Monday, November 29, 2010

Canadian Hip-Hop: A Bright New Day (Pt. III)

Welcome to PART 3 of Canadian Hip-Hop: A Bright New Day. This Special Feature originated as my final research paper for the World Pop Music class at UBC.

Don't forget to check out Part I, which sets out the Canadian music context, as well as my research sources. Part II talks about influences on Canadian hip hop, especially from our neighbours to the South. There's also a corresponding playlist to go along with the feature, which you can listen to here on CBC Radio 3.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think by leaving a comment!

Michie Mee (photo: CBC.ca)
PART III. Notable points in Canadian hip hop history

Although Toronto MC Michie Mee became the first rap artist to be signed to a major American label in 1988, it was Maestro Fresh Wes that became the first Canadian hip hop artist to hit double platinum (200,000+ albums sold) with his debut Symphony in Effect (1990) on the strength of the single “Let Your Backbone Slide” (1989) (“Canadian hip hop”; Shapiro 52). He remained the best selling rap artist in Canada until Drake came along, whose album Thank Me Later was released on June 15, 2010. The record sold 447,000 records in its first week, reaching No. 1 on the American Billboard 200 (“Drake (Entertainer)”).

By the early 21st century, the digital age has allowed independent artists to release albums directly to music consumers without the mediation of big record labels. The internet rewards artists who are entrepreneurial, allowing them to connect directly to their fan base, magnifying the effectiveness of grassroots marketing and promotions. Particularly in Canada, where large cities are separated by hours to days of driving and touring is rendered impossible for four months of the year, the internet is an increasingly important medium to sustain artists’ careers. However, distinct challenges to the Canadian rap field hinder its growth, which include a smaller market of consumers, lack of producers and studios specializing in hip hop, the financial upstart cost, as well as lack of support from the music industry (Haines 79). As of 2001, there are more than 200 rap groups across Canada, about half of which are located in the Greater Toronto region. Vancouver, Montreal, Quebec City and Halifax are also important cities for Canadian hip hop, which support clubs and the touring circuit. There are also fans from various ethnic backgrounds in these cities (Chamberland 312).

Hip hop styles

Hip hop music contains numerous distinct elements, including the DJ, who plays and mixes records, the emcee (MC), who vocalizes composed rhymes or improvises on top of a beat, the artist, who creates visual transformations using forms such as graffiti, and the dancer, otherwise known as the B-boy/girl, who moves to the rhythm laid down by the DJ. For the sake of simplicity, this paper focuses on emceeing (MC-ing), or rapping, which is often the focal point of hip hop culture, as emcees provide “recognizable voices, styles, faces and personas” (Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO 11).

Both KRS-One, a celebrated rapper from the US, as well as Krims identify four separate styles of rap. Their conceptualizations overlap substantially, although not perfectly. Firstly, party rap, or “the Fun style” as deemed by KRS-One, is marked by a celebratory tone and emphasis on getting the crowd to move. It draws its influences from the Jamaican and African-American tradition of DJ roasting at parties over tracks, as well as lindy hop. Secondly, he identifies mack rap, which parallels KRS-One’s “Sexual Style.” It’s marked by bravaggio and a misogynist reputation, as exemplified by the “pimp and ho” focus of rap. Thirdly, Krims names jazz/bohemian rap, or the “Intellectual Style,” which is often marked by eclecticism, and incorporates samples of jazz/soul/pop. Topics addressed in this genre often qualify it as “conscious hip hop” and includes social critiques, parody and irony. Lastly, Krims identifies reality rap, dubbed by KRS-One as the “Violent Style,” which is marked by the realism of inner city life. “Gangsta” rap would be included in this genre, which emphasizes an “authentic” gangster persona, with a focus on the ghetto, masculinity and hardness. Musically, reality rap is often punctuated with dominating bass, dissonant pitch combinations, and distortions in the samples (Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO 11; KRS-One qtd. in Krims 54-80). It’s also important to note that these styles are not mutually exclusive, and that an artist may incorporate multiple types of rap within even one track.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Canadian Hip-Hop: A Bright New Day (Pt. II)

Welcome to PART II of Canadian Hip-Hop: A Bright New Day. This Special Feature originated as my final research paper for the World Pop Music class at UBC.

