ROCKINGHAM: Bringing back the Junos

WhatsOn Mar 31, 2016 by Graham Rockingham The Hamilton Spectator

Hamilton wants the Junos back.

And the Canadian Country Music Awards. We want them back, too.

So the city is sending a delegation to Calgary this weekend to wave the city's flag, let the music industry folks know that we're still very much interested.

Calgary because that's where the Junos are taking place this weekend (the big show will be broadcast live from the Saddledome Sunday at 7 p.m. on CTV). Next year they're taking place in Ottawa.

Which means we've got a shot at hosting the 2018 awards show. More realistically, it'll be the 2019 or 2020 shows.

There's talk Toronto wants them back too — for the 50th anniversary in 2021 — and Toronto will probably get what it wants. But maybe the folks at the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS), which runs the Junos, won't want to hold the show in Ontario twice in a row, let alone three times.

Wouldn't want to hurt the feelings of all those other cities vying to play host, would they? Wouldn't want Halifax to mope, or St. John's or Saskatoon. Poor old Victoria, stuck way out there on Vancouver Island, is still hoping to host its first.

As CARAS president Alan Reid says: "There's a long lineup."

But there are plenty of people in the music industry who would like the Junos to return to Ontario and never leave. The big labels aren't so wealthy any more and, frankly, it saves them a pile of money to hold the Junos as close as possible to their head offices, which happen to be in Toronto. Saves on flights, hotel rooms and party favours.

Of course, the competition is heating up even in Ontario. London, hometown of Canadian music legend Tommy Hunter and birthplace of Justin Bieber, is hosting the 40th edition of the Canadian Country Music Awards in September and would, no doubt, love to add a Juno notch to its belt. London, however, should think about growing a bigger arena first. More ticket sales mean more money for CARAS.

Which brings us back to Hamilton. We proved last year that we know how to stage a Supercrawl-sized party. Reid still gurgles about what a fine job we did (at least in the presence of Hamiltonians). Fact is, he's right.

Sure we could use a bigger banquet centre, but we've got an arena that can fit a Juno audience of some 12,000 and it's available a lot more than the Air Canada Centre.

That's why we've hosted the Junos six times, more than any other city in Canada, except Toronto. We like to host it, even though last year the city had to fork over $250,000 to CARAS for the privilege. With the Junos comes an estimated $10 million to $12 million in economic benefits.

Sue Monarch, manager of Tourism Hamilton, is flying to Calgary Thursday night to spread this message to the CARAS board.

She's also meeting with the Canadian Country Music Association. Hamilton has hosted their award show five times. You might remember the downtown megaparty back in 2011 when it coincided with Supercrawl back in 2011. We want it back in 2018.

"The RFP (request for proposals) just came out for 2018 and the country awards are going to be the same weekend as Supercrawl again," says Monarch. "Can you imagine?"

Monarch, backed-up by staffers Sharon Murphy and Bridget MacIntosh (who's paying her own way to Calgary), will also be meeting in Calgary with staff from the Ontario Music Development Fund, seeking financial support for bring such events to the Hamilton.

As well, the city delegation will consult with the Ottawa Juno host committee which wants to pick their brains about how to host a successful awards week.

They'll be accompanied by Tim Potocic, the chair of the Hamilton 2015 host committee and the chief mover and shaker behind Supercrawl.

Any work Potocic does on behalf of the city will be informal. He'll be sitting in on all of Monarch's meetings as well as a few others.

Officially, he's in Calgary on business, as co-owner of independent Sonic Unyon recording label. Potocic is a former member of the CARAS board and has lost count of how many Junos he's attended.

As a businessman, Potocic sees the events surrounding the awards show as a huge opportunity to network among the 1,200 or so CARAS members in Calgary for Juno week.

As a board member of the Canadian Independent Music Association, Potocic will be sitting in on a meeting with Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly whose department will be overseeing the $1.87 billion allocated for arts and culture in the recent federal budget.

For industry players, it's mostly about seeing new bands, sharing stories and seeing old friends.

"It's not about competitiveness, from my way of thinking it's about camaraderie and friendship," Potocic says. "Obviously there are times when our paths cross and we're all potentially trying to sign the same band but I have to say that's pretty rare.

"We get into discussions about our artists. We compare notes with respect to successes and failures. Everybody is willing to share their stories and contacts."

