Tag Archives: Hedley
There is no question that Hedley has done well. Two double platinum albums and a triple platinum single, eleven Top 40 hits, and two JUNO awards. They will be playing the half time show at the upcoming Grey Cup. Wild Life is the name of their fifth LP currently sitting at #2 on the iTunes Albums Chart. Musically, the band has ridden well the wave of movement away from the pop punk fascination of the last decade to the dance pop trends of today. Wild Life offers well-constructed, on-the-mark CHR tunes. It contains the band’s cheeky, current hit single “Anything” (#6), the falsetto and rhythm guitar combo “Crazy For You”, smooth ballad “Pocket Full of Dreams”, guitar twangy “Mexico” , folk pop “Heaven in Our Headlights”, and ethereal synth and piano moody “Wild Life”. A deluxe version of the album offering four extra tracks is available.
The history of sport can be interesting, and it is in this case. Rugby was introduced to Canada by the British in the 19th century and became popular in Montreal in the 1860s. At that time in the United States, football (soccer) was the most popular game being played. Sports clubs from Canada’s McGill University and the U.S.’s Harvard University got together to play in Cambridge, Massachusetts in mid-May 1874. The Canadians wanted to play rugby and the Americans soccer. They ended up creating a new sport which is now known as football in the U.S. and Canada. The Canadians took the new sport back to Canada, and Harvard popularized it in the U.S.
The rules ended up being a little different in the two countries. Canada, for example, has a playing field of 110 yards, but the U.S. only 100 yards. The biggest difference which makes the games look very different is that American football has four downs, meaning four chances to move the ball 10 yards. But Canadian football has only three downs. Because of this, Canadian football has much more passing and involves more risk taking which makes the game more exciting. What may be curious to students of psychology is that, although Canadian football has a larger field and only three downs, games typically end in much higher scores than in the U.S.
Canada’s major football league is the CFL which currently has eight teams. The playoff round is crowned by the season championship game, played in November, known as the Grey Cup. Each year, it is played in a different city.
Financially, the CFL … could be doing better (let’s put it that way). In order to attract more, especially younger, fans of the sport, they have begun inviting popular recording artists to play at the Grey Cup final. Huge names last year resulted in a 44% increase in television viewership from the previous year.
This year, with a new album on the way, Vancouver multiplatinum pop band Hedley will be playing the half-time show. Saskatchewan boogie rockers The Sheepdogs will open the game, and Serena Ryder will sing the national anthem. The 2013 Grey Cup game will be held on November 24 in Regina which was also this year’s site of the JUNO awards.
Mr. Entertainment, Michael Bublé, and Argentine wife Luisana Lopilato are now the proud parents of a baby boy. Noah arrived 2:26 a.m. in Vancouver. Congratulations to this awesome couple!
A number of you may remember Stereos, a JUNO-nominated, multi-platinum band from Edmonton. Member Patrick Kordyback of the now defunct outfit has formed a new one called i65 which has been signed by Vancouver label 604 Records (Carly Rae Jepsen, Marianas Trench). Their debut single “Another Summer” is available now.
From “Painted Ladies” in 1973 to “Levity” in 1985, The Ian Thomas band enjoyed radio airwave success across the country, the front man being the real life brother of adored Canadian comedic actor Dave Thomas (Grace Under Fire and Bob & Doug McKenzie, eh). The band has reunited after 33 years to help their ailing band mate. You can read about it HERE.
Due to the success of Harmony and its first two singles, Serena Ryder‘s team will be releasing the album in the United States. Billboard magazine has all the info HERE.
It appears that a number of upcoming album releases are getting pushed back to November. Yes, those strategizing record companies! This may have to do with taking advantage of Christmas shopping culture or it may not. In any case, it appears that the new albums from Céline Dion and Avril Lavigne are now to be in record stores in November rather than early autumn.
Speaking of November, multi-platinum, JUNO-winning BC band Hedley has announced a brand new studio album, Wild Life, due out on Remembrance Day. Lead single “Anything” has cracked the iTunes Top 5.
Normally, the JUNOs honour democracy by giving this award to the best-selling album. Last year, Michael Bublé’s Christmas took the award. It was the second best-selling album in the world, outsold only by Adele’s 21. The best-selling Canadian album in the world last year was Justin Bieber’s Believe, while domestically, it was Céline Dion’s Sans Attendre. It would certainly be fabulous to see either the work of a youth or a Francophone album nab the award. Hedley’s Storms which continued to sell well last year won the Pop Album award last year. New to the international scene, Carly Rae Jepsen is up for the award for her second LP Kiss as is Marianas Trench for Ever After. Below are some tidbits about the artists and the albums.
Carly Rae Jepsen, Kiss
Mission, BC’s pop princess is up for five JUNO awards this year, adding to her two nominations from 2010. Kiss is her second full-length album, the first being Tug of War. In-between the two, she released her EP Curiosity. Kiss was named by Allmusic.com as 2012′s tenth best album in the world and has achieved gold certification in Canada. It contains the best-selling Canadian single of all-time domestically, “Call Me Maybe” (7x platinum), a re-mix of her Top 20 gold hit “Curiosity”, #1 hit “Good Time” with Owl City, Top 40 collaboration with Justin Bieber, “Beautiful”, Top 30 hit “This Kiss”, and her current charting single “Tonight I’m Getting Over You”.
