Asian Heritage Month Spotlight: Essential Tracks by Asian-Canadian Musicians - The JUNO Awards

As Asian Heritage Month takes center stage in Canada, it is an opportune time to recognize and celebrate the remarkable talent and creativity of Asian-Canadian musicians. To celebrate we’ve compiled a short list of songs by recent JUNO nominees and winners to highlight their impact on the Canadian music scene.

Luna Li – “Silver into Rain”

Korean-Canadian indie rocker Luna Li made waves in 2022 with the release of her JUNO-nominated debut album, Duality. Through this album, Li delves into the depths of identity, self-discovery, and her own cultural roots.“The title Duality refers to a few different things; my identity as a Korean-Canadian musician, the melding of my classical background with a contemporary sound, and the contrasting themes of anxiety and loneliness with belonging and celebration,” she told The JUNOS. 

The lead single, “Silver into Rain” is a dreamy ode to becoming a better self featuring UK-based Filipino-English singer beabadoobee. Together, their enchanting vocals, intricate guitar melodies, and introspective lyrics effortlessly captivate listeners.


Tesher – “Jalebi Baby”

Tesher is a JUNO-nominated singer-songwriter who fuses hip-hop, Bollywood and traditional Indian music to create a sound that’s completely his own. Born in Regina and raised in a South Asian family, Tesher’s sound blends together the different musical elements present in his life. “I wanted to take the stuff that I was hearing at home and combine it with the stuff I was hearing at school, to bridge those two worlds together through music,” he said.

The result is his viral Punjabi-English track, “Jalebi Baby” which helped earn him a JUNO nomination for Breakthrough Artist of the Year in 2022. The song seamlessly blends traditional Indian sounds with contemporary hip-hop becoming one of the few mainstream songs to feature an Indian language.

Korea Town Acid – “Eclipse (일)”

Nominated in 2022 for Underground Dance Album of the Year, Korea Town Acid is a producer, DJ, beatmaker, and classically trained pianist. While maintaining her classical foundations, Korea Town Acid pushes the boundaries of conventional club music. Her DJing style takes influence from her birthplace of Seoul all the way to Toronto where she is now based. 

Korea Town Acid’s genre-defying album Metamorphsis includes elements of hip-hop, R&B, k-pop, and drum and bass resulting in a truly unique musical fusion. This is evident in her intoxicating track “Eclipse (일)” which features the sultry vocals of South Korean-rapper PNSB.


Tyler Shaw – “Anybody Out There”

After years of distancing himself from his Chinese culture, JUNO-winning pop artist, Tyler Shaw went on personal journey to reconnect with his heritage. Paying tribute to his Chinese roots, his JUNO-nominated sophomore album “Intuition” features an image of Shaw adorned in a silk shirt with a Mandarin collar. Below it, Shaw proudly displays his Chinese name, 葉銘恆 (Ip Ming Hang).

Shaw’s songwriting has always been heavily influenced by his personal experiences. Since embracing his background he describes having a better understanding of himself as a person and as an artist. His track “Anybody Out There” taps into his vulnerability and maturity as an artist, describing his struggles with depression and anxiety.


These remarkable musicians and their contributions to the Canadian music landscape remind us of the richness and diversity of Asian-Canadian talent, deserving of recognition and appreciation not only during Asian Heritage Month but throughout the year.

Feature image: 2019 JUNO Awards. Tyler Shaw performs “With You”. Budweiser Gardens, London, ON. March 17, 2019. Photo: CARAS\iPhoto