Check us out each Friday as we feature a new up and coming Canadian Country Indie artist!!
Our pick this week for “FRESH FACE FRIDAY” is Bree Taylor !Her music career began at the age of six !! She performed in local choirs, and although she does not come from a musical family, she knew at an early age, that performing was the career path she was meant for. Bree has trained with the legendary vocal coach to the stars, Bob Garrett (Los Angeles), as well as, Lorraine Lawson in Toronto (vocal coach for CTV’s TV show “The Launch”). Pretty cool if you ask us!
She is one very talented young woman! Everything from having her own podcast, to online diy, to Canadian Country artist, and so much more !
Her first hit-single & video, “Broken Dreams” made its debut in September 2016, launching her songwriting and performing career. Her Pop EP “Unbreakable” was released in 2018. Bree’s inspired sound is a combination of pop and country and it has proven to be a perfect blend !
In 2019, Bree was nominated for "Best New Artist" for the Mississauga Music Awards. Which is quite an honour !
We met Bree a year ago and we soon realized, that she has a real zest for life and passion for music. She has a very unique and positive perspective, who likes to express her views that love is love, no matter what. Bree believes in equality for all people and is a huge supporter of the LGBTQ community. She said she “likes to write songs about resilience and strength and that no matter what life throws at us, we are stronger than we know and we can conquer anything!” We love that! She’s also supports causes, that are closest to her heart - including the “To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA), “ and the Canadian Mental Health Association. All worthy causes !
Bree recently performed at the first ever drive-in country music festival "Love Revolution Fest" on July 18th, along side other talented artists: Nicole Rayy, Suzi Kory, Mackenzie Leigh Meyer, Brian John Harwood from Kansas Stone, Alessia Cohle, to name a few. Truly an amazing experience for her!
If you don’t have any plans this weekend, Bree is participating in a similar drive-in type event, on Saturday August 29th called HarmoniaFest in Milton, Ontario ! All proceeds going to Halton Women’s Place - make sure you check it out ! Another worthy cause !
Bree has been making major strides in country music the past year since her debut single "Turn It Up" July 2019. Her releases “Cry” and “Drive”, garnered over 160k views on their music videos combined, in only a few weeks of their releases. “Cry” sits at over 60k organic streams on Spotify being Bree’s most successful release yet.
Outside of music, like we said earlier - Bree has also made a name for herself in the podcast world with her hit show “Unapologetically Bree” about music, dating, relationships, positive living and more, which has become increasingly popular and is another way for her to interact and engage with her fans!
Her latest song is called "Burning Bridges" but don’t let that title fool you ! She likes to put her own positive spin on it, when most people consider negative, her reasoning is “sometimes, we need to burn the bridges of the past, in order to move forward in a more positive way”- Bree said. She even wrote this song and included a few co-writers ! It’s fun, has an upbeat melody, that will have you singing along instantly! You wouldn’t be alone, Burning Bridges has been receiving massive fan engagement online and is now playing on CBC Country Sirius XM radio. Such great news for sure!
We are so proud of Bree, and everything she’s accomplished! With a career and brand built on authenticity, honesty and resilience, Bree’s creative ambitions have no limitations. No matter what life throws at her, Bree is and always will be a fighter and she will keep writing songs, keep singing and will remain truly unapologetically Bree!
Our pick for “FRESH FACE FRIDAY ” Feature, is Burlington’s own, Josh Ross ! He’s been back and forth from Toronto area to Nashville, TN. The past few months he has been home, here in Canada.He can remember from a very young age, that he loved to sing, and music was always around, in the background. Josh played a lot of sports, and even played 4 years of University Football. After injuries sidelined him, he came back to his first love - music. We are so glad he did!!
Josh has spent many hours and time, honing his songwriting skills here at home and in Nashville. It can take a while to find other songwriters, that you feel a real connection with. He has said that “sometimes you just have to roll with it, when it comes to songwriting”. Everyone has their own way of writing, and there’s no right or wrong way to write a song. The hope is that when your song is done, that your fans connect and love it and we definitely do !
