Éric Lapointe

Born: 1969, Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec
Debut: 1994
Genre: Rock

Achievements

• 2 Juno Nominations
• Won the Felix for Album Artist in 2000
• 6 songs nominated for the Felix Song of the Year award
• 3 platinum and 2 multi-platinum albums in Canada
• 30 major hits on various charts in Quebec
• Worked on soundtracks for four motion pictures including the Genie Best Picture winner Bon Cop, Bad Cop

Albums and Singles

1994: Obsession

• Juno-nominated album
• 2x Platinum
• Singles: “Danger” (#15 QC), “Terre promise” (#5 QC), “N’importe quoi” (#3 QC), “Marie-Stone” (#13 QC), “Misère” (#17 QC), “L’Exquise” (#8 QC)

1996: Invitez les vautours

• Platinum
• Singles: “Priez!” (#10 QC), “Bobépine” (#11 QC), “Je rêve encore” (#8 QC), “Deux fois la même histoire” (#8 QC), “Loadé comme un gun” (#8 QC), “D’l’amour, j’en veux pus” (#14 QC)

1998: “Les Boys” (Non-album single)

• #9 QC
• From the soundtrack of the film Les Boys II

1999: À l’ombre de l’ange

• 2x Platinum
• Singles: “Rien à regretter” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee), “Mon ange” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee), “Ma gueule” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee)

2002: Adrénaline (Double Live Album)

• Platinum
• Singles: “Qu’est-ce que ça peut ben faire” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee), “Un beau grand slow” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee)

2004: Lapointe coupable

• Platinum
• Singles: “La Bartendresse”

2008: Ma peau

• Singles: “1500 Miles” (Felix Song of the Year Nominee)

2013: Jour de nuit

Eric Lapointe - Jour de nuit

• Singles: “Ca me manque”, “Désaccordé”

Eric Lapointe was born in the Montreal suburb of Pointe-aux-Trembles (annexed into the city in 2002). While most Francophone stars were performing folk and pop songs, Eric distinguished himself with a harder-edged rock sound, decking himself with ample jewellery, dressing mostly in black, and revealing arms covered in tattoos; he became exceptionally popular. With such a rebellious (i.e. “cool”) look, it took the industry in Quebec to warm up to him, but after scoring a slew of hits and attaining multi-platinum album sales, he finally saw his songs being nominated for Felix awards five years after his debut.

Born into a family of three brothers (he being the oldest), he started out musically by asking, at age 9, his father, a manager at Zellers, for a toy guitar. He received a real guitar instead. His uncle taught him how to play. By the time he was 15, he was touring the province. A year later, he became a technician for his brother’s band. Growing up was difficult as his family moved 13 times by the time he was 16. Having to be the new kid at school several times, he had difficulty making friends.

Eric was discovered by none other than the president of the Quebec Record Industry Association, ADISQ, Yves-François Blanchet who oversaw his early career. He began gigs in the bar circuit and at colleges, supplementing his income with various blue collar jobs. After writing some original songs, he organized a showcase for record industry scouts at the Club Soda bar. Patrice Duchesne of Disques Gamma offered him a deal. His debut album, Obsession, came out in 1994. The album was produced by Aldo Nova.

In the beginning, radio stations refused to air Lapointe’s songs, saying that his harder rock style was not radio-friendly. He responded by making a music video for “Terre Promise” the airing of which on television triggered a surge of album sales. He became so popular that on day a crowd of 45,000 people gathered on the streets to see him. Obsession went on to sell a quarter-million copies in Canada.

Two years later, his sophomore release, Invitez les vautours, sold 180,000 copies. With his third studio album, À l’ombre de l’ange, a double-platinum seller, Lapointe’s songs began receiving Felix nominations. He followed with a double live album, and the platinum Lapointe coupable in 2006. During his first dozen years as a recording artist, Eric managed to sell 900,000 French-language records in Canada. A greatest hits package came out that year, entitled N’importe Qui. Ma peau came out in 2008.

The Rolling Stones became acquainted with his work and invited him to open their concerts in Paris along with Bon Jovi. Beginning in 1997, Lapointe was asked to provide songs for motion picture soundtracks, Les Boys, and its two sequels. In 2006, Patrick Huard, one of the writers of Bon Cop, Bad Cop, asked him to contribute a song to the film (“Tatoo”).

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Loreena McKennitt

Born: 1957, Morden, MB
Debut: 1985
Breakthrough: 1991
Pop Breakthrough: 1997
Genre: New Age, Celtic, World

Studio Albums and Singles

1985: Elemental

1985: To Drive the Cold Winter Away

1989: Parallel Dreams

1991: The Visit

• Juno Award for Best Roots & Traditional Album
• 4x Platinum
• Singles: “The Lady of Shalott”, “All Souls Night“, “Courtyard Lullaby”, “Greensleeves”

1994: The Mask and the Mirror

• Juno Award for Best Roots & Traditional Album
• 3x Platinum
• Singles: “The Bonny Swans”, “Santiago”, “The Dark Night of the Soul”, “The Mystic’s Dreams”

1995: A Winter Garden (EP)

• Gold
• Singles: “God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen”

1997: The Book of Secrets

• 4x Platinum
• Singles: “The Mummers’ Dance” (#10), “Marco Polo”, “Dante’s Prayer”

2006: An Ancient Muse

• Platinum
• Singles: “Caravanserai”, “Penelope’s Song”

2008: A Midwinter Night’s Dream

• Singles: “The Seven Rejoices of Mary”, “Noel Nouvelet!”

2010: The Wind That Shakes the Barley

With an angelic soprano voice, expertise of musical composition, love of classic poetry, and mastery of the piano, harp, and accordion, Loreena McKennitt became Canada’s premier new age recording artist. Beginning with what limited resources she had, she gradually rose to fame domestically and internationally. Six years after her debut she become a household name and another six years she scored a Top 10 hit on the national singles chart. She has managed to sell 14 million records worldwide.

Small town Manitoba-born McKennitt was the daughter of a livestock dealer and nurse. Early on she wanted to become a veterinarian but, born out of an appreciation for Celtic music, she learned to play the harp. In Winnipeg, she studied piano with Olga Friesen and voice with Elma Gislason. She performed in musicals and at folk clubs and sang at the Winnipeg Folk Festival when she was 17.

When she was 24, Loreena relocated to Stratford, Ontario where she launched her musical career. She began busking in Toronto, Vancouver, and London, England to earn money for her debut album, Elemental, which was released in 1985 the year that she performed at the World Expo in Japan. McKennitt established her own independent record label, Quinlan Road. All of her albums were released on this label.

Before recording, McKennitt likes to do thorough research which forms the basis of the album’s concept. She travelled to Ireland to become informed and inspired by the country’s history, folklore, culture, and geography before composing and recording her first few albums.

She released albums at two year intervals: a Christmas album in 1987 and Parallel Dreams in 1989. By this time, she was attracting the attention of the National Film Board of Canada who asked her to provide music for their documentary The Burning Times about witch hunts in Europe.

She reworked the main theme into “Tango for Evora” including it on her 1991 release The Visit which became her breakthrough album, selling a million copies worldwide and attaining 4x platinum sales in Canada. The album includes a musical rendition of Albert Lord Tennyson’s poem “The Lady of Shalott” and her interpretation of “Greensleeves”. It was perhaps the album opener, “All Souls Night”, which became the most famous track. “Bonny Portmore” was featured in the Highlander series. The album won a Juno award. McKennitt performed at the 1991 Edinburgh Festival in Scotland.

She toured Europe with Mike Oldfield in 1993 and remained in Spain to study the Galicia region, its Celtic and Arabic roots, shaping the inspiration for her next studio album, The Mask and the Mirror. The 1994 release sold over 300,000 copies in Canada and won her second Juno. A five-track Christmas EP came out in 1995 which included a musical adaptation of “Snow”, a poem by Canada’s foremost poet, Archibald Lampman.

In 1997, McKennitt released The Book of Secrets and scored her first hit single, “The Mummer’s Dance”, which peaked at #10 on the national RPM charts. It was a hit in the United States as well, helping the album to attain double-platinum status south of the border. It matched sales of The Visit in Canada. At the height of her success, however, tragedy struck.

In 1998, Loreena’s fiancé Ronald Rees, his brother Richard, and their close friend Gregory Cook took a boat out on Georgian Bay, Lake Huron. With echoes of the hurricane-sinking of the steamship Asia in 1882, an accident took the lives of the three men. McKennitt was plunged into mourning. At the time, she was working on a live album (from performances in Toronto and Paris) and decided to donate proceeds to her newly-founded Cook-Rees Memorial Fund for Water Search and Safety. After the release of the album, McKennitt announced her retreat from recording to grieve and limited her performances to charitable and special events only. In 2002, she performed for the Golden Jubilee of the Queen in Manitoba. In 2003, she joined Rita MacNeil and Philip Glass at the National Arts Centre for a concert sponsored by environmental organization The Sierra Club.

Deeply affected by the drowning, it took eight years before she felt ready to record again. The result was 2006’s platinum-seller An Ancient Muse the composition and recording of which was preceded by travel to and studies about The Silk Road. Two years later, the Christmas album A Midwinter Night’s Dream appeared. In 2010, McKennitt released The Wind That Shakes the Barley.