Céline Dion, Sans Attendre
The Charlemagne, Québec native is the best-selling Canadian recording artist of all-time worldwide. Currently, having sold 114 million records, she ranks 11th in the world. The album title, literally meaning “without waiting”, was the only triple platinum Canadian release in 2012. Sans Attendre contains three duets with prominent singers: legendary Canadian Jean-Pierre Ferland, Johnny Hallyday (best-selling French recording artist of all-time), and Caribbean singer Henri Salvador. As the latter is no longer with us, this is a virtual duet. The first single from the album “Parler à mon père” peaked at #53 on the Canadian Hot 100, a respectable feat for a Francophone tune. It was the year’s 77th biggest song in France. “Les Petits Pieds de Lea” made it to #80 on the Canadian Hot 100. Dion has won 20 JUNO awards.
The BC band’s 4th studio album won the JUNO for Pop Album of the Year last year. It has since attained platinum certification. The album spawned hit single “Invincible”, a Top 10 hit, and “One Life”, a Top 20 hit. Both songs made the year-end charts. Hedley released “Kiss You Inside Out” as a separate single later on. It became the band’s best-selling single, peaking at #2 and finishing 2012 as the 2nd biggest Canadian song of the year. Due to its success, Hedley re-released Storms to include the single. The band has so far won two JUNO awards.
Justin Bieber, Believe
Stratford, Ontario’s 19-year-old Justin Bieber has won 3 JUNOs thus far including one for Pop Album of the Year in 2011 (for My World 2.0). Believe was the world’s best-selling album from a Canadian artist in 2012 and a double-platinum release at home. It debuted at #1 in 30 countries and sold 57,000 copies domestically in its first week of release. Bieber has sold a million records in Canada so far. Believe spawned five Top 20 hit singles: “Boyfriend” (#1), “Die in Your Arms” (#14), “All Around the World” (#10), “As Long as You Love Me” (#9), and “Beauty and a Beat” (#4). It title track also made the Canadian Hot 100.
Marianas Trench, Ever After
The Trench have yet to win a JUNO award. Prior to this year, they had received two nominations. This year they are up for three. Ever After is the Vancouver band’s 3rd album and has been certified platinum. The album has spawned four hit singles: “Haven’t Had Enough” (#9), “Fallout” (#26), “Desperate Measures” (#20), and “Stutter” (#28). The first three all made the year-end Top 100, and the fourth is their current hit. Ever After is a concept album the songs of which are like chapters of a continuous fairy tale type story. There are no pauses between the individual tracks.
Comparing the Albums
|TITLE||CERTIFICATION||LP CHRONOLOGY||HIT SINGLES*|
|SANS ATTENDRE||3x Platinum||25th||2|
* Tracks from the album that have to date made the Canadian Hot 100.
Comparing the Artists
|ARTIST||JUNO AWARDS TO DATE||HIGHEST CERTIFICATION ON A RECORD|
|Carly Rae Jepsen||0||7x Platinum|
|Justin Bieber||3||3x Platinum|
|Marianas Trench||0||2x Platinum|
Unlike Album of the Year, The JUNOs do not necessarily grant the Single of the Year award to the most successful recording, as last year the award went to “I Don’t Know” by the Sheepdogs. The five nominees this year range from a #69 hit to a #1 hit. In the spotlight are a romantic car crash in Vancouver, a steamy carwash in Mission with a plot-twist finale, a baseball game in NHL-snubbed Saskatoon, handclaps and boot stomps in Millbrook, and a death march rant of corporate greed in Canada’s manufacturing capital.
Billy Talent, “Viking Death March”
This song debuted on the Canadian Hot 100 on 8 June 2012 at #69, its peak position. It spent a total of 6 weeks on the chart. Although not awarded with any certifications, it helped the album Dead Silence achieve gold status in 2013. “Viking Death March” did not chart internationally; however, its sister single “Surprise Surprise” saw some success in Germany. Billy Talent is a punk band from Mississauga. They have thus far won seven JUNO awards. Great lyrics on this: “Stop, punch in the clock / Punch it with all of your rage. Put the men in office / For a minimum wage / Rats fighting for scraps / Siphon the gas from your tank / Left your pockets empty / As they laughed to the bank”.
Carly Rae Jepsen, “Call Me Maybe”
At 7x platinum, “Call Me Maybe” is the most successful Canadian single of all time domestically. It began its chart run on 14 October 2011 debuting at #97 on the Canadian Hot 100. The song reached #1 on 3 February 2012 spending four weeks at top spot. It finished its chart run on 6 March 2013 giving it a total of 74 weeks on the chart. Internationally, it reached #1 in some 20 countries. It entered the British charts at #1 and spent nine weeks on top of the U.S. charts. It was the second biggest hit overall of 2012 in Canada, the United States, and United Kingdom. It was the biggest hit of the year in Australia and New Zealand. Carly Rae Jepsen is from Mission, BC. Outside of the success of “Call Me Maybe”, to date, she has scored three gold singles and one gold album. She was a finalist on Canadian Idol and in 2012 was signed by American heavyweight manager Scooter Braun.
