Canadian Musician - May/June 2021 | Page 18



Midem Going Fully Digital
The organizers of Midem , which is typically held in Cannes , France each year , have announced that this year ’ s music business conference will be a fullydigital event that is free to access .
The digital edition of
Midem will be split into two events , with Midem Africa held from June 28 th to July 1 st and the annual flagship Midem in its digital form from Nov . 16-19 , 2021 .
Midem Africa , according to organizers , is the first pan-African digital music event that focuses on trends , careers , and key players in the African music industry . Midem Digital will include keynote sessions , workshops , showcases , music tech start-up competitions , virtual networking opportunities , and more .
The annual Midem conference is one of the leading business-oriented music conferences in the world . Its digital platform is free to access year-round for Midem ’ s 12,000 members with resources , networking , educational content , and more .
“ Since the pandemic hit us all , we ’ ve taken our role in keeping the worldwide community connected , informed , engaged , and looking forward together , extremely seriously ,” says Midem Director Alexandre Deniot . “ Midem Digital has allowed us to be here , daily , throughout the year to help us all better understand the new context in which we find ourselves and to navigate our new landscape .” Midem currently plans to be back in Cannes in June 2022 . For more information , go to www . midem . com .
Short List Artists Selected for Next Allan Slaight Juno Master Class
The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences ( CARAS ) and Slaight Music have announced the short list of artists selected to participate in part two of the 2020 / 2021 Allan Slaight Juno Master Class program . They are : Command Sisters , MONOWHALES , and Myles Castello . These emerging musicians , selected by a “ super jury ” of music industry notables ,
COMMAND SISTERS will join Shawnee Kish , the 2020 winner of CBC Music ’ s annual search for the next undiscovered act , and receive tools to help guide their careers and help them become “ Juno ready .”
This year the program received the largest number of applications in its history . As a result , the master class program , which is developed in partnership with Canada ’ s Music Incubator , was broken out into two parts . Last fall , 10 artists ( including those shortlisted ) took part in a week-long digital experience tailored to the mentorship needs of those selected .
The short list of artists will be part of a customized program of learning from Canadian music industry leaders . This year ’ s program will provide mentorship opportunities to help artists succeed in today ’ s climate . Additionally , one artist will be invited to perform at the 2021 Juno Opening Night Awards to an at-home audience of over 1,000 music industry guests .
For more information , go to www . junomasterclass . ca .
Rita MacNeil Inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame
The “ first lady of Cape Breton ,” Rita MacNeil , is the newest inductee to the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame ( CSHF ). On April 16 th , the anniversary of her untimely passing , it
was announced that MacNeil ’ s legacy will be remembered with a permanent place in the CSHF at the National Music Centre in Calgary .
Some of MacNeil ’ s best-known songs often spoke of Nova Scotia ; however , her crossgenre appeal and immense talent resonated with Canadians across the country and globally . With her shy persona , MacNeil endeared herself to grassroots audiences nationwide and enjoyed commercial success despite not conforming to the music industry ’ s expectations . Her melody-driven , heartfelt songwriting resisted classification - sometimes country , sometimes hinting of folk , gospel , and blues .
“ Through her lyrics and songwriting , Rita allowed us into her heart and soul ,” said Vanessa Thomas , executive director of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame . “ The love between songwriter and audience was mutual . Rita didn ’ t sing to people , she sang for people ; and her audiences , in return , gave her strength to overcome her shyness and stage anxiety . There are few artists who have such an intimate and authentic connection with their fans , and that bond lives on through her songs .”
Before reaching commercial success , MacNeil was involved with the women ’ s movement in the early 1970s writing feminist protest songs . Gradually , her songwriting evolved into a broader folk-pop autobiographical style , and she performed for rallies , at coffeehouses , folk clubs , and at Mariposa and other folk festivals . She recorded three albums independently , beginning with Born a Woman ( 1975 ), but it was Flying on Your Own , her 1986 debut album with Virgin Records , that became her commercial breakthrough .
A large part of MacNeil ’ s successes came with her compositions . More than 200 of her own songs are registered with BMI , and she was recognized in 2009 with SOCAN ’ s National Achievement Award .
For more information , go to www . cshf . ca .