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May 10, 2022

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Clint Curtiss

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: Toronto, ON) (#63 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Albert Pink was born in Toronto. As an aspiring singer/songwriter he honed his talents under the guidance of Fred Roden – owner of The Record Corral, a popular record store outlet and music venue in Toronto – presenting live entertainment during the 1950s and 60s by visiting country music legends Ernest Tubb, Carl Smith, Wilf Carter, etc. Albert Pink wanted to pursue a career similar to the “stars” he was meeting. The first step on his trip to stardom was a name change and Albert Pink became “Clint Curtiss”. Clint Curtiss was soon touring country music venues with his band, The Clintsmen, and in the recording studio cutting his first album, […]
April 12, 2022

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Tim Taylor

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: Bowmanville, ON) (#62 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Tim Taylor is one of those guys who has done it all… and he’s still doing it!! Singer, songwriter, recording artist, touring act, award winner – Tim Taylor can answer to all of that. Born in Bowmanville, Ontario, Tim Taylor spent his high school years in a variety of rock bands, playing school dances and social events. He eventually “graduated” to perform professionally with the country band, Buckshot. By the late 1970s, he had teamed up with vocalist Anita Perras, both on-stage and eventually, as a married couple. They quickly honed their talents and recorded a debut album, “Bought And Paid For”. Several hit single releases followed – separately and as a […]
March 11, 2022

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Cliff Edwards

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: January 20 – Montreal, QC) (#61 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Cliff Edwards grew up in a musical family and while in high school in Montreal, formed his first band, The Strata-Cats, performing a mix of rockabilly and country. He later headed up the group The Counts Four, and hosted the TV Show “Hurtin’ Songs”, aired on CFCF in Montreal. Cliff’s late brother, Brian Edwards, was an early career guest on the TV show and he later became lead voice for the Canadian rock band Mashmakhan. In 1965, Cliff Edwards formed the group The Five Bells, which would soon undergo a name change to The Bells. The group included sisters Ann and Jacki Ralph and pianist Frank Mills, who […]
February 7, 2022

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Sneezy Waters

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: March 1, 1945 – Ottawa, Ontario) (#60 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Peter Hodgson may not be a name that strikes familiarity among country music fans… but mention the name “Sneezy Waters”, and immediately many more know who you are speaking of. “Sneezy Waters” – aka Peter Hodgson – has been recognized in the music world for more than half a century, most notably in the leading role portraying the immortal Hank Williams in the stage play and movie “Hank Williams: The Show He Never Gave”. The Ottawa-born performer first attracted attention in the duo “Nev & Pete” with long-time friend and fellow entertainer Neville Wells. As a “folk” duo, they worked major stages and venues in Ottawa and […]
February 7, 2022

Canadian Country Artist Discovery: Tyler Joe Miller (BC)

Signed to MDM Recordings Inc. in 2019, Surrey, BC’s Tyler Joe Miller has swiftly begun to make a name for himself in Canadian country music. After releasing his gold-certified debut single, ‘Pillow Talkin’’ at the end of 2019, the catchy tune quickly earned him the title of iHeartRadio Future Star at the beginning of 2020, and became his first #1 single at Canadian country radio. What followed was an unprecedented and record breaking climb with follow-up single ‘I Would Be Over Me Too’, also gold-certified, which steadily rose on the charts and earned Miller the title of the first independent Canadian country artist to reach #1 at radio with his first two singles. Ending 2020 on a high, Miller was nominated for the CCMA ‘Rising Star’ Award, and […]
January 12, 2022

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Jimmy Phair

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: February 26, 1941 – Froomfield [Sarnia], Ontario) (Died: December 31, 2020 – Sarnia, Ontario) (#59 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Jimmy Phair was born February 26, 1941, in Froomfield (near Sarnia, Ontario). He received his first guitar – made from a cigar box – at age four and has never looked back. By the time he was 14, he was guesting on his first radio show, aired out of Marine City, Michigan. Soon afterwards, he was appearing regularly on his hometown radio station CHOK, which led to the hosting of his own radio show on the station. In 1962, Phair took his live show on the road, touring extensively in Ontario, Quebec and into the USA. He often shared […]
January 12, 2022

Canadian Country Artist Discovery: Nice Horse (AB)

Nice Horse is wild: wildly talented, wildly entertaining, fun, fresh, fierce and feisty, and they’ve established themselves as one of the most buzzed-about and fast-rising groups in the Canadian music industry. A live act to be reckoned with, the self-contained all-female group has played high-profile festivals across Canada including Boots & Hearts, Big Valley Jamboree, and the Calgary Stampede, and has performed in Spain and France. They have also toured as direct support for legendary artists such as Tom Cochrane and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. The band, made up of Katie Rox (vocals / banjo / acoustic guitar), Brandi Sidoryk (vocals / bass), Tara McLeod (vocals / electric guitar), and Krista Wodelet (vocals / drums), has garnered significant accolades since forming in 2015, including […]
December 17, 2021

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Randall Prescott

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: February 6, 1955 – North Bay, Ontario) (#58 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Randall Prescott is in the middle of a rare Canadian country music generational family tree: his father is Ottawa Valley Country Music Hall of Famer, Irwin Prescott; Randall is himself a multiple Hall of Fame inductee; and more recently, Randall and his wife Tracey Brown (of Family Brown) celebrate with great pride the emergence of their daughter, Kelly Prescott, on the Canadian music scene. That’s three generations of music-makin’ Prescotts. Randall Isaac Prescott was born in North Bay, Ontario. He and brother Ron Prescott followed their father Irwin Prescott when he relocated to Ottawa in 1971. Irwin Prescott founded and operated the famous Golden Rail club […]
November 9, 2021

Ontario’s Country Music Pioneers: Tommy Hunter

// by Larry Delaney // (Born: March 20, 1937 – London, Ontario) (#57 in the Ontario Pioneers Series) Tommy Hunter has affectionately been dubbed “The Country Gentleman”, thanks largely to a legion of fans he developed through his 27 years of hosting “The Tommy Hunter TV Show” on CBC-TV (1965- 1992). Many of the faithful who followed him on the television show also attended his concerts during his almost-annual tours across Canada. The TV show was unceremoniously cancelled by CBC after 27 years, to the dismay of his fans, who petitioned the CBC for its return, to no avail. Several seasons of the show were also televised on The Nashville Network. At its peak in Canada, the show was drawing a weekly audience in excess […]

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