in Montreal in October 2004, Robitaille won several distinctions, including a first prize in the 2005 Francouvertes festival and the SOCAN Best Song Award. His career has rocketed since then with an unending stream of shows, scholarships, nominations (for JUNO and ADISQ Awards), awards (including six Trille Or prizes in March 2011), three albums (including the much acclaimed Homme autonome, released here in 2009 and being distributed in Europe since 2011) and extensive tours at home and in Europe.
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Daniel Belanger Audiogram*Select
Chic de ville
Le premier album de Daniel Bélanger Les insomniaques s'amusent, séduit rapidement un large public et extasie la critique. Les chansons «Opium», «La folie en 4» et «Ensorcelée» se logent pour de bon dans nos oreilles et nos mémoires. L'année d'après, avec une tournée depuis sacrée historique, avec des ventes qui dépassent 175 000 exemplaires et le Félix de l'album pop-rock de l'année en poche, l'auteur-compositeur interprète occupe déjà une place toute spéciale dans la scène musicale du Canada. En 1994, il remporte les Felix Album de l'année - meilleur vendeur, Interprète masculin de l'année et Spectacle de l'année, et fait paraitre en 1996 Quatre saisons dans le désordre, certifié platine, qui lui vaudra les Félix de l'Album Pop-rock, de l'Auteur-compositeur et du Spectacle de l'année. Avec l'album Rêver mieux, lancé en octobre 2001, il obtient sept Felix et un autre disque platine. Au final, l'homme au 22 Félix offre à son public Chic de ville, irrésistible virée sur les routes d'une Amérique intérieure. 
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Karim Ouellet Abuzie*D.E.P.
Fox
Karim Ouellet was born in Dakar, Senegal, and grew up in Canada, Senegal, Rwanda and Tunisia before settling in Quebec City. Musically he’s known for his progressive, genre-blending pop sound. A versatile and committed artist, Karim is involved in every step of creating a song: writing the music and lyrics, mixing, arranging and technical production. He was a finalist at the 2009 Granby International Song Festival and the 2011 Francouvertes music competition, and won the award for Best Pop Album of the Year (for Plume) at the 2011 Quebec Indie Music Awards. In 2012–13, Karim Ouellet and Lisa Leblanc were jointly hailed as Radio-Canada’s Revelation of the Year for francophone music. Following the release of his second album, Fox, Karim was pushed to the top of the charts. He appeared on a number of talk shows and was heard on every radio station in Quebec. He also toured and played at music festivals across Quebec and internationally countless times in the last year. Beneath the choirboy exterior lurks an astonishingly talented artist who shifts effortlessly between soul, pop, electro, folk, rock and more.
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Pierre Lapointe Audiogram*Select
Punkt
La carrière de Pierre Lapointe a vraiment pris son envol en septembre 2001 lorsqu'il a remporté le grand prix du Festival international de la chanson de Granby. Presque quatre ans plus tard (mai 2004), il lançait son premier CD éponyme. Depuis, il en a produit plus d'une dizaine, dont certains ont été distribués en France et en Belgique. Au Québec, les ventes de CD totalisent près de 500 000 exemplaires en 10 ans de carrière. Il a présenté ses spectacles au Québec, en France et en Belgique, notamment les FrancoFolies de Larochelle, de Montréal et de Spa. Il a aussi créé plusieurs spectacles inédits: Pépiphonique, La Forêt des mal-aimés avec l'Orchestre métropolitain de Montréal, qui fut présenté devant plus de 100 000 personnes aux FrancoFolies de Montréal ; Mutantès présenté à Montréal et Québec. Pierre Lapointe a reçu des récompenses de toutes sources : Lauréat du Festival international de la chanson de Granby en 2001 ; gagnant de plus de 13 Félix, le Prix Félix-Leclerc, le Prix Rapsat-Lelièvre, le Prix Charles-Cros, le Prix Raoul-Breton-Sacem. 
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Children's Album of the Year

Charlie Hope Little Maple Leaf*Challenge and Fun
Sing As We Go!
Charlie Hope spent her childhood in Toronto and Boston harmonizing with her sister and in her school choirs. Charlie’s fresh approach to children's music stems from the many years she has spent with children, from receiving her degree in Art Therapy with Children to the preschools and private homes where she was a trusted caregiver. Charlie believes that music is vital to a child’s overall well-being and strives to make music that reflects and respects their experiences. Her previous albums I'm Me!, World of Dreams, and Songs, Stories and Friends: Let’s Go Play! have all garnered international critical praise. Along with the 2012 JUNO Award for Best Children's Album, Hope’s music has won acclaim from the Independent Music Awards and Parents’ Choice, which praises her "unforced sunny spirit and youthful, sweet and clear-as-a-bell soprano." Zooglobble’s Stefan Shepherd describes her songs as "sparkly and joyful, with Hope's bright, clear voice carrying the tune." Echoing many other reviewers, Cool Mom Picks recommends Hope’s "clear-as-glass, pitch-perfect voice."
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Gary Rasberry Razzletone*Summit
What's the Big Idea?!?
Gary Rasberry. Philosopher. Poet. Imagination Consultant. Musician. Artist. Educator. Insecure Extrovert. Reluctant Enthusiast. Risk-taker. Scaredy Cat. Small Animal with Fast Metabolism. Currently touring with The Big Idea Band doing shows for What’s the Big Idea?!? his latest musical release. What’s the Big Idea?!? ( featuring old time fiddle and banjo duo, Sheesham & Lotus) has been nominated for Children’s Album of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. The Big Idea holds distant echoes of Pete Seeger, a splash of Fred Penner and the beautiful vibe of songs sung around the campfire. Gary Rasberry and The Big Idea Band were awarded an Official Family Showcase at Folk Music Ontario's 2013 Annual Conference. Gary has released three independent solo recordings as well as one record with the acoustic trio Fireweed. He is about to release his second book of poems, More Naked than Ever (Hidden Book Press). As Though it Could be Otherwise (Idea Manufactory Press), was released in 2011. Gary has appeared at Hillside Music Festival, Ottawa Folk Festival, Summerfolk, Mariposa, Peterborough Folk Festival, Blue Skies Music Festival, Northern Lights Festival Boréal, Home County Music & Art Festival, Canmore Folk Festival and the Australian National Folk Festival.
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Helen Austin Independent
Colour It
After years of writing songs while making a living as a musical stand-up comedian, Helen Austin's move to Canada in 2002 was the catalyst for her musical career. Eleven years and seven albums later, Helen is a prolific songwriter with many TV/movie placements, awards and competition wins under belt, the most recent being a JUNO Award nomination and John Lennon Songwriting Contest Grand Prize win. Helen brings her quirky humour to her music, as well as the ability to tug at your heart strings with her more serious songs and the melodies stay in your head long after you have heard them. Many of the songs on Helen's past albums have appealed to adults and kids alike. Colour It is Helen's second collection of songs written specifically for young children but in a style that keep the parents happy too. "Helen's words and notes are real in the way the best moments in life are real, and she is sincere in every phrase without losing one precious moment of quirkiness," says Indie Music Reviewer Magazine.
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Marie-Claude Independent
Mon coffret à surprises
Forever a child at heart, Marie-Claude has always believed that the only limits we have in life are those we create for ourselves. It is therefore not surprising that this accomplished artist and singer-songwriter has recently launched her newest musical endeavor as a children's performer where the boundless world of kids' imaginations can come to life. Mon coffret à surprises is Marie-Claude's fifth recording, having previously released two solo CDs and two more with the internationally acclaimed vocal group Madrigaïa (1998-2006). Since the release of her CD in December 2012, Marie-Claude has received four star reviews (Échos-vedettes), has been acclaimed by educators and was recently nominated for a Western Canadian Music Awards (2013). She has toured all over Manitoba and as far as Montreal. She also works closely with schools offering performances and workshops exploring arts education with kids of all ages. It is Marie-Claude's passion and love for kids that has inspired this project where her songs encourage human interaction through games, activities and communication. With her playful musical concepts, she entices children away from technology and invites them to rediscover the world around them, to imagine the world they can't see and spend quality time with friends and family.
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Splash'N Boots Independent
Coconuts Don't Fall Far From the Tree
Twice crowned "Canadian Children’s Group of the Year" at the SirusXM Independent Music Awards, and now appearing daily on Treehouse TV, Splash'N Boots have brought their award-winning live shows to over 100,000 children worldwide since 2004. What began as a class project at Queens University has led to the release of seven CDs, two DVDs, national television exposure, and a cross Canada filmed live tour with Treehouse TV. Splash’N Boots’ growing fan base and tour schedule is a result of their authenticity and dedication to connecting with their audience. Their music is timeless and universal, creating opportunities for parents and children to enjoy the same entertainment, and enabling kids to feel empowered and positive about their lives and the world around them. Talented, unique and inventive, the cutting-edge duo are constantly providing their fans with new material, and truly work 24/7 at building their business, brand and fan base. From social media, to their online kitchen jams, to their philanthropy with organizations such as Sick Kids Hospital, Splash'N Boots' brand extends far beyond the stage alone, and they continually prove to have an undeniably unique and fresh approach to children’s entertainment.
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Classical Album of the Year: Solo or Chamber Ensemble

James Ehnes Chandos*Naxos
Prokofiev Complete Works for Violin
James Ehnes was born in 1976 in Brandon, Manitoba. He began violin studies at the age of four, and at age nine, became a protégé of the noted Canadian violinist Francis Chaplin. He studied with Sally Thomas at the Meadowmount School of Music and from 1993 to 1997 at The Juilliard School, winning the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music upon his graduation. Mr. Ehnes first gained national recognition in 1987 as winner of the Grand Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Competition. The following year, he won the First Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Festival, the youngest musician ever to do so. At age 13, he made his major orchestral solo debut with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. He has won numerous awards and prizes, including the first-ever Ivan Galamian Memorial Award, the Canada Council for the Arts’ Virginia Parker Prize, and a 2005 Avery Fisher Career Grant.
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Jan Lisiecki Deutsche Grammophon*Universal
Chopin: Études Op. 10 & 25
Lisiecki’s debut recording on Deutsche Grammophon, nominated for a JUNO Award, featured Mozart’s Piano Concertos K. 466 & 467. His second album, recorded at Koerner Hall was released in April 2013 and features Chopin’s Études op. 10 and op. 25. Recognized for his poetic and mature playing, Lisiecki has won many prestigious awards. In 2013, he received the Leonard Bernstein Award of the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, in 2011, Jeune Soliste des Radios Francophones, and in 2010, Révélations Radio-Canada Musique. In 2012 he was named UNICEF Ambassador to Canada after being a National Youth Representative since 2008. 2013 performance highlights include a sold-out Canadian tour to support the release of the Chopin Études release, which has been a main-stay on the Canadian classical chart since release. He made his debut with Claudio Abbado and Orchestra Mozart, his BBC Proms debut with Antonio Pappano and the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia at Royal Albert Hall in London, and his debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Yannick Nézet-Séguin at the Bravo Vail Festival.
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Janina Fialkowska/The Chamber Players of Canada ATMA*Naxos
Concertos Nos. 13 & 14
The Chamber Players of Canada is a group made up of some of the best musicians from across Canada that varies in size for concerts, recording, and touring. The Chamber Players have performed a wide range of music from the great masterpieces of the 18th and 19th century to some of the most exciting chamber music works of the 20th and 21st century. They have recorded a series of critically-acclaimed CD recordings on the ATMA, CBC and CMS Classics labels and have performed on many prestigious series and at several of the most important Canadian festivals. Janina Fialkowska is a regular guest soloist with the world’s most prestigious orchestras in North America, Europe and Asia. Famous for her interpretations of Chopin, Mozart and Liszt, Ms Fialkowska was chosen in 1990 to perform the world premiere of the recently discovered 3rd piano concerto of Liszt with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The latest season saw her touring three continents with engagements in Germany, England, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy, the U.S. and Canada as well as Japan.
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Louis Lortie Chandos*Naxos
Liszt at The Opera
French-Canadian pianist Louis Lortie has attracted critical acclaim throughout Europe, Asia, and the United States. He has extended his interpretative voice across a broad range of repertoire rather than choosing to specialize in one particular style. The London Times, describing his playing as "ever immaculate, ever imaginative", has identified the artist's "combination of total spontaneity and meditated ripeness that only great pianists have." Mr. Lortie's performances of complete Beethoven sonata cycles were described by Die Welt as "possibly the finest Beethoven since the time of Wilhelm Kempff." Mr. Lortie has also won widespread acclaim for his interpretations of Ravel and Chopin. In 2013-2014 Mr. Lortie tours in Australia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and returns to the BBC Proms, the orchestras of St. Louis, Atlanta, Dallas, Vancouver, Detroit, the Suisse Romande, Nurnberg, BBC Philharmonic, Dresden and Hamburg, play/conducts a Mozart program for the Toronto Symphony, and performs recitals in the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Philadelphia, Warsaw, Montreal, Bournemouth, the Casals Festival, the Sydney Opera House, the National Arts Center, Duke University and in Milan. Last season he performed Gershwin in Sao Paulo with Tortelier, Liszt with NHK Tokyo and Dutoit, Chopin with the Cleveland Orchestra and Van Zweden, Schubert and Liszt with Krivine in Utrecht, Mozart with the Royal Philharmonic and Dutoit; toured with the La Scala Orchestra playing Brahms 2 and with the Beethoven Orchester Bonn playing Beethoven 4 and 5. He returned to Chicago's Orchestra Hall and other important venues to perform a recital program of opera transcriptions called "Lortie goes to the Opera". Louis Lortie has performed with the world's leading conductors and has also been involved in many chamber-music projects with such musicians as Frank Peter Zimmermann, Leonidas Kavakos, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, Augustin Dumay, the Takács Quartet, and Gidon Kremer. His regular piano-duo partner is fellow Canadian Hélène Mercier.
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Stewart Goodyear Marquis*Universal
Beethoven: The Complete Piano Sonatas
Born and raised in Toronto, pianist and composer, Stewart Goodyear began his training at Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, received a bachelor's degree from Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and completed a Masters Degree at Juilliard School of Music in New York. Goodyear has performed with the major orchestras of the world, including the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and the Philadelphia Orchestra, among many. Goodyear's style has strength and drama, elegant and exquisite technique and great emotional depth and his repertoire ranges from Bach to Messiaen, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt and Gershwin. Known as an improviser and a composer, he has been commissioned by orchestras and chamber music organizations, and performs his own solo works. In 2010, Goodyear performed at a sold out recital of Beethoven Sonatas in Toronto's Koerner Hall and his composition, the fanfare entitled Count Up, was performed by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in Spring 2011, garnering rave reviews. Beethoven: The Complete Piano Sonatas were recently released as a 10-CD box set on Marquis Classics.
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Classical Album of the Year: Large Ensemble or Soloist(s) with Large Ensemble Accompaniment