In 2017, Josh was a Finalist in the Boots & Hearts Music Festival ~ Chevy ~ Emerging Showcase. How cool is that ! He went on later that year, to win a showcase time slot at Lucknow's Music In The Fields - and won a Finalist slot in the Canadian Indie week. Performing on those high profile stages, alongside some even bigger names, helped to improve and build his performance skills and expand his fan base. Those experiences must have been very rewarding & we’re sure he learned a lot as well.
Some of his musical influences include and are not limited to, Steve Earle, Sam Hunt, Alan Jackson & Garth Brooks. In the past 8 months of 2020, he’s released a few singles, called “Born With A Boyfriend” (over 1 Million streams) & “Chevy” and his latest single, is called “Love Never Looked Like Us “ - over 100,000+ streams first two weeks !!!! So exciting for him !
With a voice like his, we feel there’s nothing he can’t achieve and we are certainly happy to go along for the ride! There are plenty of good things coming, including sharing with us, some new music, so we are looking forward to that ! While we wait, make sure to check out his current music and his website ! Check out his video below for “Chevy” ! And his new single “Love Never Looked Like Us”!
Our pick for “Fresh Face Friday” Feature is Ryan Anderson! He is currently located in Havelock, Ontario, but he has spent time in Campbellford as well. He’s a singer, songwriter and father. His family means the world to him. He said he has always loved country music and has enjoyed learning, and writing his own songs. He started singing at the young age of 6 !
His release “Forever More” made it onto the Country Thunder Network - Top 20 Charts in North America - arriving at #11. Ryan’s latest release called “Doing It” has climbed to # 16 on the Canadian Indie Country Countdown last week, and we feel it’s going to continue to climb, as it’s rather catchy !
Ryan has Five Nominations by Fair Play Country Music at the Red Carpet Awards, originally supposed to be held in Holland. The nominations include ~ Traditional Original, Country Rock Original, Modern Country Music Original, Musician of the Year, and Collaboration in Music. Congratulations and we have our fingers crossed ! Good Luck !
There are in the works some travel in his future to Australia and New Zealand - that’s pretty exciting !Ryan’s influences include Alan Jackson, Charlie Daniels, Bobby Wills and the Tragically Hip. His voice reminds us of Blake Shelton, as it has a classic country sound.
He has a new single coming out very soon, as part of a three song EPK (Electronic Press Kit). We have heard teasers already, so you will want to keep your eyes and ears, open for that !
Our pick for “FRESH FACE FRIDAY” Feature, is the Griffin Brothers! They have a great mix, a genuine love for traditional, and 90’s country - but with the drive and punch of modern country. Combined with a deep understanding of their roots, is what makes these two stand out. They currently reside in Kitchener, Ontario. They have gone from learning their craft, to working and playing anywhere with anyone, while continuing to work on their first single,"Rust on it". Not an easy task for sure, but a worthwhile one, especially at such a young age! Being so immersed in music, for their entire lives, has really given these boys a strong sense of direction, as to where they want their sound to be! We were so impressed with their big sound for a duo and their harmonies, are just outrageous! Just goes to show why Sirius XM is currently playing their single - which is pretty exciting for sure !
Ricky and Alex grew up with a musical family and have been on stage since the age of two. The boys have both said, “Music was really the only thing we knew how to do. We both have played for so long, we never really decided to do it professionally, it was just something we have done our whole lives and wanted to take it further.” Well, it looks like it certainly has panned out !
These two have been working in the studio with their producer Shawn Moore, to cut their first EP with 3 new songs, coming out digitally very soon.Both Alex and Ricky are multi-instrumentalist. Ricky is trained in classical percussion, guitar and trumpet. Alex training in brass, percussion both jazz and classical, and guitar. Griffin Brothers bring a high energy show that will keep you moving and your hands clapping! They cannot wait to get back out playing shows and meeting people who also share the special love of music!
Make sure you check out this duo ! We look forward to seeing their new music! We feel the Griffin Brothers are a duo to watch ! They have a very bright future !