Hedley, “Kiss You Inside Out”
This was the second most successful single of 2012 after “Call Me Maybe”. It entered the charts at #35 on 1 June 2012 and peaked at #2 on August 15. The song spent a total of 41 weeks on the Hot 100. “Kiss You Inside Out” was certified a triple platinum single, making it the band’s most successful. A bilingual version was recorded with Star Academie finalist Andrée-Anne Leclerc. The song was not a hit internationally and was the 19th biggest song of the year domestically. Hedley is from Vancouver. Jacob Hoggard, the band’s lead singer was a finalist on Canadian Idol. They have won two JUNO awards to date.
Serena Ryder, “Stompa”
This is the only song among the batch that is still on the charts. It debuted on the Canadian Hot 100 on October 17, 2012, at #87. It reached its peak position of #8 on January 30, 2013, and has thus far spent 21 weeks on the charts. “Stompa” has gone gold as has the album on which it appears (Harmony). Serena Ryder is from Millbrook, Ontario which is near Peterborough. She has won three JUNO awards to date. ”Stompa” cannot be considered an international hit. Her “All for Love”, though, saw some success south of the border a few years ago.
The Sheepdogs, “The Way It Is”
This song spent a total of 16 weeks on the Hot 100, from July 25 to November 7, 2012. It peaked at #59 on September 12. Though not achieving any certifications, the album on which it appears went gold in 2013. The Sheepdogs are a four-member rock band from Saskatoon who play a kind of early 1970s style “boogie rock”. Their winning a contest led to a deal with Atlantic Records. The band won three JUNO awards last year including one in this very category. The music video for “The Way It Is” (not to be confused with Bruce Hornsby’s number) showcases a baseball game. It did not chart internationally, though their current single is gaining ground in the U.S.
Comparing the Singles
|Viking Death March||6||69||-||1.9 million||-|
|Call Me Maybe||74||1||2||437.1 million||7x Platinum|
|Kiss You Inside Out||41||2||19||3.5 million**||3x Platinum|
|The Way It Is||16||59||-||251,000||-|
* “Stompa” will likely appear on the year-end Top 100 of 2013.
** Includes views of bilingual version.
Comparing the Artists
|ARTIST||JUNO AWARDS TO DATE||HIGHEST CERTIFICATION ON A RECORD|
|Billy Talent||7||3x Platinum|
|Carly Rae Jepsen||0||7x Platinum|
Predicting the Winner
Predicting the winner in this category is extremely difficult. Carly Rae Jepsen’s song was the most successful by far, both domestically and internationally, and given she has not yet won a JUNO, they will want to give her one this year (she’s up for five). Billy Talent are a favourite of the JUNOs, however, having won the most of the five artists here. The Sheepdogs are on a roll, having won this category last year. The JUNOs are being held in their province this year and are wanting to encourage the province in developing more musical talent. Serena’s song is still hot, on the charts, and fresh in the minds of the judges. It’s style offers a nice bridge between pop and rock realms. As for Hedley, their album Storms won Pop Album last year and is up for Album of the Year this year. This is their best-selling single and they took the time to release a true Canadian bilingual version.
Which song do you think will win the JUNO for Single of the Year?
Considering that some 8,000 songs from Canadian artists came out in 2012, coming up with the top 200 would have be difficult enough, but the top 20 was extremely difficult! To make things easier (and a fairer and tidier list), we allowed only one entry per artist.
Equally difficult was trying to decide whether a song could be considered a 2012 song. The biggest song of the year, Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” was released in 2011. But we think of it as a 2012 song because that’s when it enjoyed its biggest chart success. Below are a list of rules about which songs were eligible for our list.
1. For songs on albums not released as singles, the album had to have been released in 2012.
2. For non Hot 100 charting singles, the release date had to be in 2012.
3. For charting singles, the song had to reach its Hot 100 peak position during 2012.
4. If a song was included on our Faves list for the previous year but ended up being released as a single or charting this year, we will not re-include it on this year’s Faves list.
5. All songs eligible had to be in whole or in part credited to and performed by a Canadian artist whether or not it was composed by a Canadian.
As with our albums list, we listened to all 2012 songs shortlisting the ones we loved, then ranking them at the end of the year. We were not at all swayed by how popular (or unpopular) a song was or what the genre was.
We have included the cover art for singles. For album non-single songs, we framed the album cover with the song’s name on the frame.
#20. “You and I” by Anjulie
JUNO-nominated, platinum-selling Oakville recording artist Anjulie is one of the most stylish and exquisite songwriters in the country, not to mention a talented musician and very good singer to boot. This year she released 3 gourmet singles and it was a tough call picking our favourite. We’re settling on Top 30 (currently) “You and I” which pays homage to 1970s dance music while still remaining distinctively fresh and modern. It begins in a simple vein on acoustic guitar strums and builds into a star-soaring, beat thumping chorus, complete with revving keyboard riffs. This was one of 2012′s precious treasures, simply beautiful.
