Following the recent departure of long-time president Stuart Johnston, the Canadian Independent Music Association (CIMA) has announced that Andrew Cash, a former member of parliament and Juno Award-winning Canadian independent artist, has been appointed as the organization’s president.
"After an exhaustive search, we’re thrilled to announce Andrew Cash as the new president of CIMA,” says Tim Potocic, chair of CIMA’s board of directors and president of Sonic Unyon Records. “Andrew brings enormous strength to our organization with his unique combination of music, government, policy, and community activism experience. We’re excited for the future, with him leading the way."
Cash's music career spanned from the 1980s to 2000s, beginning in the Toronto punk band L'Étranger. That band also featured future NDP MP Charlie Angus. From 1986 to 2007, he released six albums, including the LP Chrome Reflection, which also feature Hawksley Workman and Jason Collett under the band name Bird.
In 2010, Cash entered politics, becoming the NDP's nominee for the Toronto-area riding of Davenport. He won his seat in 2011 and served in parliament for four years before losing in the 2015 election.
At CIMA, Cash plans to build on the relationships, skills, and experience he has gained in his past work to help lead Canada’s independent music sector to a robust recovery when the COVID-19 pandemic ends.
“Our members are at the forefront of Canada’s new economy as home-grown generators of intellectual property, green jobs, and exports,” Cash says. “I look forward to working with all parts of Canada’s music ecosystem, along with our partners in government and the private sector, to ensure our industry has what it needs for a robust post-pandemic recovery.”
The independent music sector is a significant and growing part of the overall music ecosystem, accounting for approximately one-third of the global recorded music market in 2020. Recorded music sales have been increasing steadily since 2015 in Canada, thanks in part to the growing popularity of streaming music services. However, many people and businesses in music – notably artists and the live music sector – have been significantly impacted by the global pandemic.
“As a former artist and arts entrepreneur, I’m particularly eager to help the people at the foundation of our sector – Canadian artists – get back on their feet stronger than ever,” Cash says. “The musical talent, digital know-how and entrepreneurial spirit needed to make this happen are in place. CIMA will play an active role in helping artists and Canada’s independent music sector bounce back to full strength.”