~ LEMON CASH ~
Our pick for “FRESH FACE FRIDAY” Feature is the band Lemon Cash ! This home-grown band consists of two brothers: Jeff and Cory Papineau located in Ottawa, Ontario. The band's name was inspired from their time as kids running a lemonade stand. The two would come home each day celebrating their hard-earned “lemon cash”. We love to hear the story behind the name, and that is one great story and a relatable one ~ childhood memories and good times!
Lemon Cash was formed in 2014, as a cover band playing in front of family and friends in their hometown. Once they gained experience and worked on their stage presence, by playing in front of crowds, they decided to try their hand at creating their own original material ~ as an alternative indie-rock band. They had some success and received lots of radio traction all over the province. After three solid years of playing as a five-piece band, they decided to split up on good terms. Despite the disappointing turn of events, it did not prevent the brothers from continuing to carry the Lemon Cash brand name. Looking to evolve their music, they decided to transition into the country genre. We are happy they did!
The inspiration to switch to the country genre is all Thanks to their parents. They introduced Cory and Jeff to country music when the brothers were young. All we can say is Thank You mom & dad ! Both Cory and Jeff, listened to a wide range of artists such as Garth Brooks, Brooks & Dunn, Tim McGraw, Joe Diffie, George Jones and George Strait, to name a few. The warmth and comforting sound of the country music sound, resonated with them growing up and inspired them to create music of their own.
You can hear the diversity of their individual musical influences in Lemon Cash’s sound. Cory, the vocalist and guitar player of the duo, admires singers like Kenny Chesney, Bryan Adams and John Mayer. Then Jeff, on the drums, has always had an ear for harmonies and beautiful melodies. He appreciates groups such as Bee Gees, Beach Boys and Eagles, all-encompassing that easy listening sound. Although you may not expect that the two brothers seem to have their ears set on older music, there is no question, that they are still keeping it real, remaining in the loop for new music and new sounds to support their creativity. Lemon Cash’s music is truly a collaborative effort, reflective of their favourite artists and music, while creating their own distinct sound.
Lemon Cash has some big news! They recently signed a single-song deal with multi-platinum producer Jeff Dalziel, whose accolades as you know, include 2018 CCMA, 2018 CMAO, 2019 CCMA and 2019 CMAO Producer of the Year. They are working together to fine tune their sound. Next step will be to select the most effective song for production, and connect with singers/songwriters in Nashville to help them expand their musical horizons. Keep your fingers crossed !
Jumping into the world of country music, Lemon Cash is off to a heck of a start. First they released their 4 song EP on October 31, 2019, titled “Scary Sometimes”. The music industry certainly can be ! With landing a deal with Jeff Dalziel, and releasing a new EP and then making connections in the country the world, it’s safe to say, that these Ottawa natives, are on the right path to what seems to be a very promising career in country music !
We had the pleasure of seeing Lemon Cash perform live for the first time at fundraiser in Pembroke, Ontario and we were very impressed with this band ! We feel this is just the beginning, of a very bright future and that we will be seeing more of them, hopefully sometime soon !!
They are on all the social media platforms ! Included is one of their original songs ~ Enjoy !
~ ALEXIS TAYLOR ~
Our “Fresh Face Friday “ Featured artist, is a singer and songwriter, Alexis Taylor! She was raised in the small town of Huntsville, Ontario but was captivated by Music City ~ Nashville,TN.
From a very young age, Alexis showed a great love and passion for music through her songwriting and acoustic guitar playing. “Both my parents are songwriters, and have always been very musical. Music is a part of me - it has always been in my blood.”, said Taylor. Besides her family, she looked up to Shania Twain & Avril Lavigne, Dolly, Faith, Miranda, as well as, Carrie Underwood. Talk about powerhouse women ! You can hear their influences in her songwriting. She wrote her very first song at age 12. Taylor said “In my opinion, country music conveys a sense of honesty and sincerity, which is hard to find in any other genre. It seems to tell stories of love and heartbreak, good times and hardships - but more than that, country music is a way of life.” We couldn’t agree more ! Her songwriting is based on either her own real life situations, or the things that others are going through, all which are relatable to the audience.