Don't forget to check out Part I, which sets out the Canadian music context, as well as my research sources. There's also a corresponding playlist to go along with the feature, which you can listen to here on CBC Radio 3.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think by leaving a comment!

PART II: Influences on Canadian hip hop

Rapper Kardinal Offishall (photo courtesy of Exclaim.ca)
In order to explore the origins of Canadian hip hop, a brief overview of the influences on hip hop in its place of origin, the United States, is necessary. Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO identify Jamaican dub, a subgenre of Reggae music and culture, as a predecessor to the first styles of hip hop (7). Haines complements their description by noting that hip hop draws from black oral storytelling traditions, such as toasting and playing the dozens, as well as the call and response style of African-American religious traditions (58). As a musical style that originated from minority populations, hip hop has long fostered challenges to accepted norms in various forms, such as the “proper” use of language and techniques and technology in music production. Moreover, on a more macro scale, hip hop has been a channel for political protest (Low, Sarkar, and Winer 61). In this latter form, Low and colleagues identify rap’s similarity to genres such as folk, punk, and dub in opposition to a dominant culture (62).

Although a substantial amount of literature exists probing the history and social elements of hip hop culture, there is far less academic attention paid to the musical components that underlie hip hop styles. Krims identify two periods of hip hop styles, beginning from its genesis in the 1970s. The “old-school” style of hip hop, that is, prior to 1983-4, would sound “sing-songy” to contemporary listeners’ ears due to its relatively slower tempo and less complex rhyme patterns. Comparatively, “new-school” hip hop often contains complex rhyming patterns, which may include “multiple rhymes in the same rhyme complex, internal rhymes, offbeat rhymes, multiple syncopations, and violations of meter and metrical subdivisions of the beat” (Krims 49). Musically, measures of four are most common in rap, as is the norm with other popular genres such as rock, dance, and funk. This has enabled a great deal of interactions between the different genres (Krims 53).

Canadian differences from American hip hop

The generally accepted origin of hip hop music is in New York City, in particular the South Bronx area, in the 1970s (“Hip hop music”). In Canada, the hip hop scene was present in major urban centres such as Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa as early as the early 1980s due to the population of Caribbean and African immigrants, as well as cultural fusion between the border cities (Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO 8). Contrasted with American hip hop, which was influenced by popular styles Motown and rock, these immigrant youth north of the border were more influenced by dub and reggae, resulting in a relatively less “hard” sound (Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO 8).

Thematically, Canadian hip hop differs from our American neighbours’ content. In the Ottawa Citizen, Daniel Caudeiron makes the following comment about the differences he sees between hip hop from our two countries:

What we're producing in Canada is distinctive because it's not gangsta rap, it's not specifically hardcore or misogynist, but something cooler with a call for unity. There's a narrative style that seems to combine West Indian storytelling and a reference to the old black poet style of dub poetry. This makes it fresh.
Where do we live in Toronto, Vancouver or Montreal under the same kind of deep-seated, institutionalized, racist and depressed, second-class poverty conditions that you have in the U.S?
Nowhere. We have housing projects and the like, but we don't have the sub-human conditions, the deeply entrenched racist style of some American rappers. We offer something more provocative in intellectual terms, a broader range of subjects. Ours is more laid back and mellow. It's love versus war, basically. (qtd. in Krewen)

Although not all hip hop aficionados will agree with Caudeiron’s assertion that Canada doesn’t exhibit some of the deep social and institutional inequalities that contribute to American ghettos, his implication that Canadian rap fans are responding to local hip hop because they can't identify with American storylines rings true for rapper Kardinal Offishall. He comments that “Hip-hop music can help define distinctions between Americans and Canadians, [via] positive aggression. It's a culture where you have to take a stand for something. You have to be pretty powerful with what you say" (qtd. in Krewen).