Angela Hewitt Hyperion*HM
Mozart: Piano Concertos Nos. 17 & 27
Angela Hewitt is a phenomenal artist who has established herself at the highest level, not least through her award-winning recordings for Hyperion. Her series of all the major keyboard works of Bach has been described as ‘one of the record glories of our age’. Her discography also includes recordings of Beethoven, Chabrier, Couperin, Debussy, Fauré, Granados, Messiaen, Rameau, Ravel, Schumann, the complete Chopin Nocturnes and a cycle of Mozart Concertos. Born in Ottawa, into a musical family, Angela Hewitt began her piano studies at the age of three. At the age of nine she gave her first recital at Toronto’s Royal Conservatory of Music where she later studied, going on to learn with the French pianist Jean-Paul Sévilla. She won the Viotti Competition in Italy and the Toronto International Bach Competition, and was a top prizewinner in the Bach competitions of Leipzig and Washington DC, as well as the Dino Ciani Competition at La Scala, Milan. She was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2000. She was also awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2006. She has lived in London since 1985 but also has homes in Canada and Umbria.
James Ehnes Britten & Shostakovich: Violin Concerti James Ehnes
Britten & Shostakovich: Violin Concerti
James Ehnes was born in 1976 in Brandon, Manitoba. He began violin studies at the age of four, and at age nine, became a protégé of the noted Canadian violinist Francis Chaplin. He studied with Sally Thomas at the Meadowmount School of Music and from 1993 to 1997 at The Juilliard School, winning the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music upon his graduation. Mr. Ehnes first gained national recognition in 1987 as winner of the Grand Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Competition. The following year, he won the First Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Festival, the youngest musician ever to do so. At age 13, he made his major orchestral solo debut with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. He has won numerous awards and prizes, including the first-ever Ivan Galamian Memorial Award, the Canada Council for the Arts’ Virginia Parker Prize, and a 2005 Avery Fisher Career Grant.
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Nadina Mackie Jackson and Guy Few with Group of 27 MSR*Independent
Canadian Concerto Project, Volume One
Nadina Mackie Jackson records and performs worldwide and has recorded 11 solo, concerto and chamber music CDs and can be heard on over 100 orchestral recordings on the London Decca, Sony, ATMA and Naxos labels. Her 2013/14 season includes 36 solo appearances in recital and with orchestras across Canada. Recent solo releases on MSR Classics include the Vivaldi Concerti, Volume I with Nicholas McGegan and Canadian Concerto Project, featuring concerti written expressly for her and trumpeter Guy Few with Toronto’s group of twenty-seven led by Eric Paetkau. She won Best Classical Orchestral Album of the Year in the 2009 from Just Plain Folks Music Awards for her FACTOR-backed concerto album Bacchanale and has received widespread praise for Romanza, the album of 19th century concerti. Nadina has appeared as soloist with l’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Toronto Chamber Orchestra, group of twenty-seven, Les Idées Heureuses (Montréal) among others and in 2013/14 will perform as concerto soloist with group of twenty-seven (Toronto), Orchestra London, Orchestra Toronto and the Okanagan Symphony. She regularly tours and performs across Canada and the United States in recital and as a concerto soloist.
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Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra Tafelmusik Media*Naxos
House of Dreams
Hailed as "one of the world’s top baroque orchestras" by Gramophone Magazine, Tafelmusik was founded in 1979 and has been under the inspired leadership of Music Director and Concertmaster Jeanne Lamon since 1981. The orchestra performs over 50 concerts a year at home in Toronto, tours extensively around the world, has released 80 CDs and has received nine JUNO Awards. The Tafelmusik Chamber Choir, under the direction of Ivars Taurins, was formed in 1981 to complement the Orchestra. Tafelmusik is one of Canada’s foremost cultural ambassadors, and in 2013/14 will perform in Japan, South Korea, the U.S., France, Germany and in Ontario. In 2012, Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra celebrated a successful international launch of its own multi-platform recording label, Tafelmusik Media. The label includes new digital, live performance, studio CD and DVD recordings, and re-releases of previous Tafelmusik recordings from Sony Classical and CBC Records. As well, Tafelmusik Media is creating access for young people through the digital concert hall, Tafelmusik’s Watch and Listen site, and a large presence on YouTube. Tafelmusik Media is sowing seeds for the orchestra’s future growth in recording, broadcasting and touring as well as building audiences around the world.
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Toronto Symphony Orchestra Independent
Rachmaninoff: Symphonic Dances & Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring
Founded in 1922, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra is one of Canada’s major cultural institutions and is internationally recognized as a leading orchestra. The TSO has an esteemed roster of musicians, many of whom are acclaimed solo and chamber ensemble artists, as well as teachers in music faculties across North America. Today, more than 225,000 patrons and over 85,000 students visit the Orchestra at Roy Thomson Hall each year. Under the leadership of Music Director Peter Oundjian, the TSO has increased recording and touring projects to include a self-produced record label, and performances throughout the U.S. and Canada. The Orchestra continues to develop its international presence by being an active supporter of new Canadian and international works through its annual New Creations Festival. The TSO is committed to innovative programming and each season presents a roster of distinguished guest artists. Throughout its history, the Orchestra has welcomed some of the greatest international artists, including James Ehnes, the late Maureen Forrester, Lang Lang, Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Christopher Plummer, Emanuel Ax and Maxim Vengerov. Renowned composers Igor Stravinsky, Aaron Copland, Philip Glass, Tan Dun, Jacques Hétu and R. Murray Schafer, among many others, have been in attendance for the Orchestra’s presentations of their music.
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Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral Performance

Group of 27, Eric Paetkau - Conductor, Shannon Mercer - Soprano Centaur*Naxos
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été – Palej : The Poet & the War, Rorate Coeli
Group of twenty-seven (g27) is a full classical chamber orchestra (strings, winds, brass, and percussion – the only of its kind in Toronto), comprised of Toronto’s finest musicians who are dedicated to providing concerts of the highest calibre in diverse programs that connect directly with audiences. By using innovative programming, the incorporation of social media, and exceptional musical abilities, g27 is also strongly committed to Toronto’s at-risk youth through their mentorship outreach program. In addition to orchestral concerts, g27 presents a monthly recital series entitled ‘g2-7 – Get To Know Your g27’ that highlights the magnificent individual talent of g27. With a soprano voice often described as luminous and dazzling, Canadian Shannon Mercer is equally praised for her profound yet witty acting ability and stage presence. An artist of uncommon musical artistry whose passion for her art form embraces repertoire ranging from early to contemporary music, Shannon maintains a challenging balance of opera, concert and recital appearances. Composer Norbert Palej has been increasingly recognized for his "first-rate and genuinely original work" (American Composers Orchestra), and a musical language that generates "visceral excitement" (Boston Globe). Norbert Palej is Associate Professor of Composition and the Theory and Composition Department Coordinator at the University of Toronto.
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Isabel Bayrakdarian MCO*HM
Ravel, Sayat-Nova & Kradjian: Troubadour & the Nightingale
Isabel Bayrakdarian is an eagerly anticipated visitor to opera houses and concert halls the world over, who revels in an artistic scope ranging from operas old, new, and in-between to sacred, art, and folk songs of many lands, languages, and genres. On the opera stage, her roles range from Gluck’s Euridice to Debussy’s Mélisande to Poulenc’s Blanche in Dialogues des Carmélites and Janá?ek’s Vixen. She’s appeared regularly at Canadian Opera Company, the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Paris Opera, Covent Garden and in Houston, Barcelona, Salzburg, and Los Angeles. She has appeared in concert with the World's premier orchestras under an imposing array of today’s leading conductors. Her recitals are widely applauded for their eclectic repertoire and unfailing communicative grasp of language and style. Ms. Bayrakdarian’s JUNO and Grammy Award-winning discography includes projects as diverse as baroque arias about Cleopatra, 19th-century songs of Pauline Viardot-Garcia, Mozart arias and duets; Spanish, Brazilian and Argentine songs; works of the Armenian composer Gomidas Vartabed; Tangos; Gorecki’s Symphony No. 3; Mahler’s Symphony No. 2; the soundtracks to The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and Ararat; and a dance remix with the trance band Delerium.
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Marie-Nicole Lemieux & Andre Gagnon Audiogram*Select
Lettres de Madame Roy à sa fille Gabrielle
La parution de Lettres de Madame Roy à sa fille Gabrielle, une suite opératique de six pièces, marque la réunion du dramaturge québécois Michel Tremblay et du compositeur André Gagnon. Le duo songeait depuis plusieurs années à offrir de nouveau pareil traitement grand luxe à une figure incontournable de la littérature canadienne-française. Celle de Gabrielle Roy s’impose alors qu’André Gagnon est plongé dans l’œuvre de l’auteure de Bonheur d’occasion, dont il lira tout. Michel Tremblay et André Gagnon ambitionnent d’abord de concevoir un échange de lettres entre les deux femmes avant de convenir, sous les conseils du maestro Jacques Lacombe, d’adopter uniquement le point de vue de la mère. La contralto de renommée internationale Marie-Nicole Lemieux incarne, de sa voix distillant à la fois inquiétude, mélancolie et admiration, cette femme partagée entre la douleur et le bonheur. L’Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières, sous la direction de Jacques Lacombe et selon des orchestrations signées Gilles Ouellet, épousent les états d’âme de ce personnage riche. 
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Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Alexander Weimann, Owen Willets, Karina Gauvin, Allyson McHardy, Amanda Forsythe, Nathan Berg ATMA*Naxos
Handel: Orlando, HWV 31
In 1990, an extraordinary group of musicians specializing in baroque and early classical music formed the Pacific Baroque Orchestra on Canada's West Coast. Under the leadership of internationally renowned violinist Marc Destrubé, the orchestra quickly established itself as a force in Vancouver, B.C.'s burgeoning music scene. Karina Gauvin's unique voice, remarkable technique, and accomplished musicianship have charmed audiences worldwide from the Royal Opera House in London to the prestigious 92nd Street Y and the Lincoln Center in New York. Her vast repertoire covers music from Johann Sebastian Bach to Benjamin Britten and Luciano Berio. In recent years Alexander Weimann has established a reputation as one of the leading harpsichordists and ensemble leaders of his generation.
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Vancouver Chamber Choir Grouse*Independent
A Quiet Place: Music for Healing III
The Vancouver Chamber Choir is one of Canada's national treasures, an outstanding professional vocal ensemble noted for its diverse repertoire and performing excellence. The Choir has been performing to audiences at home in Vancouver and on tour across Canada since it was formed in 1971 by conductor Jon Washburn. International excursions have taken the Vancouver Chamber Choir to the USA, Mexico, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Finland, France, Germany, the Czech Republic, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and the Ukraine. Honoured with the Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence by Chorus America, the Vancouver Chamber Choir has to its credit countless performances and broadcasts, over 30 recordings and numerous awards. Foremost supporters of Canadian music, Jon Washburn and the Choir have commissioned and premiered more than 250 Canadian choral compositions. Over the years they have sung nearly 3000 performances of 350 pieces by 120 Canadian composers in addition to their extensive international repertoire. The Choir's award-winning educational programs include the National Conductors' Symposium for advanced choral conductors, Interplay interactive workshops for choral composers, Focus! professional development program for student singers, OnSite visitations for school choirs, the biennial Young Composers Competition, and many on-tour workshops and residencies.
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Classical Composition of the Year