After making her very first trip to Nashville, Tennessee, and falling in love with it, Alexis decided to make the move to Music City. Shortly after, Alexis saw the launch of her international career in Summer 2016 with a tour throughout Scandinavia, opening for renowned singer/songwriter Doug Seegers. This allowed her to grow as a performer, and she was so grateful to Doug for the amazing opportunity. Taylor has gone on numerous tours performing in places across North America such as Calgary, Seattle, California, and Mexico.
After she released her first single in 2018, Alexis has had the opportunity to perform at events such as Canadian Music Week in Toronto, CMA Fest in Nashville, USO Northwest Gala and opened for artists such as Marshall Tucker Band, Love and Theft, and Meghan Patrick. Alexis has also received numerous nominations and accepted the award for “Female Vocalist of The Year” at the 2018 Tennessee Music Awards and was nominated for “Modern Country Vocalist of The Year” at the 2020 Josie Music Awards. She also held the #1 position for ten consecutive weeks on Reverb Nation's provincially ranked country artists charts. Congratulations!
Her second single “How Do You Sleep” received international recognition and airplay in the short time, after the debut release hit country radio in January 2019. Alexis is continuing to follow her dream as a musician; performing at a variety of venues, all over North America, and has been working on new music, that she will be releasing soon. Her latest release, and video - last week~ if you haven’t seen it yet, we’re pretty confident, that you are going to be “Cool With That”!!
~ JUSTINE SLETTEN ~
Our pick for “FRESH FACE FRIDAY” feature artist is Justine Sletten!She is a 19 year old singer/songwriter who’s music, is bordering between country and pop! Sletten hails from a small town Hazlet, population 100, in Saskatchewan!
Her interest of singing started at her church, in front of family. Fast forward to the first notes of “Up” by Canada’s own Shania Twain, Justine was hooked and spent her youth, working hard and building her skill set in the music industry. We can relate and understand, because Shania has inspired many people, whether it’s to become a Canadian Country Fan or a new Country Artist, like Justine!
Justine has been motivated, with all the positive encouragement, she received in response to her music, and from participating in numerous competitions and showcases in Western Canada. It’s all those little things working in combination, that have gotten her to where she is today. She wrote all her songs on her debut EP, entitled ‘Groundbreaking’, which was released in July of 2017, at the age of 16. Amazing ! Justine was ecstatic with the amount of radio play it received, given the fact that she was new to the country music scene. For the next few years Justine focused on developing her songwriting, musicality, and finishing high school, rightly so.
Over the last year, Justine has focused on the release of two upcoming singles, that she is incredibly excited about. Justine’s music influences come through in her upbeat, new country style, reminiscent of Kelsea Ballerini and Maren Morris, yet still classic country pop sounds, of Shania Twain ! All of these women have truly influenced the progression of her sound.
Performing since the age of 14, Justine has used competitions to help her build her confidence on stage. In 2018, Justine competed in the Global Country Canada Star Search, winning the opportunity to travel to Nashville! How very exciting and what a wonderful opportunity for her, especially at such a young age! While there, she worked with industry professionals and competed in an international competition, winning 1st in songwriting and 2nd in performance! Congratulations!
Justine’s other career highlight thus far, was when her debut EP ‘Groundbreaking’, spent it’s first three days in the Top 10 Country Albums in Canada on iTunes. Justine is very excited to share her new music, in the hopes that it will help put her career on the right track moving forward. Although she will always love her Saskatchewan home, she is hopeful that her hard work and determination will one day help her share her music around the world. We feel there’s no doubt about that, her future is looking pretty bright !
A week ago, her song “All Bad” was the third “Most Downloaded Country Single in Canada”! She didn’t write this one, but it was a new learning experience for her, to connect with a song she hadn’t written. It’s so catchy, that it will have you dancing in no time at all ! Or at least, it had this Christine dancing across the living room floor! Big future ahead for Justine Sletten! Check out her lyric video for “All Bad”, today !
~ JADE TURNER ~
Our pick for “Fresh Face Friday” feature is Jade Turner! Jade is an award winning songwriter and performer, and it’s only the beginning for this charming rising star, in Manitoba’s country scene. According to her family, she started singing right around the time she started talking ! She wrote her first song around the age of 8 and was on stage for the first time, at the age of 17.
