September 19, 2017

In The Country with Dave Woods: Catching Up With Ontario Country Artist Brad Battle

Tell us some of the artists that have influenced you. Early on, my influences were Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan. I have always looked up to Patricia Conroy. Right now, Dierks Bentley and Keith Urban are huge influences for me. You had the opportunity to write and record “Hung Up ” with well-known producer Dave (Dwave) Thomson. This was your first single at Country radio from your EP called “Always Easy”. What was it like working with Dwave? Working with Dwave was amazing. I won the opportunity after competing in the Magna Hoedown Showdown. We basically had 1 day to write a song and record it the next day. With us both being from Niagara, we had lots in common, which helped. Writing with new people can be hit […]
September 19, 2017

Partner Spotlight: MusicOntario

What is MusicOntario? Launched in 2012, MusicOntario is a non-profit, membership-based Music Industry Association (MIA), representing Ontario’s independent artists and businesses. As a division of the Canadian Independent Music Association (CIMA), our mission is to provide professional development, services and support to the independent music industry in Ontario. What do we do? MusicOntario curates programs, events and initiatives that assist in nurturing, promoting, and sustaining growth within the provincial music sector. We do this by both creating accessible opportunities for emerging local talent and professionals, and connecting them to Ontario’s existing industry infrastructures, festivals and organizations within Ontario’s communities. From 2015-2017, MusicOntario delivered over 108 events (and counting), ranging from workshops, panels, b2b and peer mentorship sessions, to showcases, domestic and international market access, networking […]
September 19, 2017

In The News (September)

This section of the newsletter is comprised of news stories, press releases and links to Internet articles that are sent in by our members who believe they will be of general interest to the membership.  We include them as a courtesy to our members but do not verify or edit their content.  Their inclusion does not constitute an endorsement by the CMAOntario nor do their contents reflect the views or opinions of the CMAOntario. ole Signs Co-Publishing and Administration Deal with The Reklaws   ole, the world’s fastest-growing independent music publishing and rights management company, announced it has entered into a worldwide co-publishing and administration deal with Cambridge, Ontario-based country music singer/songwriter duo, The Reklaws. Winners of the 2012 CCMA Discover Program and the 2013 […]
August 11, 2017

A Message from the President (August 2017)

Wow, I can’t believe that the summer is almost gone… or was it ever here? I’m hoping some of you were able to get out to play or attend some fairs and festivals these last few months. I know that many of our Ontario artists were hitting the stages in the West; and now it is time to turn to Eastern Canada, where the majority of fairs happen August through October. For information on the fairs and festivals based in Canada, please reach out to C.A.F.E (Canadian Association of Fairs and Festivals) Congratulations to Shae Dupuy, who recently won the 2017 Canadian Songwriting Competition – Country Category – for her song “Wishing On You”, co-written by Drew Gregory and Mike Little and produced by […]
August 10, 2017

Johnson Crook Selected to Perform at Lucknow’s Music In The Fields

The CMAOntario is happy to announce that Johnson Crook of Toronto, Ontario, is the winner of the Lucknow’s Music In The Fields performance opportunity. Johnson Crook will take to the Emerging Artist Stage on Friday, August 25 for two performance slots – 8:30pm and 10:00pm. If you’re going to the festival, make sure to catch their performance. About Johnson Crook: Toronto roots-rock band Johnson Crook share a love of pure, honest music stemming from their small-town backgrounds. Drawing inspiration from groups like the Eagles and the Avett Brothers, each member contributes equally, injecting their unique personalities into the overall sound built on four voices. Watch for a new album Aug 2017. Website: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram: YouTube: Congratulations Johnson Crook! We wish you much success as you represent the CMAOntario at one of Ontario’s […]
August 9, 2017

Artist of the Month: The Reklaws

With a hot summer single, live summer shows, and a new music video on the way, The Reklaws are showing just how far these hometown kids have come. The sister-brother duo of Jenna and Stuart Walker grew up on a working farm in Cambridge, ON, learning the value of hard work, persistence, and the realities that so many songs in country music talk about. Their passion for music came young and only grew as the siblings started writing and performing their own music. Stories of Jenna singing as soon as she could talk and Stuart learning to play the guitar at age nine are good indications that a career in music was inevitable for these two. In 2013, The Reklaws were recognized for their talent […]
August 8, 2017

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Ray Francis

Born: February 9, 1931 – Eberts, Ontario Died: June 30, 2010 – Chatham, Ontario (by Larry Delaney) Based out of Chatham, Ontario, Ray Francis formed his first band The Whippoorwills in the late 1950’s (with John Tangelis, Max Dauphin, Ray Dauphin, and Bill Taylor) and they quickly earned a solid reputation by backing up touring Nashville stars like Ray Price, Johnny Cash, Jim Reeves, Faron Young, Ferlin Husky, etc., and making appearances on major stages. The Whippoorwills also hosted a “live” show, aired weekly for more than five years over CFCO radio in Chatham. The act recorded two albums in the mid 1960’s: “The Whippoorwills” released on Canatal Records; and “Country Jamboree” on Arc Records. After the demise of The Whippoorwills group, Ray Francis joined […]
August 7, 2017

Patrice’s Pick: Jessica Mitchell

This month, our feature video from Patrice Whiffen at Country Music Junkies profiles Canadian country music artist, Jessica Mitchell! Jessica talks about her two new singles, “Don’t Love Me,” and “Tear It Down.” She talks about the stories behind both of the songs, and what fans can expect from her upcoming album. Jessica responds to being dubbed country’s Adele, and tells us what’s on her current playlist. You can catch Jessica at the upcoming Boots and Hearts Music Festival, later this month. For more information about Jessica, or to check out her new singles, visit For more on Country Music Junkies, visit Listen to the exclusive interview with Jessica Mitchell below: About Patrice: To Patrice Whiffen, country music is a lifestyle. As the appropriately deemed, “Country […]
August 6, 2017

ole is Looking for Canada’s Next Country Superstar

During PotashCorp Country Music Week 2017 in Saskatoon, ole will be hosting “on the spot” – a premiere event that delivers instant artist/songwriter development, and a contract with ole’s red dot valued up to $40,000 USD – that includes music publishing, EP recorded production, YouTube SRAV management, and support from ole’s world-class Creative Staff. Simply submit YouTube videos of yourself singing one of the approved hit songs from the ole catalog, as well as an original composition, and you could earn a chance to perform in Saskatoon during PotashCorp Country Music Week in front of some of Country music’s top A&Rs. Join the ranks of Charlie Worsham, Josh Dorr, Sam Grow, Katia Zuccarelli and Jordan Davis, whose careers have been launched by ole’s red dot artist development program. Enter before August 14 […]


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