Allan Gordon Bell Centrediscs*Naxos
Field Notes
Allan Gordon Bell was born in Calgary in 1953. He received a Master of Music degree from the University of Alberta where he studied with Violet Archer, Malcolm Forsyth, and Manus Sasonkin. He also did advanced studies in composition at the Banff Centre for the Arts where his teachers were Jean Coulthard, Bruce Mather, and Oskar Morawetz. Bell has created works for solo instruments, chamber ensembles, orchestra, band, and electro-acoustic media, as well as an opera. His music has been performed by the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Esprit Orchestra, the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Symphony Nova Scotia, the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony Orchestra, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra the Orford String Quartet, eighth blackbird, the ensembles of Toronto New Music Concerts, Arraymusic, Soundstreams Canada, the Société de musique contemporaine du Québec, New Works Calgary and Lands End Chamber Music as well as many other professional and amateur organizations in North America, Europe and Asia. Bell is Professor of Music at the University of Calgary, an Associate Composer and Past-President of the Canadian Music Centre, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and a Member of the Order of Canada.
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James O'Callaghan Independent
Isomorphia for Orchestra and Electronics
James O’Callaghan is an award-winning composer and sound artist based in Montréal praised for his "real orchestral imagination" and "highly refined sense of colour" (Vancouver Sun). His music intersects acoustic and electroacoustic media, employing field recordings, amplified found objects, computer-assisted transcription of environmental sounds, and unique performance conditions. In 2013 he was the Emerging Composer-in-Residence with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada and a featured artist in Winnipeg's Cluster New Music + Integrated Arts festival. In 2011, he was selected for the inaugural Canadian League of Composers / Canadian Music Centre Composer Mentoring Project. He is a founding member and co-director of the Montréal Contemporary Music Lab. His music, including over forty works of concert music, music for dance, theatre and film, and audio-visual installations, has been performed across North America, Europe, New Zealand and Japan, and has been awarded national prizes (SOCAN Foundation Awards for Young Composers, JTTP Awards). O’Callaghan received his Bachelors of Fine Arts in music composition from Simon Fraser University in 2010, studying with Barry Truax, David MacIntyre, Rodney Sharman and Arne Eigenfeldt. He is currently an MMus candidate and Course Lecturer at McGill University, studying with Philippe Leroux.
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R. Murray Schafer ATMA*Naxos
Quatuors à corder No. 12
R. Murray Schafer is Canada’s pre-eminent composer and is well known internationally. In an era of specialization, he has shown himself to be a true renaissance man. He has won national and international acclaim not only for his achievement as a composer but also as an educator, environmentalist, literary scholar, visual artist and provocateur. The multi-award-winning Molinari Quartet returns with its third recording dedicated to the chamber music of R. Murray Schafer. The quartet’s 2003 recording of Schafer's Quartet no. 8, Theseus, Beauty and the Beast garnered recognition from the Académie Charles Cros (France), an OPUS prize for Album of the Year, and a 2004 JUNO Award which they shared with Schafer, who celebrated his 80th birthday in 2012. Internationally acclaimed since its founding in 1997, the Molinari Quartet has established a mandate to perform works from the 20th and 21st centuries, repertoire for string quartet, and to commission new works.
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Stephen Chatman Centrediscs*Naxos
Magnificat
One of Canada's most prominent composers, Stephen Chatman (D.M.A, University of Michigan) is Professor of Composition at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. He has received many composition awards, including 2005, 2006 and 2010 Western Canadian Music Awards Classical Composition of the Year; 2010 and 2012 SOCAN Jan V. Matejcek New Classical Music Award; three BMI Awards (New York); multiple JUNO Award nominations; Dorothy Somerset Award; and the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is also the only Canadian ever short-listed for the BBC Masterprize (London). In 2012, Dr. Chatman was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada. Recordings include three choral collections performed by Vancouver Chamber Choir, Due North (Centrediscs) and Due West (CBC Records), Due East (Centrediscs), Magnificat (Centrediscs), A Chatman Christmas (Centrediscs); a chamber music collection, Vancouver Visions (Centrediscs); instrumental/ orchestral collections, Proud Music of the Storm (Centrediscs), Earth Songs (Centrediscs); and works on ATMA, Naxos, and CRI labels. His choral music is frequently performed and his orchestral music has been performed by the BBC Symphony, Berlin Radio Orchestra, CBC Radio Orchestra, Montreal, Edmonton, Sydney, Seoul, Toronto, Vancouver, San Francisco, Winnipeg, Quebec, St. Louis, Calgary, Detroit, Dallas, and New World symphonies.
Tim Brady ATMA*Naxos
Atacama: Symphonie No. 3
Composer / guitarist Tim Brady defies categorization – an electric guitar virtuoso who writes operas and symphonies, plays concertos and feels as comfortable with a laptop electronic improvisation or jazz group as with a string quartet. The guitar as orchestra – his music is a highly personal synthesis of contemporary classical, jazz, rock and electronics. For the past 25 years he has toured the world, both as a soloist and with his group Bradyworks. In 2004 he won the Prix Opus Composer of the Year prize, given by the Conseil québécois de la musique. In 2007 he was awarded the Jan. V. Matecjek award by SOCAN. He has performed at many major festivals and venues, including the Montreal International Jazz Festival, Festival Présence in Paris, The South Bank Centre in London (UK), and many times at the Festival international de musique actuelle de Victoriaville. In 2010 he was featured composer at the Winnipeg Symphony’s international New Music Festival and in 2013 he was the featured composer at the Scotia Festival of Music. From 2008 to 2013 he was composer-in-residence with the Orchestre symphonique de Laval. His most recent CD, Atacama: Symphony #3, was named Création de l’année for 2012 at the Prix Opus.
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Rap Recording of the Year

Classified Half Life*Universal
Classified
Classified is the Canadian MC from Enfield, NS, who has not only remained current, but improved with each disc. Revered and respected, the rapper-producer has taken Canadian hip hop music all over the world, all the while deepening his word play and sharpening his beats. Now, with his first-ever self-titled album on Half Life Records/Universal Music Canada/Atlantic Records, Classified presents the apex of his trials and tribulations of a lifetime spent in the studio, and on the road. "Inner Ninja" (4x Platinum), the album’s blazing, uplifting first single repeats its message over dirty drums and a David Myles chorus, while "New School, Old School", represents his place in the pantheon of hip hop: someone who's gone toe-to-toe with everyone from Maestro and Drake. Taken together, it’s the work of an artist in his prime. "With every album, I get better at what I do," says Classified. "I constantly try to refine myself, find new things to value, and give listeners more direction to where I’m going, but make damned sure they have a good time as they come along with me for the ride."
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Drake Cash Money*Universal
Nothing Was the Same
Aubrey Drake Graham stepped out as a rapper and singer with pop appeal in 2006, when he initiated a series of mixtapes. He raised his profile throughout the next several months by popping up on countless mixtapes and remixes, and as rumours swirled about contract offers from labels, he gradually became one of the most talked-about artists in the industry. It did not hurt that he had support from the likes of Kanye West, Jay-Z, and Lil Wayne. By the end of June 2009, "Best I Ever Had," a promotional single, had climbed to number two on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. After a fierce bidding war, Drake signed with Universal Motown in late summer and released an EP (So Far Gone) made up of songs from his popular So Far Gone mix tape. It peaked at number six on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and won a 2010 JUNO Award for Rap Recording of the Year. Thank Me Later, a full-length featuring collaborations with the Kings of Leon, the-Dream, Jay-Z, Kanye West, and Lil Wayne, was issued through Young Money the following year.
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Rich Kidd Independent
In My Opinion
Toronto’s own Rich Kidd has been Canada’s best-kept secret since his ascension from local underground stardom to national fame in the past couple of years. The architect of a new sound coming from T Dot, Rich has been steadily amassing praise from industry greats and music critics for his 360-degree musical vision: as an inspirational artist, world-class producer, and captivating performer. The compilation series We On Some Rich Kidd Shit Vol. 1-7, an annual event in the local music scene that is entirely orchestrated under his creative vision, has featured over 100 artists and proven to be a showcase for some of the best talent coming from his hometown. As his name became synonymous with quality, it didn’t take long for him to get in the studio with the country’s best from Drake to Kardinal Offishall, K-os, Shad, and Saukrates, adding underground classics, commercial hits and award-winning projects to his resume. With his most recent releases including debut solo mix tape In My Opinion, collaborative album The Closers with SonReal, Kiddstrumentals Volume 2 and a debut album to follow, there seems to be no limit to what the Kidd can do. 
Shad Black Box*Universal
Flying Colours
On October 15, 2013, Shad released his much anticipated fourth record, Flying Colours. The album is packed with charming, quick witted rhymes mixed with soulful hooks, and is self-described as "an album about everything, as per my custom, but most of all, I wanted to explore success and failure." Thus, honest rhymes about life and social issues are entwined with clever pop culture references; a sense of gratitude and pride takes centre stage. TSOL (JUNO Award winner in 2010) was a carefully crafted mix of hard-hitting, clever rhyme schemes and soul searching social commentary, by the man praised by the National Post as "Canada’s Best Rapper" in 2008, and 2010. Shad’s sophomore record The Old Prince (2007) was received with top reviews by music critics across the board, snagging him a JUNO Award nomination for Best Rap Recording of the Year and securing a spot on the coveted Polaris Music Prize short list. Shad’s skillful wordplay and smooth flow, combined with his engaging live shows, and outstanding music videos have allowed him to develop tribes of devout fans worldwide. Shad continues to walk the humble path, appreciating the chance to share his thoughts through music.
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SonReal Black Box*Universal
Everywhere We Go
SonReal is a new school leader. With 2013 JUNO Award and MMVA nominations, this young artist has independently put all eyes on him through consistently putting out interesting innovative material. Notorious for releasing mix tapes that have an album feel, it is easy to see why SonReal is at the forefront of not only Vancouver’s hip hop scene, but the Canadian music industry as a whole. SonReal consistently delivers high quality content in each mix tape, live show, album and collaboration project he brings to fans. Most recently the success of his joint project – The Closers – with Canadian producer/ MC Rich Kidd, garnered them a JUNO Award nomination and an MMVA nomination. The duo toured with Mac Miller on a run of national college dates, performed with Canadian super stars, Down With Webster and shared the stage at a JUNO Week performance with Platinum selling artist, Classified. Now with the momentum of his many mix tapes and The Closers behind him, SonReal has hit the ground running with his viral video success for his lead single "Everywhere We Go." With over half a million views, and a top 10 spot on the Much Music Countdown things are looking bright for his 2014 album record release!
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Dance Recording of the Year

Armin van Buuren & Trevor Guthrie Armada*Sony
This is What it Feels Like
As the lead singer in the band soulDecision, Trevor Guthrie had a number one smash hit with the pop/R&B song "Faded". The song became number one hit in Canada and a top 25 hit in the United States. The success of that single was followed up by the smash "Ooh It's Kinda Crazy". The album No One Does It Better which was recorded in Velvet Sound Studios in Sydney, Australia; went on to sell over a million copies. After a four year hiatus and a label change, soulDecision released the single "Cadillac Dress". The single was a moderate radio hit. They released their second album Shady Satin Drug in November 2004. Due to the lack of support from the Canadian music industry, less than 2000 copies were printed and available for sale. Shady Satin Drug, however spawned two more singles, "Hypnotize" and "Kiss The Walls." As a solo artist, Trevor is featured on Dutch DJ Armin van Buuren's track "This Is What It Feels Like" which was top three CHR and top five at HOT AC and AC radio.
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deadmau5 Ultra*Sony
>album title goes here<
Joel Zimmerman, more commonly known as deadmau5 has enjoyed international chart success with his singles "Professional Griefers," "Sofi Needs A Ladder," "Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff" and "I Remember". He has also released four critically acclaimed albums: >album title goes here<, 4×4=12, For Lack Of A Better Name and Random Album Title. The multiple JUNO Award winning and Grammy Award nominated artist was the closing performer at the 2012 JUNO Awards and the 54th Annual Grammy Awards – as part of its first ever telecast performance highlighting electronic music. His ability to push the boundaries of his talent grows at an equal rate to his fan base, which counts over 7.9 million on his Facebook page. A major touring act, he has headlined Lollapalooza, Outside Lands, Sonar, Virgin Mobile FreeFest, Ultra Music Festival and Electric Daisy Carnival, and sold out PETCO Park in San Diego. He is the first Canadian to sell out the Rogers Centre in Toronto, as well as multiple consecutive nights at legendary venues like the Metropolis in Montreal, Roseland Ballroom in NYC, and the Palladium in Los Angeles. He appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone summer double issue, 2012), marking him as the first electronic artist to do so.
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DVBBS & Borgeous Kanary*Universal
Tsunami
The Andre brothers are natives of Orangeville, Ontario. They have also spent part of their childhoods in the Netherlands and Greece. They are currently based in Los Angeles, California and are signed with Josh Herman at STRVCTVRE Artist Management. Their greatest hit came with "Tsunami". At first the authorship of the track was not revealed. The single had been popular at festivals for months prior to its official public release. It had been promoted by Dutch DJ Sander van Doorn, although he denied being the producer. Also the tracks shows some similarities to music made by Blasterjaxx, but there is nothing known about that either. The song was confirmed by Pete Tong to be the work of DVBBS and Borgeous when Tong played the song on his show on BBC Radio 1 on August 16, 2013. It was officially released on Sander Van Doorn's label Doorn Records on August 19, 2013. The song charted worldwide on iTunes, reaching number one in the Netherlands, also charted in Belgium, Cyprus, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Canada and Germany. It also reached number one on the Beatport Top 100.
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Jacynthe Whammo*Universal
Locked Down
Jacynthe quickly became one of the most recognized pop artists since the mid 1990’s. In 1999, she was nominated for a CMA and a JUNO Award for Best Dance Recording for her dance-floor anthem "This Is The Night"; and the following year she was nominated as Female Artist of the Year at Le Gala de l’ADISQ. Thanks to songs like "Give It Up" (recorded with KC & The Sunshine Band) and having worked in the Canadian music industry since she was 16, this beautiful and talented Montreal singer/song-writer has already released five albums which produced five number one hits in Quebec. Her hits include "Give It Up" in 1999; "FEEL" a collaboration with Warner Music Recording Artist Victoria Duffield that was a number one smash on the BDS French Pop Charts in the summer of 2012. She has had five top 40 successes in English Canada including "Look Who’s Crying Now" a top 10 hit Canada-wide on CHR and Hot AC and "Locked Down," which garnered top 30 airplay, national spots on !E Talk and Entertainment Tonight as well as video placement on MuchMusic.com. Jacynthe is self-assured and in total control to take over the dance floor.
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Mia Martina CP*Universal
Heartbreaker
Blame the lingering impact of Footloose, but small towns aren’t exactly known as bastions of dance music. When new stars do groove their way onto the floor, they’re usually big city club kids like Lady Gaga. But this rule has met its exception with Mia Martina. The up-and-coming clubland crooner – the sensual voice fuelling the accordion-inflected smash "Stereo Love" and its fast rising follow-up "Latin Moon" was born and raised in St. Ignace, a tiny New Brunswick village of about 500. Success took awhile to arrive, but once it did, it took off. Dance music’s biggest label, Ultra, was looking to remix a Euro hit by Edward Maya called "Stereo Love." A series of serendipitous events, including a pre-Idol J.Lo declining, ended with the untested Martina getting the gig last summer. Within a couple weeks her vocal was recorded and released. It proceeded to blow the hell up. The song went top 10 on the Canadian pop charts while ruling radio, topped the US dance charts, was nominated for a dance JUNO Award and an MMVA for Most Watched Video and, thanks to a Don Omar remix, became a favourite in Latin communities throughout the Americas.
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R&B/Soul Recording of the Year

