In this interview, Michel Rivard, creator of “La Complainte du phoque en Alaska,” which will receive the SOCAN Cultural Impact Award at the SOCAN Montréal Awards on Oct. 2, 2018, reveals what inspired him to write this iconic song, first recorded by the 2017 Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame inductees Beau Dommage. The song – which has made a profound and lasting impact, both at home and around the world – was actually one of the very first ones written by Rivard in 1974. For more than 40 years, it has found its way into the hearts of thousands of Québecers, and people all over the Francophone world.

On Sept. 12, ADISQ unveiled the nominations for the 40th edition of its awards gala, which will be hosted by comedian Louis-Josée Houde for the 13th consecutive year. The ceremony will be held in Montréal on October 28, and be televised live by ICI Radio-Canada from Place des Arts’ Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier.

The numerous SOCAN members having received multiple nominations include Philippe Brach and Loud, with six nominations each, closely followed by Pierre Lapointe, Hubert Lenoir, Isabelle Boulay and Marc Dupré, who received a total of five nominations apiece. The most nominated female artists are Isabelle Boulay, Lydia Képinski and Fanny Bloom, the only woman songwriter being nominated in this year’s Songwriter or Composer of the Year category.

In total, more than 109 artists and 76 professional music industry craftspeople have been nominated. They’ll be competing for a prize in one of ADISQ’s three 2018 awards ceremonies – the Gala de l’industrie, held on Oct. 24 at Club Soda; the Premier Gala de l’ADISQ, held on Oct. 24; and the final televised ceremony, the Gala de l’ADISQ, held on Oct. 28 at Place des Arts.

Once again this year, SOCAN’s songwriter and composer members will have an opportunity to shine in a number of award categories, including Songwriter or Composer of the Year:


  • Fanny Bloom and Tōkinoise, for “Liqueur” – Fanny Bloom
  • Philippe Brach and Gabriel Desjardins, for “Le silence des troupeaux” – Philippe Brach
  • Pierre Lapointe, Félix Dyotte, David-François Moreau and Daniel Bélanger, for “La science du cœur“ – Pierre Lapointe
  • Loud, Ruffsound, Realmind and Neo Maestro, for “Une année record” – Loud
  • Benoit Pinette, for “Désherbage“ – Tire le coyote

The public will also be invited to vote for their favourite piece of music among the 10 songs that have been nominated in the Song of the Year category:

“Comme avant“ – 2Frères
Songwriter: Steve Marin
Éditions du Baume / Les Éditions Marcha

“J’en ai plein mon cass” – Émile Bilodeau
Songwriter: Émile Bilodeau
Les Éditions Dare to Care

“Faufile” – Charlotte Cardin
Songwriter: Charlotte Cardin
Corico Arts Inc

“Une raison d’exister” – Marc Dupré
Songwriters: Nelson Minville / MarcDupré / GautierMarinof
Éditions Chansons du Suisse / Les Éditions Dama

“Fille de personne” – Hubert Lenoir
Songwriter: Hubert Chiasson

“Pour que tu m’aimes encore ” – Les sœurs Boulay
Songwriter: Jean-Jacques Goldman (SACEM)
Sony Music Publishing Canada / Zapiti Music

“Toutes les femmes savent danser” – Loud
Songwriters: S. Cliche Trudeau / P.-L. Rioux, A. Guay, M. Vincent / J.M.M. Lebron
Joy Ride Records

“Fou” – Andréanne A. Malette
Songwriters: Andréanne A. Malette / Manuel Gasse
Productions Nia / David Murphy et cie.

“La saison des pluies” – Patrice Michaud
Songwriters: Patrice Michaud / Mark Hébert

“À hauteur d’homme“ – Vincent Vallières
Songwriters: Vincent Vallières / François Plante
Les Éditions Trente Arpents

SOCAN congratulates all of its nominated members, and wishes them good luck!

For a complete list of ADISQ’s 2018 nominations, please visit

The adoption of data analytics – the process of examining data to draw conclusions about the information they contain – is pervasive across almost every industry, and the music industry is no exception.

Music streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon have contributed to a massive growth in the consumption of music globally. All of these platforms are also huge generators of data for music labels, distributors, managers, writers, and publishers, while also creating a challenge with regards to the aggregation and management of that data. Tied to this is the fact that there’s been a shift from measuring the sale of music to measuring the consumption of music, enabling artists to better understand how to retain and increase the size of their audiences.

SOCAN has recognized the importance of strategically leveraging the power of data, and our opportunity to aggregate, validate, and ultimately visualize data. This is why SOCAN recently appointed Michael King to head up a data analytics initiative across SOCAN and its associated companies.

King is establishing the Data Governance Office, responsible for effectively advancing our data-analytics capabilities, including the management, delivery, governance, stewardship, and quality control of data.

We’ll create data-governance steering and working groups to make strategic and tactical decisions, and the Data Governance Office will work closely with our legal and IT teams, as well as other critical SOCAN departments like Membership, Licensing and Distribution. The office will initially consist of a limited team of dedicated data engineers committed to advancing business intelligence and data-analytics capabilities across SOCAN.

According to Michael King, “The future of SOCAN lies in our ability to adapt and collaborate in leveraging the power of data through the Data Governance Office. We have to continually review the way in which we work, and identify more innovative ways to provide services to members and clients globally. It’s no longer good enough to accept that we can provide services the way we’ve always provided services; we have to evolve dynamically by embracing the power of data.”

Stay tuned for future developments from the SOCAN Data Governance Office, as we continue to lead the global transformation of music rights.