In PART III, we'll start going into Canadian hip hop history, as well as distinctions between different styles of rap.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

SPECIAL FEATURE : Canadian Hip-Hop: A Bright New Day (Pt. I)

Rapper Shad K, one of my favourites. (Photo: Brenda Lee)
Welcome to the first Special Feature on earbuds & ticket stubs on Canadian hip hop, titled A Bright New Day, which originated as my final research paper for the World Pop Music class at UBC.

There's also a corresponding playlist to go along with the feature, which you can listen to here on CBC Radio 3.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think by leaving a comment!

Part I. Brief overview of Canadian music context

Canada is the world’s second largest country by land mass, stretching from the Pacific Ocean on the west to the Atlantic on the east (“Canada”). Within its borders, there are temperate rainforests, continental mountain ranges, flatlands, tundras, islands, and other numerous natural divides, above and beyond the sheer distance from British Columbia to Prince Edward Island. Separated into ten provinces to the south and three territories to the north, any discussions regarding Canadian culture needs to take into consideration the sheer geographic difficulties of the nation.

It should come as little surprise then, that there are several popular music genres within Canada, and that many of these music scenes are localized in specific regions. So although genres such as classical, rock, and country are generally popular, folk traditions, especially those stemming from Celtic roots, tend to be regionalized on the east coast, whereas Chansonniers (French singer-songwriters) are localized in the French population in Quebec (“Music of Canada”). Other genres, such as electronic music, hip hop and hardcore punk tend to thrive in major cities such as Vancouver and Toronto, the most populated city in the country.

Although Canada is the second largest nation, it stands at number 36 in terms of population size, and 228th in terms of population density (“Canada”). Morrow’s 2000 data shows 82% of record sales in Canada are imported (195). Similarly, Krims identifies that over 85% of our national expenditures on recorded music goes to multinational companies based outside of Canada (177). All major record labels in Canada are foreign owned, with only a fraction of their money invested in Canadian talent. Successful Canadian artists such as Celine Dion, Neil Young and Bryan Adams have all had to leave the country in order to be viable economically (Krims 177).

As a response to the market challenges posed by our geography and relatively sparse population, the federal government, via the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), passed legislation mandating Canadian content (sometimes referred to as CANCON) in order to strengthen the Canadian music industry in the face of foreign competitors. Wikipedia states that “on January 18, 1971 regulations came into force requiring AM radio stations to devote 30 per cent of their musical selections to Canadian content” (“Music of Canada”). Currently, CANCON regulations dictate that radio stations have to play at least 35 percent Canadian content on their airwaves, leading to “an explosion in the 21st century of Canadian pop musicians dominating the airwaves unlike any era before” (“Music of Canada”). Unfortunately, this effect did not spread equally between different genres.

A great source of support for Canadian music, and in particular hip hop, emerged with the debut of MuchMusic in 1984 and its French equivalent MusiquePlus (“Music of Canada”). As the Wikipedia entry notes, these networks not only allowed both Anglophone and Francophone artists to gain exposure via television, but the networks created VideoFACT, a fund to help emerging artists produce their videos, as well as PromoFACT, a funding program to help new artists produce online press kits and websites. In sum, the success of the Canadian music industry, including hip hop, has relied greatly on the support of governmental legislation and the private sector, and its trajectory influenced immensely by these forces.