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Garou

Born: 1972, Sherbrooke, Quebec
Debut: 1998
Genre: Pop

Achievements

• 3 Juno Nominations
• Won the Felix for Male Artist of the Year Twice
• 5 songs nominated for the Felix Song of the Year award
• Diamond Album in France (Seul, 2000)
• 3x Platinum Francophone Album in Canada (Seul, 2000)
• One of only four Canadian singers in the Top 100 best-selling of all-time in France
• Co-Sung the 3rd biggest single of all-time in France (“Belle”, 1998)
• Has a song in the Top 100 best-selling singles of all-time in France (“Seul”, 2000)
• Holds the SNEP record for the most weeks at #1

Studio Albums and Singles

1998: “Belle

• From the musical “Notre-Dame de Paris”
• Co-sung with fellow Canadian Daniel Lavoie and France’s Patrick Fiori
• 3rd best-selling single of all-time in France (2.2 million copies)
• #1 in both France and Belgium
• Nominated for the Felix song of the year award

1998: “Dieu que le monde est injuste”

• Nominated for the Felix song of the year award

2000: Seul

• Juno-nominated album
• 3x Platinum
• Diamond in France

• Singles: “Seul” (#1 France and Belgium; Felix song of the year nominee), “Je n’attendais que vous” (#20 BEL), “Sous le vent” (-w/ Celine Dion- #14; #1 FR & BEL; Felix song of the year nominee)

2003: Reviens

• Juno-nominated album
• 2x Platinum in France
• Singles: “Reviens” (#9 FR), “Et si on dormait” (#2 BEL), “La Rivière de notre enfance” (-w/ Michel Sardou- #1 FR & BEL), “L’Aveu” (Felix song of the year nominee)

2006: Garou

• Platinum in France
• Singles: “L’Injustice” (#11 FR), “Je suis le même” (#1 QC)

2008: Piece of My Soul

• Gold
• Singles: “Stand Up” (#6 BEL), “First Day of My Life”, (#13 BEL)

2009: Gentleman cambrioleur

2010: Version integrale

• Singles: “J’avais besoin d’être là” (#8 BEL)

2012: Rhythm and Blues

• Bilingual album released in France
• Singles: “Le jour se leve”

2013: Au milieu de ma vie

Garou - Au milieu de ma vie

2014: Xmas Blues

Garou_XmasBlues_LR

Garou was born as Pierre Garand in Sherbrooke. His stage name is a play on his surname and the French term loup-garou which means werewolf.

Garou began learning the guitar at age 3 from his father and later learned the piano and organ. As a child he wanted to become an archaeologist. He attended a private school for boys and took trumpet in music class. With his classmates, he formed the school band The Windows and Doors which played mainly covers of Beatles’ songs. Garou got into the spirit of performing, printing tickets, and making posters.

After graduating from high school, he enlisted in the Canadian Armed Forces’ regimental band as a trumpeter. After he left the army, a friend invited him to a bar to hear Louis Alary perform. In-between songs, he was offered the microphone for a chance to dazzle the audience. It was so good that Garou was offered a regular gig. His reputation spread and soon he was performing with local celebrities.

In 1995, he started an R&B band called The Untouchables. He was offered recording contracts but felt he wasn’t yet ready. In the summer of 1997, Luc Plamondon went to see a performance of The Untouchables. After the performance he invited Garou to audition for a part in his upcoming international musical Notre-Dame de Paris. He sang some verses of “Belle” and “Dieu que le monde est injuste”. The next morning Plamondon’s people phoned him to say, “You are Quasimodo!”

Garou was stunned to say the least. Months later, he found himself performing before thousands in Paris, Montreal, Brussels, and London. In 1999, he won the Felix for Discovery of the Year award. The recorded song “Belle” from the musical, sung by himself, fellow-Canadian pop star Daniel Lavoie, and France’s Patrick Fiori, became the 3rd best-selling single of all-time in France, staying on top of the charts for 18 weeks.

This led to a record deal and in 2000 Garou’s debut solo album appeared, Seul. With its title-track topping the charts for an astonishing 11 weeks, as well as the #1 “Sous le Vent” (sung with Celine Dion), the album was certified diamond in France and attained sales of 3x platinum in Canada, something very difficult for a French-language album to do.

After a live album, Garou came out with Reviens in 2003. “La Rivière de notre enfance” sung with the legendary Michel Sardou became his fourth chart-topper. A self-titled album appeared in 2006 which spawned the hit “Je suis le meme”, a #1 hit in Quebec. An English crossover album came out two years later entitled Piece of My Soul and featured the Rob Thomas song “Stand Up” as well as Spice Girl Melanie C’s hit “First Day of My Life”. Two more French albums appeared in 2009 and 2010.

In the list of Top 100 best-selling singers of all-time in France, there are only four Canadians. After Celine Dion, the 2nd biggest Canadian singer is Garou who has outsold Lara Fabian and Roch Voisine there.

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Shania Twain

Born: 1965, Windsor, ON
Debut: 1993
Genre: Country, Country Pop

Achievements

• 3 double-diamond albums
• 11th best-selling album of all-time worldwide (Come on Over)
• Best-selling album worldwide by a Canadian artist (Come on Over)
• Has sold 65 million records worldwide
• Inducted into the Music Hall of Fame (2011)
• Star on the Walk of Fame (2003)
• Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (2011)
• 19 Top Ten Singles on the country charts, including 13 number ones
• 13 Top Thirty Singles on the pop charts, including 6 Top Tens
• 3rd biggest song of 1998 in the United States (“You’re Still the One”)
• Five American Grammy Awards
• Won all 12 Juno Awards for which she was nominated
• Juno for Artist of the Year, 2003

Primary Albums and Singles

1993: Shania Twain

• 2x Platinum

1995: The Woman in Me

• 2x Diamond
• Singles: “Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under” (#1 CC), “Any Man of Mine” (#1 CC), “The Woman in Me” (#1 CC), “I’m Outta Here” (#1 CC), “You Win My Love” (#1 CC), “No One Needs to Know” (#1 CC), “Home Ain’t Where His Heart Is” (#10 CC), “God Bless the Child” (#7 CC)

1997: Come on Over

• 2x Diamond
• 40 million copies sold worldwide
• 11th best-selling album of all-time worldwide
• Best-Selling album of all-time worldwide by a Canadian artist
• Singles: “Love Gets Me Every Time”, (#1 CC), “Don’t Be Stupid” (#1 CC), “You’re Still the One” (#1 CC; #7 PC), “From This Moment On” (#1 CC; #13 PC), “When” (#14 PC), “Honey, I’m Home” (#1 CC), “That Don’t Impress Me Much” (#2 CC; #5 PC), “Man! I Feel Like a Woman!” (#2 CC; #18 PC), “You’ve Got a Way” (#1 CC; #17 PC), “Come on Over” (#1 CC), “Rock This Country” (#3 CC), “I’m Holdin’ On to Love” (#4 CC)

2002: Up!

• 2x Diamond
• Singles: “I’m Gonna Getcha Good!” (#2 PC), “Up!” (#2 PC), “Forever and for Always” (#5 PC), “Ka-Ching!” (#8 UK), “Thank You Baby!” (#11 UK), “When You Kiss Me” (#21 UK)

2004: Greatest Hits

• 6x Platinum
• Singles: “Party for Two” (#2 PC), “Don’t” (#24 PC), “I Ain’t No Quitter” (#22 PC)

Legend: CC = Country Charts, PC = Pop Charts, UK = United Kingdom Pop Charts

“I saw this little girl up on stage with a guitar and it absolutely blew me away. … She sang a few songs that she had written, and I thought to myself, this kid is like nineteen years old, where does she get this? This is from a person who’s lived sixty years.”
                                                                                                               —Mary Bailey

Sharon Morrison and Clarence Edwards of Windsor, Ontario had a third daughter in 1965 whom they named Eileen. Two years later they divorced and Sharon took her three daughters to Timmins, Ontario where she was soon remarried to Jerry Twain. The family was extremely poor and Eileen’s parents often got into violent fights. Eileen began singing songs by The Carpenters, Dolly Parton, and Linda Ronstadt in bars at the age of eight to earn extra money for the family. She was invited to perform on the “Tommy Hunter Show” on CBC television when she was 13. She became lead singer of the local band Longshot which covered pop songs.

Eileen joined her father’s tree planting business in the harsh environment of northern Ontario. During her leisure time, she would play the guitar in the forest and write songs. In 1983, Eileen graduated from high school. By this time, Longshot had disbanded and she joined the band Flirt which toured the province. She also started singing lessons from Ian Garrett and cleaned his home as payment. She was eventually noticed by Toronto DJ Stan Campbell which led to her singing backing vocals for Tim Denis’ song “Heavy on the Sunshine”.

Regional country star Mary Bailey had heard Eileen perform in Sudbury and was so impressed that she invited Twain down to Nashville, USA introducing her to record producer Tony Migliore who was working on Kelita Haverland’s album. Twain was asked to provide backing vocals on the song “Too Hot to Handle”. This was in the fall of 1985. Twain and Bailey moved in together as flatmates.

After a number of false starts, Twains’ musical trajectory was interrupted in November, 1987, when her mother and stepfather were killed in a car accident. She had to return to Timmins to care for her younger siblings, taking them all to Huntsville, Ontario where she supported them by earning money by performing at a nearby resort.

After a few years, Twain’s younger siblings were old enough to make it on their own. She put together a demo tape of her songs and her Huntsville manager presented them to record executives in 1991. Mercury Records of Nashville offered her a contract. It was during this time that she settled on the stage name Shania.

Her self-titled debut album came out in 1993. Although it did not spawn any significant hit singles, it drew positive reviews from critics and caught the attention of British genius producer Robert John “Mutt” Lange, who had scored huge hits with Bryan Adams, AC/DC, Foreigner, and Def Leppard. He volunteered to co-write and produce Twain’s next album. They met in Nashville in June. Six months later, they married.

The songs they wrote contained catchy musical hooks and cheeky, pun-filled lyrics, and the production showcased a slick, sexy contemporary sound, unlike anything gone before in country music. The resulting album, The Woman in Me, was released in 1995 and its first single, “Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under?” shot up the country charts to number one. It was not to be the only chart-topping single from the album. Five more songs went straight to number one. And the album, itself, became the second in Canadian history to be certified double-diamond at home (after Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill).

Come on Over appeared in 1997 and did even better. With it, Twain became the only Canadian artist, up to the present day, to score a second double-diamond album at home. The album spawned an unprecedented seven number one singles on the country charts, generated six Top 20 singles on the pop charts, produced the third biggest song of the year 1998 on the Billboard Hot 100, sold 40 million copies worldwide, and became the 11th best-selling album of all-time (1st by a Canadian artist).

In Y2K, Twain and Lange moved into a mansion on the shore of Lake Geneva in Switzerland and had a son the following year.