#19. “Love” by Raghav
Gold single “Fire” was one of the most delightful songs of 2011. Calgary’s JUNO-nominated Raghav was the only artist from anywhere in the world to score three Top 10 singles in the UK in 2004 having launched his career from Britain. He released his long awaited album The Phoenix in home country of Canada this year. Raghav’s gorgeous ballad “Love” was originally written for Michael Jackson and was released as a single late in the year. With catchy lyrics “Is this what they call love? Is this what all the fuss is about? If so, let me out!”, unpredictable and detailed hooks, and some sweet singing, this was definitely one of the best songs of the year.
#18. “Tough Love” by Suzie McNeil
This Mississauga native, currently signed to Vancouver label 604 Records, is a fabulous singer best known perhaps for her song “Supergirl” which made the year-end top 100 of 2009. Suzie is blessed with a versatile voice, handling both softer and harder rock with ease. She released her 3rd studio album this year, Dear Love, three tracks of which have been released as singles. She co-wrote “Tough Love”, the album’s 3rd single, with Marianas Trench frontman Josh Ramsay. This magnificent song which should have been a huge hit is Katy Perry rolled up with Joan Jett, i.e. lovely but tough. This song is like a battle between mischievous Cupid and Supergirl Suzie.
#17. “The Love You Gave” by Elisapie
Her album Travelling Love was one of our favourites of the year and this track stood out the most for us. Elisapie, previously in JUNO award winning duo Taima, is zooming ahead in her solo career’s skidoo as her second album shifted gears from her folky roots to a more pop/rock sound. The song is a savoury blend of spicy keyboards, sweet vocals, bitter beat, salty guitars, with backing choir, handclaps, and even a 70s style guitar solo. In short, “The Love You Gave” is perfect from every standpoint including composition, arrangement, delivery, and production. It’s no wonder that iTunes selected this song as one of their “songs of the week”.
#16. “Castle in the Cloud” by Stef Lang
A cool groove that has the beauty to stop you in your tracks is this little jewel written, delivered, recorded, and produced by British Columbian independent artist Stef Lang. After releasing radio friendly EP Fighting Mirrors earlier in the year that spawned airwave played “Paper Doll” and moreover after laying the vocals on two tracks off Delerium’s latest album Music Box Opera, she created LP Self, our 9th favourite of 2012. This track was our pick of the bunch, though just about any selection from the album could easily be placed here. While many of the more popular tunes this year got away with bearing too much resemblance to a hit of the past, this is a very original composition.
#15. “The Veldt” by deadmau5
Canada’s best-known EDM musician who composes but does not normally sing recruited Chris James to deliver the vocals on what sounds like a track inspired by Carol Anne Freeling in Poltergeist. One thing we know for sure is that the title came from a short sci-fi story by Ray Bradbury. Deadmau5 first created the tune on a live streaming session and then discovered Chris’ vocal rendition of it via Twitter. He invited Chris to perform on the official recording. The single came out just one month prior to Bradbury’s passing. “The Veldt” peaked on the Hot 100 at #24 and was the 75th most popular song of the year. To date, deadmau5 has won 4 JUNO awards.
#14. “Beauty and a Beat” by Justin Bieber
Believe was the most internationally successful Canadian album of the year and was certified double platinum at home. Of several singles released from the LP, we favoured this one best which is just a blast with its playful style and funky bass. The song was composed by internationally acclaimed songwriters Max Martin (Sweden), Anton Zaslavski (Russian-German), and Savan Kotecha (American) and it features a short and sweet spoken word segment with Nicki Minaj. “Beauty and a Beat” debuted on the Hot 100 at #47, disappeared the following week, and then re-entered 16 weeks later, peaking at #4. It has gone gold. Justin Bieber has won three JUNO awards.
#13. “So Happy I Could Die” by Bif Naked
JUNO-nominated and platinum-selling (not to mention humourist, motivational speaker, and comic cartoonist) Bif Naked in recent years underwent a successful battle against cancer. This year she released an album of mostly acoustic versions of her biggest hits plus a couple of new songs, Bif Naked Forever: (Acoustic Hits & Other Delights). In teaming up with Ryan Stewart, “So Happy I Could Die” is her welcome tribute to dance pop with a fantastic beat punctuated by her classic and lovable nasally vocals. “So here goes. I decided that’s enough. And it shows. I’m a fighter; I am tough” pretty much sums up the lessons she has learned from her experience.
#12. “Satellite” by Andrew Allen
Vernon, British Columbia, situated in the beautiful Okanagan valley, is the hometown of emerging recording artist Andrew Allen. Having enjoyed some radio hits, most notably the 3-million-plus YouTube viewed “Loving You Tonight”, Andrew launched his delicious dance-pop tune “Satellite” after scoring a charting single “I Want You” earlier in the year. Pulsating, percolating, and bubbling ’round the maple tree, the song is quite the embodiment of the touring lifestyle to which Allen has no doubt grown accustomed. 2012 was the year that Canadians became dance pop specialists and Allen is yet another example of such greatness.