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Works Cited:
“Ab-Originals Podcast.” Radio3.cbc.ca. CBC Radio 3, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
Chamberland, Roger. “Rap in Canada.” Global Noise: Rap and Hip-Hop Outside the USA. Ed. Mitchell, Tony. Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, 2001. 306-325. Print.
“Canada.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
"Canadian hip hop." Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
“Drake (Entertainer).” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
"Drop the Beat." Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
“Dubmatique.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
Haines, Rebecca J. "Break North: Rap Music and Hip-Hop Culture in Canada." Ethnicity, Politics, and Public Policy. Eds. Troper, Harold, and Weinfeld, Morton. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1999. 54-88. Print.
“Hip hop music.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
“K’naan.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
Kaplan, Ben. “Hip Hop Week: MC’s discuss Drake’s spot in the history of Canadian rap.” National Post, 1 Jul. 2010. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
“Kinnie Starr.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 3 Nov. 2010.
Krewen, Nick. “Kinder, Gentler Rap, Eh?” The Ottawa Citizen, 7 Mar. 1999. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Krims, Adam. Rap Music and the Poetics of Identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000. Print.
LeBlanc, Larry. “Rascalz Refuse Award To Protest Junos Rap Act Wants R&B Portion Of Ceremony Televised.” Billboard, 4 Apr. 1998. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Low, Bronwen, Sarkar, Mela, and Winer, Lise. “‘Ch’us mon propre Bescherelle’: Challenges from the Hip-Hop nation to the Quebec nation.” Journal of Sociolinguistics. London: Blackwell Publishing, 2009 59–82. Web.
McKinnon, Matthew. "Border Block: Canadian Hip-Hop vs. America." CBC.ca, 22 Mar. 2005. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Medley, Mark. “Canadian hip hop: Why it’s not to [sic] early too [sic] declare it a golden age.” National Post, 2 Jul. 2010. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Mersereau, Bob. The Top 100 Canadian Albums. Fredericton: Goose Lane Editions, 2007. Print.
Mitchell, Tony, and Pennycook, Alastair. “Hip-Hop as Dusty Foot Philosophy.” Global Linguistic Flows: Hip Hop Cultures, Youth Identities, and the Politics of Language. Eds. Alim, H. S., Ibrahim, A., and Pennycook, A., Mahwah, New York: Routledge, 2009. 25-42. Print.
Morrow, Guy. “The Music Industry in Australia and Canada: Global and Local Perspectives.” Post-Colonial Distances: The Study of Popular Music in Canada and Australia. Eds. Diamond, Bev, Crowdy, Denis, and Downes, Daniel. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars, 2008. 190-214. Print.
Motion Live Entertainment and Saada STYLO. “The Northside Research Project.” The Canada Council for the Arts, Nov. 2006. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
“Music of Canada.” Wikipedia.org. Wikipedia, n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
National Post Staff. “Pass the Mic (video): Maestro, Cadence Weapon, Shad, Buck 65, Saukrates and more trade verses on Canadian rap.” National Post, 30 Jun. 2010. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Phelan, Bryan. “Hip-hop activism for First Nations youth.” Wawatay News Online, 1 May 2003. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Sabourin, Clement. “Inuit pop, Algonquin rap, Innu reggae aim for mainstream.” AFP, 8 Oct. 2009. Web. 2 Nov. 2010.
Shapiro, Peter. “Canadian Hip-Hop.” The Rough Guide to Hip-Hop. 2nd ed. London: Rough Guides, 2005. 52-54. Print.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

NEW VIDEO : Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

Arcade Fire's latest video is for the title track of their latest album The Suburbs. The video is directed by Spike Jonze, and I'm not going to ruin it for you, but it's eerie.


P.S. in case you're not weirded out enough, the band has also linked to an article about the Georgia Guidestones in their latest blog entry. Check it out here.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

VIDEOS : Arcade Fire perform live on Saturday Night Live


Arcade Fire appeared on NBC's Saturday Night Live last night, November 13 2010. They performed two tracks during the show as well as appearing in a skit. According to excited tweets, they also performed a couple of songs after taping was over.

Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)



We Used to Wait



And their cameo appearance in this SNL skit



Videos courtesy of The Audio Perv.

LIVE VIDEOS : The Wooden Sky takes it to the street


Thanks to the heads up from my friends over at Sticky Magazine (a great Toronto publication), I bring you two amazing clips from Toronto's The Wooden Sky's homecoming show at Lee's Palace. Or rather, what happened after their sold-out homecoming show, where they got their fans to party with them in the back alley of the venue, then took the raucous crowd down in the middle of a busy city street with their cover of Bob Dylan's "You Ain't Going Nowhere."

I had to miss them when they brought their show to Vancouver last month. Still kicking myself for it. Read Sticky Mag's full review of the Toronto show here.




