Manitoba-Based Acts Up for Honours in Roots, Adult Contemporary, Blues, and Gospel Categories
Manitoba artists are strong contenders for top honours at the 2020 JUNO Awards. Homegrown acts are up for several awards, including five nominations for artists that currently call Manitoba home. The nominees for the 49th annual awards were announced by the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) on January 28. Canada’s music awards are headed to Saskatoon for JUNO Week, March 12-15, 2020.
Bilingual Métis artist Rénee Lamoureux has picked up her first JUNO nod for Adult Contemporary Album of the Year for her latest recording, Empower.
Music legend and recent Order of Canada inductee Big Dave McLean has landed his fourth nomination for Blues Album of the Year, this time for Pocket Full of Nothin'. He earned nominations in 2018 (Better the Devil You Know), 2016 (Faded But Not Gone), and 2009 (Acoustic Blues - Got 'Em From The Bottom).
Rapper Fresh I.E. has picked up a nomination for Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year for his latest work, ILL Street Blues. A GRAMMY nominee with many other awards on his mantle, he was nominated in 2006 for Red Letterz.
Singer/songwriter Del Barber garnered a nomination for Contemporary Roots Album of the Year for Easy Keeper. This is his third nomination, with past nods in 2015 (Prairieography) and 2011 (Love Songs for the Last Twenty).
Powerhouse pair The Small Glories earned a nomination for Traditional Roots Album of the Year for their sophomore recording, Assiniboine & The Red. The duo was named Artist of the Year at the International Folk Music Awards last week. Cara Luft, one half the the duo, previously earned a JUNO for her work with The Wailin’ Jennys on 40 Days in 2012.
Winnipeg-born, Hamilton-based artist Iskwē is up for Adult Alternative Album of the Year for acākosīk. She was nominated for Indigenous Music Album of the Year in 2018 for The Fight Within.
Former Brandonite James Ehnes picked up his 28th JUNO nomination (he’s won 11) for Classical Album of the Year: Solo or Chamber for Beethoven: Violin Sonatas Op. 12.
Many of this year's nominees have participated in Manitoba Music's export and professional development programs over their careers, including support to build their business networks and expand into new markets.
The nominees for this year's Indigenous Artist or Group of the Year category include several artists from across Canada who have participated in the Indigenous Music programs at Manitoba Music, including Celeigh Cardinal (Stories from a Downtown Apartment), Digawolf (Yellowstone), Nêhiyawak (Nipiy), and Riit (Ataataga).
Winners will be announced at the exclusive JUNO Gala Dinner & Awards on March 14 and the 2020 JUNO Awards broadcast on CBC on March 15.
For a complete list of 2020 JUNO Awards nominees, go to junoawards.ca.