The country music community of Québec assembled on Sept. 11, 2020, to celebrate the artists and songs that have most strongly reached country music lovers over the past year. In all, 13 “Willie” Awards were handed out on Stingray’s Palmarès ADISQ channel to celebrate the achievements of Francophone Canadian artists and craftspeople and Anglophone Québec artists and craftspeople who stood out in 2019.

SOCAN was once again a partner in the celebration, and the SOCAN Songwriter of the Year Award was presented by our Chief Quebec Affairs & Visual Arts Officer, Geneviève Côté. This prestigious award went to the talented Léa Jarry, who’ll also have the opportunity to enjoy a free creative stay at the SOCAN House in Nashville as soon as circumstances allow.

Jarry expressed her appreciation for SOCAN’s work with these words in her acceptance speech:

The Gala Country 2020 winners are:

  • Original Song Album of the Year: “Si on y allait” (Patrick Norman)
  • Covers Album of the Year: Laurence Jalbert au pays de Nana Mouskouri (Laurence Jalbert)
  • SOCAN Songwriter of the Year: Léa Jarry
  • Song of the Year: “La Gibson de mon père” (Performer: Patrick Norman; Songwriter: Danny Boudreau)
  • Breakthrough Artist of the Year, sponsored by Paja Communications: Beauséjour
  • Promoter of the Year: Festival Country de Lotbinière
  • Radio Show of the Year: En route vers l’ouest with Véronique Labbé
  • TV Show of the Year: Tout simplement country with Guylaine Tanguay
  • Group of the Year: Beauséjour
  • Female Artist of the Year: Laurence Jalbert
  • Male Artist of the Year: Patrick Norman
  • Show of the Year: Matt Lang
  • People’s Choice Award: Daniel Bertrand

SOCAN warmly congratulates all Gala Country 2020 winners!

Honey Jam – the Toronto-based non-profit organization and artist development program fostering young female artists – is celebrating its 25th Anniversary with an online concert experience, live-streamed from Toronto’s newly re-opened El Mocambo, on Thursday, Oct. 1. The event will showcase an array of performances by alumni, paying homage to songs made famous by female artists in a variety of genres.

Honey Jam is an annual program that offers mentoring, education, performance and networking opportunities for female-identifying artists, culminating with a stellar showcase to highlight their growth. Yearly programming includes Honey Jam artists and alumni engaging in workshops, artist talks, songwriting camps, performance and development opportunities, as well as collaborations and travel experiences for the artists to expand their network and fan base outside of Canada.

Over the past 25 years, Torontonians have gathered in the hundreds each year at the showcase, to support and experience powerful voices that drive tomorrow’s music scene. Honey Jam has earned a reputation as a renowned platform and launching pad known for enriching the careers of many alumni,  including LU KALA, Haviah Mighty, TiKA the Creator, SATE, Nelly Furtado, Jully Black, Melanie Fiona, Melanie Durrant, Michie Mee, Jordan Alexander, and many more.

SOCAN members Helen Austin and Paul Otten of the duo Big Little Lions; Mike Ure and Aidan Johnson-Bujold of the duo Buck Twenty; and solo artist JoJo Worthington have all won second-place prizes in the genre categories of the 2020 Unsigned Only competition.

Big Little Lions took the honours in the Americana category, for their song “Against the Wall,” and also earned an honourable mention in the Screenshot field, for “Here We Go Again.”  Buck Twenty won in the Country category, for “All I Can Do,”  while JoJo  Worthington reached the penultimate prize in the Screenshot field, for her song “Stabilize,” which also earned an honourable mention in the Adult Contemporary category.

In addition to these genre winners, 13 other SOCAN members, or acts featuring SOCAN members, also earned honorable mentions in their respective categories, including double recognition for solo artist Madison Olds and the duo Scot Free Sessions.  These winners are:

Adult Contemporary (AC)
Madison Olds, “Sorry”

Scot Free Sessions, “Beckett”

Robyn Ottolini, “Girl Next Door”
Genevieve Fisher, “Someone Else”

Electronic Dance Music (EDM)
Enevold, “Space Machine”

Benjamin Dakota Rogers, “Better By Now”
Scot Free Sessions, “Istanbul”

Pop/Top 40
Madison Olds, “3’s a Crowd”
The Free Label, “M.I.A. (Money Isn’t Available)”
Fenmore, “The Alchemist”

The Royal Foundry, “Okay?”

Liz, “Fences”

Mikalyn Hay, “It’s Dangerous””

Vocal Performance
Hannah Thomas, “I Will Always Love You” (in the style of Whitney Houston)
Alexz Johnson, “Still Alive”

SOCAN congratulates all of our winning members on these achievements. For a complete list of winners, and to hear the winning songs, click here.