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SaskMusic takes on Europe

Published: May 7, 2012

Artists and representatives from Saskatchewan to participate in major events in the European music market

With a large number of Saskatchewan artists being invited to play at major international music festivals this spring, SaskMusic is undertaking to provide marketing and support services to these artists, as well as to promote the Saskatchewan music industry in general, at these events.

The Great Escape music festival, “Europe’s Leading Festival for New Music,” takes place May 10-12 in Brighton UK, and is firmly established as a leading international event for the showcasing of new music. It kicks off the festival season, introducing 15,000 music lovers to the taste-making artists and sounds of the year. With over 300 bands playing in 30 venues over 3 days, and over 3000 industry delegates from all over the world in attendance, TGE is Europe’s largest showcase and music industry convention. The Alternative Escape, numerous club nights, label parties, industry showcases, unique collaborations and outdoor gigs all add to the festivities (www.escapegreat.com). In order to maximize the impact of the Saskatchewan artists who have been invited to perform by Great Escape organizers this year – Jordan Cook, Slow Down Molasses, and The Sheepdogs - SaskMusic will be presenting the artists in a private industry event and additional public showcase at Canada House, in partnership with the Canadian Independent Music Association and Alberta Music.

Private receptions such as this one, with a focused showcase of Saskatchewan music for members of the international industry (as well as their performances in the festival itself which will be attended by the general public), will have a stronger result for the artists than would simply touring for the first time into an unknown market. SaskMusic staff will also be attending the Great Escape conference, a CIMA workshop featuring music supervisors from Scotland and Scandinavia, and taking part in other scheduled business meetings while in London.

SaskMusic will then travel to Glasgow, Scotland to support a performance by Slow Down, Molasses and meet with representatives of Celtic Connections, Glasgow’s annual folk, roots and world music festival. Celtic Connections celebrates Celtic music and its connections to cultures across the globe. 2100 musicians from around the world descend on Glasgow and bring the city to life for 18 days of concerts, ceilidhs, talks, art exhibitions, workshops, and free events (www.celticconnections.com).

The next stop will be Liverpool Sound City (May 17-19, www.liverpoolsoundcity.co.uk) where SaskMusic will attend as delegates, and support the official festival performances of Library Voices, The Sheepdogs, Jordan Cook, and Slow Down Molasses.

Finally, SaskMusic will host a showcase event on May 30 in Barcelona, Spain to augment the official performances of Foam Lake and Jordan Cook at PrimaveraPro (May 30-June 3). PrimaveraPro is a meeting aimed at professionals in the music industry that takes place in parallel to San Miguel Primavera Sound, an international presentation of independent music. The trendsetting character of the festival has made Barcelona into a strategic point of cultural exchange between Europe, North America and Latin America. PrimaveraPro is the ideal setting to channel the synergies that arise between professionals from different areas of the sector, offering the perfect opportunity to network as well as to soak up the latest tendencies on the music scene.

SaskMusic believes it is the best-positioned organization to deliver this type of music export mission, whereby the recorded music of Saskatchewan can be marketed to the world. Introduction of the quality talent from our province to those who have the ability to expand the exposure of our artists through additional live performances, festival appearances, or music placement is one of the most efficient and effective methods of raising our artists up to compete on the world stage.

SaskMusic recognizes the financial assistance of the Saskatchewan Arts Board’s “Culture on the Go” program and SaskCulture for this project.

