Aboriginal Music Program

Aboriginal Music Week Celebrates Music Without Borders

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The summer of music festivals continues with the sixth annual edition of Aboriginal Music Week. Running August 20-24 in various Winnipeg venues, this year's fest will feature a number of free and tickets shows as well as community celebrations, workshops, film events, and industry networking. 

AMW will play host to a number of touring acts, including first visits from emcee Tall Paul, violinist Laura Ortman, music producer Astronomar, and hip hop duo Mob Bounce, and guitarist Logan Staats. JUNO Award winners George Leach and Leela Gilday are both set to return, along with pop singer Inez Jasper, prehispanico music creator DJ Javier Estrada, and more

Homegrown talent also plays a big part on the bill this year, including performances from award-winning rock outfit Eagle & Hawk, Métis fiddlers Darren Lavallee and Melissa St. Goddard, trip hop singer and 2014 Western Canadian Music Award nominee Iskwé, funk-rockers Burnt-Project 1, champion drum group Spirit Sands Singers, rockers The Mosquitoz, country chanteuse Frannie Klein.

 

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Market Development Opportunity: Manitoba Music in Nashville

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We are now accepting submissions of interest from artists and artist representatives to participate in an industry networking event in Nashville, TN, September 16, 2014. This is an opportunity to network with Nashville-based music publishers, agents, promoters, songwriters, and more. There may be limited opportunities for a short showcase performance. Participants in this event should be export ready with a strong rationale and existing activities/contacts in Nashville. DEADLINE: August 21, 2014

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Aboriginal Music Week

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The summer of music festivals continues with the sixth annual edition of Aboriginal Music Week. Running August 20-24 in various Winnipeg venues, this year's fest will feature a number of free and tickets shows as well as community celebrations, workshops, film events, industry networking, and more. 

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Showcase Opportunity: Manitoba Music at Folk Music Ontario

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We are now taking submissions from artists interested in participating in Manitoba Music showcases at the Folk Music Ontario conference (formerly OCFF) in Toronto, October 16-19, 2014. This is an opportunity to perform for and network with influential music industry professionals from the Canadian and international folk, roots, and traditional music community. The conference includes speakers and seminars, performer showcases, and jam sessions. Approximately 800 delegates attend the conference, including artistic directors, presenters, and provincial, national, and international industry organizations. DEADLINE: August 21, 2014

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Call for Submissions: Promotional Video Series for Aboriginal Artists

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Manitoba Music is creating a series of live performance videos of First Nation, Métis, or Inuit artists to be used for online promotion. The series will feature staged performances of new music by Aboriginal members of Manitoba Music. The videos will be distributed online by Manitoba Music and used in promoting showcases and events. They will be targeted to music fans, industry professionals, and media and can be used by the artists for marketing purposes. DEADLINE: September 2, 2014

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Tanya Tagaq's Animism Makes Polaris Short List

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Tanya Tagaq

After much anticipation, the prestigious Polaris Music Prize released this year's short list and Brandon-based Inuit throat singer and composer Tanya Tagaq's acclaimed album Animism is one of the top 10 Canadian albums of the year.

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Remembering Kevin Walters

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Kevin Walters

Our music community has suffered an incredible loss with the passing of Kevin Walters.

Kevin has been a legend in Manitoba’s music scene for decades. A concert promoter, manager, industry worker, mover and shaker, super connector, Kevin knew everyone and everyone knew him. He used that power to help people build their careers, to reach new heights, and to, in turn, connect with others.

Kevin has been everywhere. Once upon a time, he was a DJ, managed Night Moves, was a booking agent with the Hungry I Agency, formed his own artist management and production company Twin Productions, took a gig as merchandising manager for Barenaked Ladies, and had a long career at the manager of sound recording programs at Manitoba Film & Music.

Throughout his time with MFM, Kevin had a massive impact on the lives of all of us in Manitoba’s music community, helping to foster careers and mentor developing entrepreneurs, sharing his wealth of knowledge and expertise. For many, Kevin was the first industry person they met as they embarked on their careers. He helped countless artists make groundbreaking albums, play for audiences across the world, touch the lives of their audiences, and realize their dreams.

Kevin was the guy behind the scenes making things happen. He helmed the 2006 Grey Cup Festival, helped to bring the Canadian Country Music Awards to Winnipeg, was a primary founder of the Prairie Music Awards that became the Western Canadian Music Awards and BreakOut West, launched the Winnipeg BBQ & Blues Festival, organized Manitoba Homecoming 2010 and Culture Days, booked talent at the Red River Ex, and was an integral part in bringing The JUNO Awards to Winnipeg not once but twice. If there was a major live music event, Kevin was probably involved and you could usually catch a glimpse of him smiling and greeting the countless people he knew in any room.