Another local label head, Geoff Kulawick, president of Waterdown-based True North Records, will also be attending the Calgary Junos. His label has two Juno nominees — Buffy Sainte-Marie and Old Man Luedecke.

Local nominees

• Burlington pop-rock band Walk Off The Earth is nominated for three Juno awards (fan choice, best pop album and group of the year) and performs a Junofest show with Marianas Trench Saturday night at Calgary's Stampede Corral Arena.

• Hamilton's Tom Wilson will perform under his alter ego Lee Harvey Osmond at the "Outlaws & Gunslingers" Juno showcase Friday night, along with former Hamiltonians Whitehorse (Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet), and Blue Rodeo's Jim Cuddy. Lee Harvey Osmond's latest CD "Beautiful Scars" is nominated for best contemporary roots album.

• Local blues veteran Harrison Kennedy is vying for the sixth time for blues album for "This Is From Here." Kennedy will perform at a Juno showcase Saturday night at Calgary's Blues Can, along with fellow nominated blues artists Blackburn and David Gogo.

• The City Harmonic, a four-piece alt rock band that got its start at Ancaster's Redeemer College University, is nominated for best contemporary Christian album, a category it won in 2013. The band, however, won't be able to make it to the Junos. It is performing a concert Saturday night in the auditorium at Redeemer.

grockingham@thespec.com

905-526-3331 | @RockatTheSpec

ROCKINGHAM: Bringing back the Junos

WhatsOn Mar 31, 2016 by Graham Rockingham The Hamilton Spectator

Hamilton wants the Junos back.

And the Canadian Country Music Awards. We want them back, too.

So the city is sending a delegation to Calgary this weekend to wave the city's flag, let the music industry folks know that we're still very much interested.

Calgary because that's where the Junos are taking place this weekend (the big show will be broadcast live from the Saddledome Sunday at 7 p.m. on CTV). Next year they're taking place in Ottawa.

Which means we've got a shot at hosting the 2018 awards show. More realistically, it'll be the 2019 or 2020 shows.

There's talk Toronto wants them back too — for the 50th anniversary in 2021 — and Toronto will probably get what it wants. But maybe the folks at the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS), which runs the Junos, won't want to hold the show in Ontario twice in a row, let alone three times.

Wouldn't want to hurt the feelings of all those other cities vying to play host, would they? Wouldn't want Halifax to mope, or St. John's or Saskatoon. Poor old Victoria, stuck way out there on Vancouver Island, is still hoping to host its first.

As CARAS president Alan Reid says: "There's a long lineup."

But there are plenty of people in the music industry who would like the Junos to return to Ontario and never leave. The big labels aren't so wealthy any more and, frankly, it saves them a pile of money to hold the Junos as close as possible to their head offices, which happen to be in Toronto. Saves on flights, hotel rooms and party favours.

Of course, the competition is heating up even in Ontario. London, hometown of Canadian music legend Tommy Hunter and birthplace of Justin Bieber, is hosting the 40th edition of the Canadian Country Music Awards in September and would, no doubt, love to add a Juno notch to its belt. London, however, should think about growing a bigger arena first. More ticket sales mean more money for CARAS.

Which brings us back to Hamilton. We proved last year that we know how to stage a Supercrawl-sized party. Reid still gurgles about what a fine job we did (at least in the presence of Hamiltonians). Fact is, he's right.

Sure we could use a bigger banquet centre, but we've got an arena that can fit a Juno audience of some 12,000 and it's available a lot more than the Air Canada Centre.

That's why we've hosted the Junos six times, more than any other city in Canada, except Toronto. We like to host it, even though last year the city had to fork over $250,000 to CARAS for the privilege. With the Junos comes an estimated $10 million to $12 million in economic benefits.

Sue Monarch, manager of Tourism Hamilton, is flying to Calgary Thursday night to spread this message to the CARAS board.

She's also meeting with the Canadian Country Music Association. Hamilton has hosted their award show five times. You might remember the downtown megaparty back in 2011 when it coincided with Supercrawl back in 2011. We want it back in 2018.

"The RFP (request for proposals) just came out for 2018 and the country awards are going to be the same weekend as Supercrawl again," says Monarch. "Can you imagine?"