Performance Schedule (artist events)
Artist    Date/Time    Venue    City    Event
Library Voices    May 3    Pop In    Paris FR    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 3    AB    Brussels, Belgium    Club date
Library Voices    May 5    Beatpol    Dresden    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 5    Bevrijdingspop    Haarlem NL and Den Bosch NL    Bevrijdingspop Festival
Slow Down, Molasses    May 9    The Windmill    London UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 10, 12:00    Blind Tiger    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival (SaskMusic showcase)
Jordan Cook    May 10, 13:30    Blind Tiger    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival (SaskMusic showcase)
The Sheepdogs    May 10, 15:15    Blind Tiger    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival (SaskMusic showcase)
Jordan Cook    May 10, 19:15    Psychosocial Ground Floor    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival
The Sheepdogs    May 10, 21:15    Pavilion Theatre    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival
Slow Down, Molasses     May 11, 20:30    Prince Albert    Brighton UK    The Great Escape Festival
Library Voices    May 12    Ekko    Utrecht    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 12    Club NME @ The Wedgewood Rooms    Portsmouth UK    Club date
Library Voices     May 13    Labour Club    Northampton UK    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 13    The Windmill    London UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 13    The Wheatsheaf    Oxford UK    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 14    Indiestad Festival    Amsterdam NL    Indiestad Festival @ The Paradiso
Slow Down, Molasses    May 14    The Moon Club    Cardiff UK    Club date
Library Voices    May 15    Night & Day    Manchester UK    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 15    Hotel Street    London UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 15    The 13th Note Café    Glasgow Scotland    Club date
Library Voices    May 16    Milk    Glasgow UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 16    Henry’s Cellar Bar    Edinburgh Scotland    Club date
The Sheepdogs    May 17, 23:00    Binary Cell    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Library Voices    May 17    Old Queen’s Head    London UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 17    The Underbelly    London UK    Club date
Slow Down, Molasses    May 18, 20:00     Mello Mello    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Library Voices     May 18    Underbelly    London UK    Club date
Library Voices    May 19, 20:00    Leaf Café, First Floor    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Jordan Cook    May 19, 16:00    Mello Mello    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Jordan Cook    May 19, 15:00    Screenadelica    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Slow Down, Molasses    May 19, 17:00    Wolstenhulme Creative Space    Liverpool UK    Liverpool Sound City
Jordan Cook    May 30    TBA    Barcelona Spain    SaskMusic showcase
Foam Lake    May 30    TBA    Barcelona Spain    SaskMusic showcase
Library Voices    May 30    Buffalo Bar    Cardiff UK    Club date
Jordan Cook    May 30-June 3    TBA    Barcelona Spain    PrimaveraPro
Foam Lake    May 30-June 3    TBA    Barcelona Spain    PrimaveraPro

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For more information please contact:

J.P. Ellson, CEO, SaskMusic, 306-535-6753 or jpellson@saskmusic.org
Lorena Kelly, Program Manager, SaskMusic, 306-347-0676 or lorenakelly@saskmusic.org.

About CIMA
The Canadian Independent Music Association is the national trade association representing the English-language, Canadian-owned sector of the music industry. CIMA’s membership consists of Canadian-owned companies and their representatives involved in every aspect of the music, sound recording and music-related industries. CIMA is hosting its inaugural Canada House at The Great Escape this year, with 24 Canadian bands in all traveling to the U.K. CIMA works proactively to assist the independent sector to expand B2B and business partnerships in the international marketplace. Chief among its strategies has been the creation and delivery of the Canada Stand, a collective initiative to provide strategic support for Canadian companies at key international trade shows around the world. Through the services provided by the Canada Stand brand, CIMA is able to facilitate Canadian independent labels and companies to build strategic alliances in major markets and establish new contacts and networks, to strengthen relations with existing contacts, to access new sales territories and new distribution networks, to license product, to export/import finished goods and to gain a better understanding of international markets. CIMA participates in trade shows and festivals around the world such as The Great Escape (UK), Liverpool Sound (UK), Reeperbahn Festival (Germany), Music Matters (Hong Kong), CMJ (New York), WOMEX (Spain), and Pop Montreal (Canada). (www.cimamusic.ca)

About Alberta Music
The Alberta Music Industry Association is a non-profit, service-based association dedicated to helping professionals in the music industry to succeed in their careers.  (www.amia.ca)

