ADISQ kicked off its awards ceremonies cycle with the presentation of the first two of three galas, where Québec’s music industry was gathered. A total of 45 Félix trophies were awarded during the Premier Gala de l’ADISQ, hosted by Sarahmée, as well as the industry awards gala, that took place at Montréal’s MTELUS and Place des Arts’ Piano Nobile, respectively, on Nov. 1, 2023.

Among the SOCAN members who stood out, Daniel Bélanger was the favourite with nine artistic and industry nominations. Unable to attend, he won three, including the coveted Album of the Year – Critics’ Choice and Album of the Year – Pop for Mercure en mai. Philippe Brach also won three trophies, two Félix at the Gala de l’industrie, and Album of the Year – Alternative at the Premier Gala for Les gens qu’on aime.

We met Richard Séguin in the press room just after he picked up Album of the Year – Folk for Les liens les lieux, and asked about his impressions of the win, and the pace of his songwriting.

SOCAN, ADISQ Gala, 2023, Richard Séguin

Select the image to play the French YouTube video interview with Richard Séguin (English subtitled version to come.)

Other awards were presented to:

  • Ginette Reno: Album of the Year – Adult Contemporary C’est tout moi
  • Matt Holubowski: Album of the Year – Anglophone Like Flowers on a Molten Lawn
  • Valaire: Album of the Year – Multilingual or Other Languages Jazz Futon
  • Francis Degrandpré: Album of the Year – Country Soir de quai
  • Anomalie : Album of the Year – Jazz Galerie
  • Shauit : Album of the Year – Indigenous languages Natukun
  • Alexandra Stréliski : Album of the Year – Instrumental Music Néo-Romance
  • Pierre Kwenders: Album of the Year – World Music José Louis and the Paradox of Love
  • Loud: Album of the Year – Rap Aucune promesse
  • Les Cowboys Fringants : Album of the Year – Re-interpretation En concert avec l’Orchestre symphonique de Montréal
  • Les Trois Accords : Album of the Year – Rock Présence d’esprit
  • Le Vent du Nord, Le Quatuor Trad, Philippe Prud’homme : Album of the Year – Traditional Les voix du Vent avec cordes et piano
  • Jonathan Roy : Live Show of the Year – Anglophone Life Distortions Tour
  • Salebarbes: Live Show of the Year – Variety/Re-interpretations Salebarbes
  • Clay & Friends: Live Show of the Year – Multilingual or Other Languages AGUÀ
  • Ariane Roy: Video of the Year – Kundah

Premier Gala ADISQ 2023At the Industry Gala, the Félix award for Publishing Team of the Year, presented by APEM – who collaborated with ADISQ to reintroduce this honour after several dormant years – went to Third Side Music. Homage was also paid to Rosaire Archambault, former member of the Board of Directors of SOCAN and ADISQ, among others, for his impressive career. The late Guy Latraverse, another major contributor to Québec show business, also received a posthumous tribute.

Naomi won the $10,000 Bell Media Breakout Artist cash prize. For its second edition, the Collegial Song of the Year Award, a $5,000 cash prize, went to Gab Bouchard for “Dépotoir.” This prize was awarded by a jury composed of students from 19 cégeps in Québec.

A number of SOCAN members performed at the Premier Gala de l’ADISQ, including Ariane Roy, Bleu Jeans Bleu, Jay Scøtt and Mike Clay, Les Shirley, Les sœurs Boulay, Matiu, Shauit, Shreez, Zach Zoya, and Sarahmée, who hosted the event for the first time.

The show is available to watch online Nov. 3, 2023, and will be aired on Nov. 5, 2023 at 6:00 p.m. ET on Télé-Québec. This 45th annual celebration of the Québec music industry will conclude on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023 at 8:00 p.m. ET with the televised Gala, once again hosted by comedian Louis-José Houde, and broadcast on ICI Radio-Canada Télé live from the Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier of Place des Arts.

For a complete list of the Premier Gala and Industry gala winners, access the ADISQ website.


SOCAN presented a “Cookin’ Beats” panel with JUNO Award-winning, multi-platinum-selling producer and instrumentalist Akeel Henry  at the SOCAN-sponsored 2023 edition of IMSTA FESTA, a free, one-day music tech conference, presented by the International Music Software Trade Association (IMSTA), and held in the Rogers Communications building at Toronto Metropolitan University on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023.

Henry has produced or co-produced Jazmine Sullivan’s “Hurt Me So Good” and  John Legend’s “Splash” (featuring Ty Dolla $ign & Jhene Aiko), among others. He’s toured with Daniel Caesar and executive-produces buzzing Canadian R&B act LOONY. Young beat-makers, producers, artists, and industry personnel packed the room for the panel, moderated by SOCAN Creative Executive, Black Music, Lord Quest. Henry demonstrated some of his techniques, offered a look into his creative process,  and provided the crowd with tips on how to raise their production game.

Lord Quest also conducted an interview for the panel “AI in Music” with Illmind, a two-time Grammy winner and multi-platinum-selling producer who’s worked with artists such as Kanye West, J Cole, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Beyoncé & Jay-Z, and many more. Illmind founded “Blap-Kits,” a series of beat-making tools available for music producers; hosts the weekly podcast Illmind Put The Loop On; released the first ever sample pack NFT; and built a metaverse recording studio for virtual reality meet-ups. He discussed the already profound impact of AI on the music industry, from the rapid generation of melody ideas to mentoring aspiring musicians; how he deploys AI to transform a demo vocalist’s voice into that of an artist, opening up exciting possibilities for pitching songs to that artist; and his newly-developed AI clone ChatBot, known as BlapGPT.

In a coup for IMSTA FESTA, the keynote speech was delivered by Noah “40” Shebib, the producer for all of Drake’s albums, and co-founder of his OVO Sound label. Shebib boasts an impressive tally of 18 Grammy Award nominations, securing two prestigious wins. He’s also lent his production talents to the likes of Lil Wayne, Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, and Jamie Foxx.

SOCAN Creative Executive, East Coast,  Houtan Hodania also presented a SOCAN 101 panel, Music Rights and Royalties, during IMSTA FESTA 2023.

From Oct. 11-13, 2023, SOCAN was on-site at the MaMA Festival, a not-to-be-missed music convention in Paris. The event brought the neighbourhoods of Pigalle and Montmartre to life through three days and nights of conferences, professional networking events, and concerts open to the general public.

The 2023 edition put Canada in the spotlight thanks to the “Focus Canada” series, celebrating our country’s diverse music scene, and strengthening ties between Canada, France, and the rest of the world.

SOCAN played a key role in supporting more than 20 Canadian artists, who performed in various showcases. These talented Québécois and Canadian representatives received a warm welcome from the Parisian public, and SOCAN was proud to be there to support them, thousands of miles away from home.

We seized the opportunity to chat with four of our French-speaking members, and give them a platform to discuss their aspirations when it comes to exporting their music to France, and the world.



SOCAN, Interview, Fredz, MaMA, 2023
Select the image to play the YouTube video interview with Fredz

“Fredz is a 21-year-old rapper from Longueuil, a Montréal suburb, who’s rapidly turning a lot of heads, and who makes no bones about his determination to conquer the hip-hop market in France. He discussed his ambitions, challenges, and tips for success, and serves as a source of inspiration condensed into a few minutes.



Mayfly, MaMA, SOCAN, Interview, 2023

Select the image to play the YouTube video interview with Mayfly

We caught up with Charlie and Emma, who form the duo Mayfly, to discuss their creative process, their desire to export their music, and the challenges for a bilingual band looking to develop their audience in Québec.



Mimi O'Bonsawin, Interview, SOCAN, MaMA, 2023

Select the image to play the YouTube video interview with Mimi O’Bonsawin

We also met Mimi O’Bonsawin, an artist from Greater Sudbury, born of a Franco-Ontarian mother and an Abenaki (First Nation) father. She recently released Boréale, her first album in French, after five projects in English. She shared her desire to export her music while preserving her authenticity.



SOCAN, Interview, Ariane Roy, MaMA, 2023

Select the image to play the YouTube video interview with Ariane Roy

We caught up with Ariane Roy backstage at her showcase, and she told us about her ambitions to export to Europe, having already taken a number of steps in her strategy to make a name for herself over there.


The Focus Canada series at MaMA Festival was a unique opportunity to showcase Canadian talent and promote artistic and professional exchanges between Canada, France and the rest of the world. Once more, SOCAN has proved its essential role in supporting the music from Québec and Canada on the international stage.