She was the 2017’s IMA ( Indigenous Music Awards) for Best Country Album & was crowned the 2018’s MCMA (Manitoba Country Music Association Awards) for Emerging Artist of the Year awards, and has several other nominations, to be proud of as well!
Jade’s brand new single was just released July 3rd, and is titled ‘Highway Town’, it’s a nostalgia-inducing, fun, sunny jam. It was on the ‘Most Downloaded Country Single in Canada this week ! How exciting is that ! Congrats! Turner has shown, that she has a versatile sound, whose stories resonate with music lovers and country fans everywhere. She has some more serious and thought-provoking musings, like her release ‘Run Carly Run’. Her new batch of songs were produced by multi-award winning producer Murray Pulver, who lends his talents to bring to life the full emotion of each story Jade tells. Which is tell tale characteristics of an amazing producer.
Turner’s music does a great job at conveying her maturity, and her wise soul, who’s learned a lot throughout the years, and she chooses to share that wealth, through her gift of song. Rather beautifully we may add!
The album is self-titled, which is fitting, as it is filled with songs that express different aspects of Jade’s personality and her passions. Her eclectic interests, coupled with the unpredictability of how life can be at times, makes for a one of a kind, unique take and journey, on this album.
Turner has many talents, one of which includes songwriting, which allows her to tell her stories, that makes for an emotional ride of an album, that country fans will find themselves relating to throughout.
Jade’s fun-loving, blatantly honest, adventurous self, is exactly what shines through in her music, whether she’s sharing her experience, hoping to teach us a lesson, expressing her own worries or looking to induce a smile!Jade Turner is well on her way to making her mark on the Canadian Country music scene, and genuinely feels, the best is yet to come! We couldn’t agree more ! She’s definitely one to watch ! You can connect with Jade on all the social platforms!
~ CAROLINA EAST ~
Our pick for “ FRESH FACE FRIDAY” featured artist is Carolina East! Originally grew up in abrador, before her family moved to South River, Newfoundland, near St. John’s. She started singing at the young age of sixteen, with persuasion from her music teacher. She started learning and singing Newfoundland traditional songs, then she moved into classic rock, rhythm and blues and country styles. By the time she was twenty, she was on her way to having her music career all figured out and was singing professionally and on a full-time basis! That’s very young to know what you want to do, and it certainly has paid off!
Carolina is a self-taught musician whose voice conveys natural warmth and honesty, as well as, amazing powerful vocals and charismatic stage presence. It’s that combination, that sparked the interest of multi-platinum producer Rob Wells! They have recorded two studio albums together. Their successful partnership, now covers songwriting, production and recording, music management and promotion.
East learned in 2005 from family, that she had roots in the Mi’kmaq community, through relatives in St. George’s Bay, an important area for indigenous culture in Newfoundland. This is where she learned of the long-standing tradition & connection of music, in her family. She finally felt like she belonged, and it also helped her make sense of her pull toward music. Now, she says, “When I sing I feel like I am going home. It’s where I feel the most like myself.”
In the past eighteen years, Carolina has performed more than one thousand times. She has performed in concert and shared the stage with Alan Doyle, The Secrets and Theo Tams, among other acts. Carolina has won the MusicNL Award for Country Artist of the Year 2020, and Artist of the Year in 2018. She’s had several nominations, for the MusicNL Awards (four) East Coast Music Association (ECMA) (twice), as well as, Indigenous Music Awards (twice). She was also a Top Ten Finalist in The Canadian Songwriting Competition in the “Undiscovered” category. There is no doubt, once regional and national audiences hear her in concert, that they will agree, that Carolina East is an artist to be reckoned with!
Carolina just released her 2020 love-drunk summer single ~ “ Soaked in Whiskey”- a song about feeling a strong connection with someone and pursuing a relationship with someone you might not normally pursue, without the help of a “liquid courage”. I am sure we have either experienced that ourselves or know of someone who has! If you haven’t heard it, you’re missing out !!! Check it out now !