Monarch, backed-up by staffers Sharon Murphy and Bridget MacIntosh (who's paying her own way to Calgary), will also be meeting in Calgary with staff from the Ontario Music Development Fund, seeking financial support for bring such events to the Hamilton.

As well, the city delegation will consult with the Ottawa Juno host committee which wants to pick their brains about how to host a successful awards week.

They'll be accompanied by Tim Potocic, the chair of the Hamilton 2015 host committee and the chief mover and shaker behind Supercrawl.

Any work Potocic does on behalf of the city will be informal. He'll be sitting in on all of Monarch's meetings as well as a few others.

Officially, he's in Calgary on business, as co-owner of independent Sonic Unyon recording label. Potocic is a former member of the CARAS board and has lost count of how many Junos he's attended.

As a businessman, Potocic sees the events surrounding the awards show as a huge opportunity to network among the 1,200 or so CARAS members in Calgary for Juno week.

As a board member of the Canadian Independent Music Association, Potocic will be sitting in on a meeting with Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly whose department will be overseeing the $1.87 billion allocated for arts and culture in the recent federal budget.

For industry players, it's mostly about seeing new bands, sharing stories and seeing old friends.

"It's not about competitiveness, from my way of thinking it's about camaraderie and friendship," Potocic says. "Obviously there are times when our paths cross and we're all potentially trying to sign the same band but I have to say that's pretty rare.

"We get into discussions about our artists. We compare notes with respect to successes and failures. Everybody is willing to share their stories and contacts."

Another local label head, Geoff Kulawick, president of Waterdown-based True North Records, will also be attending the Calgary Junos. His label has two Juno nominees — Buffy Sainte-Marie and Old Man Luedecke.

Local nominees

• Burlington pop-rock band Walk Off The Earth is nominated for three Juno awards (fan choice, best pop album and group of the year) and performs a Junofest show with Marianas Trench Saturday night at Calgary's Stampede Corral Arena.

• Hamilton's Tom Wilson will perform under his alter ego Lee Harvey Osmond at the "Outlaws & Gunslingers" Juno showcase Friday night, along with former Hamiltonians Whitehorse (Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet), and Blue Rodeo's Jim Cuddy. Lee Harvey Osmond's latest CD "Beautiful Scars" is nominated for best contemporary roots album.

• Local blues veteran Harrison Kennedy is vying for the sixth time for blues album for "This Is From Here." Kennedy will perform at a Juno showcase Saturday night at Calgary's Blues Can, along with fellow nominated blues artists Blackburn and David Gogo.

• The City Harmonic, a four-piece alt rock band that got its start at Ancaster's Redeemer College University, is nominated for best contemporary Christian album, a category it won in 2013. The band, however, won't be able to make it to the Junos. It is performing a concert Saturday night in the auditorium at Redeemer.

grockingham@thespec.com

905-526-3331 | @RockatTheSpec

ROCKINGHAM: Bringing back the Junos

WhatsOn Mar 31, 2016 by Graham Rockingham The Hamilton Spectator

Hamilton wants the Junos back.

And the Canadian Country Music Awards. We want them back, too.

So the city is sending a delegation to Calgary this weekend to wave the city's flag, let the music industry folks know that we're still very much interested.

Calgary because that's where the Junos are taking place this weekend (the big show will be broadcast live from the Saddledome Sunday at 7 p.m. on CTV). Next year they're taking place in Ottawa.

Which means we've got a shot at hosting the 2018 awards show. More realistically, it'll be the 2019 or 2020 shows.

There's talk Toronto wants them back too — for the 50th anniversary in 2021 — and Toronto will probably get what it wants. But maybe the folks at the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS), which runs the Junos, won't want to hold the show in Ontario twice in a row, let alone three times.

Wouldn't want to hurt the feelings of all those other cities vying to play host, would they? Wouldn't want Halifax to mope, or St. John's or Saskatoon. Poor old Victoria, stuck way out there on Vancouver Island, is still hoping to host its first.

As CARAS president Alan Reid says: "There's a long lineup."

But there are plenty of people in the music industry who would like the Junos to return to Ontario and never leave. The big labels aren't so wealthy any more and, frankly, it saves them a pile of money to hold the Junos as close as possible to their head offices, which happen to be in Toronto. Saves on flights, hotel rooms and party favours.