We have been incredibly lucky to have Kevin as part of Manitoba Music’s board of directors for over a decade. He took on the role of president in 2012 and continued his tenure until his passing. During his time with us, he has helped Manitoba Music immeasurably; he’s been an instrumental part of our growth and development into an internationally-respected music organization.

He has supported us, challenged us, listened to us, led us, and mentored all of us. We are all better for knowing him. He had a smile for everyone, a calm centre in any storm, impeccable judgment, and a generosity that made it easy to work with him.  He has always been a ubiquitous presence in Manitoba’s community, loved and respected by all who worked with him, knew him, or even just heard of him. He made so many friends here at home, across the country, and beyond.

Words can’t express this loss to our community. His absence leaves a void. We have all been fortunate in the time we’ve shared with Kevin and celebrate his life, his accomplishments, and his incredible spirit. Our thoughts are with his family, his friends, and all who knew him. We will all miss him so much.

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Tanya Tagaq Lands Polaris Nod

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Tanya Tagaq

The Polaris Music Prize ended months of debate and speculation with the announcement of this year's long list of top Canadian albums and Brandon-based Inuit throat singer Tanya Tagaq's acclaimed album Animism is among the prestigious names. 

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Manitoba Artists Land 14 Nods for the 2014 Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards

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Leonard Sumner

Manitoba artists have netted 14 nominations for the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards (APCMA) this year. The nominees were announced at a press conference on June 19 at Portage Place. The winners will be revealed at the ninth annual gala awards show at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg on September 12, 2014 and the invite-only Ohshkii Awards Night at the Winnipeg Art Gallery on September 11. Nominees include Indian City, Leonard Sumner, Desiree Dorion, and Winnipeg Boyz. 

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National Aboriginal Day celebrations in Manitoba

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Photo by Red Works Studio

APTN, Manitoba Music, the North End Community Helpers Network, Club Regent Casino, and many other organizations are presenting Aboriginal artists during their National Aboriginal Day celebrations in Manitoba. We've put together a list of events that commemorate the day along with a number of other performances by Aboriginal artists set for the week.

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Showcase Opportunity: Manitoba Music in Toronto

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Manitoba Music is presenting a showcase in Toronto on November 18, 2014. This showcase is an opportunity to perform for and network with key Toronto music industry professionals including labels, agents, publishers, supervisors, publicists and more. DEADLINE: June 12, 2014

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Showcase Opportunity: Midwest Market Development Tour

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Manitoba Music is presenting showcases and networking sessions this fall in Minneapolis, Madison, Milwaukee, and Chicago, November 3-7, 2014. This showcase is an opportunity to perform for and network with key music industry professionals from across the Northern Midwest including labels, agents, promoters, buyers, publicists and more. DEADLINE: June 12, 2014

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Showcase Opportunity: M for Montreal

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We are now accepting submissions from artists and bands interested in participating in M for Montreal, November 19-22, 2014. This is an opportunity to perform for and network with influential Canadian and international music industry professionals. DEADLINE: June 12, 2014

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Showcase Opportunity: BOW International Program

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Manitoba Music, in partnership with BreakOut West and other western music industry associations, will coordinate showcases and networking activities with international industry delegates in advance of the BreakOut West festival and conference in Winnipeg (October 2-5, 2014). DEADLINE: June 12, 2014

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Manitoba Music's Aboriginal Music Program Celebrates A Decade

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The C-Weed Band

Manitoba Music is celebrating the 10th anniversary of one of its most acclaimed initiatives, the Aboriginal Music Program (AMP).

The Pyramid Cabaret is set to host the birthday party on June 21, National Aboriginal Day, featuring an open mic hosted by The C-Weed Band along with appearances by Eagle & Hawk, Joe Maxim Band, Ali Fontaine, Winnipeg Boyz, and many more. Kicking off at 9 p.m. with emcee Miss Melissa of NCI FM, the event is free for Manitoba Music members and $10 at the door.

Since its launch in 2004, the Aboriginal Music Program has delivered groundbreaking projects and services to help First Nation, Métis, and Inuit people develop sustainable careers in Manitoba’s music industry. It remains the first and only program dedicated to Aboriginal musicians and industry in North America. Made possible through the support of the Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba, FACTOR, and Manitoba Film & Music, the program is a driving force behind a vibrant Aboriginal music community in Manitoba. 

