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grandson's poignant "Blood//Water" Captures the SOCAN Songwriting Prize

The song "Blood//Water" performed by grandson has officially been named the winner of the 14th annual English SOCAN Songwriting Prize. Written by Chester Krupa Carbone and Jordan Benjamin of Toronto, and Kevin Hissink, originally of the Netherlands, "Blood//Water" runs deep with social commentary.

Over the last two weeks, music fans from across Canada cast their votes for the 2019 SOCAN Songwriting Prize winner. The winner receives the $10,000 cash prize, a Yamaha PSR-S970 Keyboard, and a $500 gift card from Long & McQuade.

"It is a great honour to receive this recognition as a Canadian songwriter," says Benjamin. "Blood//Water was written from a place of frustration and disillusionment, an expression of the manifestations of karma that are waiting for those who continue to subvert justice and democracy in the name of a dollar. Those core themes are as relevant today as when the song was written. Thanks to Kevin and Krupa for bringing this song to life with me; it really does take a village. We will continue to make noise until the grandkids are heard."

Ten songs created by Canadian songwriters over the past year are nominated by a panel of 14 music industry experts. The general public is then invited to vote for their favourite song daily for two weeks to determine the winner. SOCAN plays no role in determining the nominees or winners, apart from ensuring that they are members of SOCAN. A mirroring competition for songs in French, the Prix de la chanson SOCAN, is conducted separately.

"We are thrilled to award the 2019 SOCAN Songwriting Prize to Jordan, Kevin and Krupa," says Michael McCarty, Chief Membership & Business Development Officer at SOCAN. "This year's nominated songs saw a wide range of genres and eclectic musical styles, making voting on just one winner a true challenge for music fans. Each year, a new wave of Canadian songwriting talent who aren't afraid to push the envelope with their creativity is unveiled. 'Blood//Water' is an anthem that can't be pinned down to a single musical genre and its lyrical strength is inspiring. We wish continued success to these immensely talented writers."

"It was such a pleasure working with this team who are so committed to making honest music and pushing the sound of rock & roll. I'm humbled by this award and I'm excited for the next chapter," adds Krupa.

And Kevin Hissink shares, "I'm truly honoured to receive the SOCAN Songwriting Prize. To be able to write music that rocks hard and empowers those who feel powerless is an incredible experience. Thanks Jordan and Krupa, thanks home team. Thank you SOCAN!"

The winner of the Prix de la chanson SOCAN is "On fouette" written by Teddy Laguerre, Shawn Volcy, Marc Casseus, Vladimi Methelus; performed by Tizzo, feat. Shreez.

The other nine songs nominated in the English category were:

  • "Bad Biology" – written by Elizabeth Ball, Kathleen Monks, Benjamin Reinhartz, James Anthony Rowlinson; performed by Dilly Dally.
  • "Chances" – written by Kevin Celestin, Shanice Mohamed, Anthony Pierre; performed by Kaytranada feat. Shay Lia; published by Casablanca Media Publishing Inc.
  • "Elephant Man" – written by Sam Lucia, Geoff Millar; performed by So Loki; published by Owake Records.
  • "Hang Ups" – written by Scott Helman, Thomas Salter, Gordie Sampson, Simon Wilcox; performed by Scott Helman; published by EMI April Music Canada, SONY ATV Music Publishing Canada.
  • "Payback" – written by Sarah Hagen, Maxwell Pankiw, Isaiah Steinberg; performed by Bad Child.
  • "She's The One" – written by Chloé Soldevila, Miles Dupire-Gagnon, Gabriel Lambert, Zachary Irving; performed by Anemone.
  • "Soundboi" – written by Dominique Dias, John Samuels; performed by Just John + Dom Dias.
  • "Tortoise" – written by Clairmont Humphrey II; performed by Clairmont the Second.
  • "Whatever Comes To Mind" – written by Seth Nyquist, Adrian Cook; performed by MorMor.

The 2018 winner of the SOCAN Songwriting Prize was Partner for "Play The Field" written by band members Josée Caron and Lucy Niles.

Additional winners are available to view at www.socansongwritingprize.ca.

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Michael Raine is the Senior Editor at Canadian Musician. He is also a co-host of the popular Canadian Musician Radio weekly podcast.