The envelopes have been opened and the winners revealed for the 2023 Western Canadian Music Awards! Artists and music companies from Manitoba picked up hardware in eight categories that recognize those making a significant impact in Western Canada’s music scene and beyond.
The artistic awards were announced at the BreakOut West Opening Reception, held at Metro Hub in the heart of the Cultural District in Downtown Kelowna, where BOW 2023 officially kicked off.
The industry award winners were revealed on October 14 at an awards brunch at the BOW host hotel, Delta Grand Okanagan. Honourees included Willie Thrasher who will receive the 2023 Heritage Award, Kevin Walters Industry Builder Award recipient, Mint Records, and Western Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee, Rascalz.
Polaris Music Prize shortlisted powerhouse Begonia earned Pop Artist of the Year, her third win in this category (2019, 2021) and her fifth career WCMA. R&B Artist of the Year went to bilingual soul outfit Jérémie & The Delicious Hounds, their first WCMA win. KEN mode earned their second WCMA this year for Metal & Hard Music Artist of the Year. Ambient jazz-influenced and pop-infused artist Sala won Francophone Artist of the Year, her first WCMA win and second nomination in this category. JUNO-winning singer/songwriter William Prince picked up Roots Artist of the Year, which he won in 2021 and 2020, his sixth career WCMA.
This year's industry winners included Producer of the Year winner Boogey the Beat, music company Birthday Cake Records, which picked up the award for Impact in Music Marketing, and Winnipeg venue West End Cultural Centre won for Impact in Live Music.
Now celebrating its 21st year, BreakOut West runs October 11 - 15 in Kelowna. This year’s event included the WCMAs, a music conference, three-night music discovery festival, and more special events.
Several acts from Manitoba made their way to Kelowna to hit the showcase stage at this year’s BreakOut West Festival, including Ami Cheon, Andrina Turenne, Field Guide, Ila Barker, Jade Turner, Kris Ulrich, and Lev Snowe. Check out the schedule of artists from Manitoba
Find out more about this year’s event at breakoutwest.ca.
2023 WESTERN CANADIAN MUSIC AWARDS ARTISTIC WINNERS
BreakOut Artist of the Year (Sponsored by FACTOR) – Katie Tupper (SK)
Children’s Artist of the Year – Beppie (AB)
Classical Artist / Ensemble of the Year (Sponsored by Canadian Music Centre [CMC]) – musica intima (BC)
Classical Composer of the Year – Vincent Ho – Sandman's Castle, R1ddler (AB)
Country Artist of the Year – JoJo Mason (BC)
Electronic & Dance Artist of the Year – Modern Biology (BC)
Francophone Artist of the Year (sponsored by APCM (Association des professionnels de la chanson et de la musique) – Sala (MB)
Global Artist of the Year – Ruby Singh (BC)
Indigenous Artist of the Year – Blue Moon Marquee (BC)
Instrumental Artist of the Year – Jasmine Jazz (BC)
Jazz Artist of the Year – Melody Diachun (BC)
Metal & Hard Music Artist of the Year – KEN mode (MB)
Pop Artist of the Year – Begonia (MB)
R&B Artist of the Year – Jérémie & The Delicious Hounds (MB)
Rap & Hip Hop Artist of the Year – Snotty Nose Rez Kids (BC)
Recording of the Year – Snotty Nose Rez Kids (BC)
Rock Artist of the Year – The Royal Foundry (AB)
Roots Artist of the Year – William Prince (MB)
Songwriter(s) of the Year (Sponsored by The Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada [SOCAN]) – Young D, Yung Trybez – Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Hot Planet (BC)
Spiritual Artist of the Year – Stirling John (AB)
Video Director of the Year (Sponsored by Manitoba Film & Music) – Mayumi Yoshida – Different Than Before (BC)
2023 WESTERN CANADIAN MUSIC AWARDS INDUSTRY WINNERS
Producer of the Year – Boogey the Beat (MB)
Audio Engineering Award – Sheldon Zakarlo (BC)
Community Excellence Award – National Music Centre (AB)
Excellence in Visual Design – Lyle Bell (AB)
Impact in Artist Development – Chris Wynters (AB)
Impact in Live Music (Sponsored by Canadian Live Music Association) – West End Cultural Centre (MB)
Impact in Music Marketing – Birthday Cake Media (MB)
Kevin Walters Industry Builder Award – Mint Records
Heritage Award – Willie Thrasher (BC)
WCMA Hall of Fame – Rascalz (BC)
UPDATED: October 14 with industry award winners