2002’s Up! included two discs with the same track listings. The green disc was a country mix of the songs while the red disc was a pop mix. Apparently there was a third blue disc available, in the style of Indian music with parts recorded in Mumbai. Up! became Twain’s third double-diamond album in Canada. The album became very successful in Europe with singles released there that were not in North America. Twain also made many appearances on Britain’s Top of the Pops. The following year, Shania was named Female Artist of the Year at the Junos and was given a star on the Walk of Fame in Toronto.

A greatest hits album came out in 2004 which included a few new songs. It sold over 600,000 copies in Canada.

Twain mostly disappeared from the limelight until announcing her divorcing Lange in 2008. Afterwards, she married Swiss businessman Frederic Thiebaud and came out with an autobiography, From This Moment On. She was inducted into the Music Hall of Fame and received a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame in 2011. She revealed, in an interview with George Stroumboulopoulos, that she was suffering from dysphonia which had affected her singing, preventing her from releasing further material. But in June of that year, Twain’s first single in six years was released: “Today Is Your Day”, co-produced by David Foster and Nathan Chapman. She also announced that she will be headlining Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas for two years beginning December 1st, 2012.

                    Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Isabelle Boulay

Born: 1972, Sainte-Félicité, QC
Debut: 1996
Genre: Pop

Achievements

• 4 Juno Nominations
• Won the Felix for Female Artist of the Year 7 Times
• 7 songs nominated for the Felix Song of the Year award
• Diamond Album in France (Mieux qu’ici bas, 2000)
• 20th biggest song of the year 2000 in France (“Parle-Moi”)

Studio Albums and Singles

1996: Fallait pas

• Singles: “J’enrage” (#7 WP), “La vie devant toi” (#7 WP), “Et mon coeur en prend plein la gueule” (#19 WP), “Tu n’as pas besoin” (#9 WP)

1998: États d’amour

• Platinum
• Singles: “Je t’oublierai, je t’oublierai” (#33 France; Felix-Nominated), “Le Saule” (Felix-Nominated), “J’ai mal à l’amour” (Felix-Nominated), “La Lune”, “États d’amour”

2000: Mieux qu’ici-bas

• Diamond in France
• Juno-Nominated Album
• Singles: “Parle-moi“, (#1 Belgium; #2 France; #20 YE France), “Un Jour ou l’autre” (#22 BEL; #31 FR), “Jamais assez loin” (Felix-Nominated), “Mieux qu’ici-bas”

2004: Tout un jour

• Singles: “C’est quoi, c’est l’habitude”, “Tout au bout de nos peines”, (#3 FR; #7 BEL; #23 Switzerland)

2007: De retour à la source

• Platinum
• Juno-Nominated Album
• Singles: “Entre Matane et Baton Rouge” (Felix-Nominated)

2008: Nos Lendemains

• Singles: “Ton Histoire” (#14 FR; Felix-Nominated)

2009: Chansons pour les mois d’hiver

• Singles: “Chanson pour les mois d’hiver” (Felix-Nominated)

2014: Merci Serge Reggiani

Isabelle Boulay - Merci Serge Reggiani

• Billboard Canadian Albums #4

Isabelle Boulay was born on the north shore of the Gaspé Peninsula and became fascinated by music as a child listening to tunes from the jukebox in her parents’ restaurant. Her family, including her grandmother and aunt encouraged and nurtured her singing. She sang in a group as a child and entered a singing contest in Matane when she was a teenager. Judge Joselito Michaud, became her manager a few years later.

Boulay’s friends entered her into the Petite-Vallée song festival in 1990 without her permission, but she went ahead and performed. Later on, she won the Best Performer award at the International Song Festival in Granby and was invited to participate in Les Franco Folies de Montréal.

From there, she proceeded to France representing Radio Canada at the Truffe de Périgueux festival in Périgord. She won the Best Singer award and returned home to appear in a TV series. At some point she drew the attention of Luc Plamondon who was searching for new talent to appear in his Starmania rock opera. She ended up playing the role of Marie-Jeanne, succeeding Luce Duffault.

Boulay was offered a recording contract and her debut album, Fallait pas, with the assistance of Daniel Deshaime, came out in 1996. Three songs made the Top 10 in the Quebec singles chart. Two years later saw the release of platinum-certified États d’amour. Three of its tracks were nominated for the Felix Song of the Year award. Isabelle herself won the first of seven Female Artist of the Year awards.

It was her third release, however, that made her an international superstar. Mieux qu’ici-bas was certified Diamond in France and was nominated for a Juno award. “Parle-moi” topped the charts in Belgium and was the 20th biggest song of the year in France. At the 16th Victoires de la Musique awards in France, Boulay won Discovery of the Year and Mieux qu’ici-bas won Victory Album Discovery of the year beating out the likes of Garou and France’s own hot new superstar Alizée.

In 2002, Boulay recorded the live album Au moment d’être à vous with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, at Salle Wilfrid Pelletier Place des Arts, a big seller. Her next studio album was Tout un jour, released in 2004. Paying homage to growing up in a small town, she came out with De retour à la source in 2007, a collection of country ballads. It went platinum in Canada and was nominated for a Juno. Nos Lendemains and Chansons pour les mois d’hiver followed in 2008 and 2009 respectively. Isabelle released tribute album to Italian-born French singer Serge Reggiani in 2014 which peaked at #4 on the Billboard Canadian Albums chart.

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Chantal Kreviazuk

Born: 1974, Winnipeg
Debut: 1996
Genre: Pop

Achievements

• Juno Award for Female Artist of the Year, 2000
• Juno Award for Best Pop Album, 2000 (Colour Moving and Still)
• Co-written songs for some of the world’s best-selling artists
• Contributed songs to several motion picture soundtracks

Studio Albums and Singles

1996: Under These Rocks and Stones

• 2x Platinum
• Singles: “God Made Me” (#9 WP; #77 YE), “Surrounded” (#9 WP), “Wayne” (#20 WP), “Believer” (#31 WP), “Hands” (#26 WP)

1999: Colour Moving and Still

• 2x Platinum
• Juno Award for Best Pop Album of the Year
• Singles: “Before You” (#2 WP; #71 YE), “Dear Life” (#14 WP), “Souls”, “Far Away”

2002: What If It All Means Something

• Gold
• Singles: “In This Life”, “Time”, “Julia”, “What If It All Means Something”, “Weight of the World”

2006: Ghost Stories

• Gold
• Juno-Nominated
• Singles: “Ghosts of You”, “Wonderful”, (SOCAN Award), “All I Can Do” (Juno-Nominated)

2009: Plain Jane

• Singles: “Invincible”, “The Way”, “Ordinary People”

2016: Hard Sail

chantal-kreviazuk-hard-sail

Other Songs

• “Leaving on a Jet Plane” from the Armageddon soundtrack
• “Feels Like Home” for the “Dawson Creek” TV Series and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days soundtrack
• “In My Life” from the Providence soundtrack
• “This Year” from the Serendipity soundtrack
• “Leading Me Home” from the Men with Brooms soundtrack
• “Another Small Adventure” from the Stuart Little 2 soundtrack
• “Redemption Song” from the Peace Songs compilation
• “O Holy Night” (duet with Avril Lavigne) from Maybe This Christmas Too?
• “These Days” from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants soundtrack
• “I Want You to Know” from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants soundtrack
• “Lebo’s River – A Tribute” (with Raine Maida) on Help!: A Day in the Life
• “Can’t Make it Good” (with Raine Maida) theme song to Century Hotel
• “Time” was used in the credits of the movie Uptown Girls
• “I Do Believe”
• “Wild Horses”
• “In Waskada Somewhere” on the Great Canadian Song Quest compilation
• “Cruel One” bonus track on Alex Band’s album We’ve All Been There

Songs Co-Written for Other Artists

• Six songs on Avril Lavigne’s Under My Skin album, including “He Wasn’t”
• “Rich Girl” (Gwen Stefani)
• “Where Is Your Heart” (Kelly Clarkson)
• “Walk Away” (Kelly Clarkson)
• “One Minute” (Kelly Clarkson)
• “13 Days” (Marion Raven)
• “Revolution” (The Veronicas)
• “Meant to Fly” (Eva Avila)
• “You Got to Me” (Rex Goudie)
• “Hanging On” (Cheyenne Kimball)
• “Mr. Beautiful” (Cheyenne Kimball)
• “Gardenia” (Mandy Moore)
• “Outside of You” (Hilary Duff)
• “The Look” (Luigi Masi)
• “Fake It” (Luigi Masi)
• “Permanent” (David Cook)
• “Unapologize” (Carrie Underwood)
• “Daydream” (Miranda Cosgrove)
• “Wonder Woman” (Namie Amuro)

In 1977, somewhere in Winnipeg, Carol and John Kreviazuk were astonished when they witnessed their three year old daughter, Chantal, begin playing the piano simply from observing her older brothers perform. She was a prodigy. They signed her up for formal lessons expecting her to become a classical pianist. But she developed a love for pop and music composition, attending the Balmoral Hall School for Girls.

By the time she enrolled in the English Literature program at the University of Manitoba, she was writing commercial jingles and performing in lounges. A head-on collision with a motorcycle in Italy resulted in her reassessing her pursuits while recovering in hospital. It was time to get serious about her career as a pop singer-songwriter.

Honeymooners frontman Chris Burke-Gaffney agreed to manage her and helped co-write and record her demos. Sony’s Michael Roth offered her a one million dollar contract for two albums. The resulting album, Under These Rocks and Stones, spawned five hit singles, including two Top Tens, and eventually sold 200,000 copies. Fifty thousand were sold over the 1997 Christmas season alone. “Surrounded”, which peaked at number 9 on the national RPM charts, was an emotionally power-packed piano ballad about a friend who had committed suicide. Kreviazuk’s success made her immediately sought out by American chat show host Conan O’Brien and secured her a spot in Sarah McLachlan’s Lilith Fair music festival.

Around this time, Chantal embarked on a romantic journey with Our Lady Peace’s Michael “Raine” Maida whom she had met at a Pearl Jam concert in Toronto. The two married in 1999, sealing a musical partnership.

