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

City of Toronto: Have Ryerson University remount the neon "Sam the Record Man" sign.

                        Sign this petition and help save a vital part of Toronto's cultural heritage.  Click here to sign: City of Toronto: Have Ryerson University remount the neon "Sam the Record Man" sign.
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Feature Article: Truths & Rights

Truths & Rights Truths & Rights
Truths & Rights was arguably the best reggae band ever to come out of Canada. Formed at the dawn of the 1980s in Toronto's Regent Park district, the band, made of of singer-guitarist Mojah, singer Ovid Reid, lead guitarist Vance Tynes, keyboardist Iauwata, bassist Xola, percussionist Ahmid, conga player Quammie Williams and trap drummer Abnadengel, brought reggae music to the downtown scene. Also part of the band was graphic artist Ato Seitu and sound engineer Jeffrey Holdip. "We got tired of playing uptown to just community groups and in community centres," recalls Mojah. "I, for one, always wanted to move out into the mainstream. So I set out on a path of coming down to Queen Street in...
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Obituary: Sam "the Record Man" Sniderman

Obituary: Sam "the Record Man" Sniderman
He said it, he did it. Sam “the Record Man” Sniderman loved catch phrases and used them frequently to promote himself and the family business that bore his name. But, unlike the claims of many entrepreneurial blowhards, Sam’s slogans were no empty boasts. He actually did create the “best chain of record stores in Canada, with great music at great prices,” like he boldly predicted he would, and built a reputation as the greatest promoter of domestic talent that Canadian music ever had. Long before CanCon regulations, which he helped to usher in, Sniderman made a habit of giving prominent display space in his stores to domestic artists. Gordon Lightfoot remembers how Sniderman faithfully stock...
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Toronto cultural landmark lost

Toronto cultural landmark lost

From Heritage Toronto

335 Yonge Street (The Empress Hotel) Destroyed by Fire

January 4, 2011 - 12:30pm

How can we better protect our heritage?

The Empress Hotel at 335 Yonge Street was destroyed yesterday in an early morning fire. Located on the southeast corner of Yonge Street and Gould Street, the Empress Hotel (1888) is a three-storey commercial building. The property was included on the City of Toronto's Inventory of Heritage Properties in 1974, and was designated last year under the Ontario Heritage Act in response to a demolition application.

From the Intent to Designate Report: "The Empress Hotel has design value as a well-crafted example of a late 19th century commercial building that blends elements of the popular Second Empire and Romanesque Revival styles of the era. The distinctive corner tower with a classically detailed mansard roof from Second Empire styling is combined with the monumental round-arched openings that typify the Romanesque Revival style in a carefully crafted composition designed to enhance the presence of the building on Toronto's most prominent commercial street.

Contextually, the Empress Hotel is a local landmark on the southeast corner of Yonge Street and

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Music Review: The Sattalites - Reggaefication

Canada’s reggae veterans have “reggae-fied” everything from the Beatles’ “She Loves You” to Cat Stevens’ “The First Cut is the Deepest.” Here, they add the one-drop rhythm to the Rascals’ “Groovin’.” But catchy covers are only part of the Sattalites’ oeuvre. Led by Jo Jo Bennett and Fergus Hambleton, the band—now happily celebrating its 20th anniversary—also delivers polished originals like Hambleton’s “The Key” and Bruce “Preacher” Robinson’s spirited dancehall rap “God Bless.” Joyful, unpretentious stuff.
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