Gordon Lightfoot Book, Music and More!

The home of music journalist Nicholas Jennings, author of Lightfoot, the definitive new Gordon Lightfoot biography from Penguin Random House.

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Obituaries, Books

Juno's New Rising Stars

The Juno Awards turn 50 this year. Canadian music has evolved dramatically in that half century, embracing new styles and cultures with the country’s changing demographics. Some of the freshest new sounds in Canada have come out of the Toronto area and its diverse African, Middle Eastern and South Asian communities. Here are some of the new rising stars. Ali GatieBorn in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates to Iraqi parents, Ali Gatie and his family settled in Mississauga, where he first started making music. Inspired by singers like J. Cole and Frank Ocean, he began to make his own romantic brand of “bedroom pop,” going viral with songs like “Moonlight” and “It’s You” and his latest EP...
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Ronnie ‘Bop’ Williams - Unheralded reggae pioneer helped define the genre

He was one of the early architects of Jamaican music – a guitarist, bass player, songwriter, arranger and producer whose contributions to hundreds of recordings helped to shape reggae and popularize it around the world. He played with Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Johnny Nash and Toots and the Maytals, and worked for such famous studio owners as Duke Reid, Bunny Lee and Lee (Scratch) Perry, and the Trojan, Treasure Isle and Upsetter record labels. Yet the name Ronnie (Bop) Williams is barely known outside of reggae circles.Part of the reason for the near anonymity was Mr. Williams’s own modesty. A soft-spoken man, he came from extremely humble roots in rural Jamaica, teaching himself to play on a...
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Music Feature: Stranger in the Market

To walk through the middle of Toronto's Kensington Market on a Saturday in the early ’80s was to enter what locals called the “wobble zone.” There on a stretch of Kensington Avenue, between St. Andrew and Baldwin, the booming bass sounds coming from two sets of opposing speakers could throw passersby a little off balance.The duelling sound systems, like something out of The Harder They Come, belonged to a pair of Jamaican expat musicians who ran competing reggae record shops, each facing the other. Stranger Cole came first, in 1978, launching his Roots Records store – the first Caribbean business in the Market – at 58 Kensington. Four years later, Rannie “Bop” Williams opened Record Corner a...
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