Manitoba Bands at Canadian Music Week in Toronto

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Manitoba will have a strong presence at one of Canada’s biggest music industry festivals this month. Eleven Manitoba acts are making the trip to Toronto to showcase for industry, media, and fans at Canadian Music Week (CMW), which runs March 21-25 and features 500 showcasing bands over five nights at 45 live music venues.

Showcasing acts include acclaimed rock poet John K. Samson, pop/rock outfits Royal Canoe, Mise En Scene, Federal Lights, Take Me To The Pilot, and Floor Thirteen, roots rocker James Cohen, metal band Waster, hip hop acts The Lytics and Abstract Artform, and acoustic pop singer/songwriter JP Hoe.

Singer/songwriters Ross Roteliuk and Tori Doell will also be showcasing as the big winners in this year's Radio Star National Talent Search. The duo, who hail from Portage la Prairie and Gladstone, respectively, won the competition with their country song "Still Love You", which was produced by Dave Wasyliw (Doc Walker, gomie). The prize includes which $10,000 cash, 30 hours of mixing and mastering at Toronto's Metalworks Studio, and more. Fellow Manitoban and country songwriter Heather Longstaffe took the top prize last year, shortly before signing with EMI Music Publishing Canada.

The annual event encompasses not only the popular music festival, but also a conference, trade show, and multiple awards shows. This year, several Manitoba’s artists, music companies, and radio stations could pick-up hardware at three separate awards events.  

The Canadian Music and Broadcast Industry Awards, which honour pioneers and builders of the Canadian music industry, will be held on March 22. Winnipeg is home to several Station of the Year nominees, including CITI FM (Classical Gold), Power 97 (Rock), 102.3 Clear FM (Mainstream A/C), and Energy 106 (Contemporary Hit Radio). Also up for CMBIAs this year: Paquin Entertainment for Booking Agency of the Year, Club Regent Casino for Casino/Specialty Venue of the Year, Music Trader for Independent Record Store of the Year, and the MTS Centre for Major Facility of the Year (Over 8,000 Capacity). Expat Chantal Kreviazuk and husband Raine Maida will be presented with the Allan Slaight Humanitarian Spirit Award for their charitable work.

Dave Wasyliw’s solo project, gomie, landed a Canadian Radio Music Award nod in the country category for his song “Everything Will Be Alright”. The CRMAs, which showcases up-and-coming “buzz” bands at an annual luncheon during CMW, will be awarded on March 23.

Local nominees for the 12th annual Independent Music Awards, better known as The Indies, include 2012 JUNO Award nominees KEN Mode and Doc Walker, and breakout soul/pop act Imaginary Cities. The Indies will be handed out at Toronto's Fairmont Royal York Hotel on March 24. Both a public and an industry vote decide the winners. Voting is currently open at

Many of the Manitoba artists and industry professionals were able to access financial support for their work at CMW through the Market Access Program, a program jointly funded by Manitoba Music and Manitoba Film & Music.


Abstract Artform @ Comfort Zone, 9pm
Federal Lights @ Rancho Relaxo, 10pm (Two Way Monologue Showcase)

Mise en Scene @ Mod Club, 7:30pm
JP Hoe @ Gladstone Hotel, 9pm
Royal Canoe @ Drake Underground, 9pm (Blackburn Radio Showcase)
Floor Thirteen @ Cherry Cola's Rock N' Rolla Cabaret, 11pm (x92.9 Alberta Showcase)
Waster @ Bovine Sex Club, 11pm (Warped Tour After Party)
John K. Samson @ The Great Hall, 11pm

The Lytics @ Velvet Underground, 9pm

Take Me To The Pilot @ The Supermarket, 8pm
Ross Roteliuk & Tori Doell w/ Dave Wasyliw @ Free Times Cafe, 8pm
Royal Canoe @ Hard Luck, 9pm
James Cohen @ Painted Lady, 11pm (Soccermom Records/Wired 96.3 Showcase)

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