#11. “Kiss You Inside Out” (Bilingual Version) by Hedley ft. Andrée-Anne Leclerc
The addition of Star Academie finalist Andrée-Anne Leclerc to perform a bilingual duet with Hedley’s Jacob Hoggard converted a good song into a great song and transformed something that could pass for a tune from any country into one that was distinctively Canadian. “Kiss You Inside Out”, released outside of JUNO-winning album Storms as a separate single, reached #2 on the weekly Hot 100 and was the second biggest Canadian hit of the year (after “Call Me Maybe”) in 19th spot on the year-end Billboard Hot 100. Given the beauty of musical composition, with a sweet and catchy melody, we are not surprised that this has become a triple-platinum single.
Dean Brody’s expertise on Canadian girls has now been verified, as his Top 40 single has now gone gold. How about a solid gold hoop, a prospect that would have James Naismith bouncingly happy? Nelly Furtado’s “Big Hoops” has been certified gold. “Lullaby” has rocked to sleep a gold nickel … back. Carly Rae Jepsen’s curiosity about gold has been fulfilled, as title track off her EP has attained such honours. The Biebs has a pair: one he will carry with him all around the world and the other he will keep as long as you love him.
Platinum? If you want it, you have to kiss it, inside out. Hedley has done so.
Previously, we ran a poll to ask about your favourite best-selling Canadian album (those nominated for the Album of the Year JUNO). Here, we would like to know your favourite of the 5 albums nominated for Pop Album of the Year at the 2012 JUNOs. Let the voting begin!
Don’t forget to share this post on Facebook and Twitter so that other fans of your favourite artist can vote too!
For those of you having trouble waiting for the JUNO nominations next month, a nice prelude to them (especially in terms of new artists) are the Canadian Radio Music Awards. The CRMAs are holding their 15th annual gala luncheon, this year at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto on March 23. The awards look at first-time top-charting Canadian artists, with the exception of the Fans Choice Award and SOCAN award. The categories are based on the different radio “formats”. In spite of the advent of digital music, the radio is still the biggest confirmation for a new artist and the first major milestone on the road to superstardom. It is possibly the most exciting aspect of a recording artist’s career to hear, for the first time, his or her song being played on the radio. The nominations for the 2012 gala are as follows:
CRMA 2012 NOMINEES
BLEEKER RIDGE – SMALL TOWN DEAD
JONAS & THE MASSIVE ATTRACTION – BIG SLICE
THE REASON – THE LONGEST HIGHWAY HOME
THE SHEEPDOGS – I DON’T KNOW
USS – N/A OK
CHR (Contemporary Hit Radio)
ALYSSA REID – ALONE AGAIN
ANJULIE – BRAND NEW CHICK
MARTIN SOLVEIG & DRAGONETTE – HELLO
RAGHAV – FIRE
THESE KIDS WEAR CROWNS – JUMPSTART
DANCE / URBAN / RHYTHMIC
DEADMAU5 – SOFI NEEDS A LADDER
KRISTINA MARIA – LET’S PLAY
MARTIN SOLVEIG & DRAGONETTE – HELLO
MIA MARTINA – LATIN MOON
SUNLOVERZ FEAT. ROSETTE – FIRE
HOT AC (Adult Contemporary)
ALYSSA REID – ALONE AGAIN
KRISTINA MARIA – LET’S PLAY
MARTIN SOLVEIG & DRAGONETTE – HELLO
NEVEREST – ABOUT US
RAGHAV – FIRE
MAINSTREAM AC (Adult Contemporary)
ALYSSA REID – ALONE AGAIN
JESSE LABELLE – EASIER
JUSTIN NOZUKA – HEARTLESS
MARTIN SOLVEIG & DRAGONETTE – HELLO
NEVEREST – ABOUT US
GOMIE – EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT
KIRA ISABELLA – LOVE ME LIKE THAT
MARLEE SCOTT – BEAUTIFUL MAYBE
RYAN LAIRD – I’M YOUR MAN
THE STELLAS – PERFECT
ALYSSA REID – ALONE AGAIN
FEFE DOBSON – STUTTERING
HEDLEY – INVINCIBLE
JRDN – LIKE MAGIC
SHAWN DESMAN – ELECTRIC
SOCAN SONG OF THE YEAR
Songwriters: Alyssa Reid / Jamie Appleby / Raynford Humphrey / Thomas Kelly / Billy Steinberg
Recorded by: Alyssa Reid
Songwriters: Martin Solveig / Martina Sorbara
Recorded by: Martin Solveig & Dragonette
Songwriters: Pierre Bouvier / Chuck Comeau / Beatrice Martin / Ryan Petersen / Nolan Sipe
Recorded by: Simple Plan
Songwriters: Kristina Maria / Negin Djafari / Kristian Lundin
Recorded by: Kristina Maria
Songwriters: Fefe Dobson / Claude Kelly / Michael Mentore / Jonathan Rotem
Recorded by: Fefe Dobson
UPDATE: Find the winners HERE.
