Artist of the Month: The Small Town Girls
January 25, 2018
Submit for Your Chance to Perform at the CMAOntario 2018 New Faces Showcase
February 22, 2018

A Message from the President (January 2018)

The CMAOntario’s Board Members would like to wish all a belated Happy New Year, and all the best for 2018. I believe we are all in for a much smoother and more bountiful year. Opportunities abound!

As the Board continues to prepare for 2018 in London, the Membership Committee has created some new performance opportunities with a number of Ontario Fairs. These performance opportunities will be decided by a submission-based application and the chosen artists will be selected by a jury made up of industry personnel. Keep an eye on the newsletter to get all the deets – it will be coming up soon!

I was unable to make the 2017 Unison Holiday Schmoozefest, but that party raised $35,000 for Canadian Music Workers in Crisis. Congratulations to all at the Unison Benevolent Fund! I heard it was a fantastic party. For all you musicians and industry folk out there: donate what you can, even if it is just once a year. You never know if you or a loved one may be the one asking for assistance. Please support this fund; it is important and will definitely make you feel great.

The Board would also like to congratulate Gary Slaight on becoming this year’s recipient of The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) 2018 Humanitarian Award. This award is presented annually and celebrates and recognizes the philanthropic efforts made by Canadian artists or industry leaders who have made a positive impact on social welfare worldwide.

“I am truly honoured to be this year’s recipient of the Humanitarian Award” said Slaight. “Our family has had a tradition of giving back to the community that transcends from my parents Allan and Ada Slaight. The Slaight Family Foundation, created as a result of the sale of Standard Broadcasting, is a tribute to my parents’ commitment to community, and which I am proud to lead. Whether it is supporting a local music program for children or helping to advance key healthcare priorities, our goal is to make a positive difference in the lives of those around us and those needing our support globally. We truly want to make an impact and help those who need it the most.”

The past and present Board members would also like to thank and recognize Gary and The Slaight Family Foundation for their ongoing support for The Country Music Association of Ontario – a big resounding “Thank You!”

The 2017 Stars & Thunder Festival for the City of Timmins turned into a ground-breaking success. In June of 2017, the city teamed up with western event promoter Ron Sakamoto to put on an eight-day events calendar, the likes of which no northern town had ever seen before. The events attracted over 100,000 people to the city and pumped millions into the local economy. The 2018 edition has a platinum-plus line-up of headliners, all but one of whom is homegrown. Ron’s description of the event passes? “The prices are so low it is ridiculous.” Good on you, Ron and the City of Timmins!

In sadder news, we lost one of our top publicists on December 30, 2017. Marlene (Joan) Palmer worked with some of the biggest names in Canadian music. At one time or another her client list included: Anne Murray, Bryan Adams, Loverboy, Rita MacNeil, The Rankin Family, Steve Smith (aka Red Green), Tommy Hunter, Frank Mills, and George Fox. R.I.P Marlene. She will be missed by many.

As a reminder, the CMAOntario invites any member in good standing to submit industry-relevant information for inclusion in our Newsletter. Please send us a short synopsis, a photo or graphic and any hotlink that can be included in the news listing. Submissions can be sent to Please make sure the subject line reads “FOR INCLUSION IN CMAOntario NEWSLETTER.”

One more quick reminder: to be eligible for award nominations or performance opportunities, you must be a member, and this is the month to renew or join.

As always, please let us know what you are thinking or doing… we love hearing from you!!

Catherine Faint


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