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  • Michael Ellis

2016's HEADLINERS FOR CANADIAN MUSIC WEEK


Canadian Music Week (CMW) is right around the corner (May 2 - 8 2016) and, while it's an amazing opportunity to discover new and or upcoming artists, it's one of the best ways to see some of your favourite chart-topping mega stars perform their biggest hits.

X AMBASSADORS

X Ambassadors took the industry by storm with their radio dominating hit song "Renegades".

I don't know if I heard any other song played more on the radio in 2015 and their combined 40 million+ youtube views (audio + official video) for the single are testaments to the track's massive success.

My personal favourite is "Unsteady" - another hit song from the group.

This pop ballad would have probably still been a hit if the band stuck with the ambient keys + guitar under the vocal melodies but they took the track to another level with the beat driven production. These 2 hits are just a small taste of what X Ambassadors will deliver at CMW so make sure you don't miss their performance.

TEGAN AND SARA

Powerhouse twin sisters, Tegan and Sara have been making great music since 1995 but I really started to feel their fame when I heard "Where Does The Good Go" while watching an episode of Grey's Anatomy.

I started hearing the song everywhere and everyone I knew was talking about it. After that, the name Tegan and Sara lost it's "underground/indie" effect and became a household name.

The duo has continued to grow over the years and they'll undoubtedly be a huge draw for CMW this year. Take a look at some tour footage below and get a preview of the Tegan and Sara effect.

TORI KELLY

Grammy nominated pop artist, Tori Kelly might be the most commercially successful musician in this article but it didn't come easy like most people think. Her time on American Idol, back when she was 16, was actually a healthy serving of the music industry's tough love and not a free ride to the top. Right from the start, she took a verbal beating from Simon, who called her voice annoying. She was later cut from the show well before the top 10.

Tori didn't let her Idol experience keep her down though. She went on to post a number of viral cover song videos on YouTube and was eventually discovered in a coffee shop by big time music manager, Scooter Braun. Even though he already had celebrity artists like Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande on his roster, it still took him 6 months to convince the frustrated and sceptical up-and-comer to trust him with her career.

Tori is the real deal and if you catch her performance at CMW in May, you'll get to see her amazing raw talent in person.

Check out an acoustic performance of her song "Funny" and her music video for the smash hit "Should've Been Us", which includes some concert footage.

NAO

Award winning UK soul artist, Nao, is 1 of the 2 CMW headliners in this article that you may not be familiar with. You will be soon enough though because she's, without a doubt, one of the best urban artists in the world right now. Pitchfork gave her their coveted "Best New Music" title, the MOBO Awards (UK equivalent of BET or Soul Train Awards) honoured her as "Best Newcomer" and she has been featured as an artist and writer on some major projects, including Disclosure's #1 album - Caracal.

I've blogged about Nao before and I couldn't be happier to see that CMW was able to curate her talents. Don't miss her performance !

For now, listen to her latest single "Bad Blood" (viewer discretion - nudity) and her "February 15" EP below.

MURA MASA

19 year old, Mura Masa is on a short list of producers that have a truly distinct and original sound. I first discovered his music when he was mostly making instrumentals and remixes but now he's collaborating with some amazing singers (like Nao) to create tracks that his fans can sing along to.

First listen to 2 instrumental tracks that blew up on Soundcloud. When I say blew up, I mean almost 6 million plays combined.

Now that you understand where he's coming from, check out one of his more recent collaborations with UK singer "Shura".

Just ridiculously good. Cheers to CMW for bringing Mura Masa down to TO. I'll be in the front row for this one.

These are just a few of the major acts that are headlining CMW 2016. See below for the official release and visit www.cmw.net for more info.

#cmw2016headliners

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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