Genres: Pop, Rock
Jacob Hoggard – lead vocals
Chris Crippin – guitars
Tommy Mac – bass
Dave Rosin – drums
• 2 double-platinum albums
• 13 Top 40 Singles, most of which made the year-end Top 100
• Biggest Canadian song of the year 2010 (“Perfect”)
• Triple Platinum single: “Kiss You Inside Out”
• 18 Juno Nominations, including 2 wins
Studio Albums and Hit Singles
• 2x Platinum
• Hit Singles: “On My Own” (#1), “Trip” (#11)
2007: Famous Last Words
• Hit Singles: “Never Too Late” (#4 WP; #23 YE), “For the Nights I Can’t Remember” (#6 WP; #14 YE), “Old School” (#10 WP; #61 YE)
2009: The Show Must Go
• 2x Platinum
• Hit Singles: “Cha Ching” (#6 WP; #58 YE*), “Perfect” (#7 WP; #18 YE), “Don’t Talk to Strangers” (#11 WP; #54 YE), ”Hands Up” (#27 WP; #96 YE)
• Hit Singles: “Invincible” (Weekly Chart Peak #9, Double Platinum, 69th of 2011 and 97th of 2012), “One Life” (Weekly Chart Peak #16, Platinum, 57th of 2012)
Non-Album Hit Singles
2012: “Kiss You Inside Out”
• Triple Platinum.
• Peaked at #2 on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100 was the 19th biggest song of 2012.
• In addition to the English-only version, a special bilingual version was released, with a video, featuring Andrée-Anne Leclerc.
WP – Weekly Peak
YE – Year-End
* Cha Ching was the 54th biggest song of 2009 and the 92nd biggest song of 2010.
Hedley formed in Abbotsford, B.C. in 2004. Lead singer Jacob Hoggard’s bandmates bet him $150 that he would not audition for Canadian Idol and lost the bet; Hoggard auditioned, became one of the second season’s ten finalists and ended up finishing third, behind winner Kalan Porter and 2nd place Theresa Sokyrka. After leaving the show, Hoggard decided to reform the band and recruited Crippin, Mac, and Rosin. Perhaps due mostly to Hoggard’s high public profile resulting from his Canadian Idol days, the band was signed by Universal.
In 2005, Hedley released its debut (self-titled) album, and “On My Own” became a chart-topping hit single in Canada. MuchMusic brought music videos of all singles released into heavy rotation for the next two years. The album was eventually certified double-platinum.
Beginning a tradition of releasing a studio album every two years during an odd-numbered year, Hedley released its second album, Famous Last Words, in 2007. Three singles from the album peaked in the Top 10. “For the Nights I Can’t Remember” finished as the 14th biggest song of 2008.
The Show Must Go followed in 2009. “Cha Ching” sprinted up the charts peaking at #6. Hedley performed this song during the closing ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver. “Perfect”, a piano ballad, was the most successful Canadian single in 2010, the 18th biggest song of the year. The song won the JUNO award for video of the year and was their most successful song south of the border, making it to #25 on the Billboard Adult Pop chart. The band toured with Faber Driver, Boys Like Girls, The Stereos, and Fefe Dobson.
Heralding their fourth album Storms, released late in 2011, was the single “Invincible”. The band released a new non-album single in 2012, “Kiss You Inside Out” which peaked at #2 on Billboard and became their best-selling single (Triple Platinum). A special bilingual version was recorded which featured Star Academie finalist Andrée-Anne Leclerc.
Hedley takes its name from both a town in British Columbia as well as a street from their hometown of Abbotsford. Hedley has toured with Simple Plan, Nickelback, and Bon Jovi.
Hedley’s Official Site
As mainstream pop and rock was being taken over by contestants of Canadian Idol and Star Academie, artists who signed with record labels directly began to produce music that was on the fringes—either ultra-soft or ultra-hard. This resulted in a polarization of music. On the soft side was David Foster-produced jazz-singing virtuoso Michael Bublé, the biggest new star to arise in the middle of the decade. Folky Ariane Moffatt, Mes Aïeux, and Gregory Charles were other stars on the mellow side of the spectrum. On the hard side were grungy Nickelback copycat bands like Simple Plan, Billy Talent, and Three Days Grace. Heavily-tattooed Canadian Idol contestant, Jacob Hoggard, who finished 3rd in the second season, became the lead singer of grunge outfit Hedley. The only prominent artist, outside of the talent shows, to stand in the comfortable middle was Ontario’s Fefe Dobson.
Across the river from Quebec City, pianist-guitarist, singer-songwriter, Juno and Felix award winner Ariane Moffatt hit the airwaves. Her 2002 debut release, Aquanaute, was certified platinum due in large part to the hits “Pointe de Mire” and “Poussière d’ange”. Five of her singles were to be nominated for the Felix Song of the Year award, “Je veux tout” winning such a prize at the 2008 gala. The album on which the song appeared, Tous les Sans won the Juno for Francophone Album of the Year. Another female voice emerged this year, coming from Toronto’s former suburb of Scarborough. She was a beautiful model of mixed English, French, Aboriginal, and Jamaican ancestry. The singer-songwriter scored her first of three Top 10 hits, “Bye Bye Boyfriend”, her debut , self-titled, album attaining platinum sales. Her name was Fefe Dobson. Andrée Watters, from the northeastern Quebec City borough of Charlesbourg, released her first of three Felix song of the year nominees, “Si exceptionnel”. She won the Felix for best rock album of the year. Sadly, her brother Patrick was killed in a 2007 helicopter crash near Fort McMurray, AB, while combatting a forest fire.
