As the chill set in, we were warmed by the energies on stage. Setting a world record for the first Drive-in Country Music awards, at the Western Fair Grounds in London, Ontario. Country Music Association of Ontario is a platform dedicated to the evolution of Country music in Ontario. Together with Ontario Creates (Prev. OMDC) which facilitates economic support, and collaboration with music, book, magazine, film, television, and interactive digital media avenues.
Presented by Slaight Music with support from Ontario Creates, the 8th Annual CMAOntario Awards was hosted by Jason McCoy, to celebrate and reward stellar country music talent from across Canada. With Drive-In style layout, and a complete stage set up, with side screens, and a visit from the Mayor of London. 225 vehicles rejoiced and honked their appreciation for each performance and award.
With live performances from Tim Hicks, James Barker Band, The Reklaws, The Abrams, Eric Ethridge, and Kalsey Kulyk, Genevieve Fisher, Kelsi Mayne, Les Rats d’Swompe, Nicole Rayy, Ryan Langdon, and The Western Swing Authority. For the grand finale, fellow CMAOntario performers joined McCoy on stage for a special rendition of his song “We Are One World”.
THE WINNERS OF THE 8TH ANNUAL CMAONTARIO AWARDS ARE:
SINGLE OF THE YEAR sponsored by PURE COUNTRY 106
“Keep it Simple” – James Barker Band
ALBUM OF THE YEAR sponsored by COUNTRY 106.7
Wild As Me – Meghan Patrick
SONGWRITER(S) OF THE YEAR sponsored by SOCAN
Meghan Patrick, Jordan Rager, Michael Whitworth – “Wild As Me”, Recorded by Meghan Patrick
FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR sponsored by Spring Tree Farm
MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR sponsored by ECAO/IBEW
GROUP OR DUO OF THE YEAR sponsored by Country 103
ROOTS ARTIST OR GROUP OF THE YEAR sponsored by Skelton Truck Lines
FRANCOPHONE ARTIST OR GROUP OF THE YEAR sponsored by Desjardins
Les Rats d’Swompe
RISING STAR sponsored by Slaight Music
MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR sponsored by MNP
“Keep It Simple” – James Barker Band
FANS’ CHOICE sponsored by Ontario Creates
RECORD PRODUCER OF THE YEAR sponsored by Metalworks Studios
Jeff Dalziel – Aaron Allen, The Abrams, Dan Davidson, Chris Labelle, Ryan Langdon
INDUSTRY PERSON OF THE YEAR sponsored by Calcul8
Shannon Ella, Pure Country/Complete Country
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (LARGE MARKET)
CKBY Country 101.1, Ottawa
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (MEDIUM MARKET) sponsored by Lucknow’s Music in the Fields
CHCQ-FM Cool 100.1 FM, Belleville
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (SMALL MARKET)
CICX PURE COUNTRY 106, Orillia
NIELSEN COMPASS AWARD
In these uncertain times of Covid-19, the live event community has been called to a whisper in so many ways. Felling the struggles of a musician is an almost daily occurrence for some, but adding a worldwide pandemic into the mix makes for a challenging add on to conquer. We are asked to adapt to and flow with what’s happening around us. So we must get creative on how we do life, and shows differently. This award show reminded me of the struggle not so long ago, for Cadence Grace from Runaway Angel in her battle with Leukemia. Some of the same country music artists banded together to show support for a fellow comrade. This time, the CMA’s saw us all standing strong for the dimed industry as a whole.
For more photos from the event, head to our Facebook page!
Wandering EMm Photography origins came from a wanderer who saw the world in vibrant colour, unique compositions, and an understanding of the dance between light and dark. With her ’Beastie’ as she affectionately calls her camera, EMm can be found at most events, festival, and of course, is a regular at a concert. EMm has a strong passion for music. Using her camera, EMm can capture that moment in time where melody meets lyric, and exists as memory. Musicians have a tiny window to imprint you with their gift of song, given as thoughts, emotions, and experiences. EMm would like to seize that opportunity, and photograph that moment when it all connects. ‘How far will you wander… creatively?’