Tuesday, November 9, 2010

CONTEST : Henry and the Nightcrawlers - 100 Blows


Henry and the Nightcrawlers is Henry Alcock-White-- bassist, guitarist, songwriter. Collaborator and member of Vancouver bands Bend Sinister and The Zolas. As the photo above may imply, he's probably also a sombre, poetic guy with a romanticist streak. But with his fingers crossed behind his back. When you first pop Alcock-White's debut full-length 100 Blows into the stereo, what's evident instead is a forest of  bouncy pianos, guitar noodling and drum machines. A musical jaunt as opposed to a waltz.

So where in this solitary image is the possibility of beat-driven pop? Alcock-White combines his youthful forays in rhythm and blues with his more recent endeavors in indie rock, and adds influences from Henry and the Nightcrawlers' rotating cast of supporting players, including members of Said the Whale, The Zolas and We Are the City.

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CONTEST : Henry has generously given me 3 autographed copies of 100 Blows to give to some lucky readers. To win, simply email brendahlee [at] gmail [dot] com with "Oh Henry!" in the subject line and your name and address in the email body. I'll pick a winner shortly and contact accordingly. (The contest is now closed. Thanks to all who entered!)

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Tour dates (supported by members of The Zolas and We Are the City):
9 NOV Tracks Pub, Olds , AB
10 NOV Bohemia, Edmonton, AB (w/Ghost Cousin) - Facebook info
11 NOV Amigos, Saskatoon, SK (w/Imaginary Cities)
13 NOV Music Trader, Winnipeg, MB (in-store @ 2pm) - Facebook info
13 NOV The Park Theatre, Winnipeg, MB (w/ The Liptonians)
15 NOV The Slice, Lethbridge, AB
17 NOV The Central, Fernie, BC
19 NOV TBA, Kelowna, BC
27 NOV Billy Bishop Legion, Vancouver (Album Release Party - Facebook info)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

i(heart)music's Hottest Bands in Canada, 2010 Edition


As previously alluded, I had the pleasure of contributing to i(heart)music's annual list of Hottest Canadian Acts. The top 33 list is now up, and I think you'll find that the top end of the list comes as little surprise, and judging by the amount of comments under each artist, there was great consensus between voters. Only one of my top 10 choices didn't make it in: the wonderfully warm and nostalgic The Wooden Sky.

Voters were bloggers and general music-type people from across Canada.  In no particular order: Jim from Quick Before It MeltsSaid The Gramophone's Sean Michaels; Fran├žois from Apartment 613; James, host of CHUO's Mixtape Sessions; Brenda from Earbuds & Ticket Stubs; Ryan Breese, host of CKCU's Whatever's Cool With Me; Nat Cap Rock's Andrew Carver; Ming Wu of Photog Music; Michael from Radio Free Canuckistan; Vancouver music freelancer Amanda Ash; Bootlog Rod; Toronto photographer Pete Nema; Indie Music Filter's Chris; Alex from Chipped Hip; If The Music's Loud Enough's Ian; Adrien from Pop Matters; Joe of Mechanical Forest Sound; Ca Va Cool's Daniel Hernandez; Melody from Spinner.ca; From Blown Speakers' Quinn; Mykael of Painting Over Silence; David of Exclaim!; Moncton DJ/photographer/all-around music guy Marc-Xavier Leblanc (aka bones); and last but definitely not least, Frank Chromewaves.

Not to spoil anything, but you can probably guess who #1 is. Check out the rest of the list here!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

LIVE VIDEO : The Sadies as mummies!

This is pretty fricking rad. The Sadies opening for Fucked Up on Halloween 2010 at the Garrison... as mummies!

Please note the tie.

Monday, November 1, 2010

10 Hottest Canadian Acts of '10

This is a list of the artists that topped my list for 2010, which of course required too much trimming and more than a bit of twitter participation. Compiled for i(heart)music's annual Top 100 list, which should be released within the next week. The list is in descending order.

Who were your top 10 in '10?



10. K’naan - The only reason K’naan is not number 1 on this list is because his album was released in Canada in early 2009, where it’s already had its run. But with “Wavin’ Flag” as the official Coca-Cola anthem of the World Cup, as well as getting major airplay during the 2010 Olympics, it’s hard to deny the influence and massive growth this Somali-Canadian emcee has had on the international market this past year.


