A Few Goodies and Polaroids from the Polaris Gala – S11E02

Polaris 2015 Goodies

The day after the 2015 Polaris Music Prize Gala had been buzzing over Buffy Sainte-Marie’s win on various sites from CBC.ca to The Guardian and other music sites like Exclaim. For some good laughs on Exclaim, they posted Twitter reactions for the 2015 Polaris Music Prize, go to this link. One of my tweets was on it.
Aside from that, it’s great to be back in Ottawa and the day after the Gala in Toronto, I was feeling unwell but have recovered.

Onto the goodies and a couple of more photos. It’s the second year to shoot Polaroids using The Impossible Project film. I didn’t shoot a lot this time because of the big lens for the Sony a7 camera. I was able to take a Polaroid of Sainte-Marie prior to the Gala and later becoming the eventual winner. I was able to snag a copy of The Polaris Cover Sessions #1 on vinyl and the green booklet as pictured above.

With the instant photos, I only took a photo of a radio host on SiriusXM, a photo of the band, Dwayne Gretzky at the afterparty. Those were it. You can view it below.

Due to pulling an all nighter from the Gala on Monday night, I didn’t get a chance to post more photos. Posted below are the 2015 shortlist posters. I added a couple of photos over on Flickr, just click HERE to view the album.
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The 2015 Polaris Music Prize Gala – S11E01 (Season Premiere)

2015 Polaris Gala Main-1

The 2015 edition of the Polaris Music Prize unveiled their winner for best album of the year and it went to Buffy Sainte-Marie for her album, Power In The Blood. Quite fitting that it’s back to back years for an Aboriginal artist to winning the prize.

To start season 11 of the blog, it was fitting to attend the Polaris Music Prize Gala for the second. This year is no exception for the prize as it’s now ten years old. The Polaris Music Prize has garnered a lot of attention in the Canadian media due in part of the 200 writers, journalist, DJs and personalities from across Canada to show the passion of Canadian music.
This year’s prize got upped to $50,000 with the sponsors and supporters of Canadian music.

Out of the ten shortlisted nominees, the ones performed were Buffy Sainte-Marie, Alvvays, Braids, Jennifer Castle, Viet Cong (who will be changing their band name). As well as the Toronto Symphony Orchestra accompanying on some of the performers and bands.
There’s other points that I left out due to the time of writing this entry.

This year’s host was Fred Penner and he sure entertained the crowd and show his love of Canadian music.
Overall, it was a great time attending the Polaris Music Prize Gala and always a thrill to see people I know. Kudos to Steve Jordan and the staff at Polaris for keeping the job done. It’s a blast to be in Toronto.

You can check the photos over at Flickr by clicking HERE.

Polaris Panel: Ottawa, 2015 Edition (Summer Special)

2015 Polaris Prize Panel Main

On Tuesday night, the National Arts Centre hosted the Polaris Music Prize Panel at the Fourth Stage. The panel was moderated by Polaris founder, Steve Jordan and the panelists this year had Alan Neal of CBC’s All In A Day, Ryan Bresee of Whatever’s Cool With Me, Catherine Pogonat of Radio-Canada and Julie Ledoux of Voir.

This year is unique as the panel brought a juror from Montreal and brought some female representation to it. As usual, the panel discussed how the jurors picked their long and shortlist albums. Some had a difficult time putting a particular album on the list and what was considered a strong album to be on it. Another topic brought up was Francophone content being emphasized and recommended. Since Karkwa winning the prize in 2010, there’s been less recommendation for Francophone albums.
There was a good turnout for the panel compared to last year.
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Friday at NXNE – S10E29

Friday was the start of the weekend and there were a lot of events happening during NXNE. The first event I went wasn’t part of NXNE but it was an important for myself because it was the Polaris Music Prize Long List panel at ACTRA RACS. Steve Jordan, the founder of Polaris was moderating and the panelists were Slava Pastuk (Noisey Canada), Nicole Villeneuve (AUX), Tabassum Siddiqui (Freelance) and Lana Gay (CBC Music).

The panel talked about the criteria of the music prize and who they voted for in the current list as well as mentioning past lists. Jordan brought up about having the longest list since there’s always debate and discussion on which albums got snubbed or left off from the ballot. It was a great event and always a treat to see the people behind Polaris.

CBCMusic.ca Showcase at NXNE Hub
As Friday was a jam packed event at NXNE in Toronto, the first event was the CBCMusic.ca presents: Music at the NXNE Hub. It was a free show at NXNE Hub. The hosts for the event were Grant Lawrence, Tom Power (of CBC Radio 2 Morning) and Jonny Harris (Murdoch Mysteries).
The performers consisted of the 2015 Searchlight winner, Orange O’Clock. Other performers on the list were Jane’s Party, Ben Caplan, Iceage (from Copenhagen, Denmark) and Toronto’s catl.
I was able to check out Orange O’Clock and Jane’s Party as I decided to head off to other venues. I did return for catl, which they played an awesome set.

