We all know that the MAIN event goes down on Sunday March 15th in Hamilton, but they can’t possibly have EVERY single nominee on stage, so the 2015 JUNOfest Nominee Showcase is an opportunity for fans to get a glimpse of their fav nominees before the winners walk away with the hardware.  Steel Town will be going in hard for JUNO Week!

Presented by CBCmusic.ca and sponsored by Steam Whistle Brewing, nominees from the Contemporary Christian/Gospel, Rap, and R&B/Soul Categories will be doing a pre-JUNO special performance at Sarcoa (57 Discovery Drive, Hamilton, ON), on Friday March 13th. Hamilton’s DJ Verse One and myself will be providing the vibe for the night, so I’m definitely looking forward to this one!

Featured performers will include Contemporary Christian/Gospel Nominee Manafest, R&B/Soul Recording Nominees Ben Stevenson, JRDN and Melanie Durrant, and from the Rap Category, Adam Bomb and Tona of Naturally Born Strangers, Saukrates, and Tre Mission. This event takes place at the luxurious waterfront venue, SARCOA (57 Discovery Drive, Hamilton), and is the perfect event leading up to the stellar JUNO Awards show on Sunday March 15th, 2015.

JUNOfest Nominee Showcase
57 Discovery Drive, Hamilton, ON
Friday March 13th
Doors Open at 10pm, Show Time at 10:30pm

With Performances by 2015 JUNO Nominees:

Adam Bomb and Tona (of Naturally Born Strangers)
Ben Stevenson
Melanie Durrant
Tre Mission

Music Provided by DJs MelBoogie & Verse One

$15 at the Door OR $30 wristband – on sale now through Ticketmaster or in-person at Dr. Disc (20 Wilson St, Hamilton)

Online Ticket Purchasing:

JUNOfest wristbands: http://www.ticketmaster.ca/event/10004E51B5EA52D7

JUNOfest wristbands offer priority access to all JUNOfest venues over two nights (subject to capacity). Wristbands are available at Ticketmaster and Dr. Disc (20 Wilson St., Hamilton). Wristbands are $30 each (+ taxes & service charges). All “sold-out” JUNOfest shows still give priority access to wristband holders, as venue capacity allows.

More JUNOfest details: http://junoawards.ca/events/juno-week-events/junofest



The Honey Jam Artist Showcase  —  National Talent Search is on!

This one is near and dear to me! I’ve been involved with Honey Jam since it launched in 1995 and it remains the longest running all-female talent showcase in the country.  Since it began, notable artists such as Jully Black, Nelly Furtado, Melanie Durrant, Eternia, Reema Major, Kellylee Evans and so many more have been in the Honey Jam spotlight.  This is an excellent opportunity for both established and emerging female artists.  The show is in Toronto, but Honey Jam proudly hosts ladies from Vancouver, Montreal, Scotia and more! If you know a female artist who is amazingly talented and would be ideal for this show, read below and peep the website – www.HoneyJam.com.  The auditions are in June and the showcase takes place in August… more details to come!

Live auditions take place in Toronto on Sunday June 3, 2012, 2pm @ The Mod Club on 722 College Street.  Artists across Canada who can’t make the live auditions can submit online.  All details are on www.honeyjam.com   

Judges will include reps from record labels, booking agencies, radio programmers, music media, artist funding bodies, producers, managers, vocal coaches and artists. The live auditions are open to the public – there is a charge of $10 to attend or participate.  

Honey Jam, produced by PhemPhat Entertainment Group, a non-profit organization, is the longest running all-female multicultural talent showcase in Canada.  Now in its 17th year, it continuously delivers one of the summer’s hottest shows featuring electrifying live performances.  Whether pop, rock, hip hop, R&B, jazz, soul, country, classical, dancehall – talented female vocalists representing all musical genres can take part.

One lucky artist will have the opportunity to also perform in Barbados, courtesy of the Barbados Tourism Authority. 

All selected artists will receive vocal and performance coaching from celebrity coach Elaine Overholt of Big Voice Studios and also have the opportunity to attend a free artist workshop at Harris Institute to give them some insight into the industry in keeping with PhemPhat’s mandate to educate, mentor, as well as give exposure to up and coming female artists.