9. Hannah Georgas - After being declared best new artist for the CBC Radio 3 Bucky Awards in 2009, Georgas has only built on that buzz by releasing an excellent debut full-length This Is Good, touring cross-Canada numerously and representing BC for the latest CBC Radio 2 SongQuest. Not to mention she’s been heralded as the new Feist.


8. Hollerado - I mean, you’ve seen this video, right? These four childhood friends also put on one of my favourite festival shows of this past year.


7. Black Mountain - If you don’t think the Vancouver psych stoner rock outfit deserves to be on this list, you probably haven’t heard their latest Wilderness Heart yet. Amber Webber’s warble deserves to be on this list by itself.


6. Broken Social Scene - A hotly anticipated album, a movie, international tour dates, and a slimmer but no less potent line-up all happened during 2010. Broken Social Scene is an institution in Canadian music and is far from running out of steam.


5. Dan Mangan - Vancouver’s own bearded bard has done a great (dis)service in the eyes of humankind by getting (sold out) audiences across Canada to pre-emptively declare allegiance to our robot overlords.


4. The Wooden Sky - The winner of North by East West’s Shadow Polaris Prize for 2010, Wooden Sky’s latest sleepy and haunting release If I Don't Come Home You'll Know I'm Gone. truly epitomizes the power of the album format. I’m still kicking myself for having missed their latest cross-Canada tour with Yukon Blonde.


3. Diamond Rings - I’m smitten with John O.’s solo project, who has met raving critical acclaim way before he’s released his debut album Special Affections. This is what I wrote a little while back about Diamond Rings: “his persona, which is captured in its nascent stages in the ‘All Yr Songs’ video, is one of unabashed and colourfully exuberant androgyny. In a culture where androgyny is often portrayed as sex-less and dominated by masculine females, the lanky O'Regan dances confidently with both the guys and gals, looking every bit as comfortable in a basketball jersey or a pair of zebra print tights. The ‘Baby One More Time’-esque dance moves in ‘Show Me Your Stuff’ warrants viewing in contemporary gender studies classes for its unashamed celebration of the kinetic male body.” In a word, wow.


2. Shad - The Vancouver-based rapper hailing originally from London, Ontario drops insightful and spiritual tracks delivered with a sharp tongue and mischievous glint to his eye. Shad has recently been named Canada’s best rapper by the National Post. Whether you agree with that designation or not, Shad has had an undeniably successful year, seeing his third album TSOL short-listed for the Polaris Music Prize and touring with fellow heavyweights K’naan and K-Os.


1. Arcade Fire - 2010 was the year of the Montreal octet. Whenever they went out to the corner store to buy a jug of milk, it became top news on Pitchfork. With the release of their third highly anticipated full-length, The Suburbs, AF has officially secured their title as the biggest indie band in the world, including sold out arena shows across North America and having their show at Madison Square Garden broadcasted live via YouTube.

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Not a part of the list, although they were definitely hot for this past year, is my vote for Unluckiest Canadian Act of 2010 - Library Voices.

100.5 The PEAK and Music B.C. Announce The 2010 PEAK Performance Project Top 5 Artists

Peak Performance Prize finalists Said the Whale and Aidan Knight (2nd from left), joined by Jeremy Fisher (5th from left) and Hannah Georgas (far right) as part of the Malahat Revue.
Today at 3:15 Pacific time the top 5 PEAK Performance Project artists were announced on the air by 100.5 The PEAK’s Peter Schaad and Carmen Cruz and Music B.C.’s Bob D’Eith.

The Top 5 PEAK Performance Project Artists for 2010 are as follows:

5th place Aidan Knight $5,000.00
4th place Greg Sczebel $10,000.00

The Top 3 – in no particular order are Kyprios, Said the Whale, and Vince Vaccaro

The Top 3’s specific ranking will be announced at the PEAK Performance Project Finale at the Commodore Ballroom on November 18th.

Prizes are 1st place - $100,500, 2nd place - $75,000, 3rd place - $50,000

Tickets for The PEAK Performance Project Finale are available at Ticketmaster.