SOCAN’s Vancouver Family & Friends Bash, held at Waterview in the early evening of Oct. 25, 2017, was a relaxed, well-enjoyed event that allowed our members and music users to connect extensively with others in the local music community.

We hosted more than 100 guests, including local and visiting songwriters, composers, screen composers, music publishers, and music users, as well as industry representatives from labels, artist management companies, recording studios, music funding organizations, provincial music umbrella organizations, law firms, and more.

Gina Loes, Carolyn Victoria Mill

Left to right: Gina Loes, Carolyn Victoria Mill

SOCAN CEO Eric Baptiste welcomed them all, including members of the 2018 JUNO host committee (since next year’s JUNOs will be held in Vancouver). Baptiste referenced the relationships forged at SOCAN’s recent West Coast song camp on Pender Island; changes to SOCAN Foundation grants, which now include a more comprehensive travel assistance program; and the proximity of Vancouver to Los Angeles, facilitating access to opportunities for both our songwriters and screen composers.

Baptiste also cited SOCAN’s diversity. “Nearly 40 per cent of our staff are members of a racial or ethnic minority,” he said. “At the management and executive levels, nearly 50 per cent of our staff are women. And half of our new younger members are female as well.”

The President and Chair of SOCAN’s Board of Directors, Stan Meissner, welcomed Vancouverite Janice Staub, recently appointed to SOCAN’s Board of Directors. Meissner also recognized our official charity partner, the Unison Benevolent Fund, for supporting Canadian music industry professionals in times of crisis, and reminded attendees that 2018 is SOCAN Board of Directors election year, encouraging them to consider the opportunity to run as a candidate for the board.

Jonathan Simkin, TJ Herminston

Left to right: Jonathan Simkin, TJ Herminston

Attending SOCAN members  included SOCAN Board of Directors members Ed Henderson and Ben Mink; screen composers Hal Beckett, Tim McCauley, Daniel Seguin, and Matthew Rogers (also one-half of the duo The Harpoonist & Axe Murderer); Tarun Nayar (of Delhi 2 Dublin); 2016 SOCAN West Coast Song Camp alumnus Nygel Asselin; recent Pender Island SOCAN Song Camp alumnus FAANGS; Rollin’ Trainwreck members Phil Bell, Jesse Burch and Philip Puxley (who recently won a 2017 British Columbia Country Music Association Award); former SOCAN Board member Simon Kendall; world renowned beat-maker Wondagurl (in from Toronto for some recording); and celebrated hip-hop/R&B producer Chin Injeti.

Among the attending music industry representatives were Songwriters Association of Canada Board members Ron Irving and Terry O’Brien; Rick Baker of Watchdog Management; Jonathan Simkin of 604 Records; Valerie Biggin of The Song Rep; Rob Calder of Secret Study; Alex Grigg, Executive Director of Music BC; Garth Richardson and Mike Schroeder of Nimbus Recording Studios; Patrick Aldous of CFA Law; Gina Loes of the BC Music Fund; Scott Johnson of Warner Music Canada; and Jamie Pitblado, General Manager of the 2018 JUNO host committee.

TimMcCauley, HalBeckett, VinceRenaud

Left to right: TimMcCauley, HalBeckett, VinceRenaud

In addition to Eric Baptiste and Stan Meissner, also attending from SOCAN were Chief Membership & Business Development Officer Michael McCarty; Director, A&R, Rodney Murphy; Membership Operations, Projects, Ryan Maule; Account Executive, Member Services, Coralie Hummel; Royalty Tracking Executive, Pat Mueller; Team Lead, Member Accounts, Sara Pavilionis; and External Licensing Agent, Paul Tansey, the last four from our Vancouver office.

Written with files from Coralie Hummel

Yamaha Canada Music donated an entire band’s worth of musical instruments to the Harmony Lounge in the SOCAN Toronto office on Nov. 2, 2017, to support our series of “SOCAN Sessions” with members, as well as the musicians among our staff.

Omar Ales, of Yamaha Canada Music, presented us with about $16,000 worth of gear, including

  • a Montage 8 Music Synthesizer;
  • a BBP34 Vintage Sunburst Electric Bass;
  • an LL16ARE Folk Guitar;
  • an LL16MARE Folk Guitar;
  • an RS820CR Rusty Rat Electric Guitar;
  • a THR100HD Guitar Amp;
  • a THRC212 Guitar Amp;
  • a THR10 Guitar Amp;
  • an Electric Drum Set, including
    • a DTX900M Drum Trigger Module;
    • a DTP903 Pad Set; and
    • a DTP904 Pad Set,

as well as

  • an RS700 Electronic Drum Rack;
  • an L7S Keyboard Stand;
  • an FP9500B Drum Pedal; and
  • a DS840 Drum Stool.
Yamaha, SOCAN

SOCAN staff test the new Yamaha gear

This will make it much easier for SOCAN members like Amelia Curran, Andy Kim, Damhnait Doyle, and Dean Brody to play “SOCAN Sessions” for our staff with their bands – because the backing musicians won’t have to bring along all of their gear, and load it in and out.

It’ll also make it easier for the many musicians among our Toronto staff to indulge their passion for singing, songwriting and performing – right at the office – whenever they’d like to do so, on their lunch hours, breaks, and after work. The handful of employees who were the first to test the gear really enjoyed it.

“It’s a win for everybody, all around,” said SOCAN Chief Membership & Business Development Officer Michael McCarty. “We thank Yamaha Canada Music for their generous donation, which – like SOCAN itself – fosters music creation. What a great gift!”