by Dave Charles CEO Media RESULTS Inc.
Past CARAS President and board member.
The Juno Awards show clearly demonstrates that the format needs to be changed. I’m not being critical of the this year’s event because everybody thinks that they can improve this old Award Show model. It’s a daunting task and I know this firsthand from my experience with CARAS. My point is that this award show model is dated and lacks real appeal for any and all demographics.
Having sat in the President’s chair for CARAS I know how hard it is to get the music industry, radio, sponsors, stakeholders, and the board moving in the same direction.
Allan Reid in my view has worked very hard to keep the Juno flame burning. It’s time to look for a better way to honour our best music artists that is meaningful and accurately reflects the business of music.
My idea is to produce a 2-hour packaged special each year honouring those artists (in the various categories) through downloads (sales) and the number of radio station airplays based on Mediabase stats. These are two important measurements of an artist’s success.
With the winners selected based on this business model and not record companies’ hypes or ‘People’s Choice Awards’ which skew heavily younger, you then produce a JUNOS music tribute show to those artists that deliver on downloads and radio airplay as the two key factors for measuring success. No yanking acceptance speeches (boring) no political walk-ons! Just a tribute to each winning group/artist in a slick package that shows the essence of each.
Concerts, clubs, and other stats could augment this formula; however, we know that in Canada live performance venues are not a true indicator of a group or artists’ overall success and appeal. There’s not enough live venues across Canada post Covid. Hopefully that will change because live music venues is where artists build their fan following.
CARAS could then work with a NEW production company to produce a slickly packaged show based on those artists that delivered in these criteria as the only relevant way in which artists should win a Juno. John Brunton and his team at Insight Production have done most of the JUNO’s since the early 90’s.
This new approach takes out the music companies and the potential of CARAS board political wrangling that in my view distorts the Junos. The trading for votes would be gone. Board members personal agendas would be irrelevant.
The Canadian Music Hall of Fame is a mess!
The other very important item is to once and for all sort out the backlog of deserving artists that should in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame right now!!
Each year that I weigh in on this legacy item with various music and industry heavyweights. It reminds me of the Sam Cooke classic songs ‘Someday a change is gonna come’. With CARAS politics, it never does and never will.
Rather than blame anyone for the Canadian Music Hall of Fame mess, I propose the following solution.
There’s too many deserving artists and groups knocking on the Hall of Fame door. CARAS should issue an official letter from the CARAS board and award plaques to those artists acknowledging their Canadian Hall of Fame status this year.
This list of artists should be published on Line, CARAS website, in National press like the Globe & Mail etc. announcing the latest inductees in our Hall of Fame. Get the Prime Minister, Minister of Culture and CARAS to sign the certificate awarding “Canadian Hall of Fame’ status.
CARAS should also apologize for the delay for those deserving artists who have long waited for this honour and recognition. It’s a very bad look for CARAS and its starting to smell.
CARAS is in possession of all artists worthy of the Hall of Fames honours. This will instantly clean up the backlog of artists. By doing this, it’ll bring CARAS up to date on the legacy for the history of our Canadian Music Industry which right now is inaccurate and under siege. Let my article be the start of fixing the Junos and send them in a new direction with a new future that makes them once again relevant. CARAS, you can take the lead on this.
Pssst! It can even be your idea. I just want it fixed now.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue. Please send me your thoughts and ideas which I’ll share with President Allan Reid at CARAS. My email is (firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you have a better idea on how to evolve the Junos and fix the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, now’s your chance to step up.