The most significant male artist to debut this year was a multi-talented Vaughan, ON native with Portuguese roots named Shawn Desman. His “Shook” made it to #3 on the charts. His 2005 album Back for More won the Juno for best R&B release. Besides singing, he plays the piano, produces, dances, and does choreography.
From Mississauga, ON, high school band Pezz transformed itself into Billy Talent, signing with Warner Music. Sales of their first (self-titled) heavy metal release under the major label, reached triple platinum status and won the Juno for album of the year. Their song “Try Honesty” was nominated for a song of the year Juno.
Outside the country, the biggest Canadian hits this year were Avril Lavigne’s gorgeous power ballad “I’m with You”, Shania Twain’s soothing “Forever and For Always”, and Nickelback’s grungy “Someday”. Within the country, Celine Dion revamped Cyndi Lauper’s “I Drove All Night” (originally written for Roy Orbison) and topped the charts. Canadian Idol winner Ryan Malcolm’s “Something More” was also a #1 hit. Despite being a French song, “Meme Les Anges” made it to #2 on the charts due to Audrey De Montigny’s high-profile exposure on Canadian Idol. Celine Dion’s “Tout l’or des hommes” was as successful. Nicola Ciccone’s beautiful “J’t'aime tout court” was song of the year in French Canada and Nelly Furtado’s fusion piece “Powerless” in English Canada.
There were three albums released this year that sold half a million copies: Sarah McLachlan’s Afterglow, Nickelback’s The Long Road, and the compilation Star Academie (featuring songs sung by the various contestants of the show).
First and foremost this year was Vancouver’s Michael Bublé. He debuted last year with his self-titled album, and, thanks to the blockbuster film Spider-Man, he scored his first big hit in 2004. Buble was discovered by David Foster while singing at the wedding of Caroline Mulroney, daughter of the former Prime Minister. Initially Foster was reluctant to sign him because he was unsure how the market would react to Michael’s brand of music—traditional pop and big band jazz. With the support of Paul Anka, David eventually agreed. It turned out to be a wise decision because Buble’s albums have sold 35 million copies worldwide.
In Britain, a Canadian artist scored three Top 10 hits. But in his own country, he was not as noticed. The Canadian music industry, in the interests of commercialism, has tagged along with its southern neighbours and become a blacks-and-whites only club, largely closing its doors to recording artists of Asian descent, who represent a much greater population in the country than those with African roots. Because of this racialism, artists of any and every visible minority, in order to flourish, have, rather than creating a style of rock music they can call their own, reverted to adopting African American styles of R&B and rap. This was true of Indian-Albertan Raghav. (He did sneak in some Indian-style rhythms).
Rap-R&B singer Jérôme Philippe scored a Felix-nominated song, “Pour le ghetto”. Kevin Brereton, known as k-os, grew up in Toronto and delivered the beautifully-arranged Juno song of the year, “Crabbuckit”, somewhat of an alternative reggae piece. He has managed two platinum albums and a couple of Top 20 hits.
Several new bands hit the airwaves this year, most of them dabbling in various combinations of grunge, punk, and metal. The most successful of all of them was 8-time Juno nominee, Montreal quintet Simple Plan. Recording since 2002, they enjoyed their first big hit this year, “Perfect” (not to be confused with Hedley’s song of the same name). Oddly, the lead singer Pierre Bouvier has chosen to sing with an American rather than Canadian accent. The band’s second album, Still Not Getting Any, went 4x Platinum, making it the third most successful Canadian album released this year (after Shania Twain’s Greatest Hits and Avriil Lavigne’s Under My Skin).
Drummondville, Quebec’s Les Trois Accords paid homage to Saskatchewan in their Felix-nominated song. After releasing a platinum album, they scored a couple more hits through the decade. Finger Eleven, from Burlington, ON, gave the world the international acoustic guitar hit “One Thing”. Besides Avril Lavigne, the band was the only Canadian act to appear on the U.S. Billboard year-end chart. The Scott Anderson-led group scored an even bigger hit in 2007—the grungy “Paralyzer”.
Toronto’s independent punk label Underground Operations signed Closet Monster and Hostage Life who churned out the hits “We Re-Built This City” and “Sing for the Enemy” respectively. The Trews, originally from Antigonish, NS, enjoyed a Juno-nominated song, “Not Ready to Go”. Winnipeg’s The Waking Eyes had the Top 10 hit, “Watch Your Money”.
Uruguayan-Swiss Quebecer, Carole Facal, after dabbling with snowboarding in B.C., teamed up with Dorianne Fabreg to form the duo DobaCaracol, complete with dreadlocks. Later, as a soloist, Facal, under the stage name, Caracol, scored the hit “Le Mépris”. Montréal’s Marie-Chantal Toupin came out with the power-ballad “Naître” and enjoyed two platinum albums in the decade.