Of course, the competition is heating up even in Ontario. London, hometown of Canadian music legend Tommy Hunter and birthplace of Justin Bieber, is hosting the 40th edition of the Canadian Country Music Awards in September and would, no doubt, love to add a Juno notch to its belt. London, however, should think about growing a bigger arena first. More ticket sales mean more money for CARAS.

Which brings us back to Hamilton. We proved last year that we know how to stage a Supercrawl-sized party. Reid still gurgles about what a fine job we did (at least in the presence of Hamiltonians). Fact is, he's right.

Sure we could use a bigger banquet centre, but we've got an arena that can fit a Juno audience of some 12,000 and it's available a lot more than the Air Canada Centre.

That's why we've hosted the Junos six times, more than any other city in Canada, except Toronto. We like to host it, even though last year the city had to fork over $250,000 to CARAS for the privilege. With the Junos comes an estimated $10 million to $12 million in economic benefits.

Sue Monarch, manager of Tourism Hamilton, is flying to Calgary Thursday night to spread this message to the CARAS board.

She's also meeting with the Canadian Country Music Association. Hamilton has hosted their award show five times. You might remember the downtown megaparty back in 2011 when it coincided with Supercrawl back in 2011. We want it back in 2018.

"The RFP (request for proposals) just came out for 2018 and the country awards are going to be the same weekend as Supercrawl again," says Monarch. "Can you imagine?"

Monarch, backed-up by staffers Sharon Murphy and Bridget MacIntosh (who's paying her own way to Calgary), will also be meeting in Calgary with staff from the Ontario Music Development Fund, seeking financial support for bring such events to the Hamilton.

As well, the city delegation will consult with the Ottawa Juno host committee which wants to pick their brains about how to host a successful awards week.

They'll be accompanied by Tim Potocic, the chair of the Hamilton 2015 host committee and the chief mover and shaker behind Supercrawl.

Any work Potocic does on behalf of the city will be informal. He'll be sitting in on all of Monarch's meetings as well as a few others.

Officially, he's in Calgary on business, as co-owner of independent Sonic Unyon recording label. Potocic is a former member of the CARAS board and has lost count of how many Junos he's attended.

As a businessman, Potocic sees the events surrounding the awards show as a huge opportunity to network among the 1,200 or so CARAS members in Calgary for Juno week.

As a board member of the Canadian Independent Music Association, Potocic will be sitting in on a meeting with Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly whose department will be overseeing the $1.87 billion allocated for arts and culture in the recent federal budget.

For industry players, it's mostly about seeing new bands, sharing stories and seeing old friends.

"It's not about competitiveness, from my way of thinking it's about camaraderie and friendship," Potocic says. "Obviously there are times when our paths cross and we're all potentially trying to sign the same band but I have to say that's pretty rare.

"We get into discussions about our artists. We compare notes with respect to successes and failures. Everybody is willing to share their stories and contacts."

Another local label head, Geoff Kulawick, president of Waterdown-based True North Records, will also be attending the Calgary Junos. His label has two Juno nominees — Buffy Sainte-Marie and Old Man Luedecke.

Local nominees

• Burlington pop-rock band Walk Off The Earth is nominated for three Juno awards (fan choice, best pop album and group of the year) and performs a Junofest show with Marianas Trench Saturday night at Calgary's Stampede Corral Arena.

• Hamilton's Tom Wilson will perform under his alter ego Lee Harvey Osmond at the "Outlaws & Gunslingers" Juno showcase Friday night, along with former Hamiltonians Whitehorse (Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet), and Blue Rodeo's Jim Cuddy. Lee Harvey Osmond's latest CD "Beautiful Scars" is nominated for best contemporary roots album.

• Local blues veteran Harrison Kennedy is vying for the sixth time for blues album for "This Is From Here." Kennedy will perform at a Juno showcase Saturday night at Calgary's Blues Can, along with fellow nominated blues artists Blackburn and David Gogo.

• The City Harmonic, a four-piece alt rock band that got its start at Ancaster's Redeemer College University, is nominated for best contemporary Christian album, a category it won in 2013. The band, however, won't be able to make it to the Junos. It is performing a concert Saturday night in the auditorium at Redeemer.

grockingham@thespec.com

905-526-3331 | @RockatTheSpec