The third time is the charm for Edmonton’s Cadence Weapon, as he became the winner of the 2021 Polaris Music Prize for his album, Parallel World.
Streamed by CBC Music on CBC Gem, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, the Polaris Music Prize Winner Celebration saw host by CBC Music’s Angeline Tetteh-Wayoe joined by fellow broadcaster, Odario Williams, Polaris Music Prize jury members, Calum Singerland of Exclaim! magazine, Michelle Da Silva of Xtra magazine and CBC Music Senior Producer, Jess Huddleston, as they took deep dives into the 10 Short List nominees.
Opening the show was an explosive performance from 2020 Polaris Music winner, Backxwash, who performed “I Lie Here Buried” from her latest album, I Lie Here Buried with My Rings and My Dresses. She would return to perform “Nine Hells,” and to do the honours of announcing Cadence Weapon as the 2021 Polaris Prize winner.
Previous to his 2021, CadenceWeapon was a Short List nomination for the Polaris Music Prize twice; first in 2006 for his album, Breaking Kayfabe, and again in 2012 for his album, Hope in Dirt City.
As the winner of the 2021 Polaris Music Prize, Cadence Weapon will receive $50,000. During his virtual acceptance speech from Toronto, he said he wants to use the monetary resource to create a voter registration fund to assist would-be voters in the upcoming Toronto municipal and Ontario provincial elections.
Although Cadence Weapon is the winner of the 2021 Polaris Music Prize, the nine other nominated acts did not walk away empty handed. The artists whose albums make the 2021 Short List will receive $3,000 each courtesy of Slaight Music, and new for 2021, Polaris Music Prize partnered with Play MPE to award Cadence Weapon with a global music promotion distribution package for one release (single or album) worth up to $3,025 CAD, while the remaining nine Short List artists will be gifted with distribution packages worth up to $1,000 CAD each.
Also announced during the Polaris Music Prize Winner Celebration were the nominees for the Slaight Family Polaris Heritage Prize, which recognizes and honours two landmark Canadian albums released prior to the inaugural Polaris Music Prize in 2006. This year’s nominees include important albums by k.d. lang, Michie Mee and L.A. Luv, Rufus Wainwright, Jean Leloup and Corb Lund. The winning albums will be determined through a public vote, and through a jury vote. To see all the nominees for the 2021 Slaight Family Polaris Heritage Prize and to vote for your favourite, make sure to visit polarismusicprize.ca/heritage-prize/ before October 18, 2021.
Born and raised with thoughts and aspirations of becoming a famous bassist in Sarnia, ON; Emily Plunkett now lives in Gatineau, QC, and considers National Capital Region home sweet home. A product of the Beatles, MuchMusic and the Southwestern Ontario summer festival circuit (circa 2000), her interest and love in concert photography came almost completely by accident when her journalism program at Algonquin College required courses in photojournalism (and she quickly realized that photos taken at concerts using a DSLR are enormously better than ones she was taking on a point-and-shoot she bought for a trip to England). She is extremely proud of the fact she has seen Sloan in some form or another 25 times.