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The Polaris Music Prize 2015 Long List – S10E26

Image - Courtesy of Polaris Music Prize

Image – Courtesy of Polaris Music Prize

It’s that time of month where Canadian music fans anticipate the Polaris Music Prize long list. There’s always complaints about certain artists or bands not making it to the list and then when it get whittled down to the top 10, there’s more madness and fury. It’s all in the fun and excitement to finding out who made it and which obscure album got on the list.
Don’t forget that it’s compiled and determined by a jury of broadcasters, journalists, bloggers and programmers who choose their albums based on artistic merit. The winning album this year gets the $50,000.

Here’s the list of the 40 nominated albums for the 2015 edition of Polaris Music Prize;

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The Impossible Polaris Polaroid – S10E05

Impossible Polaris Polaroid

Back from Ottawa and this will be a wrap-up to the 2014 Polaris Music Prize coverage. This is more on the photos, instant photos, to be precise.
From the previous entry, I mentioned that half of the photos were on Flickr, it’s now updated and you can go to the link by clicking HERE.

I also brought along the trusty Polaroid SX-70 camera and several packs of The Impossible Project films to Toronto for the Polaris Music Prize Gala. Worse part was having to carry multiple equipment with a small carry bag. At least, I was able to bring the fun to shooting instant film photos. You will see the colourful frames and wonderful black & white photos taken from the pre and post Polaris Gala as it’s posted below.
I got a chance to try out Impossible’s B&W Film for 600 Hard Color Frames Edition. The colour frames looked great with the black & white instant photos. It’s definitely fun to look at.
You will see some of the familiar faces with the Impossible instant photos.
There’s a few instant that didn’t out well and that’s being posted up.

Short Basia Bulat Interview
It’s been awhile I have done audio interviews and had the opportunity to do a quick chat with Basia Bulat. You can listen to the interview from below. It’s just great to see her at the Gala.

For fashion, I rarely dress up nicely and shoot selfies. It was quite dapper of me to wear the bow tie from Hudson’s Bay.

Other Things
Going off on a different topic or going backwards. Prior to attending the Polaris Music Prize Gala, as I arrived to Toronto, I went straight to CBC Toronto, the Canadian Broadcast Centre for an informal tour of the building. I’m surprised that the CBC social media/digital team have been wanting to meet up for awhile but scheduling and lack of travel, it wasn’t worked. Luckily, with the Polaris Music Prize, I was able to make a schedule to come by to the building. It’s great seeing the radio side again but never got to see the main studios (#40, 41 and 42) from the tenth floor. The last time I went on a tour, it was with CBC Radio 3. I posted several photos on my Instagram if you can look for the CBC related photos.

Lastly, a final shoutout goes out to Be SixFifty Hotel. It’s a boutique hotel located on Bay St. Their decoration is stylish and more like a fashion-chic setting. Checking into my room, it was a small, which was fine as I stayed for one day. I was provided with a bottled water and some nice treats. They were the yummy macarons and candied nuts. The staff were friendly and decided to give one of the staff an instant photo. The price is under $200 if you’re going solo and it’s convenient in the downtown core of Toronto.

That’s the fun adventure I had and time for some rest and relaxation from the sweat and muscle pain. Also quite unusual to post two entries in one day.
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The 2014 Polaris Music Prize Gala – S10E04

2014 Polaris Music Prize Gala Main-1

It was an awesome night to be at The Carlu as I experienced my first Polaris Music Prize Gala. The Polaris Grand Jury awarded Tanya Tagaq for her album, Animism on September 22nd. She gets to take home the $30,000 for best album of 2014 and based on artistic merit.

Quite fitting for Tagaq to winning the Prize as she was last to perform and delivered a bone-chilling but terrific performance. She was joined by the Element Choir and throughout the performance, the names of the murdered Aboriginal women were display as her way of dedicating them. Tagaq earned a standing ovation from her strong performance.

Other short list nominated artists performed at the Gala were Owen Pallett, Mac Demarco, Basia Bulat, Jessy Lanza and Shad (with Lights as a surprise guest for the song, Remember to Remember). Out of the favourites from the performance were Bulat, Lanza and Shad.
The gala was hosted by actor, Jay Baruchel who kept the show going with his witty jokes.
Congratulations goes out to Tanya Tagaq for winning and the nine short list nominees for the excellent albums.
Lastly, kudos goes out to Steve Jordan, Executive Director of Polaris Music Prize and to the hard working staff for bringing an awesome Canadian music event.

Being the first time to attend, it was great to meet some of the usual people and meeting new people. It was a fun and sweaty time at the event. I didn’t mind sitting up on the balcony of the Carlu and on the floor level taking photos.
You can check out some of the photos from the Polaris Music Prize Gala over on Flickr. Click HERE.

For the next entry, I will be post the Impossible photos which were taken at the gala.
Time to leave Toronto and return back to Ottawa.