In 1998, she covered John Denver’s “Leaving on a Jet Plane” which was featured in the Hollywood blockbuster Armageddon. Her masterwork came the following year. Colour Moving and Still won for her a Female Artist of the Year Juno and nabbed the award for Best Pop Album. “Before You” peaked at number two on the charts. The album was certified double platinum.

What If It All Means Something came in 2002. Chantal performed “In This Life” on the American “Tonight Show with Jay Leno”. She released Ghost Stories after the birth of two sons. “All I Can Do” was nominated for the coveted Song of the Year Juno. A greatest hits compilation Since We Met: The Best of 1996-2006 appeared in 2008. Plain Jane followed in 2009.

Chantal Kreviazuk has been sought out by the industry due to her catchy songs and skills of composition. This has resulted in a large number of her songs being featured in motion pictures and their soundtracks. Many of these were works outside of her album tracks. She has also been high in demand to co-write songs for other artists, including some of the biggest names in the industry: Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Avril Lavigne, Gwen Stefani, and Hillary Duff to name a few. Kelly Clarkson’s international hit “Walk Away” was co-written by Kreviazuk. Chantal and her family’s moving to Los Angeles has helped facilitate these two lines of work. She also owns a home in Toronto.

Chantal’s performance of Randy Newman’s “Feels Like Home” has been very popular. It was featured in the TV Series “Dawson Creek” as well as the How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days soundtrack. The song is also showcased in a video montage of scenes from The Notebook, a film starring Canadian actors Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling, put together by Monique. The Youtube music video has drawn nearly five million views. For your convenience we’ve embedded it below.

          Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Our Lady Peace

Formed: 1992, Toronto, ON
Formal Debut: 1994
Genre: Pop / Rock (“Post Grunge”)

Primary Members

Michael “Raine” Maida (lead vocals)
Mike Turner (guitar)
Duncan Coutts (bass)
Jeremy Taggart (drums)

Achievements

• 14th biggest song of 1997 (“Clumsy”)
• Diamond Album (Clumsy, 1997)
• One platinum and four multi-platinum albums
• Juno Award for Group of the Year (1998)

Studio Albums and Hit Singles

1994: Naveed

• 4x Platinum

1997: Clumsy

• Diamond
• Hit Singles: “Clumsy” (#1 WP; #14 YE), “Superman’s Dead” (#17 WP), “Automatic Flowers” (#29 WP), “4 AM” (#29 WP)

1999: Happiness … Is Not a Fish That You Can Catch

• 3x Platinum

2000: Spiritual Machines

• 2x Platinum

2002: Gravity

• 2x Platinum

2005: Healthy in Paranoid Times

• Platinum

2009: Burn Burn

• Hit Single: “All You Did Was Save My Life” (#12 WP)

2012: Curve

Our Lady Peace - Curve

• Single: “Heavyweight” (#89 WP)

Though musically very different, Our Lady Peace, or OLP, is, like Rush, not known much for their hit singles. Their albums, on the other hand, have sold impressively well. Their biggest hit was “Clumsy”, a chart-topper in 1997, finishing as the 14th biggest song of the year. The album on which it appeared (bearing the same title) was certified diamond. Their style of music is considered “post-grunge”. They have won a slew of music video awards.

Beginnings of the group started in late 1991 when guitarist Mike Turner placed an ad in Toronto’s Now Magazine seeking musicians to form a band. A U of T criminology student named Michael Maida responded saying he’d like to sing. Maida’s mother, Joan, was executive assistant to media baron Conrad Black. Soon a bassist and drummer joined to form the group As If who played some gigs in Oshawa. A number of lineup changes took place before and after they changed their name to Our Lady Peace after a poem by Mark Van Doren.

Maida and Turner attended a music seminar where they met Arnold Lanni, and songwriter, producer, and owner of a recording studio. He agreed to manage the band and helped them compose some new songs. This enabled them to get some higher profile gigs in the area and Montreal in conjunction with The Tea Party. Maida decided to change his name from Michael to Raine to avoid getting confused with Mike Turner.

A friend of Turner’s who was a film student helped make an independent music video for their song “Out of Here” which was aired on MuchMusic in 1992. Lanni arranged to meet with personnel at Warner, EMI, and Sony to introduce the work of the band. Richard Zuckerman of Sony was impressed enough to agree to sign OLP and work began on their debut album Naveed which was released in 1994.

Although none of its singles made the Top 40, the band gained a large following and Naveed sold 400,000 copies. Both Van Halen and Robert Plant became fans of OLP’s raw rock sound and Maida’s unique singing style which resulted in an invitation to join the Page & Plant tour. They were also offered slots in Van Halen and Alanis Morissette shows. They appeared on American chat shows Jon Stewart and Conan O’Brien.

In September 1996, Maida ran into singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk at a Pearl Jam concert in Toronto. Kreviazuk was working on her debut album. The two began a romantic relationship.

Clumsy and its title-track were to become Our Lady Peace’s magnum opus. The song rocketed up to #1 on the charts and finished as the 14th biggest song of 1997. The album, with three additional hit singles, was a million-seller in Canada and sold 2.5 million worldwide. The band toured Canada, the United States, and Europe for a year and a half and won the Juno for Group of the Year in 1998.

Happiness… Is Not a Fish That You Can Catch came out in 1999 and topped the album charts, selling 300,000 copies at home. In December that year, Maida married Kreviazuk. The following year, OLP’s Summersault Festival toured the country with the Smashing Pumpkins, Sum 41, and the Foo Fighters.

Inspired by American inventor Ray Kurzweil’s book, The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence, OLP released Spiritual Machines in Y2K, a double-platinum seller.

Although the band had enjoyed great success with producer Arnold Lanni, it decided to make a change and hooked up with Bob Rock in Hawaii for their next release. Turner left the band due to creative differences, during the making of Gravity, and was replaced with American guitarist Steve Mazur. The album, released in 2002, embraced a harder, less sophisticated sound and went double-platinum.

The band spent three years composing 45 songs before it felt a dozen were good enough to appear on Healthy in Paranoid Times. Produced again by Rock, it was a platinum-seller. A greatest hits collection came out in 2006, and, the following year, Maida released a solo album called The Hunter’s Lullaby, establishing his own home studio in Los Angeles. This was merely a side project; he had no intention of leaving the band, which released Burn Burn in 2009 under Maida’s production. It reached #4 on the Canadian album chart and spawned the #12 hit “All You Did Was Save My Life”.

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Diana Krall

Born: 1964, Nanaimo, BC
Debut: 1993
Genre: Jazz

Achievements

• Has sold 15 million records worldwide
• Sold more jazz albums, since her debut, than any other female jazz artist in the world
• Juno for Artist of the Year, 2002
• Juno for Album of the Year (The Look of Love, 2002)
• Star on the Walk of Fame (2004)
• Eight number one albums on the U.S. Jazz chart
• Six multi-platinum albums
• 5 Grammy Awards and 8 Juno Awards won

Significant Albums

1993: Stepping Out

• Gold

1995: Only Trust Your Heart

1995: All for You

• Gold
• Grammy Nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album

1997: Love Scenes

• 2x Platinum
• Juno Nomination for Best Mainstream Jazz Album
• Grammy Nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album

1999: When I Look in Your Eyes

• 3x Platinum
• Juno Award for Best Vocal Jazz Album
• Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album
• Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical
• Grammy Nomination for Album of the Year

2001: The Look of Love

• 7x Platinum
• Juno Award for Album of the Year
• Juno Award for Best Vocal Jazz Album
• Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

2002: Live in Paris

• Live Album
• 2x Platinum
• Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year
• Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album

2004: The Girl in the Other Room

• 2x Platinum
• Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year
• Juno Nomination for Album of the Year

2005: Christmas Songs

• Christmas Album
• Juno Nomination for Album of the Year
• Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year

2006: From This Moment On

• 2x Platinum
• Juno Award for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year
• Grammy Nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album

2009: Quiet Nights

• Juno Nomination for Vocal Jazz Album of the Year
• Juno Nomination for Album of the Year
• Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)

2012: Glad Rag Doll

Diana Krall - Glad Rag Doll

• Gold

2015: Wallflower

Diana Krall - Wallflower

• Gold

Some Songs with Official Music Videos

Let’s Face the Music and Dance“, 1999 

The Look of Love“, 2001 

Just the Way You Are“, 2002 

Narrow Daylight“, 2004 

Almost Blue“, 2004 

Quiet Nights“, 2009
 

Without a doubt, Diana Krall is the most successful jazz vocal artist in Canadian history and one of the biggest names in the world. But it came only after years of preparatory work and training under a number of professionals around North America, leading to her characteristically ultra-confident stage presence.

Krall was born into a musical family in the Vancouver Island city of Nanaimo. Her father introduced her to the world of music when she was for, thanks to his extensive record collection; her mother sang in a community choir. Diana took classical piano lessons, switching to jazz piano in her high school band under the leadership of teacher Brian Stovell and later in Victoria under Louise Rose. She performed her first professional gig at 15 and later won a Vancouver Jazz Festival scholarship to an American college of music in Boston which she attended before returning home. She was introduced to visiting Americans Ray Brown and Jeff Hamilton who convinced her to take her talents to the U.S. city of Los Angeles. There, she studied with professional jazz musiciand Alan Broadbent and Jimmy Rowles. They discovered that Krall was actually a very good singer and encouraged her to vocalize more while playing. This led to her rising status as a performer.

She relocated to Toronto in 1988, with further training from Don Thompson, and then to New York in 1990 where she performed in various lounges and travelled to take part in various Canadian jazz festivals. It was high time for a recording; her debut, Stepping Out, with accompaniments from John Clayton and Jeff Hamilton, was released in 1993 on the Montreal-based independent label, Justin Time. Sales were respectable for a jazz record and she was signed to the bigger, international label GRP for her sophomore effort, Only Trust Your Heart, the following year.

The media picked up on her rather quickly, leading to greater exposure and a steady stream of new fans. GRP transferred her to their Impulse division for her third release, All for You, a tribute to Nat King Cole. The album spent 70 weeks on the Billboard jazz charts and was nominated for an American Grammy award. Diana Krall was becoming a big name in the industry, helped in part by a high-profile 1996 stint at New York’s Oak Room.