About Slow Down, Molasses
Slow Down, Molasses are a sprawling indie rock collective from Saskatoon. The band brings together a cast of six members to create their own unique wall-of-sound. Songs that began as sparse, dust-covered arrangements have developed into full-fledged, lush indie-folk anthems filled with strings, horns and layers of feedback drenched guitars and sweet vocal harmonies. The band’s latest album, “Walk Into The Sea”, features guest appearances by Canada’s indie queen Julie Doiron and was mixed by Ohbijou’s James Bunton. Since the release of the album, Slow Down, Molasses has toured across Canada from Halifax to Vancouver. The tour and the album have been met with great critical acclaim. Summer 2011 saw the band play major festivals across Canada including North by Northeast, Sled Island, and the Regina Folk Festival, before heading across the ocean to play England’s End of the Road Festival alongside indie heavyweights Mogwai, Okkervil River and Joanna Newsom. (http://slowdownmolasses.blogspot.ca)

About The Sheepdogs
While most rock bands are all too focused on the riff, Saskatoon’s The Sheepdogs remember the importance of those other elements that make for great rock music: melody, harmony and groove. To see them live is pure rock and roll jubilation, to revel in the splendor created by three-part vocal harmonies and heavy-hitting dual guitar leads. Their latest album, “Learn & Burn,” is a beautiful blend of power and imagination, ranging from ferocious rockers to southern boogie and grooving psychedelia. Big guitars, stacked harmonies, vintage organ and piano skillfully colour each of the album's 15 tracks, proving that these boys are as dedicated to the craft of songwriting and album-making as they are to playing a dynamite live show. The Sheepdogs are an old-school rock and roll revival. They recently set a Saskatchewan record for most JUNOs received by one artist in one year, with three. (www.thesheepdogs.com)

About Jordan Cook
Saskatoon’s Jordan Cook, a.k.a Reign Wolf, has electrified audiences all over the world. Cook has been showcased at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver; he was the first Canadian rock artist to tour China; and was declared the revelation of the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland. He has made guest appearances with such legends as Van Morrison, B.B. King, and the Aretha Franklin band. Cook’s latest release, “Seven Deadly Sins”, was recently nominated for two Western Canadian Music awards and earned the attention of Ben Shepherd from Soundgarden, Matt Chamberlin (Pearl Jam/David Bowie), the Matrix Production team, and AC/DC manager Alvin Handwerker, who all had a hand in the album. The Jordan Cook show will go out to remind you that rock isn't sleeping, with his swaggering blues and towering energy. (www.jordancook.com)

About Library Voices
Library Voices are a seven-piece pop collective from Regina that blends tremolo soaked guitars with analog synths, vintage organs, circuit bent electronics, accordion, saxophone, strings, theremin, Tenori-on, and glockenspiel. Since forming in spring of 2008, the group has operated at a feverish pace given their infectious musical blend of bubblegum synth-folk. The release of their sophomore record, “Summer Of Lust” (Nevado Records/Dine Alone Records) has also provided for constant tour mileage through North America in 2011. They’ve been heralded by SPIN as an “undiscovered band you need to hear now” and have been featured in The New Yorker, La Blogotheque, NYLON Magazine and more. (www.libraryvoices.ca)

About Foam Lake
Four blood brothers creating infectiously catchy rock ‘n roll laden with synth textures, dynamic rhythms, contemplative lyricism and luscious guitars. That’s the genius of Saskatoon’s post-pop rockers Foam Lake. Equally at home with swirling keyboard tones as with jagged driven guitars, they far exceed the sum of their individual parts. With all the energy of a handful of amphetamines but the careful deliberateness of a philosophy major, Foam Lake craft majestic rock songs that shimmer with hooks at every turn while still retaining the raw emotion at the heart of every great band. Their debut full-length, “Force and Matter,” a succinct 38 minute package of harmonic glory, burrows its way into your earhole and doesn’t let go. (www.foamlakeband.com)

101-202 Fourth Avenue North, Saskatoon, SK S7K 0K1
Phone: (306) 242-1206 | Fax: (306) 242-1955 | 1-800-567-2444