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Call for Submissions: Loft Sessions Promotional Videos

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Filming Royal Canoe's Loft Session

Manitoba Music is producing a second round of videos in its Loft Sessions series. The live performance videos feature staged performances of new music by export-ready Manitoba artists to be used for online promotion. The videos will be distributed online by Manitoba Music and used in promoting showcases and events. They will be targeted to music fans, industry professionals, and media and can be used by the artists for marketing purposes. DEADLINE: April 24, 2014

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Aboriginal events and performances set for JUNO Week in Winnipeg

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Desiree Dorion

Desiree Dorion, Leonard Sumner, Winnipeg Boyz, Federal Lights, Cassidy Mann, Sierra Noble, marijosée, Inez Jasper, A Tribe Called Red, George Leach, and Amanda Rheaume will be taking the stage during the JUNO Week events in Winnipeg.

Dorion, A Tribe Called Red, Jasper, Leach, Rheaume, and Nathan Cunningham are also in the running for trophies at the JUNO Awards. The winners will be announced at the Gala Dinner on Saturday, March 29 and the televised award show on Sunday, March 30.

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Call for Submissions: Aboriginal Artist CDs and One-sheets for the Reservation Economic Summit

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Manitoba Music’s Aboriginal Music Program (AMP) will be distributing marketing materials for First Nation, Métis, and Inuit members at the 2014 Reservation Economic Summit trade show in Las Vegas, March 17 – 21. There will only be enough display space for up to six CDs and 20 one-sheets from AMP participants.

The main goal of the trade show booth is to encourage Native American community leaders to book Aboriginal artists from Manitoba for live performances in their communities. All CDs and one-sheets will be given away for free to conference delegates who have the ability to present music in their communities. Volume 6 of the Manitoba Aboriginal Artists compilation CD and the second edition of the Manitoba Aboriginal Artist Guidebook will also be distributed at the trade show.

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Manitoba Music Announces Return of Aboriginal Music Mentors Program

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Patti Lamoureux

Manitoba Music is bringing back its popular mentor program for Aboriginal artists this spring. Run through its Aboriginal Music Program (AMP), “AMP Mentors” was launched to engage new and emerging First Nation, Inuit, and Métis songwriters and musicians in Manitoba.

The diverse group of experienced mentors includes fiddle champion Patti Lamoureux, blues legend Billy Joe Green, hip hop producer Tim “2oolman” Hill, rock veteran Calvin Nepinak, classical vocalist Rhonda Head, and publicist Kim Wheeler.

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Aboriginal Musicians from Across Canada Converge on Manitoba for AMP Camp Residency Project

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Cassidy Mann (Photo: Joseph Visser Photography)

Eighteen Aboriginal musicians from across Canada will converge on Falcon Trails Resort for the Aboriginal Music Performers (AMP) Camp, which runs February 9-14, 2014. Hosted by Manitoba Music and the Canada Council for the Arts, the week-long residency gives emerging and mid-career Aboriginal recording artists an opportunity to develop their business skills and artistic abilities.

This will be the seventh edition of AMP Camp, which now runs every two years. Past participants -- including 2014 JUNO Award nominee Inez Jasper (who will participate again this year) and past JUNO nominees Don Amero, and Tracy Bone, and CBC’s The 8th Fire composer Cris Derksen -- have gone on to release acclaimed albums, receive multiple music awards and nominations, and make music their full-time job.

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Manitoba Music Performance Opportunity: Canada Day at The Forks

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Manitoba Music is coordinating live performances on multiple stages including the main Scotiabank Stage at The Forks on Canada Day, Tuesday, July 1, 2014. One of Manitoba’s most popular summer destinations, The Forks attracts thousands of visitors on Canada Day. This year’s concerts will celebrate and promote Manitoba artists with multi-genre concerts featuring solo artists, bands, and DJs, on stages around The Forks. This event is free and open to the public. Performances must be ‘family-friendly’ in language and content. We welcome submissions from high energy bands and solo artists in all genres. Artists will be compensated for their performance. DEADLINE: February 13, 2014

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NO BOUNDARIES: Tanya Tagaq Looks Ahead to Collaborations and New Projects

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Tanya Tagaq (Photo: Ivan Otis)

By Julijana Capone

“What it feels like is jumping off a cliff, and just landing wherever you’re going to land,” says Brandon-based throat singer Tanya Tagaq about her improvisational vocal style. “It’s like letting go of time. It’s like letting go of everything that’s holding me mentally or physically or emotionally and just being completely free.”