1997’s romantic ballad-themed Love Scenes catapulted her to the forefront of the jazz world with both a Juno and Grammy nomination and sales of 2x platinum. From there, everything snowballed. When I Look in Your Eyes (1999), which featured rich string arrangements, won both Juno and Grammy awards for best jazz vocal album of the year. And the rock and pop dominated Grammies nominated it for Album of the Year. Sales exceeded 3x platinum which meant it had become one of the best-selling jazz records of all-time. In 2000, Diana embarked on a 20-city tour with Tony Bennett.

Krall’s magnum opus, however, came with the release of The Look of Love in 2001. Sales were unprecedented for a jazz album: 7x platinum! Not only did it win the Juno for best vocal jazz album of the year but for overall album of the year. A Juno and Grammy award-winning live album (in Paris) appeared the following year. In 2002, Krall was named Artist of the Year at the Junos.

At this point she decided to alter her trajectory as she was now experiencing some romance with English singer-songwriter Elvis Costello. The two were married at Elton John’s estate in late 2003.

Jazz singers have often been criticized for simply rehashing the same old songs. Krall felt she could begin to compose some original material and collaborated with her new husband who helped pen the lyrics. She also wanted to convert some folk songs to jazz and selected songs from Tom Waits and Joni Mitchell. The resulting album, a mixture of original Krall/Costello pieces and jazz renditions of folk songs, was entitled The Girl in the Other Room. The 2004 recording won yet another Juno for her and sales were certified double-platinum.

From This Moment On (2006) featured covers of Gershwin, Cole Porter, and Irving Berlin songs and won a Juno. Quiet Nights followed in 2009, showcasing Latin-infused jazz standards accompanied by a 60-piece orchestra.

               Copyright 2011 by the Canadian Music Blog

Late-90s Mini Profiles on Semi-Major Artists

La Chicane

Led by vocalist Daniel “Boom” Desjardins, La Chicane, originally from Val-d’Or, QC, received a couple of Juno nominations for Group of the Year and won the Juno for best-selling Francophone album in 2000 for their debut album En catimini, released in 1998. The band had three Felix-nominated songs over the years: “Calvaire”, “Tu m’manques”, and “Viens donc m’voir”.

Nicola Ciccone

The Italian-Canadian was born in 1977 and began composing songs in English and Italian when he was 12. After winning a singing contest, he obtained a recording contract and released his (French language) debut in 1999 while studying child psychology at university in Montreal. Four singles from the album topped the charts in Quebec. “J’t’aime tout court” was named song of the year by the Felix awards. “Chanson pour Marie” and “Le menteur” were also very popular.

Holly Cole (Trio)

The Halifax native, not to be confused with Britain’s Cheryl and the United States’ Natalie, is considered a jazz artist but has performed songs in the arena of country, rock, and other genres. She relocated to Toronto and launched her music career in 1989 as the Holly Cole Trio. They performed covers of songs from Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, and Lyle Lovett. In the mid-90s “Trio” was dropped from the name and she began moving into pop until the new millennium when she returned to her jazz roots. “I’ve just seen a face” was her best-known song.

Great Big Sea

The Newfoundland folk-rock band managed two platinum and two multi-platinum albums. Although specialists at converting traditional songs and sea shanties from the region to rock pieces, they have also composed original material. Their most famous songs were “When I’m Up (I Can’t Get Down)”, “Ordinary Day”, “End of the World”, and “Consequence Free”.

The Moffatts

The four brothers (Scott, Clint, Bob, and Dave) grew up in British Columbia (Tumbler Ridge and Victoria) and started out performing country at various festivals. They relocated to the United States becoming regulars on Nashville Now with Ralph Emery. Later, they joined a show in Las Vegas. Finally, in 1994, they released their first album; their father served as their manager, as they were a teen performing act. But they quickly switched to pop and rock as a boy band and were more successful doing so. Their third and fourth albums released in 1998 and 2000, were both certified platinum and they enjoyed seven Top 30 hits including “I’ll Be There for You” (#5) and the chart-topper “Bang Bang Boom”.

Mario Pelchat

Born in 1964, Mario had been churning out albums since 1982. In the 90s, his album Pelchat was certified double-platinum. In 1999, his song “Je ne t’aime plus” was named song of the year at the Felix gala. “Tant de mots” and “Aimer” received nominations in the new millennium. He is also known as a music producer. Mario released a tribute album on French singer Becaud in 2015.

Bruno Pelletier

Born in 1962 in the Quebec City suburb of Charlesbourg, he performed in English bands before starting his own French group. He relocated to Montreal and performed in bars before joining some musicals. Bruno’s debut album came out in 1992 and appeared in Luc Plamondon musicals La Legende de Jimmy (about James Dean), Starmania, and Notre Dame de Paris. His third album sold 200,000 copies and he began winning Felix awards. “Le temps des cathédrales” was named song of the year in 1999.

The Philosopher Kings

Three songs of the metro Toronto band made the year-end charts in the late-90s: “I am the Man”, “Hurts to Love You”, and “Cry”. The group’s name comes from Plato’s Republic. They all met while students at Thornhill Secondary School, Gerald Eaton becoming their lead singer.

Sky

This was the duo James Renald and Antoine Sicotte from Montreal. They met while studying music engineering in 1992. In the new millennium, Anastasia replaced Renald. The group enjoyed three chart-toppers: “Love Song”, “Superhero”, and “You”.

1990s Juno and Felix Song Nominees and Winners

IMPORTANT NOTE: Depending on the time of the year in which the Juno and Felix Awards were held, songs nominated could have been released the same year, but more often the previous year which is why I’m beginning with 1991 and ending with 2000. It would be too complicated to go through the list and pinpoint exactly when each awards gala took place, which year each nominated song was released and which year or years it spent its run on the charts. I say this simply so that the reader will not assume that a song nominated in, say, 1994 was released in and a hit in 1994.

I’ve listed all the nominees and bolded the winners. A list of nominees and winners in the 1980s is located HERE.

1991

Juno:

“Let Your Backbone Slide”, Maestro Fresh-Wes
“More Than Words Can Say”, Alias
“She Ain’t Pretty”, The Northern Pikes
“So Listen”, MCJ and Cool G
Winner: “Just Came Back“, Colin James

Felix:

“À ton depart”, Nathalie Simard
“Au nom de la raison”, Laurence Jalbert
“Darlin'”, Roch Voisine
“Faut pas que j’panique”, Marie Carmen
“Je ne sais plus comment je m’appelle”, Martine St-Clair
“Jours de plaine”, Daniel Lavoie
“La légende de Jimmy”, Diane Tell
“Sans t’oublier”, Julie Masse
“Sauvez mon âme”, Luc De Larochellière
Winner: “Je sais, je sais“, Marjo

1992

Juno:

“Animal Heart”, Glass Tiger
“Can’t Stop This Thing We Started”, Bryan Adams
“(Everything I Do) I Do It For You”, Bryan Adams
“Too Hot”, Alanis
Winner: “Life Is a Highway“, Tom Cochrane

Felix:

“À toi”, Laurence Jalbert
“Donne-moi ma chance”, Les B.B.
“La lune d’automne”, Michel Rivard
“Lettre à un cowboy”, Mitsou
“Ma generation”, Luc De Larochellière
“Maude”, Joe Bocan
“Prends bien garde”, Julie Masse
“Prends ma main”, Joane Labelle
“Y’a des matins”, Marjo
Winner: “Aux portes du matin“, Richard Séguin

1993

Juno:

“Enid”, Barenaked Ladies
“If You Asked Me To”, Celine Dion
“Song Instead of a Kiss”, Alannah Myles
“Thought I’d Died and Gone to Heaven”, Bryan Adams
Winner: “Beauty And The Beast“, Céline Dion and Peabo Bryson

Felix:

“Comme on l’a choisi”, Julie Masse
“Entre l’ombre et la lumière”, Marie Carmen
“Le goût de l’eau”, Michel Rivard
“Mona Lisa”, Bruce Huard
“Quelqu’un que j’aime, quelqu’un qui m’aime”, Céline Dion
“Seul au combat”, Les B.B.
“Sous les cheminées”, Richard Séguin
“Tous les jours je pense à toi”, Francis Martin
“Tue-moi”, Dan Bigras
Winner: “La légende Oochigeas“, Roch Voisine

1994

Juno:

“Courage”, The Tragically Hip
“Harvest Moon”, Neil Young
“He Would Be Sixteen”, Michelle Wright
“Love Can Move Mountains”, Celine Dion
Winner: “Fare Thee Well Love“, The Rankin Family

Felix:

“Tu reviendras”, Sylvain Cossette
“En cavale”, Pierre Flynn
“Inventer la terre”, Marie Denise Pelletier
“Jamais trop de tendresse”, Marie Philippe
“Kunidé”, Luc De Larochellière
“L’amour est loi”, Martine St-Clair
“La folie en quatre”, Daniel Bélanger
“Pense à moi”, Francine Raymond
“Pleure à ma place”, Richard Séguin
Winner: “Encore et encore“, Laurence Jalbert

1995

Juno:

“Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm”, Crash Test Dummies
“The Power of Love”, Celine Dion
“Please Forgive Me”, Bryan Adams
“Push”, Moist
Winner: “Could I Be Your Girl“, Jann Arden

Felix:

“À tous ceux qui s’aiment”, Francine Raymond
“Bella”, Laurence Jalbert
“Bohémienne”, Marjo
“Échappé belle”, Beau Dommage
“J’ai l’blues de vous”, Marie Carmen
“Leïla”, Lara Fabian
“Mon frère”, France D’Amour
“Tu ne sauras jamais”, BB (Les)
“Un pays, deux étrangers”, Joe Bocan
Winner: “Pour que tu m’aimes encore“, Céline Dion

1996

Juno:

“Any Man of Mine”, Shania Twain
“Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman”, Bryan Adams
“Insensitive”, Jann Arden
“O Siem”, Susan Aglukark
Winner: “You Oughta Know“, Alanis Morissette

Felix:

“Bon yeu”, Les Colocs
“Je pensais pas”, Daniel Lavoie
“Je sais pas”, Céline Dion
“Laissez-moi rev’nir sur terre”, Ginette Reno
“Le temps de m’y faire”, Nanette Workman
“Les deux printemps”, Daniel Bélanger
“Rester debout”, Richard Séguin
“Soirs de scotch”, Luce Dufault
“Tout simplement jaloux”, Beau Dommage
Winner: “Seigneur“, Kevin Parent

1997

Juno:

“Ahead By a Century”, The Tragically Hip
“Because You Loved Me”, Celine Dion
“Birmingham”, Amanda Marshall
“Sleepy Maggie”, Ashley MacIsaac
Winner: “Ironic“, Alanis Morissette

Felix:

“I Lost My Baby”, Jean Leloup
“Les derniers seront les premiers”, Céline Dion
“Les temps fous”, Daniel Bélanger
“Quand on s’en va pour oublier”, Luce Dufault
“Que je t’aime”, Sylvain Cossette
“Soudés à jamais”, Nancy Dumais
“Tous les bateaux font des vagues”, Francine Raymond
“Tout”, Lara Fabian
“Une à une”, Nanette Workman
Winner: “Father On the Go“, Kevin Parent

1998

Juno:

“Clumsy”, Our Lady Peace
“Dark Horse”, Amanda Marshall
“Drinking in L.A.”, Bran Van 3000
“The Sound Of”, Jann Arden
Winner: “Building a Mystery“, Sarah McLachlan

Felix:

“Aime”, Bruno Pelletier
“Belle”, Garou, Daniel Lavoie, and Patrick Fiori
“Belle ancolie”, Luce Dufault
“Je t’aime”, Lara Fabian
“Je t’oublierai, je t’oublierai”, Isabelle Boulay
“Le parapluie”, Daniel Bélanger
“Maudit bonheur”, Michel Rivard
“Parler aux anges”, Nancy Dumais
“Pour toi”, Laurence Jalbert
“Tassez-vous de d’là”, Les Colocs
Winner: “Fréquenter l’oubli“, Kevin Parent

1999

Juno:

“Adia”, Sarah McLachlan
“Apparitions”, Matthew Good Band
“Hurts To Love You”, Philosopher Kings
“My Heart Will Go On”, Celine Dion
Winner: “One Week“, Barenaked Ladies

Felix:

“Calvaire”, La Chicane
“Dieu que le monde est injuste”, Garou
“En mon bonheur”, Daniel Bélanger
“Je resterai là “, Roch Voisine
“La vie est laide”, Jean Leloup
“Le saule”, Isabelle Boulay
“Maudit bonheur”, Michel Rivard
“Maudite jalousie”, Kevin Parent
“Rien à regretter”, Éric Lapointe
Winner: “Le temps des cathédrales“, Bruno Pelletier

2000

Juno:

“Heaven Coming Down”, The Tea Party
“Hello Time Bomb”, Matthew Good Band
“Steal My Sunshine”, Len
“Sucks to Be You”, Prozzäk
Winner: “Bobcaygeon“, The Tragically Hip

Felix:

“Amalgame”, Les Respectables
“En mon bonheur (tout toi me manque)”, Daniel Bélanger
“J’ai mal à l’amour”, Isabelle Boulay
“Je joue de la guitare”, Jean Leloup
“Juste pour voir le monde”, La Chicane
“Le menteur”, Nicola Ciccone
“Mon ange”, Éric Lapointe
“Ne fais pas ça”, Paul Piché
“Quand?”, Martin Deschamps
Je n’t’aime plus“, Mario Pelchat

1999’s Biggest Canadian Hits, Both English and French

CMB medThe #1 song of 1999 in Canada was Ricky Martin’s “Livin’ La Vida Loca”. The top Canadian Anglo song was Sky’s “Love Song” (6th of the year, RPM). The top Canadian Franco tune was La Chicane’s “Calvaire” (4th of the year, CKOI). This was the last complete year in which the national charts were handled by RPM magazine. It folded in November 2000 and was superseded by the Canadian Singles Chart. Below is a list of all Anglo hits by Canadians that finished in the RPM year-end Top 100 or that peaked in the weekly Top 40. Also find all Franco hits by Canadians that finished in the year-end CKOI Top 50. Below the charts, check out some trivia on the year’s hits.

YE= Year-End chart position.

WP = Weekly chart peak position.

1999 FRANCO HITS

TITLE ARTIST YE
Calvaire La Chicane 4
Mon ange Eric Lapointe 7
En mon bonheur, (tout toi me manque) Daniel Belanger 13
Voyager Jean Leloup 17
Dans un autre monde Celine Dion 20
Pis si o moins Les Colocs 22
Le mer a boire Okoume 24
Give it up Jacynthe 35
Think Big Elvis Gratton 37
Tu pourras dire Kevin Parent 39
Ou que tu sois Bruno Pelletier 41
Un gars, une fille… la chanson Guy A. Lepage & Sylvie Leonard 44
Mon ame n’est pas a donner Rude Luck 49

1999 ANGLO HITS

TITLE ARTIST YE WP
Love Song Sky 6 1
She’s So High Tal Bachman 8 3
Steal My Sunshine Len 15 3
That Doesn’t Impress Me Much Shania Twain 24 5
It’s All Been Done Barenaked Ladies 26 1
Keep a Lid on Things Crash Test Dummies 27 5
12 Years Old Kim Stockwood 33 7
When You’re Gone Bryan Adams 36 5
Cloud #9 Bryan Adams 41 7
Unsent Alanis Morissette 42 8
Angel Sarah McLachlan 48 9
Arriba Joee 51 10
Love Lift Me Amanda Marshall 52 10
Believe in You Amanda Marshall 58 10
Push Sky 62 11
I Will Remember You (Live) Sarah McLachlan 63 10
Ice Cream Sarah McLachlan 67 9
Before You Chantal Kreviazuk 71  a
Call and Answer Barenaked Ladies 76 10
Squeeze Toy Boomtang Boys 77 10
Bobcaygeon Tragicallly Hip 78 3
Fireworks Tragicallly Hip 80 9
Thinkin’ About You 2 Rude 83 9
Thank U Alanis Morissette 85  b
I’m Your Angel Celine Dion/Kelly 92 11
Why Wide Mouth Mason 94 15
If You Don’t Know Temperance 98 15
Misery The Moffatts 99 17
From This Moment Shania Twain   13
Weightless See Spot Run   13
So Pure Alanis Morissette   14
Better Get Used to It Big Sugar   17
You’ve Got a Way Shania Twain   17
Man! I Feel Like a Woman Shania Twain   17
Who Do U Love Love Inc   18
Consequence Free Great Big Sea   18
Get in Line Barenaked Ladies   18
Girl of My Dreams The Moffatts   19
Heaven Coming Down Tea Party   20
Homeless Love Inc   21
If I Didn’t Have You Amanda Marshall   21
Until You Loved Me The Moffatts   23
Pictures Boomtang Boys   23
Never Gonna Give Up 3 Deep*   24
Sucks to Be You Prozzak   25
Dancing in the Key of Love Temperance   26
416/905 Maestro   26
Goliath Melanie Doane   26
You & Me Kim Stockwood   26
Give It Up Jacynthe   27
Do You Right Joee   27
Waiting For the Tide Melanie Doane   27
Breathe Moist   28
Willie Dixon Said Tom Cochrane   30
You Stepped on My Life Philosopher Kings   30
Never Never D-Cru   31
Strong Enough Tal Bachman   31
All I Want Sky   31
Adams Rib Melanie Doane   32
Stick to Your Vision Maestro   32
Underground Moist   36
Joining You Alanis Morissette   40

* Part Canadian

a Peaked at #2 in 2000

b Peaked at #1 in 1998

1999 CHOICE TRIVIA

1999 Canadian music trivia

LINKS

More Charts…

Late 90s Overview…

1998’s Biggest Canadian Hits, Both English and French

CMB medRPM year-end charts for 1998 are per specific genre only; there is no overall Top 100 singles chart available. Four songs by Canadian artists reached #1 through the year. For all intents and purposes, Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” can be considered the year’s top song, given its huge international success and the fact that it topped the charts for six weeks. The year’s #1 song on the CKOI chart was “Tassez-vous de d’la” by Canada’s Les Colocs. Below is a list of all Anglo hits by Canadians that peaked in the RPM weekly Top 40. Also find all Franco hits by Canadians that finished in the year-end CKOI Top 50. Below the charts, check out some trivia on the year’s hits.

YE= Year-End chart position.

WP = Weekly chart peak position.

1998 FRANCO HITS

TITLE ARTIST YE
Tassez-vous de d’la Les Colocs 1
Belle Garou/Lavoie/Fiori 4
Frequenter l’oubli Kevin Parent 5
Les Boys Eric Lapointe 10
Aime Bruno Pelletier 14
Le bruit des origines Okoume 16
Plus rien n’est pareil Dubmatique 20
Maudite jalousie Kevin Parent 23
Zora sourit Celine Dion 30
Dolly…onest comme on est France d’Amour 34
Le vent a tourne Noir Silence 37
Feels Lili Fatale 41
Solitude dans la foule Rude Luck 43
Tu ne m’aimes plus Philosopher Kings 45