Three bands broke up in the new millennium and members formed a new outfit in St. Catharines called Alexisonfire. A platinum album released this year helped them garner the Juno for New Group of the Year in 2005. At the end of the decade, member Dallas Green announced his departure. He went solo under the name City and Colour.
Big hits this year from previously profiled artists included two top fives from Avril Lavigne: the rock masterpiece “My Happy Ending” and her first Top 5 hit at home: “Don’t Tell Me”. “A prophet knows no honour in her own country?” Although her singles did better elsewhere, her albums sold better at home than abroad. Canadian Idol winner Kalan Porter had the #1 “Awake in a Dream” which became the best-selling single of all time in Canada (8x Platinum). Star Academie’s Marie Elanie Thibert had the second best-selling single of all-time, “Toi L’inoubliable”. Shania Twain’s “Party for Two” fittingly made it to #2. The Felix song of the year was “Les Étoiles filantes” by Les Cowboys Fringants.
One of the biggest international hits of the decade came out this year from a Vernon, BC lad named Daniel Powter. He was bullied as a child for studying the violin (since when is there something wrong with the violin?). He switched to piano but struggled with dyslexia. “Bad Day” was released first in the U.K. where it made it to #2. At home, it was a Top 10 hit. But in 2006 the song not only made it to #1, it was the biggest song of the year in the United States. “Voyager vers toi” was a hit in Quebec for Marc Dupré. Hamilton’s Tomi Swick scored a radio hit called “A Night Like This” which helped him win the Juno for New Artist of the Year in 2006.
Third-place finalist of Canadian Idol, Jacob Hoggard, formed the successful Abbotsford, BC rock band Hedley who enjoyed six Top 10 hits through the decade, two double-platinum albums, and, until now, 15 Juno nominations. From the same city as Les Trois Accords, folk band Kaïn scored subsequent hits “Embarque ma belle” and “Mexico”. Ska band Bedouin Soundclash won the Juno for best new group and “When the Night Feels My Song” was nominated for best song. In 2007, they scored the Top 10 hit “Walls Fall Down”.
Brandon, Manitoba’s country singer Amanda Stott crossed over onto the pop charts with the #1 hit song, “Paper Rain”.
There were not too many hit songs this year from Canadian artists. The only other big hit, besides those mentioned above, was chart-topping “Alive” from Canadian Idol winner Melissa O’Neil who incidentally (and refreshingly) is half Chinese. Star Academie contestant Annie Blanchard won the Felix song of the year award with “Évangéline” and Michael Buble’s “Home” won the equivalent Juno award.
Hit albums this year were Nickelback’s All the Right Reasons (7x Platinum), Michael Bublé’s album of the year Juno winner It’s Time, and Céline Dion’s On ne change pas.
Nickelback’s lead singer Chad Kroeger started his own record label called 604 Records. It signed the Vancouver band Marianas Trench whose song “Say Anything” was a #3 hit. The Adam Gontier-fronted outfit Three Days Grace from Norwood, ON recorded the double-platinum Juno-nominated album One-X but did not manage any big hit singles. Speaking of double-platinum albums, Mes Aïeux achieved one and also won the Felix song of the year for folk hit “Dégénérations”. They have been named Group of the Year three times at the Felix galas. Combining male-female lead vocals, pop group Alfa Rococo enjoyed a few big hits in Québec, including “Les Jours de pluie” this year. Stabilo, a rock band from Maple Ridge, BC, scored the raio hit “Flawed Design”. Montreal’s alternative rock band Mobile won a Juno for New Group of the Year in 2007 thanks to their debut album released this year, Tomorrow Starts Today.
Sherbrooke, Quebec’s Vincent Vallières had been around since 1999 but began scoring some hits, like “Je pars à pied”. Retired hockey player Étienne Drapeau turned to singing and enjoyed the hit “Je l’ai jamais dit à personne”. Montreal’s Gregory Charles, of Trinidadian origin, had a very popular debut album, the triple-platinum I Think of You. Dumas’ “Au gré des saisons” was popular this year.
Exotic Indian-Irish-Italian beauty Cindy Daniel had a very big hit, “Sous une pluie d’étoiles” and Egypt-born Chantal Chamandy had the platinum-selling hit single “Feels Like Love”.
Nelly Furtado scored three Top 10 international hits this year and two more next year with her 5x Platinum album Loose which won the album of the year Juno. Her song “Promiscuous” was named song of the year. Canadian Idol winner Eva Avila topped the charts performing in American R&B style for her song “Meant to Fly”. Nickelback scored three big hits this year.
Coming up are mini-profiles on semi-major artists Billy Talent, Gregory Charles, Fefe Dobson, Marie-Élaine Thibert, Finger Eleven, Shawn Desman, Mes Aïeux, and Marianas Trench. Following that will be features on major artists Michael Bublé, Hedley, Simple Plan, Raghav, and Ariane Moffatt.
Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog