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Articles on Canadian music

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Drake has made a career as a heartbroken player who sings and raps. Drake accepts artist of the decade award at the Billboard Music Awards on May 23, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)

How Canadian R&B artists like Drake and Justin Bieber complicate ideas of race, music and nationality

Canadian R&B artists, including Drake, have built lifestyle brands that simultaneously reinforce and challenge dominant beliefs about R&B music as Black and American, and Canadian identity as white.
The Online Streaming Act aims to level the playing field between streaming giants and legacy Canadian radio and television broadcasters. (Shutterstock)

How the Online Streaming Act will support Canadian content

The Online Streaming Act is set to soon become law in Canada. The act is a step in the right direction, but more needs to be done to support BIPOC content.
Paul Langlois, left, and Rob Baker from the Tragically Hip help unveil a plaque at Springer Market Square in Kingston, Ont., in February 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lars Hagberg

Should a Tragically Hip song have been played at a Pierre Poilievre event?

There is a distinction between deliberate use of a song to support a particular political campaign, and incidental music in the background at a social function hosted by a political party.
Tobi accepts the Juno Award for Rap Album/EP of the Year during the Juno Awards in Edmonton on March 13, 2023. Tobi is among the many Juno-nominated and Juno-recognized artists who have received grants partly funded by Canadian radio profits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Timothy Matwey

Junos 2023 reminds us how Canadian content regulations and funding supports music across the country

Here’s how radio Canadian content policy started, and how Canadian legislation, C-11, could contribute to supporting and growing home-grown music in the digital era.
Neil Young isn’t the first artist to speak out about musicians’ relationships with large streaming servies. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Invision - Amy Harris

Artists’ Spotify criticisms point to larger ways musicians lose with streaming — here’s 3 changes to help in Canada

A Spotify boycott wouldn’t fix the working conditions of most musicians. Fostering a more equitable, community-based music culture requires changing how we listen to music and support its production.
Artist Alanis Morissette receives her lifetime achievement award from the Canadian Music Hall of Fame during the 2015 Juno Awards. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Junos 50th anniversary: How we remember these award-winning hit singles

Known variously in Juno history as ‘Best Single,’ or ‘Best-Selling Single,’ and now ‘Single of the Year’ this award always garners attention. Reflections on select singles since 1979.
Diga, frontman of the Yellowknife-based band Digawolf, says his goal is to pursue music “without having to move south.” Here, the band, nominated as Indigenous artist or group of the year, with Diga, David Dowe and Layne Rybchinski. (Digawolf/Maia Lepage)

The Junos have been cancelled due to coronavirus, but we still need to invest in cross-country music talent

Three-quarters of the high-profile category Juno 2020 nominees were Ontario artists. This year’s awards have been cancelled, but new efforts to boost music development across the country are needed.
Gord Downie, the poetic lead singer of the Tragically Hip whose determined fight with brain cancer inspired a nation, has died. He was 53. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)

Remembering Gord Downie through his lyrics

Good songs are like good poetry. Literature professor Robert Morrison reflects on The Tragically Hip’s best song, “Ahead by a Century,” and explains the politics of hope within the tune.
Four Seasons of the Canadian Flag, painted by Maxwell Newhouse for John Burge. (Maxwell Newhouse)

Powerful painting inspires composer to connect Canadians

Composer John Burge speaks of his drive to create a musical piece to mark Canada’s 150th year of confederation and to capture our collective experiences.

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