May 12, 2015 (Toronto, ON) – The Canadian Country Music Association® (CCMA®) is pleased to unveil the top six finalists for the 2015 CCMA Discovery Program – Atlantic Canada. The finalists are: Jason Benoit (NL), Kevin Davison (NS), Tyler Deveau (NB), TJ King (NS), Katie McGarry (PEI) and The Secrets (NL).
The CCMA, in association with the four Atlantic Canada Music Industry Associations (MIAs): Music New Brunswick, Music Newfoundland & Labrador, Music Nova Scotia, Music Prince Edward Island and the Cavendish Beach Music Festival, developed this pilot program as an offshoot of the successful national CCMA Discovery Program.
“We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to bring the CCMA Discovery Program to Atlantic Canada,” notes Don Green, President of the Canadian Country Music Association. “The East Coast is brimming with musical talent, especially in the country genre. I’m confident our six finalists will savour the insights and experiences they’ll gain during Boot Camp Week. It’s been a pleasure working with our industry partners and regional Musical Industry Associations to bring this programming together.”
“The Discovery Program is a great way to shine a light on the amazing emerging talent in our region,” says Stacey Jones-Oxner, Chair of the Host Committee for Country Music Week 2015 in Halifax. “Our host committee is excited to leverage Country Music Week to create growth opportunities for our country music artists and industry leaders, and we are thrilled to work with the CCMA and Music Industry Associations to bring this important program to Atlantic Canada.”
The 2015 CCMA Discovery Program – Atlantic Canada finalists will come together in Halifax for Boot Camp Week, June 8 through 11. During their time together the finalists will learn, in-depth, about the music business and artist development through industry-led panels and seminars; will have the opportunity for performance training; and will perform at an exclusive stakeholder showcase. All six finalists will also travel to Cavendish Beach Music Festival in Cavendish PEI, from July 10 to 12 to participate in a public showcase.
One finalist will be chosen as the winner of the 2015 CCMA Discovery Program - Atlantic Canada Award at the Cavendish Beach Music Festival, and will receive the opportunity to perform at Country Music Week 2015, among other prizing.
More information on the 2015 CCMA Discovery Program – Atlantic Canada finalists:
Jason Benoit (Hometown: Fox Island River, Newfoundland)
Since exploding onto the country scene last year with his rendition of Armin Van Buuren’s dance hit, “This is What it Feels Like” and nearly breaking the Top 40 on the Billboard Country Music Charts and iTunes Canada, singer/songwriter Jason Benoit is showing no signs of slowing down. In 2014, Jason inked his very first label deal with newly formed JV Records/SONY MUSIC CANADA and shortly thereafter broke into the Top 30 on the Canadian Country Billboard Chart with “Crazy Kinda Love”. His third single, “Gone Long Gone” is climbing the charts and has already achieved Top 30 status. Jason is currently recording his first album which is expected to be released in early 2016.
Facebook: jasonbenoitcountry| Twitter: JBenoitcountry | Instagram: jasonbenoitcountry
Kevin Davison (Hometown: New Minas, Nova Scotia)
Jumping into the music scene with both cowboy-booted feet in 2009, Kevin Davison found himself in Nashville within a year in recording sessions with some of the best musicians in North America. Since then, he has shared performance bills with other Canadian country greats such as Jason Blaine, Doc Walker, Gord Bamford and Paul Brandt, to name a few. This past winter, Kevin celebrated the release of “When Those Sirens Are Gone” his single from his album, Only Human, with a performance on Canada AM. As a paramedic himself, Kevin was moved to pen the tribute to PTSD and first responders. The rough video for “When Those Sirens are Gone” has had over 21,000 YouTube views and over 120,000 Facebook views to-date, and continues to reach and resonate with people around the world.
Facebook: Kevidavisonmusic| Twitter: kevindavison11 | Instagram: kevindavisonmusic
Tyler Deveau (Hometown: St. George, New Brunswick)
Following a trip to Edmonton for Country Music Week 2014, emerging artist Tyler Deveau, from Charlotte County, New Brunswick, has been focusing on honing his songwriting skills. Having recently made connections in Nashville that have afforded him the opportunity for writing sessions with songwriters who have cuts by country music heavyweights such as Luke Bryan and Cole Swindell, Tyler looks forward to recording his first single this June – currently set for a July release date.
Facebook: tylerdeveaumusic | Twitter: tdeveaumusic | Instagram: tylerdeveau94
TJ King (Hometown: Mount Uniacke, Nova Scotia)
TJ King is a fireball for music and performance. A crowd pleaser, he delivers his brand of country rock with energy and enthusiasm. Growing up in the small community of Mount Uniacke, Nova Scotia, TJ was influenced and encouraged from a very young age by friends and family alike. He’s worked hard to refine his musical talents of singing, guitar playing and songwriting. TJ released his first recording in 2013, a self-titled EP. He was one of six finalists, and the only country artist, in Casino Nova Scotia’s 2014 Artist in Residence Program. TJ received a 2014 Music Nova Scotia Award nomination for Country Recording of the Year.
Facebook: tjkingmusic | Twitter: tjkingmusic| Instagram: tjkingmusic
Katie McGarry (Hometown: Charlottetown, P.E.I.)
Singer/songwriter Katie McGarry has a country/Americana feel to her music and smooth vocals to wash it down. Her latest album, Waiting On, has received four 2015 Music PEI Award nominations, including Country Album of the Year and Songwriter of the Year. Her first album, My Side of Town, was nominated for two Music PEI Awards. Katie was also the 2011 Music PEI recipient of the Lynn Grishko Bursary, which is awarded annually to a deserving up and coming female singer/songwriter from PEI.
Facebook: katiemcgarrymusic | Twitter: KatieMMcgarry Instagram: katiemcgarrymusic
The Secrets (Hometown: St. John’s, Newfoundland)
Country-folk trio The Secrets, comprised of Karla Pilgrim, Terri Lynn Eddy and Renée Batten, all three accomplished singers and solo musicians in their own right, officially launched in 2010 and have been taking their music across the country since 2012. The Secrets recorded their debut album, Break Even, in Nashville with producer/co-writer, Peter Daniel Newman at the helm. The release of Break Even was followed by a summer tour which included main stage performances at the World Pride Festival in Toronto and a coveted spot at the Cavendish Beach Music Festival in PEI, among others. The trio also opened three sold out shows for Tim McGraw in Newfoundland. Break Even was nominated for a 2015 East Coast Music Award in the category of Country Recording of the Year.
Facebook: thesecrets3 | Twitter: TheSecrets_ca| Instagram: thesecretsshow
The CCMA will be heading to Halifax, NS for its 39th edition of Country Music Week, September 10 to 13, 2015. The CCMA Discovery Program – Atlantic Canada, created through a partnership with the local Country Music Week host committee, the Province of Nova Scotia and generously supported by the Government of Canada through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), aligns with the CCMA goal of introducing programs that educate, elevate and celebrate country music.
For more information about the CCMA Discovery Program - Atlantic Canada or Country Music Week, visit ccma.org.
About the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA):
Established in 1976, the CCMA is a membership-based, not-for-profit organization committed to the promotion and recognition of Canadian country music. Built upon the foundation to educate, elevate and celebrate Canadian talent, the CCMA progressively heralds the spirit, community and creativity that country music fosters through year-round initiatives, culminating every fall with Country Music Week and the Canadian Country Music Association Awards. Local sponsors of the CCMA Discovery Program – Atlantic Canada include the Province of Nova Scotia, the City of Halifax and the Government of Canada through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.
Communications Lead, CCMA
Halifax Host Committee
Sponsors of Country Music Week and the 2015 CCMA Awards include FACTOR, Canada’s Private Radio Broadcasters and The Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage’s “Canada Music Fund” and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), Radio Starmaker Fund, the Province of Nova Scotia, the City of Halifax and Destination Halifax.