Joanna Borromeo Independent
Kaleidoscope
Hearing Joanna Borromeo's music for the first time is similar to approaching an ice berg in the deep oceans of the Arctic. One immediately recognizes how beautifully crafted and organic her songs are, with her powerful voice illuminating out like a sunrise. Beneath the surface is the work of a skilled and expressive artist; the threads and pieces of her lush productions that listeners eventually only discover after several rotations through the album. Realizing the music has all been written by Joanna Borromeo alone, one can be inspired by the scope of her numerous ways of communicating the music of her soul through voice, keyboard playing, songwriting and producing. She began as a Classical pianist in her childhood, eventually moving on to jazz in her late teens. In her early twenties, Joanna started her professional music career as a successful freelancer, working with everyone from R&B artist Divine Brown to Canadian folk singer/songwriter David Myles, and to beloved childhood entertainer Raffi. In 2009, Joanna changed course to pursue a solo artist career, which led her to release two critically-acclaimed soul/jazz records, Through the Dark (2010) and Kaleidoscope (2013).
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JRDN ft. Kardinal Offishall Kuya*Fontana
Can't Choose
With his third studio album, Live My Dream (Kuya Productions/Fontana North), R&B sensation JRDN unveils a set of songs certain to cement his reputation as one of Canada’s brightest stars. On the album’s lead single, "Can’t Choose," a seamless blend of R&B and reggae featuring Canadian hip hop icon Kardinal Offishall, we find JRDN singing candidly about just where he draws the line between love and lust. As a singer, JRDN draws on a deep well of influences for Live My Dream – from Wu-Tang Clan, Jay-Z and Michael Jackson to Sam Cooke, Adele and Drake. Every writer and production team he’s worked with has also influenced him, but none more than Kuya. "On IAMJRDN," he says, "Kuya produced the whole project and we worked to tracks they made. On this project, we just caught a vibe, went with it and made a lot of tracks up on the spot in the studio. They come from an R&B background and have a lot of the same influences I have, so their production matches the style of music I do. They’ve really given me a platform, musically, to stand on and grow."
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Kim Davis Independent
There's Only One
"I am a woman capable of many things. God has blessed me with a gift that I believe I am destined to share," says Kim Davis. At first listen, it is almost impossible not to fall in love with her distinctive voice. In Kim Davis, there is a rare ability to command the attention of the listener using only the instrument of her voice. From her sultry first single "Hush," to fan favourites like "Sometimes," Kim has always been one to truly captivate her audiences. Very much in touch with her South African roots, the fetching songstress spent most of her childhood living back and forth between Toronto and Cape Town, South Africa. Part of a musical family, Kim would often perform songs at home with her siblings and guitar playing father. Later, Kim would branch out into song-writing and singing background vocals for several emerging artists. Self-conscious of her signature raspy vocals, Kim hesitated to become a solo artist; however, she cites Keyshia Cole as a special influence in becoming confident with her own God-given talent. "Hearing Keyshia sing definitely helped me find my voice and embrace it."
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Melanie Durrant CanAudio*Independent
Gone
Melanie Durrant is a seasoned veteran who embodies real artistry through her very unique, edgy and soulful music style. Born and raised in Toronto, Melanie attended the Earl Haig School of the Arts and also trained at the Royal Conservatory of Music. She has received multiple accolades throughout her career including a MMVA nomination for "Where I’m Going" and Stylus Award Single Of The Year winner for "Bang Bang" ft Kardinal Offishall. In 2013, Melanie’s reggae influenced single "Made For Love" was nominated for Reggae Single of Year at the JUNO Awards in Regina. Melanie Durrant has shared the stage alongside Jay Z, 50 Cent, Jill Scott, Common, Sean Paul, Kardinal Offishall as well as many of Canada’s top artists. Melanie has performed and done interviews with MuchMusic, MTV Canada, Star Daily, CTV Network to name a few. She has had a variety of video production releases aired nationally on MuchMusic. Currently Melanie Durrant has been working diligently on new material for her sophomore album. Full of melodic surprises heavenly harmonies and bold direction, Melanie Durrant embodies the voice, attitude and sound that have blessed Canada and that the whole world has been waiting for.
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The Weeknd XO*Universal
Kiss Land
Abel Tesfaye, known as The Weeknd, is a recording artist and record producer. In late 2010, Tesfaye uploaded several songs to YouTube under the name "The Weeknd", though his identity was initially unknown. In 2011, he released three nine-track mixtapes: House of Balloons, Thursday, and Echoes of Silence, which were critically acclaimed. In 2012, he released a compilation album, Trilogy, consisting of remastered versions of the mix tape material and three additional songs. It was released under Republic Records and his own label XO. In 2013, he released his debut studio album Kiss Land. 
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Reggae Recording of the Year

Akustix Independent
Mandela
The international reggae population will soon give citizenship to this Canadian raised Singjay who is about to make his voice an exciting part of the community. "Akustix", the name given to the artist and songwriter by Ansel Williams aka Shaggy. When one uses the term acoustic in the music futurity, you can only expect the most authentic and best sound possible which is said to fit the artist. Akustix is compelled to express his feelings via his musical talents resulting in a dynamic blend of melody and insight. Giving birth to songs poised with rhythm and purpose, Akustix brings a new source of flavour and diversity to the table of the reggae industry. Not only have his musical vibes been described as being refreshing and diverse by the industry, but his devoted fans have characterized his music as embodying "expressions of life". Prepare your minds for the conscious lyrics of his latest hit song "Mandela" produced by the legendary saxophonist Tony Greene. This new single is a heart-felt tribute to his hero Nelson ‘Madiba’ Mandela. Soothe your sweet tooth for music! Check out Akustix' sweet-sounding lyrical blend of reggae, hip-hop, R&B, Latin and dancehall today.
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Ammoye Flava McGregor
Baby It's You
Ammoye’s name is inspired by the Italian word for love. That’s what goes into her music – which is rooted in the reggae music of her native Jamaica – and it’s how audiences respond to her wherever she goes. Ammoye effortlessly glides from reggae to dancehall and dub, to gospel and soul, to hip-hop and R&B, with breathtaking ease and presence. Nominated for a 2013 JUNO Award for Best Reggae Recording, her debut single, the phenomenal "Radio" is currently taking over the airwaves and social media, having already charted in the U.K. on Galaxy Gold Radio. Ammoye has one full-length album to her credit, 2010’s Haffi Win, a futuristic dancehall, dub, hip-hop and house collaboration with Ottawa producer Rise Ashen; and she has released several singles on Balanced Records which includes production and remixes by heavy-hitting producers such as Dubmatix, Courtney John, The Seed Organization and Citizen Sound. She has recorded with the likes of: Grammy-winner Michael Rose (of Black Uhuru), Alton Ellis, Ranking Joe, Pinchers, Kemar "Flava" McGregor and the late Sugar Minot. Two of Ammoye's songs, "Best Friend" and "Catch Up" were featured on MTV’s 2010 Winter Olympics special Over The Bolts.
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Dru Effortless*Fontana North
Love Collision
Determined. Revolutionary. Unstoppable. These are fitting words to describe Dru. The R&B/ soul/ dance/ pop singer and song writer's second solo album, On The Brink (Effortless Entertainment/Universal Music Canada) ranges from up-tempo dance/pop tracks, such as the lead single, "Gettin It In", to soulful mid-tempo songs like "Love Collision", to big ballads such as "Solid Ground", all of which truly showcase Dru’s powerful vocal abilities. After years of developing his vocal talent, Dru’s early success came during his time as lead singer of the R&B group In Essence, whose debut album The Master Plan earned a JUNO Award, MuchMusic Award, and a SOCAN number one Award. Dru’s first solo album, The One, which was released in 2008, earned critical acclaim. The first three singles garnered strong chart positions at CHR/Top 40 and Hot AC radio stations across Canada.
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Dubmatix Renegade*Fontana North
Rebel Massive
Canadian composer, producer, multi-instrumentalist and recording artist Dubmatix returns with his fifth album Rebel Massive, a mash-up and bass-heavy assault of the senses! The new album features some awesome collaborations with more of reggae’s elite including U Roy, Luciano, Horace Andy and Eek-A-Mouse – and more importantly it continues to highlight the inventive and creative process that drives the Toronto based Dubmatix to experiment with various sounds, instruments and beats that seamlessly blend to create the perfect composition! Internationally, Dubmatix has done Canada proud, winning several best reggae album awards from France, Germany &, Portugal along with rave reviews from music heavyweights the BBC’s Don Lett’s and XM Radio’s Dermot Hussey. More impressive are the new video for the track "Pull Up Selector" just released to the masses and the thousands of new fans (over 500,000 of them!) that have recently discovered his music: over 200,000 SoundCloud fans, 200,000 MySpace fans and 100,000 Facebook followers. Dubmatix spent most of 2013 on the road with shows in Moscow, Poland, Brussels, Germany, France and Prague, followed by a US tour with Reggae heavyweights The Easy Star All-Stars and wrapping up in Mexico in December!
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Exco Levi Silly Walks Discotheque*VP
Strive
Exco Levi was born Wayne Ford Levy on June 7, 1981 in Manchester, Jamaica and grew up in Clarendon, Jamaica. Exco's musical tastes include the late Garnet Silk, Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, as well as contemporaries like Sizzla Kolonji. With their influence, he has developed his own unique sound that emanates deep respect for the musical icons who have paved the way for reggae music. Exco Levi has shown his range and musical intellect through songs like the Canadian anthem, "Oh Canada," the nostalgic "Sweet Jamaica" and the love ballad, "Same Ole Words." Presently, he works with Penthouse Records: he released "Bleaching Shop" on the Penthouse label, which won Best Reggae Recording at the 2012 JUNO Awards. In Regina in 2013, Exco won his second JUNO Award, for his single "Storms of Life," produced by Silly Walks Sound from Germany. This gave Exco the first back to back JUNO Awards win in the history of the reggae categories. He toured Europe for one month in the summer of 2013 and performed in places such as Hamburg, Berlin, Switzerland and Belgium alongside Germany’s own Silly Walks Sound.
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Aboriginal Album of the Year (Sponsored by Aboriginal Peoples Television Network)

Amanda Rheaume Independent
Keep a Fire
Amanda Rheaume is a powerful vocalist with just a touch of grit and an instantly accessible roots-pop-Americana sound. She emits a character akin to the likes of Blue Rodeo. The cadence and timing in her music produces a sound that is truly her own unmistakable style. Her latest album Keep a Fire is rife with emotion, insight and delicate song writing that characterize a generational journey of her family spanning centuries and thousands of miles, illuminating a brilliant landscape of Canadian history and personal experience. Rheaume pays tribute to her Métis heritage with "Keep a Fire in the Rain," a pulsing piece about her French Great-Grandfather and Ojibway Great Grandmother who lived halfway between the reserve and the mine site in God’s Lake, Manitoba – the mixed-race couple wasn’t welcome in either community. "A.G.B. Bannatyne,", is a sprightly ode to her Great Great Grandfather, a founding father of Manitoba and friend to Louis Riel, who hosted the province’s early legislative sessions in his home – and after whom Bannatyne Avenue in Winnipeg is named. Rheaume tours internationally and has performed in Europe, USA, Canada, Faroe Islands, Central America, Afghanistan and has shared the stage with Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams and Ani Difranco.
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Desiree Dorion Independent
Small Town Stories
Her voice is as smooth as her worn-in leather cowboy boots. Her music is as rockin' as the gravel roads around her hometown in Dauphin Manitoba. Desiree Dorion has just released her third highly anticipated studio album, Small Town Stories. Her unreleased song from the upcoming album, "Turn to Me" has already garnered her an honourable mention in the 2012 International Songwriting Competition. The song is a touching tribute to her daughter Grace. You might expect a singer to take time off after having a baby, but not Dorion. In her typical 'hard-working-country-girl' style, she was right back at it, writing and recording songs with WCMA award-winning producer and manager Arun Chaturvedi (James Struthers, Keeping up with the Kardashians). The album serves as a follow up to her critically acclaimed record "Soul Back Jack" which garnered Dorion multiple awards and nominations. Honesty, emotion, and work ethic are some of the defining attributes of Dorion. These coupled with her gift for songwriting, and her versatile voice (at times reminiscent of greats like Dolly Parton) are what sets this young Country crooner apart.
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George Leach Independent
Surrender
George Leach is an artist in relentless pursuit of truth. His dedication to songcraft is evident throughout his career, nowhere more so than on his latest album, Surrender, out now. Surrender is the follow up to George’s debut from 2000, Just Where I’m At. The album’s 11 tracks offer ample proof that the time was well spent. From the funky groove of opening track "You Got It", to the confident modern rock groove and keening vocal hooks of the first single, "Carry Me", to the vulnerability and intimacy in songs like the title track, Surrender takes you on an adventure. The album covers a vast terrain – touches of classic rock, balladry, and R&B, all in the service of a restless musical explorer coming into his own. It ranks among the finest you will encounter, this year or any other. Now it’s time to hit the road again. The energy level of a George Leach show can be described as ‘high’, to put it mildly. In concert George disappears into the moment, chasing the promise of fleeting transcendence that music offers and taking us all with him. Don’t miss it. 
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Inez Jasper Independent
Burn Me Down
Inez Jasper is an award winning pop artist with powerhouse talent and universal appeal. As one of Canada’s top Aboriginal musicians, her blending of traditional native sounds with a love for contemporary Pop music brings the best of her culture to the mainstream world. The 2009 release of her first solo album, Singsoulgirl garnered a lot of attention, notably taking home four Aboriginal People’s Choice Awards for Best Album Cover, Best New Artist, Best Pop Album, and Single of the Year. Later the album was also nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award and a JUNO Award. Inez has performed for the live broadcast of the 2009 and 2010 Aboriginal People’s Choice Awards, 2010 & 2012 Aboriginal Day Live!, and 2012 Indspire Awards. She has been featured on CBC Radio, Winnipeg’s Streetz FM and has hosted the television show, First Tracks on APTN for three consecutive years.
When Inez Jasper lets loose on stage you can’t help but see she has the pipes, the moves and the drive to become a genuine superstar. It’s a dream of hers, she says, one she hopes make a reality with her new album, Burn Me Down, released August 2013.
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Nathan Cunningham New Leaf*Independent
Road Renditions
As a child, Nathan Cunningham began to hone his skills as a singer by impersonating artists he admired; by the time he hit his teens, he was ready to take it public. Nathan has had a notable year, winning Aboriginal Male Entertainer of the Year as well as Country CD of the Year at the 2013 Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards. He's since performed at hundreds of live events including; The Worlds Festival (with Rita Coolidge), the 2010 CCMA's, as a tenor in Johnny Reid's choir and he's shared the stage with Dwight Yoakam, Nazareth and a host of other mainstream country artists. With no formal training, Nathan has fine-tuned his voice and has become a prolific songwriter. As a composer, he's found a unique way of blending musical genres that inspire him while staying true to his country roots. Today, his music can be heard all over aboriginal and country radio. His most recent single, "The Finer Things", climbed to number one on the National Aboriginal Music Countdown. Nathan is currently writing and recording a follow up to his debut release, Road Renditions, which held six number one spots on the National Aboriginal Top 40.
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Roots & Traditional Album of the Year: Solo

