well damn!

2009 Juno Nominations

For those of you south of the 49th parallel or an ocean away, the Junos are Canada’s semi-equivalent to the Grammys. I say semi-equivalent, because quite frankly, our country isn’t behind or involved in our music industry in the same way Americans are involved with their music industry. To be honest, after the reviewing the Grammy nominations I found myself thinking Who are these people? I am out of the loop! There isn’t one album on this list I’ve listened. Thankfully I found I actually had listened to quite a few albums and artists nominated for the Junos, although I did find myself thinking Celine Dion released a single this year? That Nickelback song is new? The Stills are a new band? Is my 10 year old sister an infant?

When did Celine Dion release new material? I’ll admit I don’t often find myself listening to mainstream pop, but surely somebody would have complained about her new stuff! Or at the very least you’d think I would have noticed in one of my many weekly (sometimes daily) visits to the record store. REALLY?

I have a hate/hate relationship with Nickelback. I quite dislike them, but I also quite dislike that sometimes I actually like their songs. Then I realize that all of their songs sound exactly the same. The Junos recognize new music! Not recycled arrangements! I think five nominations might be pushing it.

The Junos frequently nominate an established band in their Best New Group category. Last year it was the 6 year old Wintersleep (who deservedly took the award), and this year it is a 9 year old The Stills. Should I expect to be seeing Sloan in this category next year?

The Junos did make some hits though. Sam Roberts walked away with 4 nods, while Creature, Tokyo Police Club, Protest the Hero and City and Color each managed at least one nomination. The rest of the New Group of the Year, Roots & Traditional Album of the Year: Solo and Group, Adult Alternative Album of the Year and Alternative Album of the Year categories are looking promising. Coeur de Pirate and Karkwa each received a Francophone nomination. Constantines‘ bassist Dallas Wherle received a nod for the artwork on Kensington Heights. Even Moneen were nominated for their DVD, It All Started With A Red Stripe.

I do think they missed out on nominating Hey Rosetta!, Mother Mother and Land of Talk, each of whom put out fantastic albums in the past year.

Unfortunately, if I were to bring this list to a group of my friends or to my coworkers, they’d have no idea who I was talking about. Have the Junos lost their relevance or as Canadians do we need to expose ourselves to the music being produced in our backyards?

Juno Categories or PDF summary