2017 JUNO Awards Warms Up Ottawa

April 13, 2017

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The rather chilly beginning of spring marked the end of the 2017 JUNO Awards in our nation’s Capital, but the warm celebration kept the guests inside upbeat and ready for great Canadian music. It could’ve been to do with being in Ottawa during Canada’s 150th celebrations, or maybe it was the exciting party atmosphere mixed with plenty of libations. More likely, it was old friends and new ones behaving in the most Canadian of ways—big smiles, friendly attitudes, and warm hearts buried under several layers of jackets. Because really, what’s more Canadian than showing up for the JUNOs during an April snowstorm in Ottawa?

As the weather took a favourable turn by Saturday, the magical moments were still lingering from the night before. One such moment was walking into a stunning cathedral-turned-arts-centre called St. Brigid’s Centre for the Arts, only to witness Inuk throat singer Tanya Tagaq centre stage in an intimate collaboration of body and song with Whitehorse duo, Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland.

And the moments just kept coming. Here’s a list of some of the highlights:


Sarah McLachlan Canadian Music Hall of Fame Induction at the 2017 JUNO Awards.

For many who were in attendance during the JUNOs Gala Dinner and Awards (which takes place the night before the actual awards show and the majority of the awards are handed out) one of the biggest highlights was when legendary Canadian folk-singer and activist, Buffy Sainte-Marie, was presented with the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award.

The Allan Waters Humanitarian Award is named after the late Allan Waters, broadcasting pioneer and visionary, who founded CHUM Limited (one of Canada’s largest radio and television broadcasting holding companies) as well as the CHUM Charitable Foundation, which provides financial assistance to charitable organizations and social service agencies. This award “recognizes an outstanding Canadian artist whose humanitarian contributions have positively enhanced the social fabric of Canada and/or whose impact can be felt worldwide.”

Buffy is such an inspiration to young artists, that when the members of A Tribe Called Red were informed backstage that she had been singing their praises, they all became overwhelmed with emotion, even tearing up a little. When Tanya Tagaq was asked what her reaction was to Buffy being honoured, she replied, “What’s worth more than gold? Buffy Sainte-Marie is worth her weight in stars.”

Buffy Sainte-Marie Backstage at the 2017 JUNO Awards.

If you’ve ever had the opportunity to attend the JUNOs in person, you’ll know there is much more going on prior to the awards show. JUNO Week is filled with events and special activities, including but not limited to:

  • JUNO Cup – It’s rock vs jock as music stars battle it out with hockey stars on the ice in a celebrity hockey game in support of MusiCounts.
  • JUNO Cup Jam – The night prior to the big game, all the players from the musical celebrity team get together for an evening of jamming, also in support of MusiCounts.
  • JUNOfest – A two-night music festival spread out across the city with many familiar faces, including some of the JUNO nominees.
  • JUNO Fan Fare – This is your best opportunity to meet your favourite artists in person—grab an autograph, snap a selfie, and listen to some live performances.
  • Junior JUNOS – A fun family-friendly event showcasing the Children’s Album of the Year nominees.
  • JUNO Songwriters’ Circle – Another great event that benefits MusiCounts, the Songwriters’ Circle showcases top Canadian talent who share intimate stories about their songwriting process and perform a few of their best tunes.

One other unique opportunity for JUNO-goers was to check out the special JUNOs exhibition at the Canada Council for the Arts building, in the Âjagemô exhibition space. The exhibition is free to the public and called JUNO House: R·Evolutions. It will run until August 31 of this year, and features several artifacts from the National Music Centre’s collection.

The crown jewel of JUNO Week was the Songwriter’s Circle. It was hosted by Bruce Cockburn inside the beautiful NAC Theatre at the National Arts Centre. This event is always a highlight because it’s a chance to see some of Canada’s top songwriters discuss their writing process and perform some of their more well-known hits. This year’s lineup included JUNO nominees Chantal Kreviazuk, Colin Linden, Daniel Caesar, Donovan Woods, Lisa LeBlanc, and Paul Murphy from Wintersleep.