1998 ANGLO HITS

TITLE ARTIST WP
Back to You Bryan Adams 1
My Heart Will Go On Celine Dion 1
On a Day Like Today Bryan Adams 1
Thank U Alanis Morissette 1
Adia Sarah McLachlan 3
One Week Barenaked Ladies 3
Poets Tragicallly Hip 4
You’re Still the One Shania Twain 7
Money City Maniacs Sloan 7
Uninvited Alanis Morissette 7
Hurts to Love You Philosopher Kings 8
The Mummer’s Dance Loreena McKennitt 10
Cry Philosopher Kings 10
London Rain Heather Nova 10
I’m Ready Bryan Adams 11
Since When 54-40 11
Wishing That Jann Arden 12
Desire Sass Jordan 12
Everywhere Bran Van 3000 12
Under the Lighthouse Big Wreck 12
I’ll Be There The Moffatts 13
You’re a Superstar Love Inc 13
Goodbye Girl Pluto 15
Summer Long Emm Gryner 17
It’s Just My Luck VIP 18
Do What I Can Sass Jordan 20
The Oaf Big Wreck 21
Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here Deborah Cox 21
If I Could Joee 22
Miss You Like Crazy The Moffatts 22
The Spirit of Radio Rush 22
Shoulder of the Road Barney Bentall 23
Letting Time Pass The New Meanies 23
Broken Bones Love Inc 23
Love, Pain and the Whole… Amy Sky 23
Rico Matthew Good Band 23
It’s the End of the World Great Big Sea 24
Any Day Now Watchmen 24
Some Kinda Wonderful Sky 25
This Mourning Wide Mouth Mason 26
Hands Chantal Kreviazuk 26
Gasoline Moist 27
Trampoline Wild Strawberries 27
Forest Fire David Usher 27
I Know You Jann Arden 28
Immortality Celine Dion/Bee Gees 28
Shine Junkhouse 29
4AM Our Lady Peace 29
Friend of Mine Barstool Prophets 30
Shine Junkhouse 31
That Song Big Wreck 31
Blown Wide Open Big Wreck 31
Everything Is Automatic Matthew Good Band 32
Onion Girl Holly Cole 32
Leaving On a Jet Plan Chantal Kreviazuk 33
Hands of Time Temperance 34
Coward Holly McNarland 35
Spaceman Bif Naked 36
Let’s Shout (Baby Work It Out) Colin James 36
The Scene Big Sugar 36
Super Bad Girls Ivan 37
Carry Sandbox 38
The Game Wide Mouth Mason 39
Falling Bruce Guthro 39

1998 CHOICE TRIVIA

1998 Canadian music trivia

LINKS

More Charts…

Late 90s Overview…

1997’s Biggest Canadian Hits, Both English and French

CMB medThe #1 song of 1997 was Sarah McLachlan’s “Building a Mystery”. It topped the RPM charts for eight weeks. “Mon voisin” by Les Frères à Ch’val was the year’s biggest Franco hit, 5th of the year on the CKOI chart. The most popular international hit was “You Were Meant For Me” by the USA’s Jewel (2nd of the year). Below is a list of all Anglo hits by Canadians that finished in the RPM year-end Top 100 or that peaked in the weekly Top 40. Also find all Franco hits by Canadians that finished in the year-end CKOI Top 50. Below the charts, check out some trivia on the year’s hits.

YE= Year-End chart position.

WP = Weekly chart peak position.

1997 FRANCO HITS

TITLE ARTIST YE
Mon voisin Les Freres a Ch’val 5
Mother of Our Child Kevin Parent 12
Que je t’aime Sylvain Cossette 15
Soul pleureur Dubmatique 22
Je fais de moi un homme Daniel Belanger 26
Johnny Go Jean Leloup 28
Humana Lara Fabian 31
La belle histoire Jodie Resther 41
Mon petit tresor Gaston Mandeville 45
Soudes a jamais Nancy Dumais 49

1997 ANGLO HITS

TITLE ARTIST YE WP
Building a Mystery Sarah McLachlan 1 1
Clumsy Our Lady Peace 14 1
The Sound Of Jann Arden 20 3
Dark Horse Amanda Marshall 27 5
Sitting On Top of the World Amanda Marshall 46 5
Someone Who’s Cool The Odds 49 2
It Could Happen to You Blue Rodeo 50 4
Midnight Rain Wide Mouth Mason 56 7
Resurrection Moist 57 8
All By Myself Celine Dion 58 7
Make You Mad Odds 60 8
When I’m Up (I Can’t Get Down) Great Big Sea 62 6
You Won’t Remember This Kim Stockwood 64 10
Do to You Bryan Adams 65 6
I’ve Just Seen a Face Holly Cole 70 7
Remote Control Age of Electric 71 9
I Am the Man Philosopher Kings 72 7
Flamenco Tragically Hip 74 12
Numb Holly McNarland 76 9
God Made Me Chantal Kreviazuk 77 9
Sweet Surrender Sarah McLachlan 78 2
If I Had My Way Big Sugar 81 13
Kissing Rain Roch Voisine 84 13
Springtime in Vienna Tragically Hip 86 11
Raspberry I Mother Earth 87 14
Open Your Eyes Ivan 90 13
Third of June Corey Hart 95 13
All That You Are Econoline Crush 99 12
To Love You More Celine Dion   9
Surrounded Chantal Kreviazuk   9
The Tears I Cry Gavin Hope   13
I’ll Always Be Right There Bryan Adams   15
Tell Me Corey Hart   16
Superman’s Dead Our Lady Peace   17
I Finally Found Someone Bryan Adams/B. Streisand   18
Saving Face Boomers   18
Trust Me Amanda Marshall   18
Cubically Contained Headstones   20
Wayne Chantal Kreviazuk   20
Get It While You Can Gowan   21
Temptation Tea Party   21
700 Ft. Ceiling Tragically Hip   22
Everything You’re Missing Ginger   23
My Addiction Dayna Manning   23
Empty Cell Rusty   24
Euphoria (Firefly) Delerium   24
Night Train Bruce Cockburn   25
Tangerine Moist   25
It’s OK, It’s Alright Gavin Hope   25
No Regrets The Breits   26
Here with Me Ginger   27
Deliver Me Roch Voisine   28
Automatic Flowers Our Lady Peace   29
Crossing a Canyon 54-40   30
Ordinary Day Great Big Sea   30
Bad Time to Be Poor Rheostatics   31
My Own Sunrise Crash Test Dummies   31
Believer Chantal Kreviazuk   31
Just to See You Again TRU-G’z   32
Shed a Light Roch Voisine   32
Wake Up, My Love Claymen   32
Half the World Rush   33
Drinking in L.A. Bran Van 3000   35
Look Like Me Killjoys   37
The Lines You Amend Sloan   39
Angels & Ordinary Men Wendy Lands   40

1997 CHOICE TRIVIA

1997 Canadian Music Trivia

LINKS

More Charts…

Late 90s Overview…

Late 90s Big Songs and Albums

1997-99 Canadian Albums Certified Diamond

Let’s Talk About Love, Celine Dion (1997) Diamond
Clumsy, Our Lady Peace (1997) Diamond
Surfacing, Sarah McLachlan (1997) Diamond
Come On Over, Shania Twain (1997) 2x Diamond
S’il suffisait d’aimer, Celine Dion (1998) Diamond in France
All the Way…A Decade of Song, Celine Dion (1999) Diamond

Canadian Songs in the RPM Year-End Top 100, 1997

Song Artist Pos
Building A Mystery Sarah McLachlan 1
Clumsy Our Lady Peace 14
The Sound Of Jann Arden 20
Dark Horse Amanda Marshall 27
Sitting On Top Of The World Amanda Marshall 46
Someone Who’s Cool The Odds 49
It Could Happen To You Blue Rodeo 50
Midnight Rain Wide Mouth Mason 56
Resurrection Moist 57
Make You Mad The Odds 60
When I’m Up (I Can’t Get Down) Great Big Sea 62
You Won’t Remember Kim Stockwood 64
Do To You Bryan Adams 65
I’ve Just Seen A Face Holly Cole 70
Remote Control Age Of Electric 71
I Am The Man Philosopher Kings 72
Flamenco Tragically Hip 74
Numb Holly McNarland 76
God Made Me Chantal Kreviazuk 77
Sweet Surrender Sarah McLachlan 78
If I Had My Way Big Sugar 81
Kissing Rain Roch Voisine 84
Spring Time In Vienna Tragically Hip 86
Raspberry I Mother Earth 87
Open Your Eyes Ivan 90
Third Of June Corey Hart 95
All That You Are Econoline Crush 99

Note: RPM Year-End Singles Chart for 1998 Unavailable

Canadian Francophone Songs in CKOIs Top 50 of 1997

SONG ARTIST POS
Mon voisin Les Freres a Ch’val 5
Mother of Our Child Kevin Parent 12
Que je t’aime Sylvain Cossette 15
Soul pleureur Dubmatique 22
Je fais de moi un homme Daniel Belanger 26
Johnny Go Jean Leloup 28
Humana Lara Fabian 31
La belle histoire Jodie Resther 41
Mon petit tresor Gaston Mandeville 45
Soudes a jamais Nancy Dumais 49

 

Canadian Songs That Peaked in the Top 10 RPM Weekly Singles Chart in 1998

Song Artist WP
Back To You Bryan Adams 1
My Heart Will Go On Celine Dion 1
The Mummer’s Dance Loreena McKennitt 10
Adia Sarah McLachlan 3
Hurts To Love You Philosopher Kings 8
Money City Manics Sloan 7
Uninvited Alanis Morissette 7
Cry Philosopher Kings 10
You’se Still The One Shania Twain 7
Poets Tragically Hip 4
One Week Barenaked Ladies 3
On A Day Like Today Bryan Adams 1
Thank U Alanis Morissette 1
It’s All Been Done Barenaked Ladies 1

Canadian Francophone Songs in CKOIs Top 50 of 1998

SONG ARTIST POS
Tassez-vous de d’la Les Colocs 1
Belle Garou/Lavoie/Fiori 4
Frequenter l’oubli Kevin Parent 5
Les Boys Eric Lapointe 10
Aime Bruno Pelletier 14
Le bruit des origines Okoume 16
Plus rien n’est pareil Dubmatique 20
Maudite   jalousie Kevin Parent 23
Zora sourit Celine Dion 30
Dolly…onest comme on est France d’Amour 34
Le vent a tourne Noir Silence 37
Feels Lili Fatale 41
Solitude dans la foule Rude Luck 43
Tu ne m’aimes plus (comme tu m’as deja   aime) Philosopher Kings 45