Daniel Romano Normaltown*Universal
Come Cry With Me
Mosey music is a study in contrasts: glitz and grit, revelling and wallowing, wretchedness and showmanship. Mosey music's pioneers wore their battered hearts on sequined sleeves. From Bakersfield to Galveston, the legends traded their tragicomic highs and lows for Gold records and white Cadillacs. The days of Buckaroos, Nudie Suits and various Hanks are over and to quote George Jones, "Who's Gonna Fill Their Shoes?" Enter Daniel Romano, a songwriter who delivers mosey croonin' and hard luck storytelling. While references to marquee names like Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard are apparent in Romano's music, the obvious influences don't demystify his talent. Romano works with equal parts authenticity and creativity. His musical world is rich with archetypes and archrivals, wry observations and earnest confessions. Romano's solo debut, Workin' For The Music Man (2010) announced a new artistic bearing. The follow-up, Sleep Beneath The Willow, was pure honky tonk poetry, and received impressive response from all corners. Come Cry With Me furthers his mosey aesthetic, musical and visual. Self-produced and played by himself, Romano's newest album, Polaris long listed again, continues with themes of bad choices, hard times, boozing and losing.
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David Francey Laker*Outside
So Say We All
From carpenter to songwriter. Since leaving construction and recording "Torn Screen Door" in 1999, Scottish-born Canadian, David Francey has been recognized as one of today’s finest singer-songwriters. Francey has released 10 CDs to date. His most recent, So Say We All, has earned four nominations at the 2013 Canadian Folk Music Awards. Francey is a three time JUNO Award winner and also had the honour of receiving the prestigious SOCAN Folk Music Award. Greg Quill of the Toronto Star, says, "Francey has made a reputation for himself as one of Canada's most revered folk poets and singers… [His songs] are small and beautifully crafted pieces of work that have made Francey both a folk festival favourite and something of a latter-day Canadian poet laureate." And the SOCAN Words and Music magazine says, "A consummate craftsman…David Francey is one of the biggest stars of Canadian folk music."
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Donovan Woods Aporia*Outside
Don't Get Too Grand
Donovan grew up singing with his local church choir in Sarnia, Ontario. Named after legendary musician Donovan Leitch ("Mellow Yellow"), Woods was introduced to folk music at an early age. "We’d listen to Arlo Guthrie, Canned Heat, or Paul Simon for hours," recalls Woods. "In the beginning I hated it, hanging out with Dad, but now I wish I could go back and hear what we were getting into". He picked up the guitar and piano as a child, and his sustained devotion to both instruments becomes obvious once you hear his songs. Like little tableaus, they display the commitment of family life and the understated romanticism of blue-collar towns, making picture books of the extraordinary aspects of ordinary lives. Donovan presents to us the brilliance of guttingly harsh realities - including the melancholy that can result when you grow up and make a move to the big city.
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Justin Rutledge Outside
Valleyheart
Justin Rutledge’s fifth studio album, Valleyheart, was released in February 2013. The quiet songwriter returns to his roots with a stately collection of spacious songs featuring Rutledge’s trademark poetic lyrics. "I wanted to write songs the way I look at old photographs," the singer says. "Valleyheart is, at the core, an album about translating memory." It has been almost three years since Justin Rutledge has released an album—the longest stretch between albums for the 33 year-old songwriter who was born and raised in The Junction, an old railway neighbourhood in the west end of Toronto. During this time, he recorded an album with Early Winters, his band in Los Angeles, and also became involved in the world of theatre. Rutledge has worked with such pivotal directors as Daniel Brooks and Morris Panych, and collaborated with Michael Ondaatje on adapting his novel Divisadero for the stage. Valleyheart was recorded in Toronto with Rutledge’s veteran backing band, featuring his best friend Bazil Donovan (Blue Rodeo) on bass. Rutledge has twice been nominated for a JUNO Award, and twice been long listed for the prestigious Polaris Music Prize.
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Lindi Ortega Last Gang*Universal
Tin Star
"The song 'Tin Star' speaks to the plight of the struggling musician," explains country songstress Lindi Ortega, sporting her signature red lips and red boots. "To those who are so driven by their passion that they soldier on, despite the odds being against them." Tin Star, the brand new album of the same name from the Toronto born, Nashville dwelling singer-songwriter, is incredibly close to Ortega's heart and is influenced strongly by life in her adopted ?music city' home. Produced by Grammy award-nominated producer Dave Cobb (Jamey Johnson, Secret Sisters, Shooter Jennings), the album builds on the success of Ortega's previous two critically acclaimed works, 2011's JUNO Award-nominated Little Red Boots and last year's Polaris Music Prize long listed Cigarettes & Truckstops. It further flaunts the distinct voice and skilled songwriting that the singer has come to be known for and showcases the unique double edged sound that she has defined. Several songs on the album touch on the classics of country music. Loneliness, unrequited love, crumbling relationships and primal desire pepper Tin Star and give Ortega a chance to let her contemporary twist on traditional country shine through.
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Roots & Traditional Album of the Year: Group (Sponsored by the Winnipeg Folk Festival)

Lee Harvey Osmond Latent*Fontana North
The Folk Sinner
Think of growing up anywhere in North America in the sixties. If you were in grade school during that time, some key events might have made a very big impression on your innocence. Ed Sullivan bellowed, "Now something for the youngsters…The Beatles!" The Space Age brought you the man on the moon and the assassinations of the Kennedys and King. The Vietnam War was on TV every night. Peace and equality was the mantra of the times – but the establishment was pressing their boot on the neck of a movement primed to change the world as we knew it. All the things you loved about our world, you also wanted to hate. All we are saying is give peace a chance and we shall overcome, but the body count is piling up. It's your fault. It's my fault. It's our fault. It is a coming of age. LeE HaRVEY OsMOND is the eyeball and the ear of Tom Wilson, who grew up during this time in Hamilton, Ontario, a blue-collar steel town.
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Little Miss Higgins and The Winnipeg Five Independent*Outside
Bison Ranch Recording Sessions
From the Great Northern Plains of Western Canada, Little Miss Higgins struts and serenades her way, guitar in hand, onto any stage with music influenced by old-time country blues, jazz and folk. This award-winning artist has built a strong national reputation throughout Canada, appearing in clubs, theatres and on festival stages from B.C. to Newfoundland and as far north as Iqaluit, Nunavut. For her newest release, Bison Ranch Recording Sessions, Little Miss Higgins teamed up with a very talented quintet of musicians from Manitoba. Though Little Miss Higgins identifies these fine fellows as the Winnipeg Five, they are also known as the F-Holes. They have been sharing their unique blend of Country, Dixieland, Manitoba roots music with audiences across Canada since 2004. After joining forces onstage, the six of them decided to record in a barn on a bison ranch in rural Manitoba. The album was engineered by Steve Loree and co-produced by Higgins and bass player, Patrick Alexandre Leclerc. Everything was captured live off the floor—fire crackles and crow cawing included. The experience brought out the authenticity of the music, the talent of the musicians and the connection of the group. What you hear is how it happened.
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The Devin Cuddy Band Cameron House*Warner
Volume One
In a musical landscape dominated by auto tune, synthesized replications of instruments, and regurgitated songs of the 70’s, you won’t find an artist of Devin Cuddy’s stature resting on the popular tenants of today’s sad musical mosaic. Like bourbon and cherries in a perfectly mixed Manhattan, Devin’s music has a style all its own, one that shouldn’t work…but somehow does. His unique brand of roots and jazz effortlessly marries the two musical ideals with a distinctive element of Canadiana so eloquently, it leaves one wondering…why has no one done this before? In Toronto’s growing pseudo-Country scene Devin’s new take on the genre pushes the limits of what people think they want to dance to on a Saturday night.
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The Strumbellas Six Shooter*Warner
We Still Move On Dance Floors
When it came time to make We Still Move On Dance Floors, the Lindsay, Ontario-bred, Toronto-based band headed to the woods of the pacific northwest, settling in at Bear Creek Studio just outside of Seattle, to record with Grammy nominated producer, Ryan Hadlock (Metric, Gossip, Moondoggies, The Lumineers). It seemed a natural progression for the band, whose dark lyrics about death and solitude crop up amongst beautiful lyrical mindscapes of trees and lakes and home. Born in Toronto but conceived in Lindsay, Ontario, The Strumbellas are equal parts small town dream and big city hustle. It’s strange, perhaps, that Canada’s biggest city is home to its alt-Country scene, but The Strumbellas rebel yell is a natural extension of the sound honed by Toronto stalwarts Royal City, The Sadies, Cuff the Duke, The Wilderness of Manitoba, and $100. Principal songwriter Simon Ward likes to say that his heart is in his hometown but his head is in the city, or vice versa, he's not sure which. Their debut album, My Father and the Hunter, was nominated for a JUNO Award in 2011, which cemented the group’s status as a band on the rise.
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The Wilderness of Manitoba Pheromone*Fontana North
Island of Echoes
In its four-year existence, the Wilderness of Manitoba has released three albums, two EPs and toured the UK, the Netherlands, Germany, Estonia, Canada and the US. The highlights range from their UK live debut at the End of the Road Festival, where they received a standing ovation, to playing the Philadelphia Folk Festival and meeting Levon Helm; from opening for such acts as Wilco and Aimee Mann to performing the WOMAD festival in the UK with artists like Robert Plant. This year, they were nominated for two Canadian Folk Music Awards; one for the Pushing the Boundaries Award and one for Vocal Group of the Year. As they start a new chapter in their creative life, vocalist Will Whitwham explains, "Every band is a collective whose body of work is defined by those involved at certain points in time. I've often written songs intended for specific people and their strengths." With vocalist/violinist Amanda Balsys and bassist Wes McClintock now fully integrated into the Toronto-based band, there is more of an emphasis on Whitwham and Balsys’ duo lead vocals and the more dynamic rhythm section. Drummer Sean Lancaric says, "This band always has and always will rely on inspiration to produce anything. New voices start new conversations."
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Blues Album of the Year (Sponsored by Galaxie, your musical universe)

David Gogo Cordova Bay*Fontana North
Come on Down
As one of Canada’s hardest working and most prolific blues guitarists, David Gogo has amassed a worldwide fan base and an impressive list of accomplishments. He has earned three JUNO Award nominations, the 2012 WCMA for Blues Recording of the Year, the CBC Saturday Night Blues’ Great Canadian Blues Award, and has twice been named Maple Blues Guitarist of the Year. During his career he has joined Johnny Winter, Otis Rush, Albert Collins,Bo Diddley, BB King and numerous others on stage. Gogo has released thirteen albums to date and has been a guest on a number of recordings. He has composed music for television and major motion pictures and his songs have been performed and recorded by musicians worldwide. Of recent note, the track "Never Gonna Change" co-written by Gogo and Tom Hambridge appears on the latest Buddy Guy album, Rhythm & Blues. Gogo continues to tour relentlessly, performing across North America and Europe in venues ranging from small blues bars to massive blues festivals. Whether he's showcasing his blistering guitar licks and soulful vocals during an electric performance or drawing the crowd in with his humour and down-to-earth personality during an acoustic show, audiences everywhere can attest to Gogo's outstanding talent.
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Downchild Linus*eOne
Can You Hear the Music
Downchild is a household name in Canada and the internationally renowned blues band celebrated their 40th Anniversary in style, selling out Massey Hall in Toronto and the National Arts Centre in Ottawa while their popular documentary Flip Flop & Fly: 40 Years Of The Downchild Blues Band was a major hit nationally, airing continuously on HBO Canada and TMN for over two years. Can You Hear The Music, Downchild’s 17th album, features classic Downchild jump-blues such as "Don't Wait Up for Me", "Fasten Your Seatbelt" and the title track "Can You Hear the Music". "One In A Million" has a hypnotic, Southern gospel feel, while "I Need A Woman" is steeped in New Orleans vibe. Chuck Jackson's "My Mississippi Queen" takes us on a steamy road trip through the deep south and with "Worn In", Gary Kendall makes his debut song writing contribution to a Downchild album. Downchild is led by the one and only Donnie "Mr. Downchild" Walsh (who penned eight of the eleven original songs), on guitar and harmonica, vocalist/harmonica player Chuck Jackson, Michael Fonfara pianist/organist, sax player Pat Carey, bassist Gary Kendall and drummer Mike Fitzpatrick.
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Harrison Kennedy Electro-Fi*Outside
Soulscape
Born in Hamilton, Harrison Kennedy grew up in a family that loved to sing, play and listen to blues music. Touring musicians often joined them at the dinner table and performed in the family home. Lonnie Johnson was a frequent visitor, and a young Harrison met Billie Holiday in his mother’s living room. After serving his apprenticeship on the local R&B scene, Harrison left town to attend college. While home on summer break he auditioned for Motown hitmakers Holland, Dozier, Holland. They were so impressed with Harrison’s vocal and song writing abilities they signed him up as a founding member of the Soul Super Group, The Chairmen of the Board. The group went on to score a series of million selling singles and toured the world throughout the 70’s. In 2011 Harrison finished first overall in the Solo Blues performance category at the International Blues Challenge. In 2013 Harrison was nominated for the Best Acoustic Artist Award by the Blues Foundation in Memphis.
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James 'Buddy' Rogers Blue Wave*Independent
My Guitar's My Only Friend
James ‘Buddy’ Rogers learned to love the blues close to home. His dad, Bud, who worked for the railroad, brought home records and a guitar and by the time Buddy was 10 he was lifting licks. By 11 his band was a regular at local blues clubs. At 15 his band, Texas Storm, was being booked by Canada’s top agency for opening concert slots. At age 19 he teamed with former BB King bassist, Russell Jackson, and began a road trip that lasted five years. Based in Kansas City, they played an endless string of clubs, concerts and festivals sharing the bill with Canned Heat, Sam Taylor, Holmes Brothers, Elvin Bishop, Kenny Neal, Katie Webster and countless others. In 2000, Buddy started his own band and played blues clubs across Canada and Europe. When he wasn’t working under his own name he appeared on US tours and recordings with many other blues acts including B.B. King drummer Tony Coleman’s band. His main influences on guitar – Johnny Watson, Jimmie Vaughan and the three Kings, (Albert, Freddie and B.B.) – plus years of roadwork have turned Buddy into one of the most inventive and penetrating blues guitarists performing today. James ‘Buddy’ Rogers' blues are here to stay.
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MonkeyJunk Stony Plain*Warner
All Frequencies
In September, Stony Plain Records released All Frequencies, the new CD from Ottawa-based blues/roots rockers MonkeyJunk. Comprised of Steve Marriner (vocals, harmonica, keyboards, baritone guitar), Tony D (lead guitar, background vocals) and Matt Sobb (drums, percussion, background vocals), MonkeyJunk plays a mix of swamp blues and funky roots rock ‘n’ roll. Produced by Steve Marriner and Ken Friesen (Blue Rodeo, The Tragically Hip), the new album includes nine original songs, plus a scorching version of the Bobby Charles classic, "Why Are People Like That?" For the uninitiated, the band takes its name from a chance remark by legendary bluesman Son House: "I’m talkin’ ‘bout the blues. I ain’t talkin’ about monkey junk."
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Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year

Fraser Campbell Independent*David C. Cook
Search the Heavens
Fraser Campbell is an award-winning pop and gospel music artist from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Fraser’s music is dynamic and energetic and his live performances are full of undeniable passion, pounding energy, musical ingenuity and sincere honesty. Along with being a touring songwriter, Fraser is also the music director at New Life Community Fellowship, a church in Victoria. In the spring of 2013, Fraser released his second full-length album, Search The Heavens, and it proved to be an immediate success with songs from the album charting on Christian radio across Canada. His electric/rock/dance sounds are consistently pulling audiences out of their seats and his Celtic roots always seem to surface and provide his performances with folky, organic richness.
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Jordan Raycroft Independent
Jordan Raycroft
At only 22, this young gun has been captivating audiences of all-ages across the country with his story-telling and intimate performances. As a two-time participant of VIA Rail’s Artist On Board program, Jordan Raycroft has played train cars, coffee houses, and living rooms throughout each of Canada’s provinces. On a recent tour of Western Canada, Jordan added another 53 shows to his résumé in 47 days. With a voice as big as he is tall, Jordan has been developing a strong presence around his unique blend of contemporary folk. Recently named Niagara Music Awards 2013 Folk Artist of the Year, Jordan launched his singer-songwriter career only three short years ago, opening for JUNO Award nominee, Peter Katz. Over one hundred shows and two demos later, April 2013 saw the release of Jordan's debut self-titled album. Jordan Raycroft has since earned two GMA Canada Covenant Awards nominations for Folk Album of the Year and CD Artwork of the Year. With a guitar in one hand and harmonica in the other, this Canadian singer-songwriter is just getting started!
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The City Harmonic Integrity*Provident
Heart
Forming as a band nearly four years ago in Hamilton, The City Harmonic quickly went from anonymity to widespread acclaim, headlining tours across North America and gathering numerous awards along the way. In addition to a JUNO Award and countless Covenant Awards in recognition of their songs and albums, the band is the recipient of a Dove Award nomination for New Artist of the Year from the Gospel Music Association. Known for songs like "Mountaintop," "I Have A Dream (It Feels Like Home)," "Holy (Wedding Day)," "A City On A Hill" and the perennial radio favorite "Manifesto," the band's music videos have garnered over three million Youtube views. The City Harmonic's albums include the critically acclaimed I Have A Dream (It Feels Like Home) and Heart.
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The High Bar Gang True North*eOne
Lost & Undone: A Gospel Bluegrass Companion
The High Bar Gang's Colin Nairne says "In 2006, I went to my first Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco. I’ve been back almost every year. Hardly Strictly inspired thoughts of putting a bluegrass band together, so I schemed." From their first shows at the tiny North Vancouver Eagles Club to opening for Blue Rodeo, the High Bar Gang has helped carry the torch for traditional bluegrass music throughout western Canada since 2010. On their debut True North album Lost and Undone: A Gospel Bluegrass Companion, the band focused on the fine gospel music made popular by the likes of Bill Monroe and the Stanley Brothers. Featuring the lush vocal harmonies of Shari Ulrich, Angela Harris, Wendy Bird and Barney Bentall that have become the band’s signature sound, the record includes stirring versions of "Daniel Prayed," "Walking in Jerusalem," "Sinners You Better Get Ready" and "Hand in Hand with Jesus." The ladies also take a verse each on Julie Miller’s modern gospel classic "All My Tears." With solid backing from bassist Rob Becker, guitarist Colin Nairne, and Eric Reed on banjo, mandolin and dobro, these 14 songs bring back the sounds of a simpler time. Recorded live in glorious mono in Barney’s living room.
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Tim Neufeld Independent*David C. Cook
Trees
If Marcus Mumford and Matt Redman ever conspired to make music together, the result might sound exactly like the new Trees solo project by Starfield's Tim Neufeld. Backed by the Hallelujah Glory Boys – a bluegrass trio of lord-lovin hillbillies – Tim's music, and the live show that follows, introduce a fresh energy, and an old-timey charm to a worship genre long overdue for a change. 
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World Music Album of the Year (Sponsored by Canada Council for the Arts)

Adonis Puentes Tumba King*Warner
Sabor A Café
Adonis Puentes was destined to be a music star. Sabor a Café, his latest CD and first collection of all self-composed original songs, fulfills the Cuban-Canadian singer’s destiny. Adonis and his twin Alexis, (Alex Cuba), were born in 1974 in Artemisa, Cuba. Their father, Valentin Puentes, a well respected musician and teacher, had the six year old twins playing in a children’s guitar ensemble. At 14, Adonis was singing and writing original songs, music that has ripened and matured into the poetic, sensuous song-cycle, Sabor a Café. Adonis has been nominated for a JUNO Award (Puentes Brothers) and a Grammy Award for his lead vocalist work with Mongorama. He’s toured with Maraca Orland Valle and sung at L.A.’s Greek Theater and Lincoln Center, sharing the stage with Latin music luminaries Larry Harlow and Ruben Blades before 24,000 fans. He has performed at festivals around the world from South by Southwest to Java Jazz in Jakarta, Indonesia. Sabor a Café is a sensuous, profound recording with dramatic arrangements and a crystal clear studio sound.
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Azam Ali and Loga R. Torkian Terrestrial Lane*Outside
Lamentation of Swans – A Journey Towards Silence
In a career that spans over a decade and includes twelve collaborative and solo albums and one JUNO Award nomination, Iranian born/ Indian raised and Canadian based singer/composer Azam Ali has confirmed her place as one of the most gifted performers on the world music stage. Azam has collaborated with artists Serj Tankian of System of a Down, The Crystal Method, Dredg, Japanese group Kodo, Zakir Hussain and Mickey Hart. Azam Ali has worked on blockbuster films and television shows such as The Matrix Revolutions, Thor: The Dark World, John Carter, 300, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, The Nativity Story, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, The Fight Club, Homeland, True Blood, Alias and Prison Break.
Iranian born composer/ multi-instrumentalist Loga R. Torkian is internationally recognized for his ground- breaking work with world music groups Niyaz and Axiom Of Choice. A highly gifted composer and a visionary in his field, Loga is respected worldwide for his ability to combine his knowledge of the Persian classical repertoire with his knowledge of Western composition, to create his own unique, modern compositions. Loga's performances have been featured on many major film scores which include Body of Lies, Iron Man, Prince of Persia and Trespass.
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David Buchbinder & Odessa/Havana Tzadik*eOne
Walk to the Sea
David Buchbinder’s Odessa/Havana celebrates the international release of their sophomore CD Walk to the Sea. Jewish music standout trumpeter Buchbinder and Cuban piano master Hilario Durán bring their award-winning compositional prowess to create a unique musical landscape inspiring the virtuosic performances captured on this disc. The group’s first, self-titled CD (Tzadik) was lauded with dozens of rave reviews and won the CFMA for Best World Music Group/Recording. Since its release the band has toured across North America, playing to sold-out houses in every venue. The new CD has already been called "one of the best CDs of the year" and "one of the most dynamic world music offerings [of] the last decade." Now, Buchbinder and his musical compatriots have upped the ante with a renewed focus on the actual musical sources that flow through Jewish and Cuban culture, sources that lead directly to the music of Andalusia: the polyglot culture of southern Spain. The key to the success of this project is that the musicians fashion these deep influences into a fresh and powerful sound that draw on the best that Canadian musical culture has to offer. Odessa/Havana presents virtuosic, fascinating and simply sizzling music, definitely creating a "joyful noise". 
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Kobo Town Cumbancha*eOne
Jumbie in the Jukebox
Kobo Town has emerged in recent years as one of the most original artistic voices of the Caribbean diaspora. Founded by emigre Trinidadian songwriter Drew Gonsalves, whose songs draw heavily from the lyrical inventiveness of early calypso, their music has been described as "a unique, transnational composite of rhythm, poetry and activist journalism."(Exclaim!). From their home base in Toronto, Kobo Town has brought this distinct calypso and dub inspired sound to festivals, clubs and theatres across North America, Europe and the Caribbean. While Gonsalves' songs convey a deep interest in Caribbean folk music, the band delivers them with an energy and intensity more akin to indie rock, earning them a considerable audience beyond the niche of world music enthusiasts and calypso fans. Independence, Kobo Town's acclaimed debut album was released in 2007, and nominated for a Canadian Folk Music Award and an Indie award. Their 2013 sophomore release, Jumbie in the Jukebox was recorded between Trinidad, Belize and Canada. The Polaris long listed album has been described as a "pithy combination of social commentary, dubwise soca and calypsonian wit"(VillageVoice).
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Lemon Bucket Orkestra Independent
Lume, Lume
From Toronto to New York, Berlin to Budapest, audiences around the world are hailing the Lemon Bucket Orkestra as folk music revolutionaries. Since their birth three years ago, the band has grown from its initial quartet of buskers to a 16-piece guerilla folk-force with an army of grassroots followers and mainstream fans at home and abroad. Those discovering the band realize quickly that their shows are more than just concerts: they're wild, joyful experiences rarely contained by four walls; they're celebrations of tradition and culture expressed with an explosive punk spirit; they're ecstatic street parades that erupt from the collision of nostalgia and inspiration.
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Jack Richardson Producer of the Year (Sponsored by Slaight Music)

Brian Howes and Jacob Hoggard Universal
"Anything", "Crazy for You" WILD LIFE - Hedley
Wild Life was produced by Hoggard and multiple JUNO Award winner, long-time Hedley creative collaborator and friend Brian Howes (Nickleback, Simple Plan). The two have worked together right from the start on Hedley's self-titled debut album (2005), The Show Must Go (2009) and Storms (2011). "With Wild Life, Hedley have delivered another fantastic record," said Shawn Marino, Vice-President, A&R and Publishing, Universal Music Canada. "They have managed to raise the bar once again and reinvent themselves creatively, while still maintaining their highly infectious trademark vibe." Following in the footsteps of the band's past chart-topping hits "Kiss You Inside Out," "Perfect,"` and "Invincible" – "Anything" exhibits Hedley's signature anthemic charm.
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Eric Ratz Dine Alone*Universal
"Sweet Mountain River", "The Lion" – FURIOSITY - Monster Truck
Eric Ratz is a recording engineer for Canadian music studios. He has been recording, mixing and producing music for over 20 years. Ratz received his first break in the music business in his early 20s when he was awarded the chief engineer position at Phase One Studios in Toronto. Recently, Ratz has worked with many of the Canadian music industry's most successful and influential punk and rock artists/bands including Billy Talent, Big Wreck, Monster Truck, Comeback Kid, Big Sugar, Danko Jones, and Cancer Bats. Many of Ratz's projects have received Gold and Platinum record sales awards.
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Henry "Cirkut" Walter RCA*Sony*Interscope*Universal
(co-producer Luke Gottwald) "Wrecking Ball" BANGERZ – Miley Cyrus | "Give It 2 U" BLURRED LINES – Robin Thicke
Henry Walter, known professionally as Cirkut, is a Canadian music producer and songwriter. He has been involved in numerous hit songs including co-producing and co-writing for the likes of Britney Spears, Ke$ha, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, B.o.B, Lil Wayne and Taylor Swift. This includes the Billboard Hot 100 number one singles "Part of Me" and "Roar" by Katy Perry, and "Wrecking Ball" by Miley Cyrus. Walter was raised in Halifax and moved to Toronto in 2004. As a member of the Toronto-based Let's Go to War, he co-produced the Britney Spears song, "Mmm Papi", which appeared on her 2008 album, Circus. Walter opened Dream House Recording Studios in Toronto with partners Adrien Gough and Alex Bonenfant in 2010, and shortly thereafter relocated to Los Angeles, California to work with Luke "Dr. Luke" Gottwald's production team. He has been described by the Hollywood Reporter as Dr. Luke's "right-hand man and main production partner".
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Ryan Guldemond and Ben Kaplan Last Gang*Universal
"Let's Fall in Love", "Bit by Bit" THE STICKS – Mother Mother
In addition to his full time job as frontman and principle songwriter for Canadian indie darlings Mother Mother, Ryan Guldemond continues to appear in the production and songwriting credits on the releases of some of Canada’s best up and coming alternative talents such as Hannah Georgas, Sidney York, Rococode and Rykka to name a few. Spending the better part of 2012 producing the fourth effort of the group he founded and has fronted since 2005, Guldemond’s abilities and talent as a songwriter and producer shine on Mother Mother’s The Sticks, which has already far exceeded the great successes achieved by the group’s earlier efforts. The album has already yielded a top three alternative/modern rock single – "Let’s Fall In Love", which has raised the high bar set by Mother Mother’s preceding Guldemond penned/produced top 10 singles, "The Stand", "Baby Don’t Dance" and "Body of Years". Guldemond’s talents have also extended to the world of television advertising, having produced and penned the jingle heard in numerous Kraft commercials airing all over the United States throughout 2012, and previously for major national advertising campaigns with SunRype and Walmart.
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Thomas 'Tawgs' Salter Coalition*Warner*Columbia*Sony
"This is the Best" ADVANCED BASICS – USS | "Red Hands" (co-producer Gianni "Luminati" Nicassio) R.E.V.O. – Walk Off the Earth
Thomas "Tawgs" Salter is a Canadian musician, songwriter, producer and recording engineer. His extensive body of musical work includes a vast array of artists ranging from Josh Groban, Lights and Lenka to Chantal Kreviazuk, Fefe Dobson, Midway State and USS. Salter has also worked alongside Grammy-winning writer/producer Walter Afanasieff. Salter's music, production and collaborations have been featured on television shows, including Vampire Diaries, Grey's Anatomy, American Idol and The Simpsons to films such as Prom Night and Joe Somebody. Salter's writing and production of the soaring pop ballad "You Are Loved (Don't Give Up)", Josh Groban's first single from his multi-Platinum selling third studio album Awake, reached number nine on the Adult Contemporary Billboard chart. The song was sung by Lisa Simpson on the television show The Simpsons in Season 20, Episode 9.
iTunes
iTunes

Recording Engineer of the Year

David Travers-Smith True North*eOne*Fox / Independent
"Dancing In the Dark" THESE WILDER THINGS – Ruth Moody | "Flabbergasp" (co-engineer Jaron Freeman-Fox) THE OPPOSITE OF EVERYTHING – Jaron Freeman-Fox
David Travers-Smith is a Toronto-based producer, mixer, engineer and musician who has produced and/or engineered recordings for numerous artists including The Wailin’ Jennys, Ruth Moody, Deerhoof, Jayme Stone and many more. He toured extensively with Jane Siberry, as both musician and engineer and his playing can be heard on over 70 albums. He holds music degrees from Yale University and The University of Victoria. Recordings he has produced and/or engineered have garnered 40 JUNO Award nominations, with 10 wins along with nominations and wins at the Maple Blues Awards, Western Canadian Music Awards, American Folk Alliance Awards, American Indie Music Awards, Canadian Folk Music Awards, and East Coast Music Awards. He was nominated as Engineer of the Year at the 2007, 2010 and 2012 and co-produced the 2012 JUNO Award winner for Roots Ensemble of the Year, Bright Morning Stars. In 2011 David and Mark Howard were awarded Producer of The Year at the CFMA’s for their work on Bright Morning Stars and David was nominated again in 2013.
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iTunes
Eric Ratz Dine Alone*Universal
"Sweet Mountain River", "The Lion" – FURIOSITY – Monster Truck
Eric Ratz is a recording engineer for Canadian music studios. He has been recording, mixing and producing music for over 20 years. Ratz received his first break in the music business in his early 20s when he was awarded the chief engineer position at Phase One Studios in Toronto. Recently, Ratz has worked with many of the Canadian music industry's most successful and influential punk and rock artists/bands including Billy Talent, Big Wreck, Monster Truck, Comeback Kid, Big Sugar, Danko Jones, and Cancer Bats. Many of Ratz's projects have received Gold and Platinum record sales awards.
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Howie Beck Dine Alone*Universal / Columbia*Sony
"Robotic" (co-engineer Graham Walsh) HANNAH GEORGAS – Hannah Georgas "Red Hands" R.E.V.O. – Walk Off the Earth
Howie Beck is a musician, producer and mixer. While known for his solo albums, (including his 2010 JUNO Award nominated How To Fall Down In Public), Howie has also starting making a name for himself as an in-demand producer and mixer of other artists including Walk Off The Earth, Feist, Hayden, and Barenaked Ladies.
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iTunes
Kevin Churko (co-engineer Kane Churko) Universal / Warner
"The Wrong Side of Heaven" THE WRONG SIDE OF HEAVEN AND THE RIGHTEOUS SIDE OF HELL, VOLUME 1 – Five Finger Death Punch "Stardust" LUX – Gemini Syndrome
Kevin Churko is a Canadian record producer/engineer and songwriter who has worked for some of the world's biggest names including Ozzy Osbourne, Shania Twain, Five Finger Death Punch, Slash, In This Moment and Rob Zombie. He has been nominated for seven JUNO Awards and has won four times with the last coming in 2013 when Kevin and son, Kane Churko picked up an Engineer of the Year JUNO for In This Moment's "Blood" and Five Finger Death Punch's "Coming Down". Both were also jointly nominated for producer of the year. Kevin produced and co-wrote the song "I Don't Wanna Stop" by Ozzy Osbourne which was nominated for Best Hard Rock Performance at the 2008 Grammy Awards. Churko and Ozzy were nominated for a second Grammy Award again for Best Hard Rock Performance in 2010 for "Scream".
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iTunes
Randy Staub Virgin*Universal / Reprise*Warner
"Hollow" THE DEVIL PUT DINOSAURS HERE – Alice in Chains | "Be My Baby" TO BE LOVED – Michael Bublé
Randy Staub is one of the most prolific rock mixers of the last decade. Staub has worked with some of the largest names in music, mixing tracks for artists such as Nickelback, Metallica, Bon Jovi, Bryan Adams, Nickelback, U2, Cher, Celine Dion, 3 Doors Down, Avril Lavigne, Iggy Pop, H.I.M, Coheed and Cambria, Hinder and many others. He has been nominated for the JUNO Award for Recording Engineer of the Year nine times, winning in 2002 for his work with Nickelback on the tracks "How You Remind Me" and "Too Bad". Staub still lives and works out of Vancouver – he never did move to Los Angeles – and continues to work with emerging and legendary artists such as Jet Black Stare, Thousand Foot Krutch, The Almost and the reformed Alice In Chains.
iTunes
iTunes

Recording Package of the Year

Ian Grais and Chris Staples (Art Directors), Sofia Pona, Kim Ridgewell, Lisa Nakamura (Designers), Ben Tour (Illustrator) Independent
Bones BODHI JONES
Born and raised in Western Canada, Ian Grais studied economics at the University of British Columbia and then advertising and design at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, prior to founding Rethink in 1999 with partners Tom Shepansky and Chris Staples. Ian has been ranked the number one art director and also the number one creative director (with Rethink co-creative director Chris Staples) in the country for the past decade. At Rethink, Ian creates and directs a wide range of projects encompassing design, interactive, installation and advertising. Ian has served on the juries of many industry award shows, including the ANDYs, Cannes, the CLIOs, Communication Arts, D&AD, and the One Show. Currently Ian serves on the Graphic Design Advisory Committee at Kwantlen College and the Professional Advisory Board for the Illustration program at Sheridan College in Ontario.
Chris Staples is one of Canada’s leading creative thinkers. In fact, since 1997, he has been named the number one creative director in the country eight times (including four times at Rethink, with co-creative director Ian Grais). Chris has an honours degree in journalism from Carleton University in Ottawa. He has spent his entire career in Western Canada. In 1990 he moved to Vancouver as a writer at Palmer Jarvis (now DDB). Three years later he was creative director, helping lead that agency to three Agency of the Year titles in five years. In 1999, Chris started Rethink with Ian Grais and Tom Shepansky. He splits his time between high-level strategy with clients and creative direction on all accounts in both Vancouver and Toronto. Chris has won a slew of national and international awards, and has served as a judge at Cannes (twice), the Clios (twice), D&AD, the One Show, the ANDYs and the Communication Arts Annual. In his spare time he travels incessantly and watches far too much reality television.
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Jayme L. Spinks (Art Director/Designer), Janet Kimber (Photographer) Independent
Lullabies and Wake-Up Calls DINAH THORPE
Jayme Spinks is a designer living and working in Montréal. 
Originally from Halifax, now living in Toronto, Janet Kimber divides her time between her two studios. She loves art, design, architecture, and great food. When she is not shooting she is traveling and eating her face off. 
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Menno Versteeg (Art Director), Anne Douris (Designer), Annie Murphy (Photographer) Royal Mountain*Universal
White Paint HOLLERADO
What a great example of the DIY creativity of this JUNO Award nominated indie band. Hollerado asked friends to a painting party to make 10,000 CD covers (and 2,000 vinyl) for their just released, White Paint. The base image was a stained glass window that lead singer Menno Versteeg’s late grandfather made in the late 1950s for a Toronto church. Each picture was covered with white tempera paint that can be scratched off. Watch the party video. It took three days and a lot of friends, but 2000 records and 10,000 CDs were eventually each given its own unique thin coat of white, allowing fans to scratch off the paint in any way they want, revealing the album art underneath.
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Robyn Kotyk (Art Director/Designers/Illustrator), Petra Cuschieri, Justin Peroff (Designers) Arts & Crafts*Universal
Arts & Crafts: 2003-2013 ARTS & CRAFTS – VARIOUS ARTISTS
Robyn Kotyk is a JUNO Award-winning designer and three-time nominee, known for her work with Broken Social Scene, Feist, Constantines, Jason Collett and her extensive work with Arts & Crafts diverse roster of artists.
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Vincent Lévesque and Alex Ortiz (Art Director/Designer/ Illustrator/Photographer) Dare to Care*DEP
La Mort Pop Club WE ARE WOLVES
La Mort Pop Club – the fourth We Are Wolves album since Alexander Ortiz and Vincent Lévesque joined forces at the beginning of the millennium – is a primitive wave that intertwines visual arts and music. It is the result of more than a decade spent redefining the innovative aesthetics of analog occultism. For a contemporary perspective on danger. Rock in its natural habitat. A journey towards trance. Remembrance of death. La Mort Pop Club confirms the tight relationship the band has formed with minimalism. It flirts with fuzzy garage-punk riffs, without putting aside their usual analog experimentation and melodic constructions. A new shade of black, somewhere between brutal and sensitive, built on the outskirts of death.
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Video of the Year (Sponsored by MuchFACT, exclusively funded by Bell Media)

