Three Acts from Manitoba Land on Polaris Music Prize Long List

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From left: Begonia, Super Duty Tough Work, William Prince

The Polaris Music Prize ended months of debate and speculation with the announcement of this year's long list of top Canadian albums. Three acts from Manitoba landed nods from the prestigious prize for their albums this year, including Begonia, Super Duty Tough Work, and William Prince. The slate of albums was put forward by the 200+ member jury -- which includes national music journalists, broadcasters, and bloggers. The coveted prize awards to $50,000 to the best full-length Canadian album, while short listed artists each receive $3,000 courtesy of Slaight Music.

Pegged as Canada’s breakout alt-diva, Begonia launched onto the Canadian music scene on the strength of critically acclaimed 2017 EP Lady In Mind. To her fans, the indie-pop singer feels like music’s best-kept secret. Begonia went on to release her audacious debut full-length album Fear in September 2019. She wrote and co-produced the record with a familiar team: Matt Schellenberg and Matt Peters of Royal Canoe, along with Marcus Paquin, who has previously worked with The National, Arcade Fire and Local Natives. Fear was chosen as one of Exclaim!’s Most Underrated Albums of the Year, and made numerous end of the year recommendation lists. Her singles “Beats” and “Hanging On A Line” were named as CBC Music National Radio Fan Favourites of 2019, and her album Fear spent 10 straight weeks as the #1 album in the country on Earshot’s Top 50 chart. Songs from the album can be heard in numerous productions on Netflix & Oprah Winfrey Network. NPR has claimed Begonia is one of 10 Artists You Need To Know. Check out Begonia's Fear

Revered for their methodically curated sets, Super Duty ToughWork mixes laid back with high energy, for a satisfaction-guaranteed journey through culture where loops are slayed and jewels are the tools of the trade. Since forming in early 2015, Super Duty Tough Work has quickly established itself as the region’s premier live hip hop outfit.  Fronted by Brendan Grey (aka Giant #3 of Sleeping Giants) and backed by a well-curated ensemble of highly skilled local and international musicians, SDTW is a seven-piece powerhouse. Heavily influenced by the jazz-inspired vibe of early ‘90s east coast hip hop, SDTW mixes live instrumentation with an array of vocal styles, combining laid-back and high-energy into a satisfaction-guaranteed performance for hip hop heads and music lovers alike. Check out Super Duty Tough Work's Studies in Grey

A masterclass in skillful simplicity, William Prince's second album Reliever works a generous and profound kind of magic. Prince’s influences and references, from the gospel of his childhood to the pantheon of classic outlaw country singers, baseball and the great beyond, shape Reliever into a collection that approaches the big questions with humility and curiosity. At the edge of the ocean, between father and son, from stranger to lover, the album flows through the places and moments where real connections and healing happen. To make Reliever, Prince reconvened with producers Dave Cobb in Nashville and Scott Nolan in Winnipeg, the team behind his JUNO Award winning debut and subsequent Glassnote Records reissue, Earthly Days. Prince’s trajectory from Peguis First Nation in Manitoba, Canada, to opening for Neil Young, has seen the relative newcomer find esteem and career-changing opportunity wherever he performs. Check out William Prince's Reliever

The jury makes its selection entirely on artistic merit. Past winners include Haviah Mighty (2019), Jeremy Dutcher (2018), Lido Pimienta (2017), Kaytranada (2016), Buffy Sainte-Marie (2015), Tanya Tagaq (2014), Godspeed You! Black Emperor (2013), Feist (2012), Arcade Fire (2011), Karkwa (2010), Fucked Up (2009), Caribou (2008), Patrick Watson (2007) and Final Fantasy / Owen Pallett (2006).

The 10-album Short List will be revealed on July 15  on a CBC Music radio special and the 2020 Polaris Music Prize winner will be revealed live on the CBC Gem streaming service and

The 2020 Polaris Music Prize Long List

Allie X - Cape God
Anachnid - Dreamweaver
Aquakultre - Legacy
Marie-Pierre Arthur - Des feux pour voir
Backxwash - God Has Nothing To Do With This Leave Him Out Of It
Badge Époque Ensemble - Badge Époque Ensemble
Begonia - Fear
P'tit Belliveau - Greatest Hits Vol. 1
Caribou - Suddenly
Daniel Caesar - CASE STUDY 01
Chocolat - Jazz engagé
Louis-Jean Cormier - Quand la nuit tombe
Corridor - Junior
dvsn - A Muse In Her Feelings
Jacques Greene - Dawn Chorus
Sarah Harmer - Are You Gone
Ice Cream - FED UP
Junia-T - Studio Monk
Kaytranada - Bubba
Flore Laurentienne - Volume 1
Cindy Lee - What's Tonight To Eternity?
Men I Trust - Oncle Jazz
nêhiyawak - nipiy
OBUXUM - Re-Birth
Owen Pallett - Island
Pantayo - Pantayo
Lido Pimienta - Miss Colombia
Joel Plaskett - 44
William Prince - Reliever
Riit - ataataga
Andy Shauf - The Neon Skyline
Super Duty Tough Work - Studies in Grey
U.S. Girls - Heavy Light
Leif Vollebekk - New Ways
Wares - Survival
The Weeknd - After Hours
WHOOP-Szo - Warrior Down
Witch Prophet - DNA Activation
Zen Bamboo - GLU

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