Canadian Songs in the RPM Year-End Top 100, 1999

Song Artist Pos
Love Song Sky 6
She’s So High Tal Bachman 8
Steal My Sunshine Len 15
That Don’t Impress Me Much Shania Twain 24
It’s All Been Done Barenaked Ladies 26
Keep A Lid On Things Crash Test Dummies 27
12 Years Old Kim Stockwood 33
When You’re Gone Bryan Adams 36
Cloud #9 Bryan Adams 41
Unsent Alanis Morissette 42
Angel Sarah McLachlan 48
Arriba Joee 51
Love Lift Me Amanda Marshall 52
I Believe In You Amanda Marshall 58
Push Sky 62
I Will Remember You Sarah McLachlan 63
Ice Cream Sarah McLachlan 67
Before You Chantal Kreviazuk 71
Call And Answer Barenaked Ladies 76
Squeeze Toy Boomtang Boys 77
Bobcaygeon Tragically Hip 78
Fireworks Tragically Hip 80
Thinkin’ About You 2 Rude 83
Thank U Alanis Morissette 85
Why Wide Mouth Mason 94
If You Don’t Know Temperance 98
Misery The Moffatts 99

Canadian Francophone Songs in CKOIs Top 50 of 1999

SONG ARTIST POS
Calvaire La Chicane 4
Mon ange Eric Lapointe 7
En mon   bonheur, (tout toi me manque) Daniel Belanger 13
Voyager Jean Leloup 17
Dans un autre monde Celine Dion 20
Pis si o moins Les Colocs 22
Le mer a boire Okoume 24
Give it up Jacynthe 35
Think Big Elvis Gratton 37
Tu pourras dire
Kevin Parent 39
Ou que tu sois Bruno Pelletier 41
Un gars, une fille… la chanson Guy A. Lepage & Sylvie Leonard 44
Mon ame n’est pas a donner Rude Luck 49

LINKS

More Charts…

Late 90s Overview…

CMB Home

Branching Out and Conquering Other Genres (1997-1999)

Canadian music showed no signs of slowing down through the remainder of the decade. What was unique about the late-90s was that, Canadian artists began to branch out and conquer other genres of music. Pop and rock had been championed by a plethora of Canadians as had folk; it was time to show that we could produce a superstar in other fields of music.

Although Canada had always done well in the country music scene, ever since Wilf Carter appeared in the 1930s, it was time for a Canadian superstar to churn out three double-diamond albums in a row, a feat completely unprecedented. Her catchy music appealed to children, teenagers, young adults, older adults, and even seniors. It was so irresistible that a few of her songs crossed over onto the pop charts. One was the third biggest song of 1998 in the United States. She teamed up with musical genius “Mutt” Lange, who had worked with Bryan Adams, and married him. Her name was Shania Twain.

So-called R&B had always been a genre that appealed more to the populace south of the border. But a Torontonian fell in love with it and decided to make a career out of performing these kinds of songs. She never became a big name in Canada, but, in 1998, her song “Nobody’s Supposed to Be Here” was a million-seller in the U.S., peaking at #2 on the pop charts and topping their R&B charts for 14 consecutive weeks, smashing all records. Her name was Deborah Cox. She scored a big hit in Canada later on in 2009; “Beautiful U R” was 39th of the year.

The late-90s also saw the rise of the biggest-selling female jazz artist in the world, a Canadian. Most jazz artists could never hope to sell as many records as pop or country artists but Diana Krall sold 15 million worldwide. Eight of her albums debuted at the top of the Billboard jazz albums charts, six of them being certified multi-platinum at home.

Another genre conquered was Celtic / New Age, thanks to harp-player Loreena McKennitt and her hauntingly beautiful voice. Her three albums released in the 90s all went 3-4x platinum and in 1997 she scored a Top 10 hit on the pop charts.

Canadians were not satisfied with their newfound success in France which began not with Celine Dion but with Roch Voisine. Two more superstars arose to score diamond albums in the land of the Eiffel Tower. The first was roots rocker Isabelle Boulay. The second was to become the second best-selling Canadian artist in France (after Celine Dion). He was born in Sherbrooke and is known for his throaty singing style. He currently holds the SNEP record for the most weeks at number one. His name is Garou.

Toronto’s Our Lady Peace, thanks to a diamond album, was the hottest new band to emerge. Frontman and primary songwriter Raine Maida formed a musical family by marrying Chantal Kreviazuk, a former childhood prodigy, who, herself, became one of the most cherished singer-songwriters in the country.

1997

Many new artists arose this year. The biggest song of the year, as mentioned previously, was Sarah McLachlan’s “Building a Mystery”. Second to that was Our Lady Peace’s “Clumsy” which appeared on the year-end chart at #14. Another new band to emerge was St. John’s folky Great Big Sea. Their song “When I’m Up” appeared in the year-end chart at #62. They managed a pair of platinum and of multi-platinum albums and scored a few more hits. The Philosopher Kings were another semi-major act, their first big song being “I Am the Man”. Band members met while in high school in the Toronto suburb of Thornhill. They scored a couple more Top 10 hits the following year. Saskatoon’s bluesy Wide Mouth Mason scored their biggest hit “Midnight Rain” (#56 YE). Another band from Saskatchewan had a hit this year. Age of Electric’s “Remote Control” finished as the 71st biggest hit of the year. Toronto’s Big Sugar added a dash of reggae to their music and had their first hit single “If I Had My Way”. Fellow locals I Mother Earth scored their biggest hit, “Raspberry” which pushed sales of their album to double-platinum status. Vancouver’s Econoline Crush attained one-hit wonder class with “All That You Are”.

Isabelle Boulay, from the town of Sainte-Félicité, on the north shore of the Gaspé peninsula, scored her first hit,” Je t’oublierai, je t’oublierai” off her debut album. Although she’d been around since 1993, Nanaimo, BC’s Diana Krall made it to the big leagues when her album Love Scenes, released this year, attained double-platinum status, a difficult feat in the realm of jazz. Chantal Kreviazuk scored her first hit “God Made Me”, the 77th biggest song of the year. Halifax’s fusion artist Holly Cole made a name for herself with “I’ve Just Seen a Face”. Another Holly (McNarland) emerged from The Pas, Manitoba and gave us the hit “Numb”. Later she collaborated with the likes of Matthew Good and The Tea Party.

The biggest name in male soloists was Sherbrooke’s Garou, a stage name that is a combination of his surname Garand and the French expression loup-garou, which means werewolf. He was discovered by Luc Plamondon while performing in a local bar and subsequently drafted to play in Notre-Dame de Paris. The song “Belle” from the musical, sung by himself, Canada’s Daniel Lavoie, and France’s Patrick Fiori, became the third best-selling single of all-time in France (after two novelty songs). In 2000, Garou released his debut album Seul, certified diamond in France, and one of the biggest-selling French-language albums in history worldwide. He eventually became the best-selling Canadian artist in France after Celine Dion.

Bruno Pelletier was another new name this year. He was born in Charlesbourg, a suburb of Quebec City. His debut had come in 1992 but, with the 1997 single “Aime”, saw his first Felix-nominated song of the year. The only other male artist to have a big hit this year was Men Without Hats’ Ivan whose song “Open Your Eyes” made the year-end Top 100 chart.

1998

Big hits this year included Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” from the number one movie of all-time (at the time) Titanic. Bryan Adams had two chart-toppers: “On a Day Like Today” and “Back to You”. Alanis Morissette’s “Thank U” was a number one single as well. In the United States, the two biggest songs of the year were “Too Close” by Next and “The Boy is Mine” by Brandy & Monica respectively. In third place was a song called “You’re Still the One” by a Canadian country artist from Windsor, Ontario, named Shania Twain. She achieved the unimaginable: three consecutive studio albums were certified double-diamond in Canada (2 million copies sold).

Manitoban Celtic new ager, master of voice, piano, accordion, and harp, Loreena McKennitt, had been around since the mid-80s, scored a quadruple-platinum album in 1991, called The Visit, and had her first big hit, “The Mummers’ Dance”, on the pop singles chart this year.

Montreal’s Éric Lapointe scored his first Felix-nominated song of the year, “Rien à regretter”. According to some sources, he had as many as 30 songs that topped the charts on various radio stations and singles charts in Quebec.

Toronto’s dance band Love Inc. scored a couple of hits this year: “Broken Bones” #31 and “You’re a Supertar” #13. A few years later they were discovered by Britain and both songs became Top 10 hits there. There are some who credit their debut with being the only dance album created in Canada to attain platinum status.

On a side-note, a dance version of Gordon Lightfoot’s “If You Could Read My Mind” was performed by the international group Stars on 54 and was featured in the Mike Myers’ film Studio 54. It peaked at #3 on the charts.

1999

The three biggest Canadian songs of the year came via new artists. While the Americans were taken by Toronto’s Deborah Cox who supplied the 9th biggest song of the year in the U.S., Montreal pop duo Sky scored the first of three number one singles called “Love Song”, the 6th biggest song of the year. In eighth place was Randy Bachman’s son Tal with the song “She’s So High”. And at 15th spot was the Toronto one-hit wonder group Len (“Steal My Sunshine”).

Besides Sky and Len, there were a number of new bands this year. Bluesy La Chicane debuted and scored the hit “Calvaire”. The Moffatts were four brothers who had grown up in various locales in B.C. They relocated to Nashville in the U.S. and released their first (country) album. Later they switched to pop and scored their first hit “Misery”. Montreal’s Les Respectables came out with “Amalgame”. Dance trio The Boomtang Boys scored the hit “Squeeze Toy”. Toronto’s dance group Temperance had the hit “If You Don’t Know” and 2 rude had “Thinkin’ about You”

Mario Pelchat, from Dolbeau-Mistassini, QC, won the Felix award for song of the year with “Je ne t’aime plus”. Francophone Italian-Canadian Nicola Ciccone appeared this year with the song “Le menteur”. Dance artist Joee scored the hit “Arriba”, the 51st biggest song of the year. Martin Deschamps saw his first hit—”Quand?” He took on the role of lead singer for the reunited Offenbach.

There were no new significant female soloists this year.

Coming up are lists of big songs and albums from the late-90s; a list of Juno and Felix song nominees and winners; mini-profiles on semi-major artists La Chicane, Nicola Ciccone, Holly Cole, Great Big Sea, The Moffatts, Mario Pelchat, Bruno Pelletier, The Philosopher Kings, and Sky; and feature profiles on major artists Isabelle Boulay, Garou, Diana Krall, Chantal Kreviazuk, Éric Lapointe, Loreena McKennitt, Our Lady Peace, and Shania Twain.