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SOCAN Foundation Launches the Black Canadian Music Awards

The SOCAN Foundation has announced the launch of the Black Canadian Music Awards, in partnership with SiriusXM Canada.

The Black Canadian Music Awards will recognize and celebrate the artistic merit demonstrated by Black music creators (songwriters, composers, producers, etc.) in all genres. The inaugural awards will be presented virtually in 2020, and winners will be selected by a jury and advisory council of prominent Black artists and industry leaders, including DJ Agile as the inaugural Chair of the jury.

"The Black Canadian Music Awards are part of the SOCAN Foundation’s efforts toward advancing equity in the Canadian music industry by collaboratively creating opportunities to celebrate Black music creators. Our ongoing aim is to build inclusive programming as diverse as the communities in which we live, and this new award pushes us even further ahead," said Charlie Wall-Andrews, Executive Director of the SOCAN Foundation. “Furthermore, we cannot lose momentum to elevate communities impacted by ongoing and historical injustices. We acknowledge that there is still much more work to do, and we hope this award will celebrate and empower Black music creators in Canada.”

Five winners will be selected to each receive a $5,000 award, which is made possible with the support of SiriusXM Canada.

"We’re very proud to partner with the SOCAN Foundation to launch the Black Canadian Music Awards and help to provide more recognition to Black artists in Canada,” says Kayla J. Schwartz, Senior Manager, Communications & Canadian Content Development, SiriusXM Canada. “There need to be more opportunities for Black music creators, and we’re committed to supporting this vital community.”
“The Black Community in Canada has a rich, long, and deep history of creation and contribution to music in Canada, and well beyond our borders,” said DJ Agile. “From Salome Bey to Portia White to Oscar Peterson, Canadian Black music creators are a part of the musical tapestry of Canadian culture. History too often doesn’t acknowledge and celebrate their contributions in their time, and this is why it’s important for the SOCAN Foundation to honour our diverse Black music creators with the Black Canadian Music Awards, now.”

To apply for the Black Music Awards, visit www.socanfoundation.ca/awards. The deadline to apply is Oct. 15, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. EDT.

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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.
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