Entertainment

Junos 2024: Aysanabee, Tate McRae early winners

Artists from three corners of Canada’s music scene were celebrated at the Juno Awards industry gala on Saturday as rapper Tobi, alternative singer Aysanabee and pop star Tate McRae emerged as big winners.

All three pocketed two Junos each with Oji-Cree musician Aysanabee’s “Here and Now” being named alternative album of the year, while he also won the songwriter award.

Toronto rapper Tobi’s “Panic” landed rap album of the year while its track “Someone I Knew” picked up rap single.

And while Calgary native McRae wasn’t in attendance, she landed two of the night’s biggest awards. Her pop smash “Greedy” was picked as single of the year and she won artist of the year.

Another double winner found himself amid the most surreal of Juno-winning circumstances as technical guru Shawn Everett won his second award of the night while talking backstage about his first.

Everett was named producer of the year for his work with Miley Cyrus and Alabama Shakes member Brittany Howard.

Dressed in massive black platform shoes and sporting luscious dreadlocks, Everett watched a live feed of the main room with befuddlement as one of the hosts accepted his second win in his honour.

“I won? That’s crazy,” Everett said backstage while learning he was also named engineer of the year.

“This is a surreal moment for me. This is weird.”

Everett was later given another chance to accept his second award in front of his peers, which he used to thank his manager and his family.

Other winners at the Saturday event included Montreal pop singer Charlotte Cardin, who went into this year’s Junos with a leading six nominations. Her “99 Nights” took home pop album of the year.

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And Toronto band the Beaches, who saw their single “Blame Brett” become a TikTok sensation last year, saw its album “Blame My Ex” win rock album of the year.

James Barker Band picked up country album for “Ahead of Our Time,” while Toronto music collective New West won breakthrough group.

Music video of the year went to Allison Russell’s “Demons,” directed by fellow Montrealer Ethan Tobman. Russell accepted on his behalf

Toronto DJ and producer Bambii’s “Infinity Club” was named electronic album of the year.

“I’m just a sum of all the communities I’ve traversed,” the second-generation Caribbean DJ said after her win.

“Being around young people, queer people, trans people. It’s not only (artists) … it’s the people who consume and understand art … that have inspired my sound. Just regular people around me that are in my music, their stories are in my music.”

The Junos industry ceremony is a precursor to Sunday’s televised CBC broadcast, which Nelly Furtado will host. That’s where several marquee awards will be handed out, including fan choice and album of the year.

Sunday’s show will also celebrate this year’s Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee, rapper Maestro Fresh Wes, and Halifax native Elliot Page will present Tegan and Sara with the humanitarian award for their work supporting LGBTQ2S+ youth.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 23, 2024 

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