Tagaq’s emotionally-charged soundscapes are a fury of voice and breaths that can resemble animals, nature sounds, and other noises, simultaneously fusing her bond to The North with her contemporary influences.

Although she was exposed to throat singing while growing up in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, it wasn’t until she moved to Halifax for college that she began to craft her own style. While throat singing traditionally involves performances with two women facing one another, Tagaq’s style of throat singing is done solo.

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NATIVE AMERICAN NORTH: Canadian Aboriginal Artists to Perform at APAP|NYC

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Indian City

Three of Canada’s top Aboriginal recording artists are headed to New York to showcase for industry at global performing arts conference and marketplace, APAP|NYC.

The showcase is part of the Native America North project, which also includes networking and professional development opportunities during the event, running January 10-14. Native America North was created to help First Nation, Inuit, and Métis artists access new markets and connect with presenters around the world. 

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Manitoba Declares 2014 the Year of Music

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Premier Greg Selinger makes the official Year of Music declaration at McPhillips Station

Get ready for an amazing year of music!

With the JUNO Awards and BreakOut West converging on Winnipeg, joining the many stellar festivals and events taking place within our borders, The Province of Manitoba has officially declared 2014 to be the Year of Music.

Premier Greg Selinger made the declaration at a news conference on December 11 at McPhillips Station, welcoming Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries as the presenting sponsor for the year-long celebration of music. 

Year of Music will shine a spotlight on JUNO Week in March, Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards in September, and the BreakOut West music festival and Western Canadian Music Awards in October. It will also help bring even more attention to many of the province’s acclaimed festivals and destination events through new promotional partnerships. 

Manitoba’s music venues, which foster exciting new artists and give fans a place to discover new music, will be able to offer even more live music when Manitoba’s new liquor laws come into effect on January 1. The changes lift a number of restrictions, particularly for small venues and cabarets, which will encourage growth and diversity in the vibrant live music scene.

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Aboriginal artists and industry accessing FACTOR support

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Federal Lights

Six Aboriginal artists and businesses have accessed support from the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings (FACTOR) this year. A total of $87,634 has been invested in tours, marketing campaigns, business travel, business development, and recordings by the Aboriginal music community in Canada.

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NATIVE AMERICA NORTH: Canadian Aboriginal Artists to Perform at Mundial Montreal

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Tanya Tagaq

Three of Canada’s top Aboriginal recording artists are headed to Quebec to showcase for industry at world music conference and festival, Mundial Montreal. The showcases are part of the Native America North project, which also includes networking and professional development opportunities during the event, running November 19-22. The project is made possible by a partnership between Manitoba Music, through its Aboriginal Music Program, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

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Showcase Opportunity: Manitoba Music at Big Fun Festival / January Music Meeting

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Manitoba Music will be presenting a showcase in Winnipeg in partnership with the Big Fun Festival for guest speakers from our upcoming January Music Meeting workshops (January 24-26, 2014). The January Music Meeting will host several of Canada’s top independent music industry professionals including representatives from labels, agencies, management companies, and publicity firms. Presented as part of the Big Fun Festival, this showcase will offer artists a unique opportunity to perform for and network with influential music industry professionals from outside Manitoba. Submission deadline is November 7, 2013.

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AMP Camp 2014 participants announced

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AMP Camp participant photos

Manitoba Music and the Canada Council for the Arts are proud to announce that 20 Aboriginal artists from across Canada have been selected for the 2014 edition of the Aboriginal Music Performers Camp (AMP Camp). The week-long residency will include more than 50 hours of professional and artistic development sessions at the Falcon Trails Resort in Manitoba. The project begins on February 9th and ends on the 14th.

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Don Amero wins at the Western Canadian Music Awards

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Don Amero

Don Amero's latest album, Heart On My Sleeve, has earned him the hardware for Aboriginal Recording of the Year at the 2013 Western Canadian Music Awards. The winners in 21 artistic categories were announced at a Gala Awards Show in Calgary, Alberta on October 6.

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Aboriginal artists at BreakOut West

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Leonard Sumner (Photo: Red Works Studio)

Leonard Sumner, Don Amero, and Marijosée are three of the seven Aboriginal artists set to showcase at BreakOut West in Calgary this weekend. The showcases run Ocotber 3 to 6 and they provide each artist with an opportunity to connect with industry leaders attending the annual conference or music award show.

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