Sponsors include Slaight Music, Nelstar Entertainment, TD Bank, the Barbados Tourism Authority, Yamaha Canada Music, MuchMusic, Exlaim.ca, Urbanology, Universal Music Canada and Canadian Musician.

For info on Honey Jam and more details about the auditions and showcase go to:


Follow us on Twitter @TheHoneyJam

Melanie Durrant has collaborated with Kardinal Offishall, Famous, and other MCs so it’s nice to see her doing something where she gets her spot in the solo limelight, at least on camera! In her newest video, “Made for Love” she worked with Singer/Producer/über-Multi-Tasker Slakah The Beatchild to direct the visuals.

Produced by Satnam Singh Chatha of 5 Rivers Ent INC., the single is available for purchase on iTunes (sorry, no freebies this time!!), but you can peep the video below.  You can follow Ms. Durrant on Twitter >> @melochew

Art of Fresh, one of my favourite duos are back delivering some soulful and positive vibes with Good Shoes. Slakah da Beatchild and D.O. are simply amazing at what they do, and both of them are always positive musically and in person – no easy feat with all the pitfalls the music industry holds for artists. When not touring schools and opening  young minds across the country, they somehow manage to squeeze out enough time to create great music.  Melanie Durrant is the PERFECT voice to accompany this track, which instantly made me want to  get up and dance – not an easy thing to do (or watch), since I admittedly have two left feet.

Good Shoes is from the group’s second album – When the Night Comes In – which you can still download for free at http://theartoffresh.bandcamp.com/

Check out the video and Enjoy:

I can’t front – I took an instant liking to Slakah da Beatchild’s music. He’s worked with some of my favorite Canadian artists (including D.O, Melanie Durrant, Sauks), and his beats remind me of the easy going, ‘for the love’ nature of hip hop’s so-called Golden Era.  His label, BBE is releasing a special edition of Slakah’s album, Something Forever, featuring 4 bonus tracks. Below, he breaks down the feel/inspiration for the tracks on this special edition.  If you missed it the first time around, it’s worth your while to check it out right now!


This is the Special Edition version of Slakah The Beatchild’s “Something Forever” that was released recently released as CD on BBE. It features four hot bonus tracks.

In Slakah’s own words “Something Forever” is “the theme that is forever at the forefront of my mind when I create music. We can easily identify music that has that indescribable timeless vibe, music that regardless of the time period in which it was created sounds refreshing and relevant when played.”

“When the Night Stood Still” : A warm summer night can evoke a variety of conflicting yet unifying emotions, Slakah’s love for the starry sky above inspired this piece which takes you on a relaxing journey through the night as it stands still.

Something Forever”: This piece is based around an entrancing chord progression that could go on and on, hence the title.

“Living for the Rush”: We all have our own ways of escaping and feeling a rush, what ever ones ! rush is this, piece represents the sound track to the feeling of being in that moment.

“The Things I Do (For Her)”: When you’re passionate about someone or in this case something, that love may drive you to do things you would never imagine…

“Down”: A cool groove to make your body rock and forget about the stress of the work week.

“B-Boy Beef V2”: Version 2 to the original version found on critically acclaimed Soul Movement vol.1.

“Illusions”: What your heart feels could often conflict with what your mind feels.

“This Beautiful Feeling”: This song featuring Ebrahim is a reminder for us all to never take “Time” for granted. We can find joy in even bad moments.

“The Cure”: We’ve all had that one person in our life who like a prescribed drug made everything better in our life. But like any drug, you can get addicted to what makes you feel good.

“D.A.N.C.E.”: Timeless vibes,! memories in the making in the company of great friends or the! soul synchronization of a stranger, the positive energy exchanged between people when celebrating life, is at the root of what inspired this song.

“War Within”: Collaboration with Swedish soul artist Magnus Tingsek & Canadian artist Ebrahim. War Within was written and recorded while the two were in Toronto for Slakah the Beatchild’s Vibe Love Smile Tour. This song relates to the inner wars one goes through when battling addiction.

1. When The Night Stood Still
2. Something Forever
3. Living For The Rush
4. Things I Do (For Her)
5. B-Boy Beef V2
6. Down
7. Illusions
8. This Beautiful Feeling ft Ebrahim
9. The Cure
10. D.A.N.C.E. 
11. War Within ft.! Ebrahim & Tingsek

**Available on iTunes!

B-Boy Beef video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyTEMJn7HZI