Agathe Bray-Bourret Audiogramme*Select
Je t'aime comme tu es es - DANIEL BÉLANGER
Born and raised in Montreal, Agathe studied cinema at Concordia University before her passion for drawing made her change floors to enroll in film animation instead – the perfect mix of her two passions. She likes to represent the fantasy and humor that lies in everyday life using mainly watercolor, her favorite medium. She illustrates for magazines and books, and her short movies have played in many festivals worldwide.
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Briin "Briin?" Bernstein and Daniel AM Rosenberg Desolate*Independent
Friend of Mine - D-Sisive
"Briin "Briin?" Bernstein and Daniel AM Rosenberg are award winning directors who have worked with a wide range of major label artists, from Kardinal Offishall to Kristina Maria, alongside producer Jason Kennedy. In their spare time they enjoy writing about themselves in the third person."
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John Poliquin Universal
Anything - HEDLEY
Some of JP's directorial credits include Hedley, Finger Eleven, My Darkest Days, Mother Mother, Arkells, Theory of a Deadman, The Trews, and illScarlett ft Kardinal Offishall. John "JP" Poliquin has also directed videos for YTV series, The Next Star and has appeared on-air several times on MuchMusic's television program New.Music.Live – sitting on an expert panel to discuss industry music videos and adding entries to their official blog. In January 2012, JP's music video for Light Organ Records artist Adaline "The Noise" premiered exclusively with Andy Warhol's Interview Magazine. Poliquin's music video work has been nominated at the JUNO Awards, the MuchMusic Video Awards, the East Coast Music Association Awards, the PEI Music Awards, and the Leo Awards.
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Matt Barnes Atlantic*Warner
Feeling Good - THE SHEEPDOGS
Matt Barnes is a Toronto based photographer, who is represented commercially by Westside Studio. He is a gentle ginger giant, with an avid interest in all facets of pop culture, from western films to sailor tattoos. He works in a tight knit group, with producer Tara and assistant Papi, as well as a cool group of freelance professionals. 
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WeWereMonkeys Republic*Universal
King and Lionheart - OF MONSTERS AND MEN
WeWereMonkeys is the writing, directing and producing duo, Mihai Wilson and Marcella Moser. Together they have created many successful music videos, film and commercial works that have been seen around the world at film festivals and art exhibitions. They have been nominated for multiple JUNO Awards, an MTV Music Video Award for Best Art Direction and most recently won Les Prix Phi Films for their debut short film, OVO. WeWereMonkeys' unique visual style is inspired by foreign cultures, collage, classical painting and the latest technology. With a mixed-media approach, they strive to build worlds that exist somewhere between dreams and reality.
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Electronic Album of the Year (Sponsored by Roland)

A Tribe Called Red Tribal Spirit/Pirates Blend*Sony
Nation II Nation
Bursting forth from Canada’s capital, native Producer/DJ crew, A Tribe Called Red, is producing a truly unique sound that’s impacting the global electronic scene and urban club culture. Since 2010 the group – made up of two-time Canadian DMC Champion DJ Shub, DJ NDN and DJ Bear Witness – has been mixing traditional pow wow vocals and drumming with cutting-edge electronic music. Their self-titled album, released in March 2012, was long listed for Canada’s prestigious Polaris Music Prize and included in the Washington Post’s Top 10 albums of the year. ATCR’s music is the soundtrack to a contemporary evolution of the pow wow: their Electric Pow Wow events in Ottawa showcase native talent and aboriginal culture, alongside an open, wild party. Within a couple of years they’ve become the face of an urban Native youth renaissance, championing their heritage and speaking out on aboriginal issues, while being on top of popular music, fashion and art. Their second full-length, Nation II Nation made the Polaris Prize short list as one of the 10 Best Canadian albums of the year.
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Blue Hawaii Arbutus*F>A>B
Untogether
The duo, Blue Hawaii's EP, Blooming Summer reflected the pair’s travels in Central America. Eventually Ra (Raphaelle Standell-Preston) returned to her role in BRAIDS, touring constantly, while Ag (Alex "Agor" Cowan) moved to Europe, treading deeper into dance music, electronics, and production. The two decided to make Untogether in 2012. Following their winter in Canada, their music became colder, more introspective. It again captured a time and place, but instead of a dense saturation of love and excitement, this record reflects the vast world of self-awareness and delicacy. It takes for its subject the question of belonging, despite overwhelming space. It contains the vast space of two years passing, including watching their Montreal scene change as some launched into international success and others turned deeper inwards. The duo noticed that throughout the changing social and personal landscape of one’s twenties, these divided notions and people somehow stay together. It is because – or perhaps in spite of – these disjointed intersections that the record is called Untogether.
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Graze New Kanada*ST Holdings/Hardwax
Graze
Fusing techno, garage, and the broken rhythms of contemporary bass, the six-track self-titled EP Graze rattles the ribcage as thoroughly as you’d expect from this duo. Their back story is emblematic of a broader convergence in club music. Both producers hail from different corners of Toronto’s fertile club scene – Adam Marshall from house and techno, Christian Andersen from jungle and dubstep. The two met up in Berlin, and, as fans of each other’s work, decided to join forces for a series of "upfront dance-floor tracks" that occupy the netherworld between their respective traditions. The Graze project represents an effort to look beyond club-music clichés. Their music has the kind of emotional weight and musical narrative that are all too rare these days. They aimed for that elusive sweet spot – neither gimmicky party jams nor flaccid, "experimental" brooders – and they nailed it.
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Noah Pred Thoughtless*MN2S
Third Culture
The entity known as Noah Pred now finds himself based in the cultural nexus of modern Berlin. Making the leap to Europe after five years fertilizing the extensive musical underground of Canada's multicultural metropolis, he comes deeply impacted by the unique influence of Toronto. Launching his Thoughtless imprint there over four years ago, the label is now well past its 50th release – Pred's acclaimed ERA ONE mix-CD – and has served to expose many potent talents from Canada and beyond. Throwing the much-loved Thoughtless label parties was a natural evolution of numerous DJ residencies held by Pred in Vancouver, Montreal and in Toronto with the legendary Fukhouse crew. The past few years have seen Noah perform extensively throughout North America, delivering highly improvised sets that always strive to meet the moment head-on. Recent releases on Cynosure, Highgrade and Trapez LTD have earned a renewed focus on his distinctive production style and extensive discography. With his False Image collaboration with Tom Clark out now on Get Physical, and his new full-length, Third Culture, enjoying widespread critical acclaim, 2014 looms large for Pred.
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Ryan Hemsworth Last Gang*Universal
Guilt Trips
Ryan Hemsworth is a young producer from Canada with a remarkable output and a unique approach to hip hop and R&B production. Starting as a singer and guitarist, he quickly weaned off rock into hip hop and more software oriented music, diving whole-heartedly into drum loops and samples. In 2011, his first release No Plans was featured on SPIN Magazine’s Top 20 R&B albums of 2011, and he quickly followed up with A Way and Kitsch Genius, which got him increasingly noticed for a singular sound. He began cultivating relationships online and became a go-to producer for MCs like Main Attrakionz, Shady Blaze, and Deniro Farrar, helping craft a sound that sits somewhere between chill-wave and trap-rap. His first label release, the Last Words EP was released through Wedidit Collective in 2012 and most recently, Ryan signed to Toronto-based indie label Last Gang Records. His first full length effort, Guilt Trips was released October 22 to rave reviews. 
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Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year

Anciients Season of Mist*Sony
Heart of Oak
Heart of Oak, the stunning debut full-length from ANCIIENTS (Kenneth Cook - guitar, vocals, Chris Dyck - guitar/vocals, Aaron Gustafson - bass/vocals, Mike Hannay - drums) on the Season of Mist label was one of 2013's most anticipated albums for a reason. Formed in 2009, the acutely modern, progressive quartet crafts songs as nuanced and expressive as the range of human emotion without eschewing their hard rock/heavy metal roots. Unforgettable tracks such as "Raise the Sun," "Falling in Line," "The Longest River" and "Faith & Oath" hit hard and resonate deeply. With Heart of Oak as their calling card, ANCIIENTS exude class and the confidence of a band beyond their years.
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Gorguts Season of Mist*Sony
Colored Sands
Gorguts, one of death metal's most revered and influential bands, has returned! From their beginnings in 1989 as one of the most-acclaimed bands in the genre’s first wave, through their growth into a unique and wildly-progressive entity, the Montreal-based quartet has cast a long shadow of influence over extreme metal that reverberates to this day. On Colored Sands, their first new album in almost twelve years, the band (helmed by founder Luc Lemay) builds off the groundwork laid by its earth-shattering, genre-milestone Obscura (1998). New tracks like "Forgotten Arrows" and "Absconders" showcase Lemay’s distinct playing and approach to composition, and prove that Colored Sands is death metal of the highest order.
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KEN Mode New Damage*Universal
Entrench
KEN mode (an acronym for Kill Everyone Now mode) is a JUNO Award winning, Canadian metallic hardcore-influenced noise rock band from Winnipeg, Manitoba, that was formed by brothers Jesse and Shane Matthewson in September 1999. On March 31, 2012 their fourth album, Venerable won the inaugural Heavy Metal/Hard Music Album of the Year JUNO Award in Canada. Venerable was also nominated for Rock Album of the Year by the Western Canadian Music Awards. March 2013 saw the release of Entrench through New Damage Records in Canada. The album was mixed by Matt Bayles and was extremely well-received amongst both fans and critics. Entrench was long listed for the 2013 Polaris Music Prize in June 2013. KEN mode continues to tour relentlessly, proving that despite being a well-seasoned band, they won't be calling it a day anytime soon.
Protest the Hero Protest*Sony
Volition
Protest The Hero have carved an identity for themselves that is so revolutionary within heavy music that to call them "unique" would be like calling Louis C.K. "pretty funny" or the classic Star Trek television series "influential sci-fi." The band effortlessly balances high-minded artistry with wit and whimsy, substantive viewpoints with wanton tomfoolery and masterful musicianship with true songcraft. Across Protest The Hero’s cinematic fourth album, Volition, spider-fingered arpeggios, walloping bottom heavy brutality and dynamically theatrical vocals the group have made their stock-in-trade remain unrivaled. Their storied career has earned them a Revolver Golden Gods Award, two Canadian Independent Music Awards, a JUNO Award nomination, and millions of views online leading to a number one debut in Canada. But it’s the groundswell of loyal supporters who’ve connected with the band’s spontaneity, authenticity and depth that continues to propel them forward: when they set out to crowdfund Volition, Protest The Hero met their goal in 24 hours and had more than tripled that sum when it was over.
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The Flatliners New Damage*Universal
Dead Language
Dead Language is the brutally crisp sound of four people in a room – the sonic payoff of a decade of learning how to play as one fierce unit. Its strength doesn’t come from racks of guitars or bass drops, but from its sparse precision. The band’s song writing chops are as honed as their playing, allowing them the freedom to bang out their point quickly ("Young Professionals") or take their time to make an impact ("Ashes Away"). The Flatliners’ records have always been an accurate, honest portrait of where the band lived. Dead Language, the band’s most direct and vital record to date, is a monument to the honesty of ten years in the trenches.
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Adult Contemporary Album of the Year

Alysha Brilla Sunny Jam*Independent
In My Head
Winner of the 2013 Leading Edge Arts Award, Alysha Brilla is a wonderful example of Canadian diversity through her own roots, her musical style and the stories she tells in her songs. Known for her unique roots-pop fusion musical style, the acclaimed Tanzanian-Canadian musician wrote and produced her first full-length record, In My Head in August 2013, with JUNO Award winning engineer, Mike Jones and Grammy Award winner Tom Coyne, who has worked with such artists as Amy Winehouse and Adele. Brilla has played major concerts and festivals across Canada and the United States and her music has been featured on television shows including CTV's Degrassi; the Next Generation ("Lifted"); CTV's Seed ("Pearl"); and Showcase Network's TV series King ("Crown Of Flames").
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Céline Dion Columbia*Sony
Loved Me Back To Life
From humble beginnings in a rural French Canadian home town, Céline Dion has risen to international superstardom like a shooting star. Céline was called the premier contemporary pop vocalist of the Nineties. She has earned music industry accolades from around the world: Grammy Awards in the US, JUNO and Felix Awards in Canada, and World Music Awards in Europe. The entire world has seen Céline Dion literally transform herself from a gifted pre-adolescent into an international superstar.
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Chloe Albert Independent
Dream Catcher
Edmonton-based singer/songwriter Chloe Albert is on to something good. Born and raised in the Alberta capital, the multi-instrumentalist had strong showings in numerous major songwriting contests, and according to Penguin Eggs Magazine, "has a better sense for pop hooks than many....This is slick, well-crafted stuff." When not performing her own material, Chloe plays with several different Edmonton bands. Her impressive, self-generated debut album Dedicated State garnered a Canadian Folk Music Award for Emerging Artist of the Year in 2008. Since then she's been touring, showcasing and writing in anticipation of her sophomore release, Dream Catcher, which remained number one for six weeks on Alberta’s CKUA radio charts; reached number one on Halifax’s CKDU; and was number five on the Canadian Folk/Roots/Blues charts.
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Coral Egan Justin Time*Universal
The Year He Drove Me Crazy
Coral Egan is an artist reborn. After early career success – with The Path of Least Resistance (2002) and My Favourite Distraction (2004) receiving a JUNO Award nomination and Félix award win between them – Egan might have been forgiven for hitting artistic cruise control. Instead, she put out another album (Magnify), had a child, then fell madly in love, all of which kick-started a bout of soul searching that became the catalyst for an artistic conversion. In 2010, drawing from a rich palate of new influences, she began writing again. Entering the studio in late 2011 with co- producer/engineer Tim Gowdy, she began a series of collaborative sessions with a group of Montreal musicians that culminated in the release of The Year He Drove Me Crazy, an album that evokes California soul, singer- songwriter and indie-rock, while retaining Egan's distinctive jazz-inflected vocal style.
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Johnny Reid Johnny Mac*Universal
A Christmas Gift To You
Pop/Country singer and songwriter, Johnny Reid, embraced the spirit of the festive season with a brand new 12 song collection of traditional time-honoured standards and newly penned original tracks. On the song "Winter Star," produced by legendary music producer, Bob Ezrin, the joy and warmth that is Christmas can be heard in every note, interpreted beautifully by Johnny’s signature voice. "Christmas is a time of peace, hope, love and happiness", notes Reid. "I’ve always loved Christmas and everything it represents." A Christmas Gift To You from Johnny Reid ignited the Christmas spirit of fans from coast to coast.
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