On the eve of Canada’s 150th birthday, the JUNO Awards and the various activities surrounding JUNO Week served as a sometimes emotional reminder of the trailblazing artists that this country has produced (Hear: Leonard Cohen, Gord Downie, Sarah McLachlan) and the legacy they’ve contributed to our national identity, along with the next generation of groundbreakers that are flourishing today in all corners of the country (Hear: Tanya Tagaq, William Prince, A Tribe Called Red). As we reflect on 150 years since confederacy, we are reminded of the power of music and its ability to unite the nation, if only for a brief moment. See you in Vancouver in 2018.

For a full list of all the winner and nominees of the 2017 JUNO Awards, click here.

 

Photo Gallery

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Gala Dinner & Awards. William Prince performs Breathless for In Memoriam tribute. Shaw Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Gala Dinner & Awards. Performance by Jess Moskaluke. Shaw Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Welcome Reception. First Nations dance presentation. National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, On. March 31, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Fan Fare. Members of Marianas Trench pose for pic with a fan. Rideau Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Fan Fare. L-R Danny Miles, Peter Dremanis and Leah Fay of July Talk. Rideau Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Fan Fare. The Strumbellas perform to start round 1 of JUNO Fan Fare. Rideau Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Fan Fare. Gord Bamford signs a boot that made it's way down the table. Rideau Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Fan Fare. Cold Creek County. Rideau Centre, Ottawa, On. April 1, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Songwriters' Circle. First session. Lisa LeBlanc.National Arts Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Songwriters' Circle. First session. Colin Linden performs. National Arts Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

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    2017 JUNO Cup Jam. JJ Shiplett. Performances by musicians participating in the 14th annual JUNO Cup. Bourbon Room, Ottawa, On. (Photo: CARASiPhoto)

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 Juno Cup Practice. Gary Roberts, Kathleen Edwards and Jim Cuddy have some fun rehearsing the ceremonial puck drop. The NHL Greats will play the Rockers, Friday, March 31. TD Place, Ottawa, ON. March 30, 2017. CARAS/iPhoto

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 Juno Cup Practice. Former NHL player Gary Roberts talks to media. The NHL Greats will play the Rockers, Friday, March 31. TD Place, Ottawa, ON. March 30, 2017. CARAS/iPhoto

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Cup. NHL's Daniel Alfredsson and Jim Cuddy during sing-off. TD Place, Ottawa, On. March 31, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Cup. Music Counts Director Kristy Fletcher and NHL'r Mark Napier post game with the JUNO Cup trophy. TD Place, Ottawa, On. March 31, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Cup. Jim Cuddy against NHL goalie Matthew Barber. TD Place, Ottawa, On. March 31, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Cup. NHL'r Chris Phillips and Honorary Coach Henry Burris of the Ottawa Red Blacks of the CFL. TD Place, Ottawa, On. March 31, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Alessia Cara, members of Billy Talent, The Strumbellas, July Talk, Sarah McLachlan, White Horse and Arkells join Bryan Adams for "Summer of '69" The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Alessia Cara, members of Billy Talent, The Strumbellas, July Talk, Sarah McLachlan, White Horse and Arkells join Bryan Adams for "Summer of '69" The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Sarah McLachlan, Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee performs "World on Fire". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

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    2017 JUNO Awards. Billy Talent performs "Afraid of Heights". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Alessia Cara performs "Stay" (with Zedd) and "Scars to Your Beautiful". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Bryan Adams performs "You Belong to Me". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

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    2017 JUNO Awards. Ruth B & Orkidstra perform "Lost Boy". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. July Talk performs "Picturing Love". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. JUNO Fan Choice award presented to Shawn Mendes by Bob Moses and Jus Reign. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Sam Roberts and Tasha the Amazon present Group of the Year to winner The Tragically Hip. Accepted by Rob Baker and Paul Langlois. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Josh Ramsay and Delaney Jane present Songwriter of the Year award, winner Gord Downie. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Arkells perform "Drake's Dad". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. The Strumbellas perform "Spirits". The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Country Album of the Year presentation to Jess Moskaluke by Nathan Dales and Michelle Mylett. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee Sarah McLachlan. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

  • 2017 JUNOs

    2017 JUNO Awards. Co-hosts Bryan Adams and Russell Peters. The Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, On. April 2, 2017. (Photo: CARASiPhoto).

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About the Author

Brandon Wallis

Brandon is the Manager of Content and Production and for the National Music Centre and Managing Editor for Amplify.


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